Major Changes to the Disney Dining Plan in 2007.

Monday, August 14, 2006 9:53 PM
http://allearsnet.com/din/restnews.htm

It seems that they are slowley starting to delete all the good resaurants from the list. Just about every sit down restaurant at epcot has been removed from the meal plan.

Higher ticket prices to boot.

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Monday, August 14, 2006 10:57 PM
Considering Biergarten, Le Cellier, Rose and Crown, and Coral Reef are still on the list, this isn't as drastic as I first feared. It still sucks, but it's not surprising.

The strangest thing to me is the lack of Downtown Disney options. I have to assume this has something to do with most DD establishments being vendors and not Disney owned.

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Tuesday, August 15, 2006 8:46 AM
Don't panic.

If you look carefully, you will discover that the restaurants dropped are all non-Disney owned, and all non-Disney restaurants were dropped.

Two theories are floating around out there: one, WDW is putting the squeeze on the outside vendors. Unlikely, as they just signed a contract with an outside vendor to open AK's only in-park table service restaurant. Two: they're still trying to negotate terms for reimbursement between the Mouse and the vendors.

I'm figuring option 2. For example, it is really unlikely that WDW is going to want NO DDP restaurants in Coronado Springs with its thousands of hotel rooms.

*** Edited 8/15/2006 12:46:57 PM UTC by Brian Noble***

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Tuesday, August 15, 2006 11:09 AM
Animal Kingdom only has one sit-down restaurant? That sounds like a ton of money left on the table.
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Tuesday, August 15, 2006 11:50 AM
Right now, there is only one, but it's not really in the park; it is adjacent to it, accessible from outside the park. There is a turnstile in the restaurant for direct access to the park. It is a Rainforest Cafe, owned by an outside vendor.

They have announced another one (to open in '08 sometime), this time *in* the park, but also run by an outside vendor as a combination quick service/sit-down place. I think it's Landry's but don't quote me---the same vendor is also building a place in DTD.

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Tuesday, August 15, 2006 12:43 PM
Well, Jeff, the reasoning I think behind having no sitdown restaurants in DAK was that the park closed at 5-6 pm each day, so they lost the diner. With Everest and the evening extra magic hours, they must have figured it was now worth it to have a sitdown restaurant.
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Tuesday, August 15, 2006 12:56 PM
The early closing times really did limit the table service restaurants in AK. I think they were relying on people checking out the restaurants in Animal Kingdom Lodge after the park closed. There are several excellent dining options there. (I myself have reservations for Boma on Labor Day morning :) )

A lot of the changes in the Dining Plan were put in to curb the abuses to the plan, especially when it came to sharing. While the list of restaurants being cut seems drastic, there are still many restaurants left, including some of the best on the Disney campus.

Overall, the Disney Dining Plan is still the way to go, I feel. Even with the slight price increase, it is still much more economical than dining at each place individually and paying for your meals. You also tend to eat at much nicer places if you are on the Dining Plan vs. if you arent. In my upcoming trip in a couple weeks I have reservations to some of the best restaurants at Disney, places I would have never dreamed of going to had I had to open my wallet to dine there.

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Tuesday, August 15, 2006 1:20 PM
^ What are your recommendations for all of the parks? I am going in January '07 for a week and wouldn't mind some recommendations.
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Tuesday, August 15, 2006 4:05 PM
There's only one:

get yourself a subscription at www.tourguidemike.com.

The best $20 you'll spend. He's a former Plaid Vest (VIP guide) at WDW, and now owns a private business that plans and provides personal tours of the parks. This site is a side business for him---If I remember correctly, Walt has used it happily as well.

As for AK, there's still not quite enough there to keep the average guest captured for a whole day. It still needs a bit more to be a "two meal" park.

*** Edited 8/15/2006 8:05:39 PM UTC by Brian Noble***

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