Mother, Son, Giraffe, Kilimanjaro Safaris, Animal Kingdom, Savannah
  • On Mar 11, 2014
    Annie from CA 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 it worth to get a dining plan? We (family of 4) are not big eater, but I want my kids to have some character dining experiences. With 1 ts, 1 cs & 1 snack, do we need to pay out of pocket for another meal each day? What is the wise way to use the

    Hi Annie!

    My family LOVES the dining plan. I love it because as the official vacation planner in the family, I can set my food budget and then just enjoy my vacation instead of constantly checking my funds. My children love it because there are such great selections and also dessert is included at every meal (except breakfast ~ but really isn't a muffin a morning cupcake anyway?) My husband loves it because he can order almost anything off the menu and it is included in the Dining Plan.

    Due to the generous portion sizes for counter service and snack credits, we usually do not spend very much more money than the gratuities for our table service meals when we use the standard Disney Dining Plan. I think that you will find your family will share a few snacks and counter service meals because of the large portion sizes and that you will have a lot of food each day. You will probably want to budget a little more money outside of gratuities for items not covered by the Dining Plan like alcohol and appetizers, or even the occasional turkey leg.  I will admit it; I always bring "turkey leg" money for my family since that favorite of ours isn't included in the snack credits. 

    One of my favorite tips for using the Dining Plan is to select a muffin or pastry as a dessert when having a counter service meal then save it for the next morning as a quick breakfast in your room. There are lots of dining plan tips at AllEars.Net if you want to look further into how to best plan for your family.

    Overall Annie, I have never been disappointed with using the Disney Dining Plans.  They are a great value especially if you plan to do some character meals with your children. 

    I hope this information helps you with your vacation plans.  Please don't hesitate to write back if we can answer any more questions.

    Brenda ºOº
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Meet the Panelist: Brenda, Missouri

I fell in love with Walt Disney World on my very first visit, which took place during my honeymoon. Since then we have added 4 "mouseketeers" to our family and have come to appreciate what a great value a Walt Disney World vacation can be on a budget. As a Physical Therapist and a mom of a large family, I would love to help you plan your next magical trip! Learn More About Brenda

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