You heard about our Five Best “One-Credit” Table-Service Values last week, so I wanted to share what I believe to be the five best quick-service values today! These are my picks based on what you get for one quick-service credit on the Disney Dining Plan; they may not stand up as the best when we consider paying out of pocket.
Hopefully this will be useful to those of you heading down to the World for free dining this fall!
Wolfgang Puck Express in Downtown Disney (West Side and Marketplace)
With the famous (and delicious) rotisserie chicken ringing up at over $14 plus tax, it costs more than some table service meals. Some of the salads and sandwiches alone will cost $13. Desserts cost as much as $4.95. Cha-ching.
Animal Kingdom Picnic in the Park
When it’s available, the Picnic in the Park Tier II Rotisserie Chicken meal can be a great value on the dining plan.
To my knowledge both the Tier I and Tier II meals can be bought for the cost of one adult counter-service credit per person (please let me know if the rules have changed!), which means you’re getting a lot of food for one credit. It’s also an interesting experience, which adds to the value in my opinion. Reminder: You can’t use a kids’ counter service entitlement on this meal. If you order the picnic for three, it will cost you three adult counter service credits.
Unfortunately, Disney’s been wishy-washy with the picnic since its launch in spring 2009. It’s been available sporadically since January 2010, so your best bet is to arrive at the Animal Kingdom on the day you’re hoping to picnic and ask about it at guest services. If it’s not available, just go to Flame Tree Barbecue and enjoy yourself just as much
Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe in Magic Kingdom and Fairfax Fare in Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Cosmic Ray’s and Fairfax Fare have similar menu items in their half rotisserie chicken and rib/brisket meals, which offer what feels like a metric ton of food for $13.99. I won’t vouch too heartily for the food quality, but I will say, if you have a big eater in your midst, this will definitely work well for you!
Pepper Market at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort
Many Disney World guests have a love/hate relationship with this Coronado Springs cafeteria-style eatery, but there’s no denying that the dining plan can save you some big bucks if you happen to be dining here. The Steak Ranchero rings in at almost $13, and other items including sandwiches and rotisserie chicken top out at $10 and $12.
Most folks love the food, but hate the price — using the dining plan could solve all that, now couldn’t it?
The Mara at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Resort
Ah, the lovely Mara at AKL! This sweet, little counter-service spot will give you a half rotisserie chicken dinner for a cool $9+.
Again, the wonderful amenities of the AKL — including watching the animals on the savanna, taking part in resort activities, and just exploring this gorgeous place — add to the value here. (But, rest assured, that is a pretty expensive piece of chicken.) Tip-of-the-day: Use your snack credits to get some Zebra Domes!
What Are YOUR Thoughts?
As always, I can’t wait to hear what you think. I haven’t eaten everywhere, so let me know in the comments section below what your best and most valuable counter service experiences have been on the dining plan.
Also, if I’ve gotten any of the details wrong here, just drop me a line or say so in the comments!