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Ask The Disney Experts Discuss Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan? in the Ask The Experts forums; Okay so I have a dilemma, I am really trying to do do WDW as cheap as I can. But I am torn between getting the dining plan or not. ...
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    supermariodrums's Avatar
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    Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    Okay so I have a dilemma, I am really trying to do do WDW as cheap as I can. But I am torn between getting the dining plan or not. I think if I was going to get it I would have to get the quick service because it is the cheapest, but my girlfriend is a very very picky eater. Aside from eating pancakes for breakfast and ice cream for a snack she may only eat fries for lunch/dinner. Me on the other hand I would use the dining plan to its fullest potential.

    Last time we went we brought pop-tarts for breakfast and brought assorted snack/meal bars with us to hold us over for one quick service meal. Then later at night we would get a snack. Quite frankly I did not mind this at all and I think it worked out quite well for the both of us.

    So, I guess the question I am proposing is will we really save money by getting the dining plan or will we be taking a hit?

    Thanks!
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    i myself love the dinning plan.. i love paying for it and it being outta the way.. my room, ticket, and food are already taken care of before i even leave the house.. it just brings me comfort.. and im also not looking at prices.. because thats something on vacation i dont like to do is worry about $$$. i love the dinning plan.. i personally get the one with a sit down dinner because we love to do character dining. but its to each their own
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    We never use the dining plan cos we always find in Florida heat we don't want to eat alot so will just get a burger or small pizza at some stage and not eat alot else


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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    I love the full dining plan personally but your situation it doesn't sound like you'd be using it to the fullest. I'd recommend the quick service plan if anything.
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    I wouldn't reccomend the dining plan if you want to do exactly what you did before. I think you wouldn't get the value out of it. We did the dining plan last September---free dining but the room was full rack rate... we figured we definitely got our moneys worth but it was alot of food. The biggest benefit for us was we tried several signature rests. that we otherwise never would have tried. Yachtsmans steakhouse was outstanding. And Narcosseses wasn't far behind.
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    We are doing the dining plan for the first time this December.

    Various friends have used it and loved it. But it really depends on your dining patterns.

    If you can have one meal and snacks a day, I don't think even the QSDP makes sense - unless the snacks you eat would add up to more than $20/day/person or so.

    I ran the numbers for our trip, looking at the QSDP first - but we intended to do two or three table services as well. It didn't take long to realize that for the three meals we'd easily spend more than the extra $10/day/person the full DDP cost. So we'll be having a signature meal, etc.

    Being DVC we have the advantage of a kitchen, but we have yet made effective use of it yet (much to the detriment of my wallet)...but most of our breakfasts will be done in-kitchen.
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    If you are paying for the dining plan I say no. The last few times I went I did the free dining and that was awesome but the one time I payed for it I realized that it wasn't really worth it. The thing with the dining plan is you get A LOT of food. The deal sounds good because it you get free counter service with a dessert and a sit down with a free dessert and a snack. To get all that for the price they charge is a good deal. HOWEVER, I often found myself eating way too much food and feeling like **** the rest of the day. The only reason I ate it was because it was free and it was there. If you just buy your meals regularly you can fill yourself up with less food and less money.

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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    If you really want to do WDW as cheap as you can I say skip the dining plan and eat outside the parks, that may not be the most convenient way but it's the cheapest. You don't save any money by doing the dining plan you are just paying up front.
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    The dining plan can save money, but it sounds like you wouldn't fully utilize it in your case anyway so it would be a waste. I look at the dining plan more as a way to pay before hand so I don't have to worry the cost of food when I'm at the parks. If you max out everything that it offered to you on a plan, then it pays off, but it's not worth forcing yourself to eat more than you want to just because you've already paid for it and feel like you need to get your moneys worth.

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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    I don't know if we saved that much money, but we tried a couple of signature restaurants that we probably never would have gone to without the dining plan. We used snacks at lunch and used counter service credits for the nights we weren't going to have a table service meal. We also shared a few counter service meals if my DW and DD were not that hungry. I did enjoy not having to worry about how much we were spending on our meals.
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    oops, nothing like repeating yourself. sorry, lol.
    "I just want it to look like nothing else in the world... and it should be surrounded by a train" -Walt Disney.
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    id recommend doing it the way you have in the past... what happens to many people is they end up having to blow the quick service meals on ridiculous things... and then you run the risk of your g/f not eating some of the things... unless you know your gonna use every meal the dining plan has to offer... i wouldn't... for my g/f and i... we are using the normal dining plan... but we are using 2 sit downs to go to the Hoop-De-Do Revue... so i know i wont be blowing a sitdown meal at the end of the vaca...
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    I personally would get the dining plan. You'll just have to eat a lot.
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    Thanks for some great advice! Looks like we are going to do it the way we have in the past and skip the dining plan. The last thing I need is too be bogged down with food as I am speed walking and dragging my g/f behind me as I race to ride Splash Mountain before the park closes.
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    Re: Dining Plan? Or No Dining Plan?

    Quote Originally Posted by supermariodrums View Post
    Thanks for some great advice! Looks like we are going to do it the way we have in the past and skip the dining plan. The last thing I need is too be bogged down with food as I am speed walking and dragging my g/f behind me as I race to ride Splash Mountain before the park closes.
    Actually if you pick a week that's not blacked out - you'll probably get FREE dining plan, and then you won't have to worry about blowing the $

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