Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast
Results 16 to 30 of 38
  1. #16

    • Little Miss Sunshine
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    4,950

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by disneyfann121 View Post
    I have a question about the dining plan -- to those who have used it, did you think it was worthwhile? Did it save you money? I have to decide whether to use it on my next WDW trip, so any opinions would be appreciated.
    I just have done it when it's part of the free dining package. As it stands, I don't think it's a good value otherwise (when it included the appetizer and tip, I thought it was).

    I was a travel agent for 6 years - Disney only - until January. If I was still doing that, I'd be selling as few of the dine package to my clients as possible (hopefully none).
    Denise

    www.mousesteps.com




    Favorite TDL Typo:

    Quote Originally Posted by TDLFAN View Post
    I think it will give more pipping pervs the reason needed to go parasailing
    on Bay Lake.

  2. #17

    • Hurry Baaaaaaaack!
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    New York, NY...it's a helluva town :)
    Posts
    116

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by disneyfann121 View Post
    I have a question about the dining plan -- to those who have used it, did you think it was worthwhile? Did it save you money? I have to decide whether to use it on my next WDW trip, so any opinions would be appreciated.
    My family only uses it when it's free. If it helps gauge price at all, the 4 members of my family who are in WDW currently are spending about $45 per sit down meal in tips, appetizers, and drinks that aren't included in the plan. If the plan is free, I think it's absolutely worth it. Disney's an expensive trip and any little bit of savings helps!

  3. #18

    • Disneyholic
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,621

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by disneyfann121 View Post
    I have a question about the dining plan -- to those who have used it, did you think it was worthwhile? Did it save you money? I have to decide whether to use it on my next WDW trip, so any opinions would be appreciated.

    Yes and no, if you know how to "milk" the plan or work with a good travel planner who knows how to do it you can save some money with it, but not as much as you could with previous plans. If you go though all the menu's at each sit down and counter service restaurant, pick what you think you would want to eat, add it up for each day and then compare it against the plan cost and pick only those restaurants that will save you money you can save some money. Not as much as in previous years mind you but it is possible. The problem I see most often is with folks not planning ahead, not having reservations and either not using or trading the table service meals for counter service meals which are not as great of a value as the table service for your dollar. I'm almost finished writing an online tool to help people evaluate the DDP option and it should be online in about a month, I'm in the middle of the tedious process of updating the price lists for all the restaurants at WDW... (Thank you for all who have been sending me menu updates... you know who you are! )

    Now the pervasive argument is well if I don't do sit down all trip that might save me more and that's probably true, but for me the food and restaurant's are part of the big appeal of going to Disney, its something a little different and just makes the vacation a bit more special. It's also a good break from the parks and a chance to rest and recharge your batteries for an hour or so. That plus there's only so many burgers and hot dogs I can stand to eat in a week...

    That all said, we always use the pan free or not because we know how to work the system to get the value from it. It's also nice to have that cost known "up front" since it can be substantial which again most folks don't realize if they have not done thier homework...
    Hi I'm Jerren and I'm a Disneyholic...

  4. #19

    • Little Miss Sunshine
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    4,950

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by MadameGracey73 View Post
    My family only uses it when it's free. If it helps gauge price at all, the 4 members of my family who are in WDW currently are spending about $45 per sit down meal in tips, appetizers, and drinks that aren't included in the plan. If the plan is free, I think it's absolutely worth it. Disney's an expensive trip and any little bit of savings helps!
    It wouldn't have been worth it (for me) "free" this year, except that I have 3 friends sharing at the Pop Century. Otherwise, if it was just me (or with one other person), then the AP discount may have been a better deal.

    There are a lot of guests who end up using the dining plan for breakfasts - and once you do that, it's definitely NOT worth it. You really have to work the plan to make it valuable at all - as Brad said. And don't leave any credits behind. Even on the free dine, I make sure to use every credit - even if it's for food to take home with me.
    Denise

    www.mousesteps.com




    Favorite TDL Typo:

    Quote Originally Posted by TDLFAN View Post
    I think it will give more pipping pervs the reason needed to go parasailing
    on Bay Lake.

  5. #20

    • We'll hold them at bay
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    1,805

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Unless its free, why are people doing the Plan at this point?
    www.jamboeveryone.com
    Celebrating Disney's Animal Kingdom


  6. #21

    • Little Miss Sunshine
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    4,950

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by MJMcB View Post
    Unless its free, why are people doing the Plan at this point?
    Convenience would be a big reason (though I don't find it more convenient than anything else). And lack of education about what the different plans are. Many guests will call Disney, not sure what they want. Agents there are sales people - and will try to sell up (dining plan, insurance, water park ticket, etc.)
    Denise

    www.mousesteps.com




    Favorite TDL Typo:

    Quote Originally Posted by TDLFAN View Post
    I think it will give more pipping pervs the reason needed to go parasailing
    on Bay Lake.

