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by Daisy Diva

So if you read Part 1 of this series, you should understand the basic terminology of the Disney Dining Plan. Now let’s talk about the dining plans themselves.  There are five to choose from, and you are guaranteed to find one that fits the dining needs and preferences of your travel party.  I’ll start with the most affordable option and work my way up.

The Quick-Service Plan is the plan with both the smallest amount of food and the smallest price tag.  Disney is not exactly upfront with a per person cost regarding the dining plan—I asked a cast member during an online chat, and he said they could not give out dining plan pricing, but that I could play around with adding various dining plans to different packages to get pricing ideas.  So that’s exactly what I did.  According to my calculations, the Quick-Service dining plan costs about $43 per adult per night and about $18 per child per night.  (Please keep in mind, a “child” at Disney World is between the ages of 3 and 9.  Anyone ages 10 and up is an adult when it comes to ticket pricing and the dining plan.)  The Quick-Service Plan includes two Quick-Service Credits and one Snack credit per person per night of your resort stay.  What that means is a family of four (2 adults, 2 kids between the ages of 3 and 9) staying for 5 nights has 40 Quick-Service credits and 20 snacks to use during their vacation.  There is no limit to how many credits can be used in one day; that means that dad can use two snack credits in one day if he really wants a pretzel and some popcorn in one day.  It also means the family can eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner using their Quick-Service credits in one day, but that also means that they will run out of credits before the end of their vacation.  This plan also includes the Rapid Fill Reusable Mug. (Photo is of the chicken nuggets and fries [and a little bit of the flatbread pizza] from Lottawatta Lodge at Blizzard Beach–a Quick-Service restaurant.)

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The Basic Disney Dining Plan is next on our list, and cashes in at about $62 per adult per night and $20.96 per child per night.  It includes one Quick-Service credit, one Table-Service credit, and one Snack credit per person per night of their stay.  The same rules from the Quick-Service Plan apply here—you are not limited to only using one Table-Service credit per day.  As long as you have at least a three night stay, you can eat breakfast at Chef Mickey’s, lunch at the Crystal Palace, and dinner at Be Our Guest all in one day if you want.  But that will use up a lot of your Table-Service Credits.  This plan also includes the Rapid Fill Reusable Mug.

Something to remember with both the Quick-Service and Table-Service plans is that they require a good amount of planning.  I say this because just eating willy-nilly could mean using up all of your credits before your vacation is over and having to pay out of pocket for something that you could have gotten with dining plan credits had you planned better.  And of course, if you are on the Basic Dining Plan, you will need to plan your Table-Service credit usage so you can make your Advance Dining Reservations.  (Photo is of Daisy Diva family outside of Tusker House at Animal Kingdom–a Table-Service restaurant.)

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Next is the Deluxe Dining Plan, and here is where the specific credits (Table-Service vs. Quick-Service) end.  This plan includes three meals and two Snack credits per person per night of your stay.  There is no specification as to whether those meals are Quick-Service or Table-Service, which means that a family with the Deluxe Plan could eat at a Table Service restaurant for all three meals every day of their vacation AND get two snacks each per day.  My quote for the Deluxe Dining Plan is roughly $112 per adult per night and $33 per child per night.  This plan also includes the Rapid Fill Reusable Mug.

Just a personal note from Daisy Diva:  I have never used this plan, but a friend who has used it before informed me that it was a LOT of eating.  And I tend to agree.  While all the walking can definitely work up an appetite, and the food at Disney is quite yummy, the heat combined with the activity keeps me from being able to eat very much.  This would be way too much food for my family—but we spend most of our time in parks on the rides.  For a family of foodies or a travel party that doesn’t plan to do many rides, this might be perfect!  (Photo is of two different breakfast buffet plates at Boma at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge–a Table-Service restaurant.)

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The fourth option in our list of dining plans is the Premium Dining Plan.  With a price tag of approximately $209 per adult per night and $152 per child per night, the Premium plan is basically the Deluxe Dining Plan plus lots of recreational extras.  Premium Plan users have unlimited use of all four of Disney’s 18 hole golf courses, unlimited parasailing, tubing, water skiing, water boarding, and watercraft rentals at Sammy Duvall’s Watersports Centre, unlimited resort activities such as horseback riding, fishing, boat rentals and more, and unlimited admission to select Disney Tours and select Children’s Centers.  The Premium Dining Plan also includes one admission per person to the Cirque de Soleil show La Nouba at Downtown Disney (soon to be Disney Springs).  And of course, this plan also includes the Rapid Fill Reusable Mug.  (Photos are of the check in area and walkway to the dining room of Coral Reef at Epcot–a Table-Service restaurant.)

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The final plan option is the Platinum Dining Plan.  With a pretty hefty price tag of over $260 per adult per night and over $200 per child per night, the Platinum plan includes everything you get with the Premium Plan plus one fireworks cruise experience (either Wishes or Illuminations) and one spa treatment per adult.  The Platinum Plan is only available for guests staying at a Deluxe resort, and also includes a special Itinerary Planner for pre-planning help, turn down service, and more.  This plan also includes the Rapid Fill Reusable Mug.  (Photo is of the buffet at Chef Mickey’s–a Table-Service Restaurant at Disney’s Contemporary Resort.)

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After all of that explanation, you may still have a few questions.  I will attempt to address them all in my next installment of this series:  Part 3 FAQ.  And if you do end of adding the Dining Plan to your Disney vacation package, make Daisy Diva one promise:  that you will enjoy at least one Mickey Waffle while you’re there.

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Contact Patricia at All For Dreams Travel to plan your vacation.

I am a Disney-loving former second grade teacher turned stay at home mom of two kids whom I homeschool and the wife of a Disney-tolerating husband. (But I think I am slowly starting to convert him!) If I'm not at Walt Disney World, you can probably find me planning my next Disney vacation or day-dreaming about being in the Magic Kingdom. I also love monograms, reading, Sonic Cherry Limeade's, autumn, and teaching kid's church.