There are currently 3 dining plans being offered to guests staying at a Disney resort: Quick-Service Dining Plan, Disney Dining Plan and the Deluxe Dining Plan. For details on all 3 dining plans click this link. Today we’re going to be comparing the Disney Dining Plan with the Deluxe Dining Plan. We did a comparison previously between the Quick-Service Dining Plan and the Disney Dining Plan, for that post click here.
Disney Dining Plan
The Disney Dining Plan gives guests 1 table service meal credit, 1 quick-service meal credit and 2 snacks per night of their stay. For a table service meal credit you get an entree, a drink and a dessert, for a quick service meal credit you get a drink and an entree. The Disney Dining Plan also gives guests a refillable mug that can be filled at any resort fill station. The cost of 2018s Disney Dining Plan is $75.49/adult/night and $25.80/child/night. For those enjoying one of the free dining plans this dining plan is included when you stay at a Deluxe Resort or Deluxe Villa.
Deluxe Dining Plan
The Deluxe Dining Plan gives guests 3 meal credits and 2 snack credit per night of stay. You also receive a refillable mug that can be refilled at any resort fill station. These meal credits can be used at either Table Service Restaurants or Quick-Service restaurants. At a table service restaurant you’ll receive an appetizer, entree, dessert and beverage (alcoholic or non). At a quick-service restaurant you’ll receive an entree and a beverage (alcoholic or non). The cost for the Deluxe Dining Plan is $116.24/adult/night and $39.99/child/night. We tried the Deluxe Dining Plan for the first time this summer. For our thoughts click here.
Deluxe Dining Plan VS Disney Dining Plan
When you’re dining on the Deluxe Dining Plan you get an extra course with each of your table service meals, with the exception of breakfast during the week. You get an appetizer! So if this is your normal method of dining out then this is a winner for you. If you don’t, then moving from the Disney Dining Plan to the Deluxe Dining Plan may not be worth it for you.
Meals per day
On the Deluxe Dining Plan, you have meal credits for each meal of the day. On the Disney Dining Plan you only have 2 meal credits for each day. So you have to be more creative with your meal planning. Either you bring some food from home to make breakfast, use snack credits for other meals or have meals later and earlier than regular meal times.
There’s a clear cost difference between the two meal plans. The Deluxe Dining Plan is $40 more a day per adult meal. The difference covers the additional course received at table service meals and the additional meal credit. If you eat all your meals at table service restaurants than you’ll definitely consume more than $40 worth of food.
There are restaurants at Walt Disney World that are termed as Signature Restaurants, these restaurants are high end and therefore cost more. These restaurants require 2 table service meal credits. If you are dining on the Deluxe Dining Plan, planning for these 2 meal credit restaurants is easy. When you’re on the Disney Dining Plan it can be more difficult. Still possible but more difficult. So if you want to dine at a couple of these incredible restaurants then the Deluxe Dining Plan is your way to go.
With any of the dining plans you need to make sure that you consume what you have invested. You want to make sure you’ve gotten your moneys worth. So when you’re on the Deluxe Dining Plan you’ll want to make sure you use your meal credits at as many Table Service restaurants as possible to get the value for your dollar spent. With the Disney Dining Plan it’s not as difficult because it’s already very structured for you, with only 1 table service and 1 quick service per day. The likelihood that you’ll end up on par or above is very good.
If you are choosing the Deluxe Dining Plan, be aware of where you are staying. If you are staying at a Value resort you don’t have access at your resort to Table Service Restaurants, making it harder to get all those three meals a day in at the value of your investment. If this is your plan just make sure to plan to resort hop or dine at Disney Springs. There are plenty of choices at the four theme parks.
Those are the biggest differences between the two dining plans. The Deluxe Dining Plan certainly has more food to consume, even at the Signature Restaurants. I had expected the Signature Restaurants to have smaller portions but they weren’t any smaller than a normal restaurants servings. So there is plenty of food to eat. But it definitely provides you the opportunity to try a variety of foods in one vacation. The Disney Dining Plan gives you more time at the parks, because you don’t have to sit down to eat as often. So the right dining plan is dependent on what you want out of your vacation. Happy Planning, Friends.