Mom and daughter on Expedition Everest; Animal Kingdom
  • On Mar 6, 2012
    Megan from TN Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    Experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    Is the dining plan truly worth it or can you find cheaper affordable food in the area?

    Hi Megan!

    We have tried it just about every way you can imagine. And, since my husband is a "numbers" guy, he loves figuring out our expenses and testing.  So, what we have found is that if we don't give a hoot about food at all, and are perfectly fine with PB&J sandwiches all through our vacation, then we can skip the Disney Dining Plan.  The problem is, we really enjoy great food and amazing dining experiences, so it is inevetible that we will want to spend a pretty good portion of our budget on dining while at Disney, even when we have the best intentions of being frugal.  We have tracked it, and what we've discovered is that we have ALWAYS ended up spending more out of pocket on food when we do not have the Disney Dining Plan than what we would spend to purchase the plan.  Even the time we went while I was pregnant and nauseous all the time so couldn't eat a thing myself and we were thinking that I wouldn't eat so we'd save money by NOT getting the plan, we STILL spent more out of pocket than it would have cost us to get the plan - and I really did not eat on that trip!  So, the answer is "yes" to both of your questions:  Yes, you can find cheaper, more affordable food in the area if you're willing to sacrifice; and Yes, the Disney Dining Plan is truly worth it!  Now, if you want the BEST deal of all, here's a little secret:  Check out the "Special Offers" tab on the Disney Website from time to time.  Every so often they offer the Disney Dining Plan FREE when you book specific plans within a special time frame.  You can't beat that!
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Meet the Panelist: Teronya, Tennessee

I'm Teronya from Tennessee, but friends call me "Tron!" From experience with Disney Vacation Club, Disney Dining, special diets, Grand Gatherings and more, it would be an honor to help you create your own Walt Disney World vacation magical memories! Learn More About Teronya

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