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Thread: Dining Plan Questions? Stop here first!!!

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    tests unsafe roller coasts in china blyday's Avatar
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    Dining Plan Questions? Stop here first!!!

    First things first.....Josh....the amazing developer of this site....has some great articles on the dining plans including the current costs for each. Please take some time to read through these so that you have a good understanding of the dining plans http://www.easywdw.com/worth-2/disne...ntroduction-2/ and http://www.easywdw.com/worth-2/figur...or-your-group/ .

    This thread covers the most commonly asked questions about the dining plans at Walt Disney World. It only covers the 3 major plans (Quick Service, Basic and Deluxe) as they are the most commonly used. So, if you are looking for the more elaborate plans, go ahead and post your question in a new thread in the forum. Please read down this list to see if your question is answered here. If not, please start a new thread. Do NOT post your questions in this thread.

    If you see any errors or have recommendations for Q&As to be added, please post those in this thread. Thanks

    General Dining Plan Questions

    Q: What are the requirements to participate in a Dining Plan?
    A: You must be staying at a Disney-owned resort on Disney World property if you want the option of adding a Disney Dining Plan. All Disney Value, Moderate, Deluxe, and Deluxe Villa resorts are eligible. Guests staying at the Swan, Dolphin, Shades of Green, any of the Downtown Disney resorts, and all off-site visitors are not eligible. In most cases, you must have a "package" which includes the Disney hotel AND a park ticket. The exceptions are Disney Vacation Club members staying on points, using rented points from a Disney Vacation Club member, and AP holders who book an AP room at one of the above mentioned qualifying.

    Q: We are going to WDW for 5 nights/6 days with 6 day tickets. We are thinking of adding on a couple of extra days on our tickets so that we can get some more Dining Plan credits. How do we do this?
    A: You don't. The number of credits that you get with your dining plan are NOT tied to your tickets in any way. They are based on the number of nights that you are staying at the resort. This means that in the above case, you will only be allowed 5 "days" worth of credits for this trip, period! The only way to get more dining credits is to add more nights to your trip.

    Q: Can we get the dining plan for only 2 of the 4 people staying in our room?
    A: No. Everyone in the room must be on the same package.

    Q: Can we get the Deluxe Dining Plan for the first part of our trip and the Quick Service for the last part?
    A: No. You must keep the same plan for your entire stay. The only way to change plans is to make 2 different reservations. In this case, you will have to check out and check back in and might be required to move rooms, even if you are staying at the same resort. Also, remember that in order to have the dining plan added to your reservations, you must purchase a ticket. So, with the split stay, you will need to have at least a 1-day ticket with the first reservation and a 1 day ticket with the second reservation for all people in the room. (Unless you are staying on DVC points or on an AP rate.)

    Q: If I have the dining plan, do I have to make reservations at the restaurants or do I get in automatically?
    A: Having a dining plan does NOT guarantee you access to a restaurant. Dining reservations are always encouraged because it will guarantee access to the restaurant. Without reservations, you are at the mercy of what's available to walk-up guests. Many of the most popular restaurants will be booked solid by the time you arrive and walk-up guests will either be turned away or quoted a long wait for a table.

    Q: We are not leaving until 5 PM on our last day. Will we be able to use our credits even though we have checked out of our room?
    A: Absolutely!! Your dining plan is good from the time you check into your room until midnight the day that you check out.

    Q: We are meeting up for dinner with some friends who don't have the dining plan. How do we all pay for our meal?
    A: Simply tell the cast member serving you that you will be paying with your dining plan credits and your friends will be paying out of pocket. They will gladly split up the bill so that you can do this. It is very simple. Just make sure that you let them know when you are first seated (they normally will ask). Then they will know to ring your bill up correctly.

    Q: We have a cousin joining us for dinner one day. Can we just pay for his meal with our dining plan credits?
    A: No, credits are non-transferable. Your card will specify exactly how many people are in your room and you will only be allowed to use that number of dining credits to pay for your meal. Your cousin will either have to pay out of pocket for his meal or you will have to pay for him.

    Q: My 10 year old is considered an adult by Disney standards but sometimes she just prefers a kids meal. Will she be able to use her adult credit to get a kids meal?
    A: Yes, however, you might want to really evaluate if a dining plan is really going to work best for you. If she is going to get several kids meals, you are actually going to lose quite a bit of money with a dining plan and might be better off just paying out of pocket for your meals until she is actually ready to eat as an "adult".

