Tips on the Dinning Plan

Discussion in 'UK Trip Planning Forum' started by Supercod, Mar 20, 2013.

  1. Supercod

    Supercod Remember Supercod is a friend, not food!

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    Hi, I understand that you now pay the tip when on the dinning plan (you didn't in 2005) anyway I am not happy that we are automatically being charged 18% for every meal because we will be a party of 7.

    I have no issues paying that tip on a table service meal but on a buffet meal, no way am I paying 18% for someone to bring me a drink when I have to go get my own food. I take it I am not forced to pay this 18% and can politely tell me server that he/she done nothing to warrant a 18% tip and kindly change that to a 10% one if it's a buffet ;-)

    I am not being tight here but on deluxe dinning plan, I could be paying out over a thousand dollars on tips over 10 nights. Unless I have my maths way wrong on this.
     
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  3. scoobydooby

    scoobydooby Dreaming of next Disney trip

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    I'm not casting any kind of opinion here, but I don't think it's a choice with a party of that size, although I've never heard what happens if you try to argue it.
     
  4. tinkerpea

    tinkerpea DIS Veteran

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    I also don't believe there to be a choice when you are a party over 6!

    I tend to agree with you on the fact that I'm also not happy to pay 18% on buffets we are also a party of 6, but you do know before going into the restaurant that you will be charged and so have the choice NOT to do buffets!

    Quick example for you,
    In 2008 we was at coral reef a TS meal our server was plane awful and we complained a few times throughout the meal that we was not happy, we was a party of 8 and although we booked together we was seated 4 tables apart, In my view with the awful service ( he was rude to my 2 twins when they asked very politely for a refill, he told them try should not have downed the 1at drink he didn't have time to keep filling up their drinks!!!) they was 4!
    Our drinks was not brought out for over 20 mins after we ordered them and he explained nothing to us about the menu.
    Anyways we told the manager we wasn't paying It and we would leave 10% and feel lucky we did that, the manager said we had to pay it as we was a table of 8! He told us when we refused that he was going to pay the server himself and put onto the computer as we was on the DDP that we didn't pay the tips and that every other TS meal we did would know about it!
    I was so upset and utterly disgusted that of course we went to Guest services at our hotel and they was so very sorry, and sorted it straight away telling us that they didn't even think he could link it plus I had booked the TS meals in different last names due to it being out wedding.

    Anyways just wanted to tell you that as they can get pretty funny about it, I mean if I refused on bad service and your just going to refuse for NO reason I wonder how they will take it.?

    Can't you if your not happy about it just choose not to do buffets?
     
  5. GirlDreamer

    GirlDreamer DIS Veteran

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    They wouldn't take of the gratuity just because you don't feel it's right to pay it. It's a Disney policy. In the US servers depend on their tips to pay for their bills. A server there don't get full pay as they would here in the UK. When I was a server in Disney, I got paid $3.50 an hour. If you get bad service, then that's a different matter. Then you could complain to a manager that then should remove it. But as long as the server is doing their job, there's no reason why you shouldn't pay. If it's that big of a deal, then don't do the buffets.

    And to tinkerpea: What a horrible story! Your reservations aren't linked at all, so another restaurant wouldn't be able to see any comments they would choose to put into your bookings.
     
  6. dansamy

    dansamy DIS Veteran

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    You can choose not to go to buffets. I don't tip 18% for a buffet either, but I am not with a party of 6 or more. However, we now have a TIW card & even adding the mandated 18%, we still pay less than the menu price plus my usual tip percentage.
     
  7. Elise79

    Elise79 Moderator Moderator

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    The gratuity can only be removed by a manager and for that to happen there would need to be a complaint for bad service. It is clear before you go what the policy is for large groups.

    If you don't wan to tip 18% like others have suggested avoid buffets however our severs at buffets work just as hard clearing plates and keeping our table clear as a regular restaurant server.
     
