News! Participating Restaurants for the 2013 Disney Dining Plans Updated

Great news! Walt Disney World has now updated the 2013 Disney Dining Plan brochures with the completed list of participating restaurants.

Guests headed to Disney World in 2013 will want to check out the new information before planning their Advance Dining Reservations. These updates are effective January 1 – December 31, 2013.

To see changes to the overall 2013 Disney Dining Plan, click here!

New Restaurants on the 2013 Disney Dining Plan

Lots of new spots have opened in Disney World this year, and that means there are new restaurants on the list! Check out Be Our Guest Restaurant, Monsieur Paul Restaurant, and Splitsville with your DDP credits this year!

Interestingly, Gaston’s Tavern seems to be missing; however, this may be an oversight as we know from the Gaston’s Tavern Menu that there are DDP snack options available. We’ll watch for further updates.

See all 2013 Disney Dining Plan restaurants here!

Be Our Guest Bridge Entrance

2013 Disney Dining Plan Brochures

Quick-Service Disney Dining Plan

Standard Disney Dining Plan

Deluxe Disney Dining Plan

Premium Disney Dining Plan

Platinum Disney Dining Plan [Read more…]

News! 2013 Disney Dining Plan Pricing and Updates

Details for the 2013 Disney Dining Plans are being unveiled!

You can see updated pricing for the 2013 plans below (thanks to reader Pudge the Fish for this!). And there are price changes as well as clarifications that you need to know about if you’re planning a 2013 trip.

The major stand-out seems to be that Le Cellier in Epcot is listed as two table service credits for both LUNCH and dinner meals.

2013 Disney Dining Plan Pricing

As always, the price has gone up on many of the plans. See calculations below…

Quick-Service Dining Plan
(all year long)
$37.58 per night ages 10 and up
$14.32 per night age 3 to 9

2012 was $34.99 and $11.99.

See more info on the Quick Service Dining Plan page.

Be Our Guest Restaurant will be a new addition on the 2013 Disney Dining Plan

Standard Dining Plan
(Value and Regular Season)
$55.59 per night ages 10 and up
$17.16 per night age 3 to 9

2012 was $51.54 and $15.02.

(Peak Season)
$56.94 per night ages 10 and up
$18.16 per night ages 3 to 9

2012 was $53.54 and $16.02.

Read all about the Standard Dining Plan!

Deluxe Dining Plan
(Value and Regular Season)
$99.97 per night ages 10 and up
$26.84 per night ages 3 to 9

2012 was $85.52 and $23.79.

(Peak Season)
$102.27 per night ages 10 and up
$28.91 per night ages 3 to 9

2012 was $89.52 and $25.79.

We’ve got all the details on our Deluxe Dining Plan page.

Le Cellier Lunch

The 2013 brochure now shows Le Cellier Steakhouse in Epcot as a two table-service credit restaurant for lunch! Since March 2011, the restaurant has been a one-credit location for lunch and a two-credit location for dinner.

Other Clarifications

There have been a few changes made to the Disney Dining Plan brochures for 2013 as well.

Special Dining Events
The brochure this year spells out clearly that “special dining events with special menus offered at certain table-service locations” are not included in the [Read more…]

Snacks Series: Ham and Cheese Croissant in Epcot

Sometimes burgers just won’t cut it and you need a little piece of heaven for lunch, right? Who hasn’t felt that way after a few days in Disney World?

So here’s a quick Friday Afternoon Cost-Saving tip for ya: Fill up for less on one of these amazing ham and cheese croissants at Boulangerie Patisserie. Awesome, right?! And the last time we were there, you could get one of these babies for a single Disney Dining Plan snack credit!

Stop by France's bakery for a filling snack!

Enjoy your lunch at the nearby indoor seating area, or outside at one of the bistro tables! And since you’re keeping it “light” and inexpensive for this meal, you’ll be able to sample some more mouthwatering treats on your adventure through Epcot!

Boulangerie Patisserie Epcot

Don’t miss other delicious snack items in Epcot! We’ve included over 100 photos and reviews of our favorite snacks in the new Disney Food Blog Mini-Guide to Epcot Snacks!

This e-Book has detailed reviews, information, and full-color photos of [Read more…]

Top 6 Disney Dining Plan Snack Credit Values for 2012

As always, we want to make sure all of us are getting the best value with our Disney Dining Plan snack credits!