    Q: My kids won't eat chicken nuggets and will want to eat the adult meal. Can we just get an adult meal for them?
    A: Officially, no!! Table Service meal credits are kept separately and you will only be allowed to order a kids meal with the kids credits. At times, you can get an adult meal at the Quick service locations as the credits are pooled. However, the CM can limit you to just the number of adults listed on the card.

    Q: I've heard that I can exchange my Deluxe plan credits and quick service credits for snacks in case I can't use up all of those credits. Is this true?
    A: Generally speaking, No. Once in a while you might get lucky and have a Cast Member who will let you do it and occasionally during times when the Free Dining promotion is taking place, they will allow you to do this. Otherwise, you will just lose any unused credits.

    Q: How do I know if a dining plan is right for my family?
    A: There is no easy answer to this question. Check out the menus and see what items you will most likely order and punch in the numbers. Be honest when doing this. If you honestly would not purchase a drink or dessert, then don't count those in your total. Then compare the prices. Also, ask yourself if you will eat better because you are on the plan because then you'd be okay with ordering that steak instead of the pasta. If that is true.....then a dining plan might be a good splurge for you. Recognize that Disney is in the business of making money. That means that you very well might end up paying more for a dining plan then you would without one. Only you can honestly decide if it is the best choice for your family or not.

    Q: What is this "Free Dining" I keep hearing about?
    A: Occasionally (most often during late Aug through the end of Sept) Disney will offer a package discount that offers free dining with the purchase of room and tickets at rack rate. You can only get this if you pay for the room and tickets, are staying during the times it is offered AND you book within the required time of the offer.

    Quick Service Dining Plan (QSDP)

    Q: What is included with the QSDP?
    A: Two Quick service meals and one snack credit per night of your package stay plus 1 free resort refillable mug.

    Q: Who is this plan the best option for?
    A: This is a great option for those who are going for a short trip and are planning on mostly just eating quick service meals to start with. This plan is a bad idea if you need real silverware to call it a meal, are planning on eating at several table service locations, or are planning on a longer trip where you have more time and would like to experience more table service meals.

    Q: Quick Service...does this mean that I'll be eating Hamburgers and chicken nuggets all week?
    A: No!!! Disney quick service locations have a large variety of different foods available. Stop by the restaurant forum to learn more about what is available.

    Q: What all is included in my meal?
    A: For breakfast, your drink and entree are included. For Lunch and dinner, you get a drink, entree and dessert.

    Q: We never eat that many desserts. Can we get something else?
    A: Yes. Quick service locations are flexible with your dessert options. You may be able to substitute a bottle of water, yogurt, piece of fruit, or other price-equivalent item from the menu. Just ask when you're ordering for a list of options."

    Q: We are staying for 4 nights/5 days and have 4 day tickets. How many dining credits will we get?
    A: Since it is based on the number of nights that you are staying, you will get 8 Quick Service and 8 snack credits per person to use during your trip.

    Basic Dining Plan (DDP)

    Q: What is included in the DDP?
    A: The DDP includes 1 table service credit, 1 quick service credit and 1 snack credit per night of your stay.

    Q: Who does the DDP make the most sense for?
    A: This plan is good for the following: 1) Families who want to have at least one table service meal per day and enjoy dessert with their meals. 2) Families who order the pasta when they really want the steak. Because the Dining Plan is a fixed price no matter what you order, the Dining Plan may make you feel like you can freely order the most expensive items on the menu, rather than sticking to less expensive entrees like the pasta or chicken. 3) When traveling with extended family and you don't want to fight over who is going to pay the check. 4) Families who just want to have everything paid for and aren't worried about getting their value out of the plan.

    Q: What is included with my meals?
    A: Breakfast includes drink and entree. Lunch and Dinner includes drink, entree, and dessert. It is the same for both quick and table service locations. Buffet locations include all of the food on the buffet and your drink.

    Q: Can we eat 2 table service meals one day and only quick service the next day?
    A: You bet, you can use your credits any way you choose to. Just note that once they are gone....they are gone.

    Q: So this plan only has 2 meals per day. Does this mean that we are going to have to pay for breakfast?
    A: It does mean you will be paying for food that is not covered by the plan, including breakfast. However, the Dining Plan is a lot of food for most people and you may not miss that third major meal. Also, consider using snack credits for breakfast items like cereal, pastries, and milk

    Q: Can I use my table service credits for quick service meals?
    A: No and honestly, you will not want to as you will lose a significant amount of money doing so. Disney does occasionally make an exception to this rule during times when the Free Dining promotion is offered.

    Q: We are staying for 7 nights/8 days and have 6- day tickets. How many credits will be get for our dining plan?
    A: Since the credits are determined by the number of nights that you are staying, you will receive 7 Table Service, 7 Quick Service and 7 Snack credits per person.