  8. klangkat

    klangkat Mouseketeer

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    This is correct :)
    If you experience genuinely poor service throughout a meal, that can't be resolved, then speaking to a manager and explaining the situation can result in having the gratuity deducted.
    However, it's very, very clear Disney policy that when you go as a party of 6 or more 18% gratuity is also added.
    I'm from the UK to so am aware of the culture shock that can occur when people first encounter tipping in the US, however you have to just budget for it as part of the overall cost of your holiday, because it is as mandatory as anything else. You wouldn't just not pay for parking because you thought it's too much? Or demand a free locker because you needed one and didn't want to pay? No, of course you wouldn't, but the 18% gratuity charge is just as much Disney policy as these charges are. :)
     
  9. Pootle

    Pootle <a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis-sponsor/" targ

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    ita
     
  10. Supercod

    Supercod Remember Supercod is a friend, not food!

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    What's funny is when I booked the DDP the Disney person told me the reason they removed the automatic gratuities and "allow" guest to pay it themselves was many guest felt they didn't get as a good a service because the people serving just expected to get the gratuity automatically. Don't get me wrong I did tip on top of the Disney gratuity for amazing service but honestly that's a rubbish excuse for removing it from the Dinning Plan especially when they automatically add it if you have a bigger family ;-)

    I can tell you one thing for sure, if it was bad service in any restaurant they would not be getting paid a tip, it's not a legal requirement to pay for bad service no matter what the menu says.

    As most of you seem to be saying don't do buffet's however as most of our buffet's are character meals, I do hope the person in the suit gets a share of the tips and not the full amount going to the person who delivered 1 drink to the table and removed the plates ;-)

    What's interesting is that Disney seems to be underpaying their staff and folk seem to think that's ok. Please understand that I think it's fine to tip up to 20% in the USA, I been loads of times and I accept that as normal, after all the way I look at it most restaurants are already that or cheaper than the UK without a Tip anyway. But can't condone paying staff such a poor wage and then expecting the customer to make up the difference.

    I do however feel that I am more than happy to pay extra per day on the Dining Plan if like Dinner Shows, Private In-Room Dining and Cinderella’s Royal Table. That for Buffet meals, especially Character Dining that Gratuities are included in these like they are for the 3 mentioned before.

    DDP is not exactly cheap and if they could do it in 2005 all the way up to 2009 (and it included everything), they should still be able to do it now or offer an option, so you can just grab your room key and go, again don't mind paying more for that, because that's a value added service.
     
  11. wayneg

    wayneg Moderator Moderator

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    We have done DDP as a party of 6 for last 2 years, I felt service was not as good as we get as a party of 3 in a few places but for me it wasn't bad enough to enter into negotiations with a manager. Complaining spoils an evening for me, for sake of $5-10 being removed off the bill its not worth it but I am sure others feel different.

    The person in the suit gets a full wage, no tips go to them as far as I know.

    Disney are not underpaying, they are paying them a legal wage. In the US when you buy a meal it does not include service, the price in the menu is for food, cooking & costs, it does not include the wait staff, that is paid by the diner at the end of the meal depending on the level of service you receive.
    As some diners fail to leave an adequate tip restaurants add a service charge for larger parties (usually 6-8 or larger).

    I believe many restaurants would prefer to include service into the menu prices and work more like our system but the wait staff would be far worse off with less wages and higher tax bills.
    Its just a different system out there we have to accept if we want to holiday there.
     
  12. Pootle

    Pootle <a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis-sponsor/" targ

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    I was going to reply along the same lines as Wayne, but he beat me to it. If I knew how to highlight with an iPad, I'd have picked out his last sentence.

    I'd also add that whatever you think about the DDP, it's Disney's game and Disney's rules. You can only choose whether to take part or not. And of course, I'm not referring to tipping for bad service here, but in many, many visits over 25 years, the worst I could complain about is so-so service, usually when very busy.
     
  13. Supercod

    Supercod Remember Supercod is a friend, not food!

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    Indeed I agree, and for the first 9 nights off site, I will be paying 20% tip every time, I have looked up the prices and like I said I am quid’s in compared to the UK.

