California Grill
  • On Nov 14, 2017
    Tiffany from OH Asked

    We are booking our vacation and I’m wondering about dining services... is it worth the money? Would you end up spending more on food/snacks if you didn’t go this route? Has anyone ate outside of the parks and is it relatively expensive?

    Hi Tiffany,

    Welcome to the Disney Parks Moms Panel! It sounds as if you are considering purchasing one of the Disney Dining Plans. My family loves the dining plans and I am always happy to discuss them.

    Let me first say that our decision to purchase a dining plan is based on three factors, 1) we love to eat well on vacation, 2) we rarely have a car so we rely on Disney transportation, and 3) we love all-inclusive vacations. When we are not on a dining plan, we pay separately for drinks, desserts and snacks. And, when eating outside of the parks, we lose valuable time.

    On our last visit we did not buy a dining plan and we spent about $2100 on food for our family of four for a six-night vacation. And that was without enjoying the desserts, snacks and drinks we would have enjoyed on a dining plan. When I just did the math for a hypothetical stay in July of 2018, the Disney Deluxe Dining Plan would cost my family about $2790 for a six-night stay. The Disney Dining Plan would cost my family about $1812. To offer another perspective, we love to do character meals. Our breakfast at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall on our last visit cost about $200. The resort refillable mugs also are a great value because we use them to get drinks while we are just relaxing at the resort. 

    Tiffany, I suggest that you price your trip without a dining plan and with a dining plan. Then check out some of the menus of restaurants you might visit. Be Our Guest is one of our favorites. Looking at menus will give you a better sense of prices! As always, remember that prices are subject to change.

    Magic, memories and Minnie Mouse hugs,
    Donyell
thumbnail image for Donyell

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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