Something we always recommend, especially for peak seasons, is to book in advance restaurants at Disney World. Very important, for example, if you want to dine in a specific place during the new year or from where you can see the fireworks at night.
Walt Disney World has many restaurants, all kinds of food and entertainment. Many have characters and others from where you can have fun with a theater or watch fireworks. For those you need a reservation, not all of them is mandatory but it’s a great suggestion since they fill up very quickly. Sometimes even months before your visit.
On the official Walt Disney World website you can see the list of restaurants and maybe add your favorites to a list so you know where you would like to eat. On the page, along with the restaurant description, you will find the menu from breakfast to dinner. Also if you can apply a Dining Plan or not.
There are many, we have tried a great variety and we have not visited all of them yet. Restaurants, cafes, bars … in the parks, at Disney Springs or at the Resorts. While at Walt Disney World Resort, the following tips will help you a lot.
When making reservations, either through the official website or through the My Disney Experience application (for both you need to register, the same account works with both options), you have several things to pay attention to. Here we leave you a list of some points that will help you make the reservation easier and be able to choose the restaurants you want to try.
1) Typical lunch hours are between 12-2pm and dinner between 6-8pm. So you will most likely have trouble finding a table at those times and on short notice. We are usually party of 4, sometimes with family 6 or more, which does not make it easy. For some restaurants, for example, when we wanted to visit for the 1st time “Be Our Guest”, we made dinner reservation for 3 people about 5 months before the visit. If you want to see the Magic Kingdom fireworks from the California Grill at the Contemporary Resort (they even play the music from the show in the restaurant) we recommend a reservation a few months before your visit. Other restaurants in Epcot such as Spice Road Table or La Hacienda de San Angel you can also enjoy your dinner watching part of the fireworks in the park.
2) If they are more than 4 people, it could be a bit easier to separate the group. What we recommend is to make 2 reservations, 2 tables each with 4 people (for example, if there are 8 people), obviously try first party of 8. When arriving at the restaurant they can advise that there are 2 reservations and ask if the tables can be close by. We did it on December 31, 2 tables (in one 4 people and in another 6 people). It took us a little while to sit down but the tables were next to each other. In other cases they may bring the tables together.
3) In general, breakfasts are cheaper than lunches and lunches are cheaper than dinners. But it can change a bit if the restaurant includes characters. For example at Be Our Guest, dinner includes meeting The Beast or at ‘Akershus Royal Banquet Hall’ meeting the princesses (photo above) or breakfast at ‘1900 Park Fare’ with various characters.
4) If you book for a restaurant while visiting a park, remember the typical eating hours, at those times the attractions will be a little free since most people will be eating. So maybe you can enjoy several attractions and then eat more calmly and with fewer people. Of course, many times it has happened to us, that fast food restaurants do not serve after ‘lunch time’ (especially small ones) or close early. For quick service, most of them, you can order online and be ready when they call you through the app.
5) If at the time of booking you cannot find a spot where you want to eat, try another time or the next day. Many times other people can cancel that reservation and it will appear available! Also try other blocks of hours, it is easier to find between 2 pm-5pm than to specifically search 2pm.
6) Disney World is a family place, sometimes it will be difficult to find a table for 2. Keep trying! 🙂
7) Many of the reservations can be made 180 days in advance. In the same way, check often before 180 days.
8) When making a reservation, they will ask for your credit card. Nothing will be charged to the account. If can’t make it, you need to cancel 48 hours before the reservation so that nothing is charged to your account. This is recent since many made reservations and then they did not show up or did not cancel, taking space away from other families. So if you have a reservation and for some reason you cannot go that day or at that time, it is better to cancel to give other people a chance. If not, about $10 will be charged per person.
9) Sometimes it is easy to find places to eat at the time of the visit. Do not hesitate to ask at the door of the restaurant if there is availability for your family, you can also check on the app. It may take time to get in, but maybe someone canceled at the last minute. If it is low season, it is much easier to find available tables.
10) Restaurants with theater (Hoop-Dee-Do Musical Revue and Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show) need to be paid in full when booking. They are shows with dinner at a fixed price. You need to call for those.
11) If you want to make a reservation for New Years or Christmas or some important date in the United States (July 4th – Independence Day – is one of the busiest), the sooner you do it, the better places you will find. 180 days is normal, but if you can check more than 181 days in advance to have options when booking.
If you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask. We hope we can help you with these little tips. Bon appetite!
This post is from Todo Sobre Disney