Lately I have been hearing complaints about the price of meals at Walt Disney World. Phrases ranging from “highway robbery” to “price gouging” seem to be the phrases I hear most often. I have never heard someone say, “I thought it was so cheap I thought I should pay more for my meals.”
Over this past weekend I went to a small water park/amusement park (the entire park would fit on Main Street, USA) in our area. My family of 4, 2 adults and 2 children ages 10 and 7, ordered lunch from one of the counter service restaurants in the park.
For lunch we ordered:
1 Italian Sausage (no onion or peppers on a hot dog roll)
1 Zweigles red hot
1 hamburger (no roll for my gluten free son)
1 double cheeseburger
1 french fry
1 garden salad with Italian Dressing
2 large sodas
2 small sodas
total cost: $38.60.
To tell the truth we have had much better counter service meals in Walt Disney World for about the same price. Amusement parks know exactly how much to charge so that they can make a decent profit and still sell their product.
You can leave the parks for cheaper meals but by then you will have lost valuable touring time and is it really much cheaper in the end if you have to figure in time out of the park and possible cost of travel if you are not using WDW transportation?
Amusement parks will always charge what the market will take. Free dining has been offered at least once each year since about 2006 and with the ability to purchase a Disney Dining Plan there are many ways to stay in the parks and still have some good to very good meals. Exploring your options and planning ahead will help make your meal times in the park enjoyable.