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15 Reasons to Buy the Disney Dining Plan

15 Reasons To Buy The Disney Dining Plan

Buy the Disney Dining Plan, or walk the plank, Savvy?

Ok, I m not exactly Jack Sparrow, but I am a budget conscience wife and mom of two and I want to make sure we get the most for every one of our dollars. For one of our first trips, my husband suggested we get the Disney Dining Plan (DDP). After thoroughly analyzing the cost and experiences and flexibility of the plan, I discovered why the Disney Dining Plan is necessary for every trip to WDW. It started with Point #1

#1 Because of someone s suggestion. Remember, my husband suggested that we get the plan. Then I discovered how many plans there really are. (see #3)

#2 1 credit here, 2 credits there You can use the credits however you wish. All credits are very flexible, but not interchangeable. Most meals are 1 credit. Dinner shows and some Character meals are 2 Table Service Credits. So if you choose, you can have a buffet for breakfast (1) and see a show for dinner (2).

This flexibility applies to all 5 plans. Each plan has the credits based on your length of stay the differences are in how many of each type of meal service (Table Service Credits vs. Quick Service Credits) and the perks that the higher scaled plans have. Read on to learn more

15 Reasons To Buy The Disney Dining PlanCan you believe this is theme park food? Photo by Stephanie Shuster.

#3 Variety is the spice of life With 5 plans to choose from, there MUST be one to fit within your vacationing needs. Each plan comes with a certain number of meals, snacks and a refillable cup per person. Let s look at them all

#4 The Quick Service plan. This one is for the family or couple on the go. You want to grab your food and go.

No sit-down, 1 hour meals for you!! (2 Quick Service, 1 Snack per day). It s also a good option if you re planning on only 1-2 sit-down meals on your trip, which you can pay for out of pocket.

#5 The Disney Dining Plan I know it sounds redundant, but the basic plan is so simply named. This is the plan that worked best for my family. It gave us the option to grab-n-go or sit, and we liked that dessert was included at lunch and dinner. (1 Table Service, 1 Quick Service, 1 Snack per day)

#6 The Deluxe Plan this one is for the foodie in you. It s 3 meals, anyway you like. Quick Service or Table Service. With more meal credits available, this is designed more for the enjoyment of food, 2 credit signature meals and/or dinner shows. (3 meals, 2 Snacks per day)

Note: #5 & #6 also come with the choice of In-Room Dining or Pizza Delivery 2 credits each

15 Reasons To Buy The Disney Dining PlanA perfect snack. Photo by Disney Photo Snapper.

Now onto the cr me de la cr me

#7 Premium Plan this plan is the same as the Deluxe Plan but has the addition of recreation, some unlimited golf activities, and varied water sports.

There are also tickets to La Nouba and select Disney tours included to round out your vacation. (3 meals, 2 Snacks per day)

#8 Platinum Plan Similar to the Premium, however, this plan has a Fireworks cruise included and select spa treatments added. (3 meals, 2 Snacks per day)

Some friendly advice on the plans

#9 Prepayments are awesome! Since you pay for the plan in advance of your trip, there is no need to worry about budgeting for that last meal or snack of the day. It s paid for. So budgeting for meals is less stressful since it is limited to monitoring your credits, which is easy as they are listed on all your receipts.

#10 Simplify Snacks. This is pretty easy, and most things you want to nosh on are included especially that ever important Mickey Bar. Look for the Purple Square on the Quick Service menus as your guide.

15 Reasons To Buy The Disney Dining PlanMickey Waffles are the perfect start to the day photo by Laurie Sapp.

#11 Quick Service. Use these credits for meals you buy at a counter or from a cashier. This credit is good for families to stay on the go as there is no fussing with cash or card at the registers, a simple scan of the band any family member s band is all it takes.

#12 Table Service With a Table service credit you can get an entr e, a non-alcoholic beverage and a dessert. There is no need to be concerned about ordering a soda for dinner or dessert after. Also, these very flexible credits can be used for character meals, for shows, for In-Room pizza delivery for the family or for a romantic In-Room meal for two.

#13 Reservations are a necessity, not a suggestion! Now this is actually a great tip for anyone dining in Disney.

However, because you are staying in a Disney resort and you have purchased the Dining Plan, you actually can make your reservations for your Table Service Meals 10 days ahead of everyone else. At the 180 day mark, you can make 10 days of your trips reservations!! So you have more of a chance of securing that MUST HAVE reservation that your family has at the top of your list!

#14 Budget, Smudget ok, so that s not really a word, but I d like to highlight again how since the plan is already paid for and most of the meal is already included, it s easier to say yes to the FUN extras like a drink in a light-up cup or an appetizer or even that souvenir popcorn bucket! (That is well worth the cost of the plan!!)

#15. THE VALUE This was so important to me and my family. I found such peace of mind knowing that it s all paid for and it was all included. It gave me freedom to simply sit and enjoy our meal. The quality and quantity of food was a stupendous value. In comparing the price of the plan and the price of the foods we choose, the plan paid for itself before we were done with our trip. And since dessert is included, why say no that that 5 layer chocolate cake with fudge frosting??

Again, after scrutinizing everything, I realized the immense value, flexibility and variety of the plans. I discovered the necessity of the Disney Dining plan. I dare you to buy it, and compare for yourself! I believe you will find the same thing, that the Disney Dining Plan is a cost-effective, stress-relieving necessity to every Disney Vacation!!!