Dining Plan Credits vs paying

We are staying 8 nights in October and have the standard dining plan. I have 9 total in my party. 2 kids and the rest are adults. 2 of the adults on the plan are only 10 years old. They both eat like birds and would probably want to order off the kids menus. My question is this. At TS restaurants can I pay for them to get a kids meal and save their TS credits so we could then do another TS due to them not using their credits? Or do they make you use them since everyone else is using them at the table. I understand I can’t do this at buffets where it’s a set credit for them but at places such as Sci-fi could I pay for the 2 10 year olds meals while using the dining plan on the rest of the party?

I personally do NOT like the Dining Plan for just this reason. My wife orders off the kid’s menu more than not. I would think YES you could break it up even and pay some credits and some not credits. We were there with friends - we happened to be on the dining plan - they not. We would sit together and split the bill.

I find the dining credit only worth it if you do character diners a lot or you have people that eat a lot and want an entree and desert.

Otherwise paying $$ has always made sense for us

Yes at any place that is not fixed price ie all character meals /buffets.

Yes, I know it’s possible because I’ve done it. My then-10yo son was an “adult” on the DDP but prefers the size and type of food in kid’s meals. We saved enough adult credits by paying for kid’s meals OOP to have the family get one extra character meal.

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Yes. Just let your server know which diner will be using points and which will be paying out of pocket for their meal.

The only thing I would consider though:
If you all use credits and pay out of pocket for 2 diners, you will theoretically have 2 TS credits left at the end of your trip. If you used those 2 TS credits another time during your trip, that would mean you were paying OOP for the others dining at that particular meal.

Great info. Thanks everyone for their input. I dislike that Disney forces a 10 year old to order and pay adult prices. Since when is 10 considered an adult? I can see 12 or 14 being the cutoff but 10 seems way too young to upping their prices. Ok done venting. Thanks again for the responses.

Agreed - that is why we don’t do the dining plans. My 2 kids and wife almost always order off the kiddie menu. If we have desert it is usually just one or two that we split. The ONLY time it was worth it for us was when we did a lot of character meals.

Yes I agree too but think maybe 14 should be the cutoff.

Also, since you said your kids eat like birds, maybe just let them pick off the adult plates or only get some fries or something like that. In this way, you aren’t shelling out money at all (or very little) and have your credits to do an additional meal. I find the kids meals to be a rip off, mostly, because the portions are more for a 5 year old (with the 6 grapes, the juice box, and the tiny Mac n cheese or nuggets). So, consider not buying them anything.

I plan to do a TS meal where we share two credits among the four of us. Knowing how much food you end up having throughout the day, no one will go hungry sharing an adult meal.

I thought I read somewhere that sharing is not allowed when using the DDP. Is that not true?

You can share on ddp at ts as long as its not fixed price ie all buffets, character meals and things like Hoop are charged even if you don’t eat. You would have to pay oop for drinks for those not using credits.

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Anyplace that is Character or Entertainment - you are paying for that and not the food.