  7. #22

    • We'll hold them at bay
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    1,805

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by nbodyhome View Post
    Convenience would be a big reason (though I don't find it more convenient than anything else). And lack of education about what the different plans are. Many guests will call Disney, not sure what they want. Agents there are sales people - and will try to sell up (dining plan, insurance, water park ticket, etc.)
    I guess. But anyone who takes a good hard look at the plan should realize is doesn't really save you anything. Certainly not anymore
    www.jamboeveryone.com
    Celebrating Disney's Animal Kingdom


  8. #23

    • back to WDW in January
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    971

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    The suggested tip amount on the bill is not exclusive to Disney.
    I received a bill recently at a Ruby Tuesdays in NJ that had suggested tip totals of 15% and 20% based on the total amount pre-printed on the bill.

  9. #24

    • back to WDW in January
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    971

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by MJMcB View Post
    I guess. But anyone who takes a good hard look at the plan should realize is doesn't really save you anything. Certainly not anymore
    Agreed and for proof of this, see Kevin Yee's recent article on this very subject.

  10. #25

    • Disneyholic
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,621

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by MJMcB View Post
    Unless its free, why are people doing the Plan at this point?
    What I'm finding are a lot of folks these days are looking for a "fixed price" or "all inclusive" vacation package, which makes sense from the POV that you want to budget the vacation, know exactly how much you'll pay for it.

    In other words they want to do Disney but have heard of all the "hidden" or "variable" costs of dining etc and are looking for a way to fix the price so they know up front what it will cost them. Then they can decide weather they can afford to go or not or sometimes when and how long they can afford to go.

    Even if you don't do the DDP it's a good idea to add it to see what the price is, if the price is way too high then perhaps you might want to consider if that's supposed to be a "save up to 30%" price can you really afford to go... that's how I used to do it whenever we got hit by the we need a WDW fix bug.

    Some people do very well with the plan, some do not. General rules of thumb are use the table service for Dinners not lunch or breakfast as Dinners are usually the same or similar menu but marked up a few dollars on each item/entree. If you eat "well" e.g. get the steak or lobster or most expensive items on the menu AND pick the right combination of restaurants you can save money. I think the biger question is is it worth the extra effort? If your working with a disney planner who can guide you though it and work with you to show you how to "milk" the DP then yes, if your on your own and don't have the time to plan it yourself then maybe not. I don't like to say it's not worth it because it can be for some folks.

    Now that said I have yet to figure out the magic combination for the 30% off Disney keeps advertising with the base DDP but I'm working on it. I have a feeling it may only be for folks who shell out the extra for the more expensive dining plans where ALL meals are sit down plus you get the free cups etc. This is similar to the dining plan Disney offered about 12 years ago which was a much better value for more people, however as one colleague of mine once said who did the Deluxe Dining "it seems like you're just eating all the time going from restaurant to restaurant all trip".... So you may get your 30% savings if you book all TS dining with that particular plan but what do you give up in terms of time in the parks etc. for that 30% is the real question. One I'm digging into a bit deeper in my spare (yeah right) time.
    Hi I'm Jerren and I'm a Disneyholic...

  11. #26

    • Banned User
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Montreal, Quebec, Canada
    Posts
    2,899

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    So basically, if you only plan to have sit down, restaurant meals SOME of the time -- you will be doing some counter service meals to save time -- the dining plan is not worth paying for?

  12. #27

    • Disneyholic
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,621

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by disneyfann121 View Post
    So basically, if you only plan to have sit down, restaurant meals SOME of the time -- you will be doing some counter service meals to save time -- the dining plan is not worth paying for?
    Answer is of course "it depends" with the current DDP you get 1 Counter service 1 Table service, and 1 snack per night of stay. The snacks don't have that big of an impact so I'll skip those for now. Now if you plan to have a nice table service meal each evening and counter service for lunch AND you do your homework to keep the meal cost of those two items over the daily cost per person of the meal plan, and have all your reservations in order for those places yes it's worth it if you stick to the plan. If you don't do the math and plan up front then you may not save money.

    The biggest mistakes I see and why a lot of folks say the plan is not a good deal are:

    • Lack of planing - either by not making reservations or making reservations for restaurants that are on the less expensive side to use for their meal credits. You figure this out by learning the menu's at each restaurant and knowing what you like to eat there, adding it all up and seeing if it's a good deal for you.This is huge and the information is scattered everywhere, which means you're going to spend several hours and possibly a few family arguments over this.
    • Not using all the meals - I see this more with snacks or with TS meals during the free meal plan promotions or when folks don't make reservations and cannot get into a restaurant to use them. - This is throwing money away don't ever let this happen to you!
    • Using Table Service meals for meals other than dinner - WDW restaurants charge a premium at dinner, for the same meal you wind up paying 3-4 dollars or more per person at dinner vrs lunch.
    • Using counter service meals for Breakfast - Same as above, lunch is generally (but not always) more expensive than breakfast.
    • Using Table service meals for Counter Service - Yes WDW will let you do this once you've used up all your counter service meals. Unless you absolutely cannot get a table somewhere this is usually a very bad move as Table service meals generally cost twice as much or more than counter service. Again your throwing money away if you paid for the DDP.
    • Using meal plan credits by mistake - Ok so you are staying for 5 nights and have 6 reservations, it's sometimes easy to us the TS credit on a meal you had planned to pay out of pocket, sometimes the server's do it by mistake, sometimes they just don't ask! You need to watch it every time.
    • Doubling up - Several restaurants require 2 TS coupons I call this doubling up, this is generally not a great idea. Again it's all about knowing the menu's and prices is the food or show twice as expensive as the other restaurants on your list? Probably not and your better off for example paying out of pocket for that Once upon a time Breakfast at Cinderella's Castle and then booking 2 dinners with those TS credits.
    • Change of plans - This is a biggie, you feel sick, someone gets injured, leave the park early, cheerleader invasion drives you screaming from the parks etc. It's important to call the dining line (407 WDW Dine) or duck into guest relations to book a new reservation and cancel the old one so you don't waste your TS credits.


