Ever so popular Disney Dining Plan….is it worth it for your family?

In all of my years of traveling to Walt Disney World, the one thing I have continued to notice is that Walt Disney World has something for everyone.  In this case the dining possibilities are endless!!! My family and I have decided that it is best for our family of 5, to invest in the dining plan. 
Think about the following information before you book your Walt Disney World vacation. 
·         Does your family look at eating as part of a Walt Disney World attraction?
Are you an avid food fan? Do you wake up in the morning anticipating what you are going to dine on for the day? Do you enjoy searching through the endless possibilities of dining options at Walt Disney World? Is planning the dining part of the fun of your travel experience?  If you answered yes to these questions, then it is quite possible that the basic Disney Dining Plan is for you.
·         Think about how much your family typically eats?
When you are on the Disney Dining Plan you are exposed to a TON of food! Would you normally order a dessert when you are out to eat? Does dessert appeal to you?  When I visit with my in-laws they don’t typically eat their dessert so that part of the plan for them is not a good option.
·         How do you like to vacation to Walt Disney World?
Are you a park junkie? Does the thought of sitting down for a meal for about 1-2 hours per day totally cramp your vacation style? Do you enjoy the thought of sitting down for a relaxing meal once a day?  On the basic and deluxe Disney Dining plan, you will be paying for the opportunity to have one possibly two sit down meals per day.
·         Can your little ones sit for a long meal?
Walt Disney World is a family friendly park there is no doubt about that. What you will want to consider is if you will be so stressed with your little ones during a sit down meal, that you simply cannot enjoy the experience?
·         What does your family like to eat?
Would your family be fine eating mac and cheese, burgers and hot dogs for the duration of your trip?  What my family loves about the Disney Dining plan is that they can try things that I would never make at home…this is part of the ambiance for us.  Would your family enjoy trying new foods?
Now that you have been able to think about if you think the dining plan is a good choice for you. Let’s talk about the 2011 free dining plan that has been offered throughout most of the year.
Disney has recently changed the way they offer free dining. The free dining plan is now a tiered program that is based off of what Walt Disney Resort category you chose to stay in.  See below for explanation:
·         Value Category Resorts-Free Quick Service Dining Promotion.  The quick service plan includes, 2 Counter Service Meals per person, per day, 2 snacks per person, per day & your resorts refillable mug. If you would like to get the basic dining plan, you can upgrade from quick service to the basic dining plan for a fee.
·         Moderate & Deluxe category resorts- Free Basic Dining Plan. Each person under your reservation ages 3 and up will receive the following: 1 table service, 1 counter service & 1 snack per day.
Looking at the above, you should have a good indication as to what your family would spend on food for the week. Keep in mind that food at a theme park is going to cost you much more money than at home. Taking into consideration what my family of 5 eats on a daily basis and knowing that on vacation, I would like to be able to eat a nice variety of food…we always go with the Basic Dining Plan.  What I would recommend before deciding to take the free dining promotion, is to see what other offers are currently out there and see if those would save you more money.








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