For those who are unfamiliar with the Disney Dining Plan, it’s a way for guests to pre-pay for their dining when visiting Disney World. “Snack credits” are used by guest to purchase items like popcorn, candy, ice cream, and other low-cost treats.

I’ll list my top six choices, then you tell me your experiences. Let’s work together on finding the best snack credit deals!

Note that snack credits are usually accepted for items that are a single serving, and cost $4.50 or less (though some cost as much as $4.99 out of pocket).

1. Bakeries

A Disney Food Blog staff and reader favorite — bakeries! Not only can you use your snack credit for some incredible treats, but you can also get a pastry for your morning meal. Hey, it’s vacation!

Don’t forget to check out our Disney World Bakery Throw Down to see some of the very best spots to spend those credits.

Disney World Cinnamon Roll at Main Street Bakery

Consider some of these options at bakeries around Disney World: cinnamon rolls, butterfinger cupcakes, caramel cupcakes, white chocolate elephant cupcake, crepes, school bread…and so much more!

These are all great deals for one single snack credit.

2. Ice Cream Sundaes and Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches

Recently, I’ve been overwhelmed with what kinds of sundaes you can get for a snack credit in Disney World! Easily costing $4.50 or more out of pocket, these sundaes are awesome deals!

Stop by Storybook Treats in the Magic Kingdom to snag a Cookie Fudge Sundae that you can easily split between two! Other options at Storybook Treats include a Brownie Sundae and a yummy Strawberry Shortcake Sundae!

Hot Fudge and Caramel Cookie Sundae at Storybook Treats

Another ice creamy treat that’s not-to-be-missed is the homemade ice cream cookie sandwich. You can get these at all four parks, and while the snack credit payment option [Read more…]

What’s Your Ideal “Disney Dining Plan”?

So, yesterday there’s a bit of a to-do about the Disney Dining Plan. Apparently there’s a typo in Disney’s official PDF describing the Standard Disney Dining Plan, indicating that an appetizer is available with all table-service meals.

Incorrect Info in DDP PDF

Based on calls to Disney Dining (speaking to supervisors and managers), Erin heard that this is, indeed, just a typo and not a change in policy. But if it WAS true, that’d be awesome!

And this got me thinking… what if we could design our very own Disney Dining Plan based on the way we and our families eat in Disney World!?

What Would YOUR Ideal Disney Dining Plan Look Like?

So what if they introduced a “Magic Your Way Dining Plan,” where guests could build their own individualized plan off of a base plan? Let’s dream a little, shall we?

Snack-tastic

Customize your counter service : table service : snack ratio!
One thing that we keep hearing: the Standard Dining Plan is too little, the Deluxe Dining Plan is too much (and yup, we know…it TOTALLY works just fine for some folks.) So, what if you could change things up a bit?

Not a big fan of sit-down breakfast? You could add more counter service meals or snacks in to make for a light first meal o’ the day. What if your little ones have no interest in sitting still for table service? Not a problem! Which brings us to another pie in the sky option…

Different people in your party could have different dining plans!
Maybe your 3-9 year old eats like a linebacker and doesn’t order off of the children’s menu. Or maybe he or she eats like a bird, and you’d rather choose a different level for him or her. Or maybe you have a [Read more…]

Top 5 Disney Dining Plan One-Credit Table-Service Values for 2012

Now that you’ve booked your 2012 Disney World vacation, it’s time to make your Advance Dining Reservations. Which restaurants are credit-worthy?

The vacation package add-on called the Disney Dining Plan is a meal plan with a set price in exchange for a certain number of credits. Many table-service meals in Disney World cost one credit, but are you getting the best value?

Stick to the one-credit restaurants, order the most expensive meal on the menu, and maximize your savings! Let’s get to my top picks for best value at “one table-service credit” Walt Disney World restaurants. I think some of them will surprise you!

Criteria Used

When we looked at values, our main criteria was price. These restaurants offer a great bang for your buck when paying with the Disney Dining Plan.

We also looked at enjoyment level and food quality, but these criteria were secondary and tertiary to cost. Note that these aren’t necessarily our favorite restaurants, but they are good values for one Disney Dining Plan credit.

Tutto Italia

Tucked into the Italian pavilion at Epcot, Tutto Italia Ristorante boasts regional cuisines from Italy in an Old World setting. Table service is attentive, although the fine-dining atmosphere can lead to longer waits.

