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  • We are going with 2 adults and 2 kids (4 and 2)... we plan on splitting an adult meal for the kids... how much would you estimate we'll wind up spending on an average counter service park meal (no reservation/table service and no dining plan)? Thanks
  • - Asked by Ken from Indiana on 1/15/2014
  • Hi Ken:

    Eating at Disney World is a treat, but it also can be an expense. Planning a generic budget is difficult as everyone’s food needs are different. Generally speaking, a family of vegetarians probably can probably eat out for a lot less than a family of professional wrestlers. And of course, there are also tricks and ways to cut corners to eat for less, such as by replacing meals with a snack bar, skipping meals, eating extremely light or by sharing plates. The most accurate way to budget your expected dining expenses while at Disney World is to plan out several meals in advance by looking at the menus, including prices, that Disney and other Web sites post online.

    For mornings, you can grab a pastry and coffee at the resort or park which runs about $20 for a family of four.  For lunch and dinner, my family generally finds that it costs about $35 for a family of four to eat a counter service meal, which includes two adults meals and drinks and two kids meals (which generally include the entrée, two sides and a drink). The cost may be slightly less for you since your children will share an adult plate rather than two separate kid meals.  Another option is to grab a famous massive turkey leg lunch or dinner from a stand or cart. The cost of three turkey legs and drinks should cost under $25. For snacks, I would budget about $10-15 per day. You can find snacks around the parks, including fresh fruit, popcorn, and the Mickey Ice Cream Bar, which all run a few dollars each.  So I would expect about a $100 per day for three meals, snacks, and drinks.  However, that cost will go up oir down depending on your family's specific tastes.
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Panelists have received/will receive a Walt Disney World® Resort, Disney Cruise Line®, Disneyland® Resort or Disney Vacation Club® vacation for panelist and up to three family members and/or park tickets for their participation on the Disney Parks Moms Panel. The views expressed in the Panel are those of the panelists, who are independent contractors. These views are not intended to reflect the opinions of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Online, its affiliates, its management, its agents or its employees and have not been reviewed or approved by Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Online prior to posting.