    I have been reading online that the buffet staff do indeed have to work just as hard and that being the case, fair is fair but I still can't get away from the fact that in Dining Plans of old, the system was so much more simpler. You pay all the money upfront so when you went on holiday you didn't have to think about anything and in fact when the wait staff found out you had the Disney Dinning Plan they would jump for joy and would work hard on getting you to purchase the most expensive everything on the menu LOL ;-)
     
  14. Supercod

    Supercod Remember Supercod is a friend, not food!

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    Yes but a company makes money from customers and if enough of them think it was better the way they had it before, or that many feel an option to pay more so they can just grab their key card and go. They will listen if there is profit in it.
     
  15. Jayworm9

    Jayworm9 Thinks he has a WDW Addiction

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    Some mentions on this thread about people in character suits. This is a lie right? They are the actual characters. Ssshhhh
     
  16. Pootle

    Pootle <a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis-sponsor/" targ

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    Sure, we would all like more free stuff, but they will only offer what they need to, when they need to, and the evidence is that they are currently not having to try so hard to woo customers! Visitor numbers and profits are up. If that changes, so will their marketing strategies - not just because people tell them they liked it better before.
     
  17. wayneg

    wayneg Moderator Moderator

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    They are gutted if you don't order dessert, they will offer you a smaller portion something different to the menu or pack it up to take away, they want their 18%:rotfl2:

    I have done free DDP for past 4 years, been great but for me they have increased costs too much so back to offsite this year. Trouble is Disney are still getting plenty to take up their offers so they must be doing something right.

    :rotfl2:
     
  18. ChipnDaleRule

    ChipnDaleRule DIS Veteran

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    We did the DDP back in the day when tips were included,but that was also in the day when their was no such thing as free dining.When we have had the free dining i can honestly say that the level of service has been the same,buffet or signature.It is common knowledge that servers get a low wage,its a USA culture not a Disney one, so am more that happy to pay 18% to any server.We even payed 20% twice last year(Ron-California Grill & Oscar-Yachtsman Steakhouse) only once not paying at all for atrocious service.If your a party of six then you know (and can budget beforehand) approximately what the extra cost will be, but i would also hope that if you do get the same atrocious service as we did once it can be removed.
     
  19. Elise79

    Elise79 Moderator Moderator

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    As far as I can remember when the tips were removed from the DDP in 2008 it was done so because of negotiations with the unions regarding servers wages. At that time the cost of the DDP was also lowered slightly. The DDP only included everything up to 2007.

    You have chosen to upgrade to the DxDDP therefore as a large group you have to accept that the tips are going to be automatic and that is a cost you should have budgeted for.

    And yes I have been in a large party but I have never considered having them adjust my auto gratuity even at buffets as I knew it was going to be there when I chose and booked my ADRs.
     
  20. wayneg

    wayneg Moderator Moderator

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    Didn't realise OP had upgraded to Deluxe DDP, Ouch, that's a lot of money on tips.
    We struggled to use our credits on regular DDP, Deluxe is a lot of food, you won't be hungry for 10 days.
     
  21. mackay_j

    mackay_j DIS Veteran

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    2 things here.

    1 watch out in the sig restuarants- Some are fab- but tips can run to near $100 for a family of 4 (we had this in the flying fish they offered us the top main course in the rest as a special offer $69 - not always on for dd plan and also added in 'free starters') Oh and we didn't splash out on alcohol/drinks - 2 cocktails + 2 glasses wine + 4 soft drinks/waters.

    2. To thoses that have been used to eating ofsite cheaply- We were there over Xmas (well over at tampa) and found the prices have jumped - I mean really jumped. We only ate at more basic places as we were just having a few days at busch ahead of a cruise. We went to Olive garden and Red Lobster and for the 4 of us spent at least 50% more on each meal than we have done in the same places a few years ago last time Xmas 2010 (didn't eat off site last summer 2011 as on the dining plan). Most mains were all in the region of / $17-$22. The freebies they used to give out caesur salads/breads etc all now add on a few more $. Just a heads up for those that haven't been for a few years or like us have used the dd plan in recent years.


    To add to this - I am amazed that people manage to eat there way through the delux plan - we struggled with the reg plan- and we love eating out and went to several sig resturants
     

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