This restaurant serves up a Roasted Rack and Leg of Lamb ($34) as an entree. End your meal with Copetta Sotto Boscue, a dessert specialty comprised of berries, zabaglione cream, gelato, and chocolate sauce, which has an out-of-pocket price of $14. When both of these items are ordered, Tutto Italia becomes quite possibly your best one-credit table-service value in Walt Disney World.

There’s also a Veal Roast which would run you $31 out-of-pocket but… perfectly worth one dining credit!

Veal

Tutto Italia is closed for refurbishment until [Read more…]

Disney Dining Plan FAQs: Kids and the Disney Dining Plan

With the Free Disney Dining Plan for August and September 2012 being announced earlier this week, I figured now was a good time to start up our Walt Disney World Disney Dining Plan FAQ Series!!

Dining With The Characters is a Great Dining Plan Option.

Our illustrious Disney Food for Families columnist, Erin Foster, has worked day and night (night and day) putting together a list of 81 Disney Dining Plan FAQs with thorough answers! (For those new to the Disney Dining Plan, see the specs here.)

You and I get to reap the benefit of her hard work as we post the first installment of our Disney Dining Plan FAQ Series — Kids and the Disney Dining Plan.

The Disney Dining Plan With Kids Under 3 Years Old

A few FAQs for those visiting with a toddler under 3 years old (Disney’s “children” classification begins at age 3 and goes through age 9).

Why can’t my under-three-year-old child can’t be on the dining plan.
That’s just the way it is. You may have a 2-year-old with a voracious appetite who you want to put on the dining plan. I don’t recommend it.

While theoretically you could fudge his age and say he was three, but then you’d be required to purchase theme park tickets for him. (Park entrance free for the under-threes.) It will be MUCH cheaper to just buy your two-year-old his own food at the restaurants.

How do I feed my 2-year-old at a traditional table service restaurant?
At regular table service restaurants, children under the age of three can [Read more…]

Guest Review: Meadow Snack Bar at Fort Wilderness Resort

Welcome back guest author Melissa Sue Sorrells Galley with another guest review! This time she takes us to the Meadow Pool Bar at Fort Wilderness. And I love the awesome extra look around Fort Wilderness in this review — Yee-haw!

Deep in the winding wilderness, there’s an oasis of family fun waiting for you at the Meadow Recreation Area. Located near the center of Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground, the Recreation Area is themed like a real old-fashioned swimming hole, with rustic wood touches; lots of open, grassy spaces; and stone-work details. It feels like an upscale summer camp … with very well-appointed bathrooms!

Meadow Swimmin’ Pool signage, which hangs over the entryway of the Snack Bar.

Atmosphere

As you enter the Recreation Area, the Meadow Snack Bar—our stop for an afternoon cocktail—is on your right. The area reminded me less of the [Read more…]

2-for-1 Tip from The DFB Mini-Guide to Epcot Snacks

As many of you know, we just launched our brand new e-Book — The DFB Mini-Guide to Epcot Snacks! And today I’m thrilled to highlight another great snack tip from the e-Book! Remember, you can get your copy for $2 off this week only — head over to http://dfbminiguides.com/epcotsnacks and use code EPCOT for the discount!

Today, we’re taking a look at one of Disney’s best throwback snacks — a Hand-Scooped Ice Cream Float at Epcot’s Fountain View Cafe!

Hand-Scooped Ice Cream Float Prep in Epcot

While this snack will only set you back one Disney Dining Plan snack credit (or $4.39 if you’re paying out of pocket), you’re actually getting [Read more…]

Sunshine Seasons Strawberry Shortcake: A “Best Snack Value” in Epcot

As you know, we’ve just released our brand new The DFB Mini-Guide to Epcot Snacks, and we’ve got a special tip from the book today!

As many of you know, it can be difficult to decide how to get the best value with your Disney Dining Plan snack credits or vacation dollars while in Walt Disney World. And while you can get a Mickey Bar anywhere, some guests want a more unique treat.

Here’s where we com in! When visiting Epcot, Sunshine Seasons in The Land pavilion is a convenient location in Future World for a great snack. The restaurant is located downstairs — just steps from Soarin’ — and offers dozens of market-fresh treats and meals. One of our very favorites is this Strawberry Shortcake, which has quickly reached cult favorite status for repeat Disney guests!

Sunshine Seasons Strawberry Shortcake

Smooth, creamy whipped cream, decadent vanilla shortcake, and fresh strawberries make this snack an incredible value for the dollar — and it’s [Read more…]