• On Feb 17, 2017
    Janette from FL 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.

    Would it be smart to get the QS Dining Plan and just pay for individual character dining reservations or upgrade? The cost from the QS dining plan to the regular one is almost a $200 difference. I'm going with 2 more adults and my 8 year old son.

    Hi Janette,

    Welcome to the Disney Parks Moms Panel! I am so pleased that you are considering a Dining Plan. My family has always found the dining plans to be a great value. 

    Having said that, I would definitely suggest that you upgrade to the Disney Dining Plan if you plan to do Character Meals. There are price estimates for most restaurants posted online. If you go to the Dining List, you can see the price estimates for each restaurant that has an estimate near the dollar signs. You may also call 407-939-5277 and speak to a Dining Cast Member who should be able to provide specific pricing for character meals during your trip dates. 

    Even when using a dining plan, we have seen what the cost would have been for our meal had we paid out of pocket. For our family of four, one character meal has often been between $140.00 and $200.00 depending on the venue. With our girls, we always eat at least three character meals - Chef Mickey's, Crystal Palace, and Cinderella's Royal Table.

    If you do upgrade to the Disney Dining Plan, remember to also budget for additional tips. We have always tipped at least 18% because our service has been fantastic. The Cast Members have consistently been attentive and made sure our girls saw all of the characters.

    Be sure to make Advanced Dining Reservations. Reservations can be made 180 days in advance and character meal venues fill quickly!

    Food is one of our favorite experiences at the Walt Disney World Resort! Trust me - you will want to immerse yourself in the deliciousness of it.

    Happy Planning!

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Meet the Panelist: Donyell, North Carolina

Hello from North Carolina! I am a mom of twin girls, wife, and university professor who has been inspired by the creativity of Disney for a lifetime. Since my first Disney visit when I was 12-years-old, I have been drawn to the adventures crafted by Disney Imagineers. Planning Disney vacations helps connect me to families who will find in Disney the kind of joy my family has experienced over the years. Allow me to help you map your own Disney journey so that you, too can create the memories of a lifetime! Learn More About Donyell

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