    So just like when you go to Vegas and do your homework to know that Slots are a sucker bet but video poker, Baccarat (as long as you bet on the banker) and blackjack are better choices and study your basic strategy charts for months before you go. You need to do your homework on the DDP and all the menu prices or work with a good travel planner that specializes in WDW to guide you though it to keep from making a sucker bet on the meal plan. Not everyone has the time or patience to do this on their own, plus you have to think while on vacation (the horror!) hence I feel the DDP has gotten a bad reputation, while it's not as great as it once was you can still make it work.
    Hi I'm Jerren and I'm a Disneyholic...

  13. #28

    • Banned User
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Montreal, Quebec, Canada
    Posts
    2,899

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Thanks for the detailed response, Brad.

  14. #29

    • Too far from Disney World
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Duckburg USA
    Posts
    1,052

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Last year we wound up using our snack credits to get snacks to bring home. Between the two of us we had 12 snack credits and we used 3 in the parks (2 to get a drink and 1 to get a bag of trail mix). We used the rest of them in our hotel gift shop and got small boxes of cookies, bags of pretzels, tins of mints and things like that.
    With great pride: Disney Store Cast Member August 2011-Present

    D23 Charter Member - 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012

    WDW Trips: June 2012, 2010, 2008, 2007, 1997, 1996, 1994


  15. #30

    • Pilot EdForceOne
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    15,761

    Re: New Dining Plan Feature (As of This Week)?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerren View Post
    Actually it's not a scam, waiters and waitresses are exempt from minimum wage, in many places they may be making less than $1.50/hour and they are supposed to report and share a potion of the tips with the bus boys and hostesses, wine stewards, etc depending on he restaurant it seems to vary quite a lot. Also they don't usually get the tips on credit cards till payday, and of course if a party leaves without paying in many restaurants the waiter or waitress gets stuck with the bill which can wipe out a couple days worth of tips depending on the venue.
    Let's be clear here..

    1 - Federal law requires they get paid AT LEAST $2.13/hr without any tip credit (in Florida this minimum is actually $3.77).

    2 - If a person's tips + cash wage does not equal minimum wage, the employer is required (by Federal Law) to make up the difference. They can not make less then minimum wage when combining wage+tips.

    3 - Employers are allowed to setup tip pooling to a level that is 'customary and reasonable'. Note also, only tips in EXCESS of those required to reach minimum wage are valid for pooling/sharing.

    4 - Don't get paid till payday... you mean like everyone else??

    The trend that tipping rates are escalating is insane. The notion employees don't get paid without you is false. What they don't get is paid a lot without you. To me, that is where it should be. You deliver a good product, you deserve good pay. You deliver crap - you will get crap.

    I've had no problems taking someone's tip when they have failed to perform - and written exactly why on their receipt as well.

    Including those who have screwed up and then pass the blame. If they are getting screwed by another group (kitchen, etc) its their job to try to do something about it. One time a girl at D&B screwed up our order and we waited well over an an hour for food without her doing anything about it. When we raised the point, she said 'sorry, the cook will take care of your meal'. When we got the bill, we were still charged full price, and I asked... she said 'oh I meant the cook would be bringing out your meal'.

    I wrote on the bill 'please see the cook for your tip'
    Check out my blog - Coreplex: Rambling from inside the Grid


    Am I evil? yes, I am
    Am I evil? I am man, yes, I am

    Quote Originally Posted by sleepyjeff View Post
    Disneyland was meant to be sipped not chug-a-lugged

Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. [Question] A few questions about the dining plan and character dining
    By Serenity1207 in forum Walt Disney World Resort
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 03-31-2009, 01:21 PM
  2. dining plan???
    By canadamouse in forum Walt Disney World Resort
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 03-01-2008, 01:40 AM
  3. Dining plan...
    By Stitchy in forum Walt Disney World Resort
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 01-19-2007, 08:46 AM
  4. So we have the Dining Plan...
    By markbee in forum Walt Disney World Resort
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 11-23-2005, 03:30 PM
  5. WDW Dining plan?
    By snowhite10882 in forum Walt Disney World Resort
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 10-24-2005, 12:04 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •