Deluxe Dining Plan~Talk me down !?1?

OK, I need help, advice, insight...I am considering upgrading from free dining to deluxe dining plan. I know the popular opinion is that it's too much food, BUT looking at my ADRs, we are already going to CRT, Le Cellier, HDDMR, HBD, and would love to try Narcoossee's and FF. And this doesn't include our character breakfasts. Should I upgrade?

Please talk me off the ledge, or send me flying over. Just can't decide!

Hey Kelly - how many people in your group? And where are you staying?

How many nights? Who are you traveling with? Eating habits on vaca?

We are staying at BWI, with four paying total (me, hubby, DD14, DS4, and DS 4 months).

Nine nights. Last year we at two meals a day, but we admittedly booked them too close together, as we crammed in lots of meals in 5 nights. This year we wanted to space them out, and we will be there longer, too.

It might be worth the $ to upgrade. You'll need to run the numbers to know for sure.

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Look at it this way. On the DxDP you will have 3 TS meals per day - or one "regular" TS meal and one "Special" (signature, CM, etc) meal per day. At EVERY meal, each person will get an app, an entree, and a dessert. Plus each person will get 2 snacks per day. Ask yourself this question: If you were paying out of pocket, would you order this much food? If the answer is yes, then the DxDP is definately a "good deal".

I have a 7-day trip planned with 6 TS lunches, 1 signature lunch, and 7 signature dinners; I strongly considered the DxDP. DW and I rarely have an app at lunch, and if we do, we share. We never have dessert at lunch. We will typically share an app at dinner, and MAY share a dessert. In round numbers, that's about 20 apps and 20 desserts "included" on the DxDP that we would normally never order. When I "ran the numbers", paying OOP for the way we would "normally" eat. it came out about $400 cheaper than the DxDP. When I added in TIW, the difference went up to around $600.

Also, remember that tips are not included in the DxDP, so, depending on "how big" you order, you could have a $20-30 per adult per day OOP expense (kids would probably be less if they ordered from the kids menus, but that is NOT the way to maximize your "savings" on any DP).

Other factors to consider is how much your room is costing. Rooms that come with the DPs are typically not discounted. There are frequently room-only discounts. Which would save you more money - rack-rate room with DP or room-only discount and dining OOP?

I'm not specifically "down" on the DDPs, but just sounding a word of caution - what sounds like a great deal up front, may not be "as good" as deal when you look at all of the details. For some families, no doubt, it will affect a savings - or at least be worth the "convenience" of having meals (mostly) pre-paid. But it's not a one size fits all, and and if the $$$ aspect is of prime importance to you, you need to really do your accounting before you fall pray to the Disney marketing team... smile

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Personally I like one TS and one QS a day, two TS just takes too long. You need to pick what is right for your family.

Wow, the deluxe plan! Better bring your stretchy pants. I agree with Jedilogray, thats alot of food for me.

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Here's the spreadsheet I put together when I "ran the numbers" for the trip I discussed above. I used 7% for tax and 20% for tip. I can't swear that it's "perfect math", but it certainly gives a "decision point" analysis...

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We had the DxDP last year and are not doing it this year. We actually lost money with it. Even though we will not have the plan this time, we are not changing the # or type of meals. We are still doing character breakfasts and 2 credit dinners. What I found was the amount of food that we ordered was simply too much. There were many meals where we didn't even order apps/desserts. And my oldest (a Disney adult) oftentimes wanted something from the kid's menu. We just don't eat that way. And my oldest (a Disney adult) oftentimes wanted to order something from the kid's menu. I think that we had over 30 snack credits left at the end. With that said, it was very convenient and it was nice to have everything prepaid. Good luck deciding! Like the others said, run the #s and see what will work best for your family.

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I would never be able to eat that much food. I prefer 1 TS and 1 CS.

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This is great! Thank you @bswan26

Thanks @kellymouse5 I'll try and figure it out!

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Thanks @Jedilogray for the link!

My daughter loves the deluxe dining plan as she and her husband go to a lot of signature dining and a lot of character breakfasts. For them it works. For me and my husband it is too much time spent in restaurants and too much food. We eat at TS most nights but eat very light during the day.

We have the DDP for our next trip....I decided to go with that one because of we had booked two signature meals and seriously almost all the rest of them are character meals. We never have a problem using the snack credits...use them for water and drinks and we are slim people...but my hubby wants to eat in the signature restaurants and my son has to have Mickey waffles and Mickey Ice cream bars everyday.

@lori55 @Ilovedisneyworld I think we are going for it! When I called to price, it was a lot less than I thought it was going to be. After using the link from @Jedilogray, it will definitely be less expensive for us. So I'm super excited. Not telling the husband, just going to surprise him with lots of yummy meals.

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Glad I could be of assistance wink

Awesome! I'm excited too!