Bought our tickets through non-Disney outlet (Official Ticket Center), now told dining plan not an option

I am planning a trip to WDW in November 2015. At first we planned to stay off site. Then, about a week ago, we decided to split it up and stay 3 days on site. I went to the official WDW site and checked rates and found that booking room only did not allow me to add a dining plan later.

I called Disney and was told that because I did not purchase tickets from WDW, that I could not add dining to the package.

Can anyone tell me if this person who told me this was wrong, or can this be done some other way? It seems to me that if Disney wanted to make the sale, they would allow you to add dining even if you bought your tickets elsewhere.

Any insights?


The dining plan must be purchased as part of a package that includes tickets. I believe current AP holders have the option to waive this but they are the only ones. So, unfortunately it sounds like the CM was correct. You might potentially be able to resell the tickets as long as you haven’t already linked them to your MDE account.

Already linked them to MDE. This displeases me greatly. Could incessant calling and bugging them change their minds? :wink:

Yea sorry. Since tickets are technically non-transferable I’m not sure Disney is going to be too fond of helping you lol. You could always try though.

We I started planning ours I was really anxious about getting in on the free dining promo because I assumed that was easily the best promo. When it came out of course the week we were there was one of the few blacked out this year so I was pretty mad. Once the room only discounts came out we went ahead and switched to that. Then I actually sat down and made a sample menu of what we’d likely spend at each place we plan to eat and added in tax and tip… then compared that to cost of the dining plan with only having to pay the 18% tip at each meal. By going room discount and paying for meals it actually ended up coming to nearly $400 cheaper than using the dining plan so even though I was initially bummed out I ended up saving a bunch. Had I not been in a blackout I would have ended up paying rack rate and never even knowing how much over I was paying.

Of course it could vary a lot by which resort, how many in your party, where you like to eat, etc… Don’t lose hope… If Disney won’t help you, you should still be able to grab discounts in other forms.


Plus because we weren’t tied to a package that included dining we ended up being able to do a split stay. We used the ro discount and stacked an orbitz promo code and upgraded the last half of our stay to AKL so all in all I think we got a great deal without it.


Still…Disney can bite me right now.


IMOH(!!!). Dining plan isn’t a great deal anyway. Too much food and takes work to get a value out of it but- even then- more food than what we’d order, more money than what we’d spend. You may have just saved yourself some cash and calories. :slight_smile:


Not sure if this will work out to be lower cost, but you could create a second My Disney Experience account (with a different email address) and book your room package using that account. I’m pretty sure you need some park tickets, in which case you could just book 1 day tickets for the package. However, the cost of doing that will probably negate whatever you may save with the dining plan.

You’ll be fine without the dining plan. Seriously. You’ll spend less money and only eat things you are actually hungry for without it. Just take the money you want to give them for the dining plan, and make that your food budget. I bet you a Mickey Bar that you’ll come out ahead.

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We booked our room through Disney with the dining plan with no park tickets. Is that what you mean?

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You did? Are you AP holders?


Very interesting. I was told that could not be done.

Could you ask Disney to upgrade your tickets upon arrival (say, add one more day, which would be cheap), and then add the dining plan?


I thought of that but I would want the perks of reserving dining and Fastpasses 60 days out.

Ahhh…so you wouldn’t want to reserved the dining unless you knew you were on the DDP? Makes sense.

Maybe try calling Disney and see if they’ll upgrade the tix over the phone, and add to your trip as a package?

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That’s what I was trying to do! I’ll try again to see if I reach one who will do this for me.

I thought that disney now allowed a ticket-free dining plan option… I recall one of the TA’s posting about it on old chat.

However… I’d echo the others above that its RARELY a good value. Paying OOP is cheaper for us, even eating whatever we want.



If you email the right people, things happen. :wink:

Especially if you use words like “please” and “can you help me?”


Glad to hear this worked out for you. But you dont need dining plan or a hotel reservation to book adrs. They open 180 days ahead to anyone.