    Q: I've heard that some meals take 2 Table Service Credits. What are they?
    A: They include all signature locations, dinner shows, Cinderella's Royal Table and dinner at Le Cellier (begining March 1, 2011. Lunch is only 1 Table Service Credit)

    Deluxe Dining Plan (DxDDP)

    Q: What is included in the DxDDP?
    A: It includes 3 meal credits (can be used at either table service or quick service locations) and 2 snack credits per night of your stay plus a resort refillable mug.

    Q: Who does this plan make the most sense for?
    A: For most people, the Deluxe Dining Plan will be too much food. We're talking three table service meals per day, many of which can easily take an hour or more, plus the time to get to the restaurants and be seated. I ONLY recommend the Deluxe Plan if dining is going to be one of the main focuses of your vacation. It can be a lot of time away from the attractions, especially with young kids who would rather be riding Dumbo than eating at Tony's Town Square.

    Q: What is included with my meals?
    A: Quick service includes: Entree and drink for breakfast and Entree, dessert and drink for lunch and dinner. Table Service includes: Entree and drink for breakfast, Appetizer, entree, dessert and drink for lunch and dinner. Buffets include all food at the buffet plus your drink.

    Q: We aren't worried about losing a lot of time to go to attractions because we will use at least one quick service meal per day. We just like having 3 meals. Does this sound reasonable?
    A: Not usually. The additional cost to upgrade from the Basic Dining Plan to the Deluxe Plan is about $30 per adult, per day. That means that third meal must cost at least that much money for it to be worthwhile.

    Q: Doesn't it make more sense to get the DxDDP over the other plans since I get 3 full meals?
    A: Only if you plan to eat three complete meals every day. It's a lot of food for most people. I compare it to eating at Old Country Buffet for breakfast, Olive Garden for Lunch, and Outback Steakhouse for dinner. That's three entrees, two desserts, and two appetizers.

    Q: We are staying for 7 nights/8 days with 6 day tickets. How many credits will we get?
    A: Since credits are based on the number of nights you stay (7 in this case) you will get 21 meal credits and 14 snack credits per person.
    Last edited by blyday; 12-24-2013 at 02:17 PM.
    Brenda

  2. #2
    tests unsafe roller coasts in china blyday's Avatar
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    OK everyone.....I know that there are going to be some errors, omissions, things that don't make sense, etc. Please help me out and read through this and let me know of any errors that you see. If you have some suggestions for new Q&As please posts those also. I need all of the help I can get here!!!!
    Brenda

  3. #3
    who gon stop me? HUH? josh's Avatar
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    Oh wow, looks great. Let me have a look.

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    THE RULES!!! vicki_c's Avatar
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    Q: Can we get the Deluxe Dining Plan for the first part of our trip and the Quick Service for the last part?
    A: No. You must keep the same plan for your entire stay. The only way to change plans is to make 2 different reservations. In this case, you will have to check out and check back in and might be required to move rooms, even if you are staying at the same resort.
    Don't forget to mention that there is a minimum ticket purchase required for each separate reservation.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~
    It's an amusement park, for goodness sake, how much planning could you need?

  5. #5
    tests unsafe roller coasts in china blyday's Avatar
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    Thanks Vicki!!!! I knew I could count on you to help me!!!!

    Anything else???
    Brenda

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    who gon stop me? HUH? josh's Avatar
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    Forwarded some thoughts via private message

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    THE RULES!!! vicki_c's Avatar
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    No but maybe when you stop writing FAQs, you could take a look at mine in the Resorts area? Only Edith has commented on it. I don't think it's THAT good! LOL. Just that no one else has really looked.

    It's still a work in progress too - I'm sure there's more I should add.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~
    It's an amusement park, for goodness sake, how much planning could you need?

  8. #8
    tests unsafe roller coasts in china blyday's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vicki_c View Post
    No but maybe when you stop writing FAQs, you could take a look at mine in the Resorts area? Only Edith has commented on it. I don't think it's THAT good! LOL. Just that no one else has really looked.

    It's still a work in progress too - I'm sure there's more I should add.
    You bet.....I'll look at it tonight and again tomorrow. I'm feeling really wiped out tonight and don't know why. But I'll see what I can do to help. After all....I owe you!!!
    Brenda

  9. #9
    tests unsafe roller coasts in china blyday's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by josh View Post
    Forwarded some thoughts via private message
    OK.....I fixed ALL of those errors you found!!!

