Does eating offsite save much money


Earning My Ears
Jan 17, 2001
I've been reading the thread about how much it costs to eat at Disney.

Does anyone eat offsite to save money, even while staying at Disney? Does eating offsite save a noticable ammount?

If so, are there any particularily good cheap spots to eat outside Disney, but conveniently close?
The more I go to Disney, the more I eat off-site. We usually stay at DVC resorts which do not have food courts, so we drive a little to save money.

For places that are close, I like Jungle Jims, Chevy's and Unos over at the Crossroads. My favorite cheap place to eat is Sweet Tomatoes, but it's pretty far away up near the Beltz Outlet Mall.

-- Robin
We've never stayed on-site so we always eat off-site. Snacks and small meals in the parks we do, but our big meals we eat off-site. One thing that we found works very well for us is to go back to our car and leave the park around 1-2:00 p.m. for lunch. Our girls fall asleep for awhile and we're able to have a leisurely lunch. Sometimes that has meant going to Olive Garden, ordering to go and eating in the car (if our girls are still sleeping) but it's a chance for all of us to take a break.
I would like to know from those of you who do eat out of the Resort area, how long are the wait times and how is the service. We have wanted to go off site but we have figured that waiting an hour or more for dinner is more aggravation that it would be worth.

You can stay on-site and not spend a ton on food if you don't eat at the sit-down restaurants in the parks. We are a big food-court/fast food family so it's fine for us to eat at counter-served places all week. I don't feel the need to HAVE to sit down in a restaurnt and have our meal brought to us by a waitress. We're satisfied standing in line for our food and taking it to our tables ourselves. We think Disney's counter restaurants are good and they give you a ton so we don't feel like we're paying too much. When we were on-site, we ate at the food court in the hotel, also. When we were offsite, (at HIFS) we ate a huge breakfast and only had to eat at the parks for lunch -- we returned to the hotel for dinner as we were there during off-season and the parks closed earlier.
Eating offsite is obviously cheaper. Go to Golden Corral for great Dinner Buffets for $5.99.
Home style food at an affordable cost. But if you are a penny pincher like me, go to there you will find about 200 online coupons. Once you get to the page, just click print and they all print out. Enjoy your extra there really such a thing as extra money? :rolleyes:

It all depends on you. My hubby and I prefer eating on site if we are only going to have fast food and a few little finger foods. Due to cost, we go off site for a sit down restaurant, but since we would rather spend our time at the parks, etc. we don't this very often.

I like those restaurants and also the Cracker Barrel in Kissammee. It is close to Krispy Kreme and we pick up a few donuts for our breakfasts. That saves us some cash and more importantly, time!


If you are as big a penny pincher as me, you will definitely want to eat off site! It all depends what your budget is and how frugal you are. I'm a cheapskate most of the time, I guess! :)

I couldn't bring myself to pay the prices at Epcot for dinner -- any I didn't care if I sat down to eat or ate fast food -- both were way too much for me! We did get a small popcorn for a snack, but brought our own snacks otherwise. The only restaurant that was fairly reasonable was the Mexican one at Epcot. The others were $18 and up per person! If it's just 2 adults, that's not THAT bad, but if you have 4 kids, you'd spend $100 a meal compared to $30-40 at a buffet!

Even the "fast food" at Epcot was high. It was $5-6 dollars, I think, for a bratwurst. We brought snacks, and left at 7:30pm for a late dinner off site.

(I loved Sweet Tomatoes, too. There are coupons, so make sure you use them when you go there.)

When we did eat lunch at Universal Studios, it cost $20 for my DH and I to each have a burger and fries and SPLIT a shake and a cookie. That was at a counter where you carry your own food, etc. The prices were comparable at Epcot. (We didn't go to the Magic Kingdom this time.)

Hope this helps!
I don't really find the cost of food inside the parks to be an issue. It usally costs my DH and I about $15 for the two of us for fast food in the parks. We went to our local cracker barrel tonight and it was $22 plus tip and we had to wait 20 minutes. Eating in the parks is definitly convenient and for that convenience I do not mind shelling out a few extra bucks. I find it to be a real pain to go off property for a meal. The days we go to Universal or Seaworld, we eat dinner off property at somewhere like Racerock, TGI Fridays, or Outback Steakhouse. Otherwise, Disneyfood is fine for us. There are so many places to choose from and in all different price ranges, ecspecially if your resort has a food court. Good luck in whatever you choose.



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