Monday, July 21, 2014

Disney Dining: How to use the Disney Dining Plan

By: Lindsey


Considering the Disney Dining Plan (DDP) or going to Disney during the free dining offer? I’m sure you have a lot of questions. I know I did the first time we decided to use the plan. This post will cover the standard dining plan. I haven’t used the Quick Service Dining Plan or the Signature Dining Plan.

First off, how does the dining plan work?

For each night you stay, you get one snack, one quick-service meal, and one table-service meal to be used during your stay. Each person on the dining plan is also eligible to receive one resort-refillable drink mug.

What is considered a snack, a quick-service, and table-service meal?

A snack can be a multitude of different things. It can range from a coffee at Starbucks on Main Street to a cinnamon roll at Gaston’s Tavern to a Mickey Ice Cream bar. It’s typically a single-serving item and is marked on the menu with a dining plan snack symbol in most cases.

A quick-service meal is what could be considered a fast food order. You order at the counter and then take your food to a seat. On the DDP, a quick-service meal includes: 1 entrée, 1 dessert (lunch and dinner only), and a single-servicing, non-alcoholic beverage.

A table service meal is a sit-down restaurant. A table-service meal consists of one entrée, one dessert, and one single-serving, non-alcoholic beverage OR one full buffet.

Do you have to use one snack, one quick-service meal, and one table-service meal each day?

Absolutely not. You can mix and match these as you would like. Do you want to have a table-service for lunch and dinner? You can do that. Just make sure you plan your meals to where you are taking advantage of all the dining plan credits. If you get down to your last day and you don’t have any meals left, you’ll be responsible for paying for your next meals out of your pocket.

How do I keep track of how many DDP credits I have left?

Check the bottom or your receipts. It shows you how many credits are left. Keep in mind, it shows the total number of credits for your whole party. Not just you. Don’t let that confuse you.

Are all table-service meals one credit?

Not necessarily. If you are dining at a signature restaurant, it may take two table-service credits. You need to check these when you are making your dining reservations. For example: Cinderella’s Royal Table takes two table-service credits per person while Chef Mickey’s only takes one table-service credit per person.

How does my server know to use my DDP credits?

I always tell the server when we are ordering, a lot of the time they’ll also ask. When the check comes, they’ll scan your Magic Band, you’ll add the tip, and sign the receipt. And that’s it! Super simple.

What about tips?

Tips and gratuity are NOT included in the DDP. You need to either carry cash for these or your can use your Magic Band to charge them to your room. At the end of the trip, you’ll receive an itemized statement that shows what charges will be charged to the credit card associated with your account.

How do I book the DDP?

You can book it either online or by calling: (407) 939-1936. In order to get the DDP, you have to book a Magic Your Way package which includes your resort stay and your park tickets.

Want more information about whether or not the DDP is worth the expense?

Check out this post by Real Mom’s Disney.

If you have any questions, please leave a comment or email us at realmomsdisney@gmail.com.

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