On our previous trips to Walt Disney World, we have used the Disney Dining Plan. We also visited Disneyland and were disappointed about the lack of Dining Plan there, so in our minds, Dining Plan is the way to go. However, since our last trip to WDW was quite last minute and shorter than usual, we decided to go without the Dining Plan. BIG mistake! Even though we consider this mistake a great learning experience, we are still kicking ourselves in our behinds for not getting the Dining Plan. Upon our calculations (yes, we do keep our Disney receipts!) they definitely indicated that we would have saved money had we purchased DP.
Here is what this mistake taught us:
- We are a family of 3 and we like food. Therefore, we enjoy at least one sit down meal a day, which means we end up doing character meals a lot. What does this mean? Dining Plan is best! Paying out of pocket for these meals is always more for us.
- Snacks – We ended up grabbing more snacks than we anticipated. Some of these were actually our breakfast! Which means we would have spent less with the Dining Plan and the two snack credits per person per day.
- Refillable mugs for use at the resort! Need I say more?
- No worry dining! From past experience, we realized that we do like having everything paid for! Not having to sit there looking at a menu and calculating costs is a feeling of relief. Dining Plans provide a sense of security in a way. Everything you need is paid for (except for gratuities at sit down restaurants). Which brings me to this,
- Flexibility! with the Dining Plan we get to choose whichever restaurant we want to try, including character dining. The list of restaurants that accept the DP is quite extensive.
Now, the Dining Plan may or may not be for you. However, we do encourage you to look into it. We will gladly help you navigate through the ins and outs of the Dining Plan. Please ask!
As for us? Never again without the Dining Plan!
So, the answer to the question: to Dining Plan or not to Dining Plan? Big fat YES!
Click here to view the three types of Disney Dining Plans and ask away!
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