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Thread: Free Dining

  1. #1
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    Default Free Dining

    I keep seeing posts about people asking about free dining. What does that mean exactly?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    There are periodic offers made to the public to book "package" vacation - Room and Park Tickets - and receive the Disney Dining Plan (DDP) for free, rather that the $46/$12 (approx. adult/child) per NIGHT per person charge for the plan. (QSDP is $35/$12)

    Now, here is where it gets a little confusing...

    1) You need to book your package plan that includes at least two park days (a 2 day MYW park ticket) and a minimum of 4 or 5 nights in a Disney resort.

    2) Your stay MUST begin within the boundaries of the offer -- it can extend past the end of the offer period and the offer has, in the past, covered your entire stay.

    3) Different levels of the DDP are offered based on what level resort you select -- Value resorts get the Quick Service Dining Plan (QSDP) and everyone else gets the standard Disney Dining Plan (DDP) -- The QSDP can be upgraded to the DDP for the difference in price between the plans ($11 adult/$0 child.)

    The DDP includes: 1 Table Service (TS) meal , 1 Quick (Counter) Service (QS or CS) meal, and 1 snack per person per NIGHT of your stay.

    The QSDP includes: 2 Quick Service meals, 2 snacks per person per NIGHT of your stay, PLUS each person will receive 1 Disney Parks Refillable Drink Mug for use at the resorts only for length of stay.

    The Dining Plan(s) are all based on the number of NIGHTS you are staying at a Disney resort, NOT the number of DAYS you will be spending on property - in resorts/parks/water parks/etc.
    -Bud

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  4. #3
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    Mar 2004
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    Disney has done "free dining" packages in the past. They are specials where if you book a Disney resort room for your stay with at a non-discounted room rate (rack rate) and Magic Your Way tickets (MYW) you will qualify to get the Disney Dinning plan. Most recently, it has been tiered so the families that book at the Value resorts get the Quick Service Dinning plan and Families that book at Moderate or Deluxe level resorts will get the Regular Disney Dinning Plan.

    There is much dispute or "discussion" as to if "Free Dinning" is indeed "Free" since you have to book at rack room rates (so you can't use room discounts available) and often other discounts for rooms can save more $. Plus you loose the option to buy discounted tickets from an authorized ticket broker (A $15-20 discount per ticket for a family of 4 or more surely needs to be considered in the savings value calculation). And lastly, the dining plans by design are questionable on if they are a savings. Quick service seems to be about the same in value as it would be to pay out of pocket and the regular Disney Dining plan includes deserts that one would normally not order for both lunch and dinner, excludes appetizers in it's selection options and does not include tips in the plan...so there is still an added out of pocket expense for table service establishments.

    "Free Dining" General public offers were available for 2011 but had to be booked by Dec 20th?? I believe. Everyone is wanting to know if they will be offered as a booking incentive for 2011 to be booked in 2011 because many missed out.

    Your innocent question probably opened a can of worms you were not aware of, LOL! As the dispute for is "free dining" really free continues.....

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  5. #4
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    WOW! Thank you so much for the responses. That actually seems to work out for me! My boyfriend and I are planning a trip in September and might possibly be staying at AK so I'll be checking the WDW site for that offer!

  6. #5
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    Dec 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by flipadeeflop View Post
    WOW! Thank you so much for the responses. That actually seems to work out for me! My boyfriend and I are planning a trip in September and might possibly be staying at AK so I'll be checking the WDW site for that offer!
    If it's just the two of you be sure to watch for room discounts as well, as you may find that WL (being a deluxe) may have a 30-40% discount which could result in higher savings for a party of two than free DDP would.

    In 2010 they often had 3 "plans" to choose from, free dining, room discount, or a preloaded Disney visa. Discount types and amounts varied on your resort level (value-mod-deluxe).

  7. #6
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    Mar 2003
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    We are staying at YC with the free dining this spring. Our kids are teenagers, so for all four of us to pay for the DDP would be about about $185 per night, which, if you took $185 off the nightly rack room rate, it is much better than any general public disounts offered. We usually eat a TS almost every night when we pay OOP, so I really feel this is going to save us money. I will let you know when we get back if our calculations are correct. I imagine from what I've heard about the quantity of food you get with the DDP, that we are all going to come home 10 pounds heavier!
    "Dream'nDisney"
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