The Disney Dining Plan is a way for guests to make their vacation almost all-inclusive. Guests who purchase a Disney vacation package (room and tickets) or who are using Disney Vacation Club points are eligible to buy the plan.
There are actually 3 different dining plans for 2017. Let’s take a look at what they include.
Disney Quick Service Dining Plan– This plan includes 2 quick service meals per person per night. Quick service meals are generally meals where you order at a counter and take your food to your table. A meal includes an entree or combo and a non-alcoholic drink. You also get 2 snacks per person per night. Each guest over 3 also receives a refillable souvenir resort mug that is good for unlimited soda and coffee any at Disney resort. Estimated pricing is $49 per night for adults and $22 per night for children.
Disney Plus Dining Plan– This is the most popular dining plan. It includes one quick service and one table service per person per night. Table service meals are those where you are served by a waitress/waiter at your table or buffets. They include an entree, dessert and non-alcoholic beverage or a full buffet. This plan also includes 2 snacks per day and the refillable resort mug. Estimated pricing is $70 per night for adults and $26 per night for children.
Disney Deluxe Dining Plan– This dining plan is for those who are serious about eating and want maximum flexibility. This plan includes 3 meals per day. Those meals can be quick service or table service. Obviously, to get the value out of the plan, you’d want to mostly eat table service meals. Those on the Deluxe plan receive an appetizer, entree, and dessert at table service meals. This plan also includes 2 snacks per day and the refillable resort mug. Estimated pricing is $106 per night for adults and $40 per night for children.
Snack options for these plans are really limitless! You can indulge with a caramel apple, popcorn, pastry, ice cream, non-alcoholic beverage and more. Items that qualify are clearly marked on menu boards. One of the best use of snacks and the Food and Wine or Flower and Garden festival booths where many of the menu items are considered snacks.
So is the dining plan right for you? Honestly, it depends. I almost never recommend the Quick Service or Deluxe plans to guests. It’s just too hard to get your money’s worth with those plans. Also, eating 3 table service meals a day on the deluxe plan takes a lot of time; this means less time exploring the parks. The standard Disney Dining plan is the one I most often recommend when clients are interested in adding dining. It closely fits the way that many guests eat, and it possible to save money if you eat at lots of buffets or tend to order more expensive meals. Many of my clients also like the idea of having their meals prepaid, giving them an almost all-inclusive vacation experience. Making dining reservations are key if you are on the dining plan, and I can help you maximize the value of whatever plan you chose.
Is there anything else you should keep in mind about the dining plan? One important item of note is that gratuities for table service restaurants are not included in most cases. The exceptions are the dinner shows and Cinderella’s Royal Table. Gratuities at those meals are included. Also, some table service meals, such as signature dining restaurants, dinner shows, and Cinderella’s Royal table require the use of 2 table service credits per guest. Lastly, keep in mind that the way you use your dining plan credits is flexible. For example, with a 5 night stay on the standard Disney Dining Plan, you receive 5 quick service meals, 5 table service meals, and 10 snacks per person. It’s OK to use 3 snacks one day and only one snack the next, or you can choose to eat 2 quick service meals on the same day. In other words, you can divide the credits over your stay however you would like.
If you’d like more information on any of the Disney Dining Plans or if you have tips or tricks for using the plan, please comment below!