Foodie Friday: 2018 Disney Dining Plan Changes

It’s that time of year again. Walt Disney World vacation packages just became available for 2018. And of course with the release of these new vacation packages, it also means that we’ve seen some changes with the Disney Dining Plan. This year, while there was of course, the inevitable price increase, there was also an additional perk that was added that MAY just make the question of “Is the Disney Dining Plan worth it?” well make that question that much harder to answer. (Or easier, depending on you.)

You see, new for 2018 Disney Dining Plan, Guests have several new beverage options available to choose from. These include non-alcoholic specialty beverages and, for the first time ever, for Guests 21 and older, the option of beer, wine and cocktails. That’s right….alcoholic beverages will now be available with the Disney Dining Plan. Of course, this isn’t an all you can drink type situation. Instead, it’s just a single serving of either the specialty beverages or the alcoholic options, but still. That’s a big deal.

A single-serving non-alcoholic beverage for 2018 Disney Dining Plan will includes items such as:

  • Artisanal Milkshakes
  • Fresh Smoothies
  • Premium Hot Chocolate
  • Soda, Coffee or Tea

A single-serving alcoholic beverage for the 2018 Disney Dining Plan includes items such as:

  • Beer or Cider
  • Wine or Sangria
  • Mixed Drinks and Specialty Cocktails

Of course, some exceptions will apply. Guests 21 and older must present valid ID to be able to be served alcoholic beverages. Oh and alcoholic beverages may only be redeemed with a Quick Service or Table Service meal entitlement. (So, you can’t grab a margarita in the Mexico Pavilion with one of your snack credits.)

Now with the additional perk of allowing Guests the option to choose an alcoholic or specialty beverages, the price for the 2018 Disney Dining Plan also saw a bit of an increase. We’ve broken these down in a handy-dandy chart. Pricing is based on each night of your stay. If you run your own pricing, you may notice a difference here and there by a couple of pennies, due to rounding. Keep in mind that the Disney Dining Plan does include tax, however it does not include gratuity. (So, yes, you will still have to tip your servers at any Table Service restaurant you visit.)

 

 

Each Quick-Service meal includes (for breakfast, lunch or dinner):

  • 1 Entrée
  • 1 Non-alcoholic Beverage or Alcoholic Beverage, for Guests 21 and older

Each Table-Service meal includes (for breakfast):

  • 1 Entrée
  • 1 Non-alcoholic Beverage or Alcoholic Beverage, for Guests 21 and older

-OR-

  • 1 Full Buffet or Family-Style Meal

Each Table-Service meal includes (for lunch or dinner):

  • 1 Entrée
  • 1 Dessert
  • Non-alcoholic Beverage or Alcoholic Beverage, for Guests 21 and older

-OR-

  • 1 Full Buffet or Family-Style Meal

Snacks:
Snacks may include a single serving of items such as:

  • Frozen ice cream novelty, popsicle or fruit bar
  • Popcorn scoop
  • 12 oz. coffee, hot chocolate or hot tea
  • Prepackaged milk or juice
  • Piece of whole fruit
  • Bag of snacks
  • 20 oz. bottle of Coca-Cola, Sprite or Dasani water
  • 20 oz. fountain soft drink

 

So we’re back to the question of “Is the Disney Dining Plan worth it?” Again, it does depend on you and your individual family’s needs. As for my family, it’s not really something that makes sense most of the time. My husband doesn’t eat desserts and with the addition of alcohol, while that would be a nice bonus for my hubby, for me, I don’t drink….so that part is wasted on me.

 

Really, I find that the people who benefit most from the 2018 Disney Dining Plan are ones who know that they will be buying the most expensive dishes at most of their meals, will be absolutely getting dessert, and now, will absolutely be drinking an alcoholic beverage with most of their meals. Of course, your mileage may vary and unfortunately, the Disney Dining Plan is something you are actually going to have to sit down and do the math about what makes the most sense.

Or, if you are really overwhelmed, you could always let our friends at The Magic For Less Travel help you! Request a no-obligation quote and they can help you plan your vacation with you!

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