Disney’s Advance Dining Reservations – ADR Explained
One of the most satisfying parts of any holiday to Walt Disney World is the amazing choice of restaurants available for guests to eat at!
The options are varied, with prices to suit every budget, from Counter Service snacks to 5 Star gourmet experiences – Disney World can offer these and everything in between!
Many of the restaurants at Disney World are becoming increasingly popular and it is advisable to make a reservation before you leave so you aren’t disappointed!
What is an ADR
dvance Reservations (ADR) is what Walt Disney World uses to manage their restaurant bookings. It is very similar to a regular restaurant table reservation. An ADR guarantees your party the next available table from the time selected when the ADR was booked. It’s recommended that you check in about 15 minutes before your allocated time. Wait times vary depending on the time of day and restaurant but usually averages between 15 and 30 minutes.
ADR differs from a traditional restaurant reservation and it is important to leave plenty of time, especially if you are timing a meal for an event afterwards.
For example, if you are hoping to watch “Illuminations” at Epcot (usually at 9pm) and wish to eat at one of the World Showcase restaurants before, it would be prudent to make an ADR no later than 7.30pm. 7pm would be the optimum time, allowing for any delays in seating and giving you enough time to stake a fair spot for the fireworks afterwards.
How do I make an ADR
You can use the My Disney Experience website or APP to book your ADR or call WDW-DINE on 001-407-939-3463. Lines open at 12 noon UK time and online bookings open at 11am UK time. You can book most meals at 180 days in advance. Guests staying at Disney resorts may make reservations for their whole vacation (up to 10 days) on the 180th day
ADRs can also be made on arrival at Guest Services at any park (or Downtown Disney), at the podium of any restaurant or by dialling WDW-DINE when you are in resort (the call is free from any WDW hotel or park).
Do I need to leave a deposit
For all table service restaurant reservations, guests will have to provide a credit card hold. A $10 per person charge will be made to the card if you no show or cancel with less than 24 hours.
What happens if I had to cancel
For all table service restaurant reservations, guests will have to provide a credit card hold. If the reservation needs to be cancelled, but isn’t done one day in advance, a $10 per person charge will be made to the card. Reservations must be cancelled up to 11:59pm the day before the reservation to avoid the charge. To cancel, guests can call 407-WDW-CNCL, stop by any table service restaurant front desk, or call 407-WDW-DINE. Reservations can also be made and cancelled online at www.DisneyWorld.com/Dining.
Some locations require pre-payment, such as Hoop-Dee-Do Musical Revue and Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show. If these reservations aren’t cancelled one day in advance, the full amount will be charged.
Do I REALLY need to make an ADR
This is a very common question for visitors. It can be easy to make too many ADRs and be “tied” to a strict itinerary whereas, conversely, it can be extremely disappointing to arrive at restaurant and be told there are no tables available!
Several factors need to be looked at. WHEN are you travelling? For those of you visiting in the very busy holiday periods of Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving etc, it is wise to make as many ADRs as you think you will need. You can always cancel those you do not want at a later date. It is not unusual for nearly all the restaurants to be full to capacity at these times, and if you don’t want to eat Burger & Fries for Christmas dinner, then you MUST make an ADR!
Any “event” such as Mothers Day and Valentines Day will show a marked increase in bookings, so you will almost certainly need to book some of the more upmarket restaurants well in advance on these days.
If you are planning a meal for a birthday or anniversary, it is wise to make an ADR. Tell the Cast Member when you make your ADR and you never know what surprises MAY arrive at your table!
If you are travelling in a large party, again, you would be well advised to make at least some ADRs. It is not hard for a couple to be seated at almost any restaurant, fairly quickly with no ADR (with the exception of Holidays), but larger groups fare less well, so either call in advance, or make a booking on arrival that day.
It is always advisable to make an ADR for the “Fantasmic Dinner Package” as this is now extremely popular and you cannot make an ADR for this “on the day”.
If you are travelling mid to low season, then it is still always a good idea to make a few ADRs for the more popular restaurants. These would include Chef Mickey’s, Boma, The Crystal Palace, Princess Breakfast at Epcot and of course, Cinderella’s Royal Table.
For other restaurants, you can make ADRs on arrival at Guest Services or at the podium of any Disney World restaurant. You should have no trouble obtaining an ADR for the restaurant of your choice either on the day or a few days in advance.
It is quite possible to obtain a table as a “walk in” with no ADR at off peak times, but if you have chosen particular places your family would like to eat at, then an ADR will guarantee you a table, close to a time that is convenient for you. As a walk in, you may experience waits of over an hour or more at busy dining times, even during a slow season.