Disney World Quick Tips – Advanced Dining Reservation Tips

Most Disney visitors plan on dining at some table service restaurants while they are on vacation. I thought most everyone was aware of the Advance Dining Reservation (ADR) system and used it as designed. In reading some of the many Disney forums on the web it is a bit disconcerting to see that there are still a lot of folks out there (particularly first time visitors) who believe that you can just walk up to one of the Walt Disney World restaurants and get a table. Check out this article Disney World Quick Tip: Dining without Reservations for more.

Please make your ADR’s or you will be eating at counter service locations throughout your visit. Just making your reservations will work if you are planning on eating at the normal table service restaurants but if you are planning on hitting the really “popular” or “in” places there are some strategies you should employ. By “popular” or “in” restaurants I mean places like Le Cellier, Cinderella’s Royal Table, OHana, Chef Mickey’s etc. etc. Here are a few tactics you might employ as ADR day approaches and arrives:

  • Have A Plan – Know where you want to dine, what day you want, and an approximate time and write them down!!!
  • Credit Card At The Ready – There are some venues that require either pre payment (Dinner Shows) or a deposit of some type (Fantasmic! Dining Package) so whether you use the on line system or call 407-WDW-DINE have your card available. Policies are thoroughly explained as you make each and every reservation so be patient.
  • Prioritize Your ADR’s – This is key whether you use the on line system or call. Always make the most difficult reservations first. You can make your ADR’s in any date order so if you want to have breakfast in Cinderella Castle that should always be your first reservation.
  • Use 180+10 Wisely – One of the major benefits of staying on site is that you can make reservations for the first 10 days of your vacation at the 180 day from check in mark. If you are planning on making ADR’s at some of the wildly popular venues you may want to consider scheduling them later in your vacation. Doing that will somewhat reduce the competition from those folks who check in 4 or 5 days earlier than you and are scheduling their ADR’s for the first few days of your vacation before you get a chance to start. It sounds a bit strange but it works.
  • Be Flexible On Times – Don’t depend on eating lunch at 12:00 or dinner at 5:00. Lots of other folks are trying to do exactly that so be a bit flexible in your times so you won’t be disappointed.

There is no sure fire way to get the exact ADR’s at the exact time you want but if you utilize these suggestions you will likely have some success. I know these things work because that’s what I do. As always, enjoy your visit to Walt Disney World!!


  • Disney World Quick Tips: Count ALL of your family for ADRs (chipandco.com)
  • Top 10 Table Service Meals at the WDW Resorts (chipandco.com)

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Chip and Co Past Writers and Friends
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