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Dining Discuss Pros & Cons of the Dining Plan in the Vacation Planning forums; As we begin to look at ticket prices etc I keep looking at the Dining Plan as well. How effective is this? Does it really pay for itself? What are ...
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    princessariel's Avatar
    princessariel is offline Fastpass Holder
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    Pros & Cons of the Dining Plan

    As we begin to look at ticket prices etc I keep looking at the Dining Plan as well. How effective is this? Does it really pay for itself? What are the drawbacks about it if any?

    Is it worth it to upgrade to the Premium Dining Package? I heard they've offered this for free during the past.
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    JMSuperHeroTeam is offline Maura Colleen the Makeup Queen
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    We used the dining plan on our last trip, and if I can give you any advice, it's GO FOR IT!

    We liked it because we could eat our fill each day and not have to worry about how much it cost. Each of our table service meals would have ended up being $60-$80 dollars total, had we not used the plan. It made the whole trip a much more luxurious vacation, because not only did we have access to food we may not have otherwise been able to afford, we did not have to spend a single minute worrying about if we had spent our food budget for the day on a souvenir or whatever.

    Right before we got there they upgraded their snacks to include many more items. It was very easy to tell what was on the plan and what was not. The items that are included in the snack plan have a little purple and white symbol next to them. Easy as pie!

    One thing I did while planning was go to www.allearsnet.com/din/dining.htm and look at all the sample menus and pick what my husband and I would have chosen from that restaurant for dinner. I chose several restaurants and added up our "bill", and it was always way more than $37.99. That site is such a gem because it is updated very frequently and I found it a helpful tool in planning the our meals for our vacation. The only negative thing about it is you get hungry reading all the yummy menus!!!

    You've found the best source of info already though- the DWT forums! If people here don't have a squillion and two answers for your questions, someone will know where to direct you.

    Best of luck, hope this helps!
    Last edited by JMSuperHeroTeam; 07-17-2006 at 04:09 PM. Reason: oops bad link

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    dac921's Avatar
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    I think so, the cost is approx $39.00 per person with includes 1 Table Service, 1 quick meal, and 1 snack.

    You can spend more than $39.00 on just dinner at WDW...

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    iwannabeminnie is offline I'm old! I'm like the cryptkeeper!
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    The only drawback that Mr. iwannabeminnie and I saw when we used it was that we probably would have eaten less if we were paying for each item seperately. For example, we probably would have ordered only one appetizer to split and one dessert to split. That is an AWFUL lot of food to eat! We MAY have saved a little money by sharing some of our meal items, but not a lot. All that being said, we will NEVER go without the dining plan again.
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    disneycdk is offline A-Ticket holder
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    I completely agree about the dining plan. We use it every time and even though it seems to change all the time, it is always worth it. It makes the entire trip more carefree. Not quite like going on a cruise but almost. There is rarely that you buy something that is not on the plan. And you can have two table service meals in one day and two counter service meals another day if you want. Plus all the character meals are included. It is a great deal no matter how you look at it. If you don't use all your snacks, load up on the last day for the trip home.

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    dac921's Avatar
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    regarding splitting, we usually split too, but getting a variety of things is great.
    besides the little one will get soup with ever meal

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    JMSuperHeroTeam's Avatar
    JMSuperHeroTeam is offline Maura Colleen the Makeup Queen
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    Another thing, we often used our snack for breakfast at our resort.

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    disneycdk is offline A-Ticket holder
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    The dining plan is always a good deal. They change the rules once in awhile but it is always worth it. You have the freedom to suit yourself when and how you use it. Your meals are paid for before you get there. To me that's worth it because I don't have to watch every dime that way. And we eat at way better places than we might if we had to pay for each meal. Two table service meals pays for Hoop Dee Doo Revue. But the Magic Your Way plan gives you a free meal at Planet Hollywood. Only one for each party but that helps make up the difference. I did the math and it's still a great deal.

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    princessariel's Avatar
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    I've heard you can use a snack for booths at the food and wine festival is this true?

    Thanks guys. I think ya'll have made up our minds to get this. After look at prices on allearnet.com I can see how this totally pays for itself and more.
    Summer '83-Off Site

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    October '07-POFQ

    March '10-POFQ

    March '13 POFQ

    June '14 POFQ

    Nov'14 All Star Sports-F&WF W&D 1/2 Marathon!


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    I personally am not a fan of the dining plan, but only because it doesn't fit in with our vacation style... we like to be able to eat anywhere, anytime, without limits, and the last thing I want to do on vacation is to wonder how many snacks or full meals I have available at any given time... We like to dine at some of the fancier places in Disney if we can (V&E's, expecially), and some of the restaurants use two meals off your plan to eat there once.
    The rest of my family and friends have used the dining plan and loved it... if you take the time to research the restaurants and do a bit of planning, I believe you can actually make out quite well on the dining plan, and if you're savvy, save a lot of money on food at WDW, which is good, because it sure ain't cheap


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    nicks10's Avatar
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    I really dont see a con to the dining plan, almost every sit down I ate at I had a meal that was over $39. I think the dining plan is one of the best things that staying at a Disney Resort has to offer!
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    JMSuperHeroTeam's Avatar
    JMSuperHeroTeam is offline Maura Colleen the Makeup Queen
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    I personally am not a fan of the dining plan, but only because it doesn't fit in with our vacation style... we like to be able to eat anywhere, anytime, without limits, and the last thing I want to do on vacation is to wonder how many snacks or full meals I have available at any given time...
    To each his own, but I found it much more relaxing to only worry about meal credits than to worry about our whole trip budget going to food! ADRs are recommended when you eat at WDW just so you can eat promptly, but they are not necessary to use the dining plan. There are not many places in all of WDW that don't allow the dining plan. I didn't feel that there were any significant limits to time or location.

    Our first trip to WDW by ourselves, we were only able to afford one table service meal, and we considered it a splurge. This last trip when we used the dining plan, we ate one table service meal a night! To us, it was much more convenient than worrying about every penny spent.

    We like to dine at some of the fancier places in Disney if we can (V&E's, expecially), and some of the restaurants use two meals off your plan to eat there once.
    I guess if you're used to Victoria and Albert's every night, the dining plan is not for you. One meal there can cost hundreds of dollars. Unfortunately, not everyone can afford that! That's like half a month's rent to me! But if you can afford that, hooray for you!

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  13. #13
    disneycdk is offline A-Ticket holder
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    V & A was over $200 last time we went. At about $39 per adult per night for the plan it's still cheaper even if you go to signature restaurants every night. It would cover half your table service meals (two of your meal allowance per meal) and still give you a counter service meal and snack per day. So instead of paying full price for your signature dinners, you would only have to do that half the time.

  14. #14
    Canadian is offline A-Ticket holder
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    We used the dining plan last year and have purchased it again for this year. For the two of us last year it cost us $600 canadian for the dining plan. We kept every bill for the entire week and added them up on the way home. If we would have had to pay for all of our meals it would have cost well over $800 american. We also would have not had the chance to eat at some of the fantastic reaturants at Disney. Not even a question if its worth it to me.

    On another note I don't think V&A's is on the dining plan list. Atleast I don't see it in their guide.

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