Wednesday, August 11, 2010

2011 Disney Dining Plans

It's that time of year again...when Disney's packages for the next year come out. And always one of the hot button issues is with the Dining Plan...and whether it's a good value or not.

Now I can't tell you if the dining plan is a good value. Really it all depends on each person's individual budget and tastes. It takes a lot of homework to decide if the dining plan is worth getting and for that I suggest looking at the menus on AllEars.net and deciding which restaurants you may be thinking about eating in (to me, the best value is to make sure you're eating dinners when on the dining plan) and looking at the prices and seeing if it meshes up with the cost of the plan.

(Basically, in a nutshell, for the easy way to figure it all out, for an adult, you want to budget about $10 for counter service meal, $3 for snack, and that leaves you with about $29.99 for dinner, give or take. If you think you'll spend more than that for the majority of your days, then the dining plan may indeed be worth it for you. If not, you may want to look at other options for saving for meals.)

A lot of people do like the convenience of the Dining Plans though. Everything is all paid for (for the most part) and you don't have to worry about what to order. You can just sit back and order what you want. Plus, since everything is then prepaid, so all that you'll really have to pay for during your vacation is for souvenirs.

Some however, don't like the Dining Plans because it serves them too much food. More than they normally eat. This is something else that needs to be considered when looking at the value of the plan. For example, if you don't normally eat desserts, these plans may not be for you.

So, with that being said, here is as look at what the 2011 Dining Plan will cost you. (And in parenthesis is the cost for the 2010 Dining Plan to compare.)

Quick-Service Plan
Adults 10+: $34.99/night ($31.99)
Child 3-9: $11.99/night ($9.99)

The Quick Service dining plan allows each guest to get 2 Counter Service Meals per day (which includes an entree or combo meal, dessert or juice, and a non-alcoholic beverage), 2 Snack Options per day, and 1 Refillable Mug per person for the length of your stay.

Basic Plan*
Adults 10+: $45.99/night ($41.99)
Child 3-9: $11.99/night ($11.99)

The Basic Plan (Also known as the Standard Plan) comes with 1 Counter Service Meal per day (which includes an entree or combo meal, dessert or juice, and a non-alcoholic beverage), 1 Sit Down Meal per day (which includes entree, dessert, and non-alcoholic beverage. Or, if eating at a buffet, the full buffet.) Also 1 Snack credit per day.

Deluxe Plan
Adults 10+: $78.99/night ($71.99)
Child 3-9: $21.99/night ($20.99)

For the Deluxe Dining Plan, guests receive 3 Table Service Meals (Or Quick Service meals). Table Service meals include which includes entree, dessert, and non-alcoholic beverage. Or, if eating at a buffet, the full buffet. Also included are 2 Snack Credits per day plus one resort refillable mug per person for the length of stay.

Premium Package
Adults 10+: $169/night ($164)
Child 3-9: $119/night ($114)

The Premium Dining Plan offers all the Deluxe Dining Plan does, plus unlimited use of select recreation including golf, tickets to the Cirque du Soleil show, La Nouba and many more options.

Platinum Package
Adults 10+: $229/night ($220)
Child 3-9: $160/night ($155)

The Platinum Package offers everything the Premium Package offers, plus pre-arrival planning services, a dazzling fireworks cruise, reserved seating at Fantasmic!, a select spa treatment, turndown service and much more.

Wine & Dine Add-On
$39.99/night ($39.99)

If you want to add the Wine and Dine Add-On, you will receive one wine bottle per night.

* Note that during Peak Season the price does change for the Basic Plan increases to $47.99 for adults and $12.99 for children (3-9). Peak Seasons include 2/17-2/26, 3/11-4/30, 6/3-8/13, 12/23-12/31

Keep in mind that gratuities and any extras like alcoholic beverages and appetizers are not included in the prices listed above and will be added at an additional charge. Keep that in mind when you are budgeting to see if the dining plan is worth it for you, because if you like an adult beverage or two (or three) or often eat appetizers with your meals, the plan may not work for you either.

Finally, here is the 2011 brochure that is currently being distributed that you can take a look at. As with all things Disney related, things are subject to change, but this is where things stand now.

Whatever you decide to do for your family, getting the Dining Plan or just saving money on something like a Disney Gift Card to pay for your food, or putting money aside in envelopes or whatever, I can't stress enough...you really have to do your homework. But unfortunately, the often asked question of is the Dining Plan worth it, doesn't necessarily have an easy answer to it.

2 comments:

PortCanaveral said...

Thanks for a great post. Planning remains a crucial stage when you decide to travel, your post is of great help not only for me but for any traveler looking for dining plan for individual, family, business. I really liked the Basic Plan as it best fits my pocket and will leave my pocket with good money to shop around and get most out of Disney.

Buying things at Disney and spending on food without plan may leave your pocket blank. Your tips and plan has truly saved me from my homework and provided best solution as I was looking for my kids dining. When you have already spent on Orlando airport Disney transportation, you need to save for spending on other things to enjoy rather spending lavishly on food.

Rikki said...

Thank you so much for the kind words. :) I'm so glad I could be of some help.