Is the Disney Dining Plan Worth it For Your Trip? Part 2

Disney dining plan desserts


  • Snack:
    • 1 single serving snack or drink (i.e. popsicle, piece of whole fruit, 20oz drink)
  • Quick-service meal:
    • 1 entree + 1 drink (non-alcoholic or alcoholic)
  • Table-service BREAKFAST meal:
    • 1 entree + 1 drink (non-alcoholic or alcoholic) OR 1 Buffet or Family-style meal
  • Table-service LUNCH/DINNER meal:
    • 1 entree + 1 dessert + 1 drink (non-alcoholic or alcoholic) OR 1 Buffet or Family-style meal
  • DELUXE Table-service meal:
    • 1 appetizer + 1 entree + 1 drink (non-alcoholic or alcoholic) + 1 dessert OR Buffet or Family-style meal

Now it is understood that our way of capitalizing on the Starbucks route is not the traditional everyday, everybody route (aka my husband has issues…) but where the current pricing is at $75 a day, it is all about doing a little math to see if it makes sense. That $5 fancy non alcoholic beverage, plus that $25 entree and $10 dessert = $40 just for your TS meal. Another $20 for QS meal and another $5 for a snack. That’s $65 and you just picked the middle tier food. Trattoria in Italy – the chicken parm is $30 and the yummiest dessert is $12 plus a $5 drink. ABC Commissary- the rib platter is $18 plus another $10 for drink and dessert. Snacks still all run around $5-6, but it’s possible I have missed the expensive ones. That’s $80, and a bit more of the “standard” human (aka- not my husband) New for 2019-you can now get an Alcoholic Beverage at your QS and TS meals instead of your NA Beverage- upping that $5 drink to $8-$12.

Essentially you can consider yourself breaking even when all is said and done. For me, the one benefit that tips the scale towards this being worth the money: it is already paid for before you even show up. Maybe it is my personality or mindset, but that really gave us the feeling of an “all-inclusive” vacation with the ability to just sit back and enjoy ourselves without worrying about how much each meal would cost. I’ve heard of people putting the DDP cost on a gift card and using that for meals, which is a great alternative, but I, for one, would still find myself nickel and dining that $30 salmon when I could spend less on the fish sandwich. And then feel that I was limiting myself on vacation.

In December, we are going for our 3rd DDP trip. We are taking ourselves, our 3yo son, my mother and my aunt. We are also brand new to DVC, and this is our first trip home. This will be a completely different type of trip. Now that we qualify for DVC discounts and Tables in Wonderland- it will be interesting to see if we are still “breaking even” with the DDP.

The pros and cons of the DDP really come down to your own personal vacationing habits and eating habits. The more you go the more you know. I would like to think as we get older, we might evolve to the deluxe plan and enjoy more TS meals and really slow down our park running. We have good appetites, but mostly we like food. If you are a picky eater- it probably won’t make sense for you. But if you’re dying to try new flavors and have a pricey palette, then you can really maximize this plan.


Guest Author

Jen Carey

DVC Disney Vacation Club Members facebook group member

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