    Thanks for you help!!!
    Brenda

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    prefers quisp over quake tiggr88's Avatar
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    Since I believe this is more related to the Free Dining Promotion, I'm not sure it belongs here or elsewhere, but here goes.

    Q Can I upgrade my free dining dining plan package? For example, if I want to stay at a Value and it only comes with the QSDP, can I upgrade to the DDP so I can get 1 TS and 1 CS instead of 2 CS per day?

    A Yes. You can pay to upgrade to a higher package if you want to pay the difference in price.

    Poorly written, but it's late. Hope you get the idea. I'm not sure people realize they can upgrade with the promotion. It might still be cheaper to upgrade the plan than upgrade the resort.
    Oct 89 QS, Sep '98 Poly Concierge, Jan '01 ASMu, Oct '01 HI Family Suites, Oct '03 HIFS, Oct '03 Portofino Bay (anniversary trip), Dec '04 POFQ, Oct '05 ASMu, Oct '06 ASMu, Nov '07 Magic cruise, Nov '08 ASMu (family reunion), Dec '08 BCV/BC (20th anniversary trip w/o kids), Aug '10 HRH, Sept/Oct '11

  11. #11
    tests unsafe roller coasts in china blyday's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiggr88 View Post
    Since I believe this is more related to the Free Dining Promotion, I'm not sure it belongs here or elsewhere, but here goes.

    Q Can I upgrade my free dining dining plan package? For example, if I want to stay at a Value and it only comes with the QSDP, can I upgrade to the DDP so I can get 1 TS and 1 CS instead of 2 CS per day?

    A Yes. You can pay to upgrade to a higher package if you want to pay the difference in price.

    Poorly written, but it's late. Hope you get the idea. I'm not sure people realize they can upgrade with the promotion. It might still be cheaper to upgrade the plan than upgrade the resort.
    Thanks......I'm thinking of putting together a "package" thread that will discuss things like "Free dining" and other promotions. I did think about adding this here and then thought that the package thread would be a better fit. This is the point where forums start to get "gray" lines because free dining and promotions also fit under the Money saving forum. But I do like the idea of a package descriptions that goes into the differences between room only, package reservations and general promotions that Disney releases.

    What do you think???
    Brenda

  12. #12
    Will work for Dole Whips. Brandie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blyday View Post
    Thanks......I'm thinking of putting together a "package" thread that will discuss things like "Free dining" and other promotions. I did think about adding this here and then thought that the package thread would be a better fit. This is the point where forums start to get "gray" lines because free dining and promotions also fit under the Money saving forum. But I do like the idea of a package descriptions that goes into the differences between room only, package reservations and general promotions that Disney releases.

    What do you think???
    I would imagine that mentioning and/or comparing package possiblities is a good idea for the "package" part of this forum. For people to find out what promotions are currently being offered, I think they should head over to the "savings" forum.

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    Hello,

    Love this site and all the advice. I know this post is 6 months old, but thought I'd add something I found out a few weeks ago.

    Per the FAQ above:
    Q: My kids won't eat chicken nuggets and will want to eat the adult meal. Can we just get an adult meal for them?
    A: Officially, no!! Table Service meal credits are kept separately and you will only be allowed to order a kids meal with the kids credits. At times, you can get an adult meal at the Quick service locations as the credits are pooled. However, the CM can limit you to just the number of adults listed on the card.

    My son is 8 and will be 9 on our next trip. He rarely eats off the kids menus when we dine out anymore. We have the free dining plan so I called to see if we could make him an adult for the trip. I guess Disney gets this request alot because the answer is yes! All we had to do was purchase an adult theme park ticket for him and they adjusted his age in the system to 10. It cost me $25 total for the 8 day trip and now he can order anything off the menus! He'll eat that $25 in the first sitting! :)

    I'm sure this could also be done if someone is on the non-free dining plan. Simply list your child as an adult during reservations and you'll pay the adult ticket and adult dining price. It's not cheating the system because you're actually paying for the upgrade in food (as opposed to trying to say your child isn't 3 yet, etc).

    THANKS!

  14. #14
    Oh wow, looks great. Let me have a look.

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    Senior Member yedliw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blyday View Post
    Quick Service Dining Plan (QSDP)

    Q: What is included with the QSDP?
    A: Two Quick service meals and two snack credits per night of your package stay plus 1 free resort refillable mug.
    I could be wrong on this, but I don't think this is still correct.. It looks like the QS dining plan is only 1 snack per day, not 2..

    https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/media/wdw_nextgen/CoreCatalog/WaltDisneyWorld/en_us/PDF/2013QuickService.pdf


    We are taking a low key trip in a couple of weeks and looked into the QS DDP, but it doesn't save you any money if you get everything, and in my experience, the deserts that come with QS meals are not always great, and if I were paying cash, I wouldn't get them.

