As expensive as a trip to Walt Disney World, add a Disney Dining Plan can seem like a waste of money. For our family, we have always purchased a Dining Plan, not because the plans save money, but because we like to have everything paid off before we touch down in Florida for our vacation.
Once upon a time, there was only ONE Dining Plan option, which is now considered the basic dining plan, that included one counter service meal, one table service meal, and two snacks per day. It also included the tip for any tables service meal, so it truly was all prepaid by the time you hit WDW.
Nowadays, there are three dining plans to chose from: The Quick Service Plan, the Disney Dining Plan, and the Deluxe Dining Plan. While they no longer include tips, all three plans now include specialty drinks for the kids and beer, wine, and cocktails for the biggest of the kids.
The Quick Service plan is just that; two Quick-Service meals per day, two snacks per day, and one refillable mug per guest. The cost of the QS plan is $55 per day for adults and $26 per day for children. This plan is not a good choice for my family, because we like to sit down for one meal per day, relax and have a good meal, but I do see that this would be a great plan for folks on a budget, or families that just like to go, go, go. While the average quick service meal is $14.99, which might lead you to believe this is not.a good value, when you add in two snacks and a mug, this one works out.
The Disney Dining Plan is one quick service, one table service, two snacks per day and the refillable mug. The cost of this plan for 2020 is $78 per day for adults and $30.50 for kids. When you look at the cost of the table service meals, this plan makes total sense. As an example, Crystal Palace breakfast, which is a must for our family, is $42 per adult, and $27 for kids. Add one of the quick service meals at $14.99 and two snacks at about $5 each, and you break even each day with this plan. Our other must do, Tusker House Dinner is $55 per adult and $36 for kids, so again, great bang for your buck. Where you can really save on this plan is the non-buffet restaurants. Outside of free dining promotions, there is not a limit on what you can order at a table service meal.
The Deluxe Dining Plan is a whopping $119 a day for adults and $47.50 a day for children. This plan includes three meals per day; any three meals, either table service or quick service, along with the two snacks and the refillable mug. This plan is for the serious foodies that want to do those Signature Restaurants, the ones that count as two "points" on the plan. We have done the Deluxe Plan, and while we enjoyed California Grill and Jiko, this was too much food for us. If you are looking to take in as much of the elite foods that What Disney World has to offer, the Deluxe Dining Plan is for you.
For our family, we will always use a Disney Dining Plan, if only for the two snacks a day, so this is a big YAY for us.
Check out DisneyDad's video what goes into depth about meal plans!