by Pixie Dusted Diva
You’ve read all about the Disney Dining Plan here at Tips from the Disney Divas and Devos and you may have watched my videos on our Youtube Channel or Facebook page when I am on vacation, as my family and I are huge Disney Dining Plan lovers! I explained what works for my family here. Now each year Disney makes changes and tweaks the Dining Plan. I’ll explain some parts of the Dining Plan as well as what to expect for changes for 2018.
Keep in mind, to be eligible to book a Disney’s Dining Plan you must be staying on-property, which makes this a huge perk of staying on property and deciding where to stay during your Disney World vacation. You must also book a Magic Your Way vacation package, which includes your room, tickets and dining package. However, if you are an Annual Passholder, you are able to book the Annual Passholder room rate plus dining. If you are a Disney Vacation Club (DVC) owner, you are also able to add the dining plan on to your points reservation.
The biggest change for 2018 – alcohol! Guests have several new beverage options available including non-alcoholic specialty beverages and, for Guests 21 and older, beer, wine and cocktails. Now of course, this comes with a price increase. To those of us who love the dining plan, and don’t drink this may pose a problem, however it does include non-alcoholic specialty drinks besides soft drinks such milkshakes or smoothies.
For 2017, Disney changed the configuration of what was considered a quick service meal, taking away the dessert and replacing it with a snack credit. A quick service composed of one entrée and one nonalcoholic beverage. If you really wanted dessert at a particular restaurant you could order it still and use a snack entitlement. Honestly though, most quick service restaurant had chocolate cake or seasonal cobbler, and how many of those can you have on your vacation especially if you are on the Quick Service Dining Plan.
For 2018 the Quick Service Dining Plan will include the following for each guest (ages 3 and over) per night for the length of your resort reservation:
The Standard Dining Plan will include the following for each guest (ages 3 and over) per night for the length of your resort reservation:
-One Table Service Meal (one entrée, one beverage and one dessert OR one full buffet)
-One Quick Service Meals (one entrée and one beverage)
-One Refillable Resort Mug
The Deluxe Dining Plan will include the following for each guest (ages 3 and over) per night for the length of your resort reservation:
-Three Meals (Quick Service or Table Service)
-One Refillable Resort Mug
NEW FOR 2018: Guests under 21 years of age can choose one non-alcoholic beverage with their Quick Service and Table Service meal (including specialty beverages where offered). Guests 21 and older can can choose either one non-alcoholic beverage (including specialty beverages where offered) or one single serving mixed cocktail, beer, or wine (where offered) within their meal entitlement.
Walt Disney World’s website explains the beverages by saying:
Guests under 21 years of age can choose one non-alcoholic beverage (including specialty beverages where offered). Guests 21 and older can choose either one non-alcoholic beverage (including specialty beverages where offered) or one single-serving mixed cocktail, beer, or wine (where offered) within their meal entitlement.
A single-serving non-alcoholic beverage includes items such as:
Premium Hot Chocolate
Soda, Coffee or Tea
A single-serving alcoholic beverage includes items such as:
Beer or Cider
Wine or Sangria
Mixed Drinks and Specialty Cocktails
Most beer, wine and mixed drink beverages included, some exceptions apply. Guests 21 and older must present valid ID to be served alcoholic beverages. Alcoholic beverages may only be redeemed with a Quick-Service or Table-Service meal entitlement.
A few of my own personal tips when using the Disney Dining Plan:
-Use your credits wisely, if you are trying to make the most of your money book your reservations accordingly. Dinners are more expensive then breakfast or lunch and character meals are more expensive then non-character meals.
-Book advance dining reservations for each of your table service credits. Although they aren’t required, they are strongly recommended. Nothing would be worse than having a credit to use and nowhere to eat. Aren’t sure which Table Service to book, read Disney Magic Diva’s quick guide to Table Service restaurants here.
-Keep track of your credits!! Each and every time you use your plan the total remaining will print at the bottom of the receipt. Do not wait until the end of your vacation to use up all your snack credits! Epcot is a great place to snack around the world especially during the Flower and Garden Festival or the Food and Wine Festival.
-Your snack credits can be meals! If you aren’t a big breakfast eater, you can use your snack credit for a bagel or muffin at your hotel and that can be your meal. We never use our snack credits on smaller value items or bottles of water; we save them for larger snacks that fill us up! Just look for the Dining Plan logo on the menu and it will show you what qualifies as a snack.
-One quick service meal equals three snacks. Find yourself at a location where you would prefer three snacks over a meal? You can convert! It has to be done at one location at the same time, but it can be done. One large Starbucks coffee and two cupcakes coming right up!
-Water is FREE! At any location which serves fountain soda you can ask for a cup of ice water for FREE! Take it to the next level by bringing along some packets of flavoring and you’ve got your own drink for FREE!
At the time this article was written the information provided was the most up to date. However, Disney does make changes to their Dining Plans as needed. Visit our blog frequently to stay up to date on the latest Disney news and tips!
Need help planning your Disney vacation and booking the Disney Dining Plan? Contact our Military Diva, Patricia with All for Dreams Travel, today for a free vacation quote!