For guests planning a visit to Walt Disney World Resort, one of the most exciting aspects of their trip is the dining experience. But how do you make the most out of your dining experience at Disney? That’s where the Disney Dining Plan comes in.
Or, rather it DID come in. Since the reopening of the Walt Disney World parks, the Dining Plan has been conspicuously absent as an add-on option for bookings.
That has all changed as Disney has finally announced the return of the Dining Plan starting January 2024.
Because it’s been a while, though, it might be good to refresh on just exactly what the Dining Plan entails…
The Dining Plan is a prepaid meal plan that allows guests to budget their dining expenses while visiting Walt Disney World. With the Dining Plan, guests can purchase a variety of meal plan options that includes quick-service meals, table-service meals, and snack credits tied to the number of nights on a Disney resort stay.
What’s the Advantage?
One advantage of the Disney Dining Plan is flexibility. Whether you’re looking for a quick and easy meal, a leisurely dining experience, or just a snack, there’s a Dining Plan option to fit your needs. If you decide to skip a table-service meal, you can use your credits for quick-service meals instead. If you don’t use all of your credits during your stay, you can still redeem them for snacks or meal items at select locations. And with over 300 participating restaurants to choose from, there’s something for everyone on the plan.
In addition to its flexibility, the Dining Plan is also easy to use. You simply look for a “Disney Dining Plan” designation on the menu at all participating dining locations and indicate what credits you want to use when ordering. The My Disney Experience app makes keeping up with your prepaid meal credits available a breeze as well.
Perhaps the biggest advantage of the Dining Plan, however, is its budgeting benefits. Disney vacations can quickly become expensive, especially when you factor in the cost of food and drink. Once you’ve purchased a Dining Plan, however, you can rest assured that you’ve already covered the cost of most of your dining. You won’t be carrying around that “extra expense” stress while on vacation.
Finally, the Dining Plan also offers unique dining experiences that you may not have considered otherwise. From character dining to fine dining experiences, the Dining Plan provides opportunities to try out new restaurants and cuisines around the resort.
The 2024 version of the Disney Dining Plan offers similar options that have been available in the past. These include the Quick-Service and Standard Dining Plan.
- Quick-Service Dining Plan: Provides two quick-service meals and one snack per day.
- Standard Dining Plan: includes one quick-service meal, one table-service meal, and one snack per day.
The “Deluxe” and “Plus” dining plans previously available did not return. As far as pricing going, you can expect to pay roughly the following:
- Quick Service Dining Plan: $60 per adult and $25 per child
- Standard Dining Plan: $95 per adult and $30 per child
Compared to 2020 pricing, this is a large increase for adults on the standard dining plan and a small increase on the quick-service dining plan. For children, it’s a slight decrease on both. Fortunately, most all locations that previously accepted the dining plan will continue to do so in 2024.
A Worthwhile Return?
The return of the Disney Dining Plan to Walt Disney World in 2024 is great news for visitors who want to make the most of their Disney World dining experience. With its flexibility, simplicity, budgeting advantages, and opportunity to try unique experiences, the Dining Plan is the perfect way for visitors to enjoy resort dining experiences without the stress. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned Disney fan, I think it’s worth considering the advantages of the Disney Dining Plan when it returns in 2024.
Will purchasing the dining plan actually save you money? Possibly. It really depends on the make-up of your family (# of adults vs # of children), how many sit-down meals you plan to book, etc. etc. I suggest putting together a list of locations you plan to dine and just see what makes the most financial sense. Just be sure to factor in the above benefits as well.
Something to Consider…
And If you do plan on adding the Disney Dining Plan to your Walt Disney World package in 2024, you’ll want someone to help you get the most out of it. I’ve spent years learning the ins and outs of theme park vacation planning and would love to help you plan your next visit to destinations like Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and Universal Orlando. I can also help with non-theme park vacations like Disney Cruise Line, Adventures by Disney, and Aulani Resort.
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