  16. #16
    tests unsafe roller coasts in china blyday's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yedliw View Post
    I could be wrong on this, but I don't think this is still correct.. It looks like the QS dining plan is only 1 snack per day, not 2..

    https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/media/wdw_nextgen/CoreCatalog/WaltDisneyWorld/en_us/PDF/2013QuickService.pdf


    We are taking a low key trip in a couple of weeks and looked into the QS DDP, but it doesn't save you any money if you get everything, and in my experience, the deserts that come with QS meals are not always great, and if I were paying cash, I wouldn't get them.
    Thank you. I hadn't noticed that this hadn't been updated when they changed the QSDP....I'll get that fixed right now!!
    Brenda

  17. #17
    Senior Member broncobill's Avatar
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    Hi Every one,
    I've heard that you can use 2 quick service credits for 1 table service meal.
    Is this correct?

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    Senior Member Micah008's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by broncobill View Post
    Hi Every one,
    I've heard that you can use 2 quick service credits for 1 table service meal.
    Is this correct?
    Not that I have ever heard...

    The only 'substitutions' I have heard of are:
    - Getting 2 or 3 Snacks for a QS credit.
    - Getting a bottle of water instead of your dessert with a QS credit.

    ... and even these aren't 100% guaranteed.
    Micah

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  19. #19
    Senior Member broncobill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Micah008 View Post
    Not that I have ever heard...

    The only 'substitutions' I have heard of are:
    - Getting 2 or 3 Snacks for a QS credit.
    - Getting a bottle of water instead of your dessert with a QS credit.

    ... and even these aren't 100% guaranteed.
    Thanks for the reply.

  20. #20
    Senior Member isabellea's Avatar
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    Just to let you know that today I was able to get a ticketless package. I booked a room-only discount for CSR (July 2015) and asked to add the regular dining plan without purchasing any ticket since I already had them from airmiles (point program in Canada and from UT). That means that if you find cheap tickets elsewhere than WDW you can still have the dining plan. The only thing is that you need to call to get a ticketless package (it's not available online).
    ​Isabelle

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    Senior Member yedliw's Avatar
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    I read on another site that they are taking the desert away from QS meals, and replacing it with an additional snack credit for next year.. for me, that makes an already poor value (QDP) even worse, because you are loosing a desert/snack (2 QS desert-less meals, 2 snacks per day) but is a wash, and may be a positive change for the regular DDP.. In my experience, the desert offerings with many QS meals are limited and often not my first choice.. It would be nice to get an extra snack.. although, often, we spend the morning we fly home in the hotel gift shop spending the unused snack credits on things we can take on the plane..

  22. #22
    Junior Member GDGL's Avatar
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    A few questions, 1 of which looks like it was answered but do not know if things have changed:

    1) We have a trip planned for end of Sept. There are 8 of us going in 2 rooms and both have free dinning. At each meal, can 1 room take turns "paying" for the meal with credits or would it have to be broken up to 2 checks each time.
    2) The way I figured, we will have some extra meal credits by the end of the trip. There is another group of 4 going down that did not get free dinning. If we all ate together, could we get the meals for them under our plan?

  23. #23
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    1) Yes you can. Only concern is it even? Such as 2 adults, 2 children ages 3-9 in both rooms?
    2) This is new, but yes, now you can.

  24. #24
    Junior Member GDGL's Avatar
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    Good point with #1. I didn't even think about that. We are not even. Is there anyway all meals for both rooms could be linked? All reservations are under 1 MDE as I am in charge of the whole trip.

  25. #25
    dawn
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    Quote Originally Posted by yedliw View Post
    I read on another site that they are taking the desert away from QS meals, and replacing it with an additional snack credit for next year.. for me, that makes an already poor value (QDP) even worse, because you are loosing a desert/snack (2 QS desert-less meals, 2 snacks per day) but is a wash, and may be a positive change for the regular DDP.. In my experience, the desert offerings with many QS meals are limited and often not my first choice.. It would be nice to get an extra snack.. although, often, we spend the morning we fly home in the hotel gift shop spending the unused snack credits on things we can take on the plane..
    Hey there, I was just looking up an answer I need and saw your comment, I just wanted to interject that on the regular dining plan you really aren't losing anything but rather gaining the option to use your 'free dessert' at anytime. My kids use the snack credits for a muffin or other quick breakfast option like those expensive 'yogurty' breakfast drinks... You can also buy candy and such in Disney Springs.

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