Tips and Tricks for the Deluxe Disney Dining Plan


The deluxe dining plan. More food than you could ever imagine. This plan is great for foodies, people that really love sit down meals or want multiple signature meals.

As a refresher, here’s what’s included in the deluxe dining plan:

  •          3 table service or quick service credits per person (for each night stayed)
  •          2 snack credits per person (for each night stayed)
  •          1 refillable mug to be used at any Disney resort during your stay

Unlike the Plus Dining Plan (or the “standard” dining plan), you receive an appetizer with your meal. This is in addition to the entrée, dessert, and non-alcoholic beverage. For any quick service choices, you will not receive an appetizer. And if you choose to eat breakfast, you will not have an appetizer or dessert.

Here’s some do’s and don’ts from those that have wined and dined via the deluxe dining plan:

DO schedule all of your reservations ahead of time via or ask your travel agent from help. Dining reservations open up 180 days before your arrival and with an active reservation you are able to book dining for the first 10 days of your trip which is a great way to get those hard to get reservations!

DO NOT try to eat three table service meals every day. Between 3 meals and 2 snacks, you’ll be dying. Try for two table service meals (either a breakfast and a signature dinner or an early lunch and a late signature dinner).

DO know what each credit allows you. On the deluxe dining plan you receive an appetizer, entrée, dessert, and non-alcoholic beverage per person for lunch and dinner. Breakfast does not include an appetizer or dessert. Quick service meals do not include an appetizer. You can also use your credits for a buffet meal!

DO NOT feel like you have to clear your plate at every meal. It’s a lot of food, so enjoy what you want.

DO the math and see if this is what works best for you! While you may want to eat at many signature restaurants for dinner, you may not need an appetizer and dessert for each meal. It could be less expensive paying out of pocket. Plus you’ll get to save money through the date of your arrival. When choosing any dining plan, you are required to make final payment for your entire trip 45 days before arrival.

 DO try new things and be adventurous.

 DO NOT feel like you have to choose the most expensive item on the menu if you paid for the dining plan. The whole point of having credits is to not think about money!

 DO use your snack credits for things like Starbucks coffee. Now that it’s available in 2 parks AND Downtown Disney, it’s a perfect way to start the day, or keep you going.

 DO NOT just eat in the parks. Some of the best restaurants on Disney property are not located in any of the parks: California Grill, ‘Ohana, and Boma just to name a few.

DO share a meal if you’re too full! Almost every restaurant will allow you to share credits if you can’t eat everything. The exceptions I am aware of are buffet meals and Via Napoli in Epcot.

DO NOT  choose this plan if you are traveling with younger children. Signature meals can take 2 hours or more with appetizer, entrée, and dessert. The exception to this rule is if you want to hit all of the character dining restaurants which take considerably less time.

DO use all of your snack credits even if it’s to bring some souvenir snacks home to family and friends.

DO plan for tips in your budget. With lots of table service credits to choose from, make sure you budget for 18-20% gratuity for each meal.

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Ready to get started planning your 2015 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free cruise opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!

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