If you want to eat at WDW’s best and most popular restaurants during your vacation, you need to know how Disney World dining reservations work.

Looking to score a coveted Disney World dinner reservation at Be Our Guest? What about grabbing lunch in outer space at Space 220? This guide is full of tips, tricks, and must-know about ADRs at Disney World.

How early should you make reservations? Which restaurants should be your priority? And what can you do if you waited until the last minute or couldn’t find a table?

Find out the answers to these and more in our free Guide 2 Disney World Dining Reservations.

Update July 20, 2023: Disney World now allows same day dining cancellations through the Disney World app. We’ve also updated this guide with information about the walk-up waitlist at certain WDW restaurants.

What is an ADR?

If you’re visiting a lot of Disney World blogs, you’ll probably see the term ADR at some point. It stands for Advanced Dining Reservation. ADR is just Disney World lingo for dining reservation. You can say it, but you don’t have to.

Do I need to make dining reservations at Disney World?

If you want to eat at the best and most popular table service restaurants, yes. While some Disney World restaurants have a walk up list, most WDW restaurants require reservations in order to be able to dine.

For any table service meal, we strongly recommend getting a reservation ahead of time and as early as possible. This will guarantee that you’re able to get a dinner reservation without having a long wait (and encountering dreaded hangriness, which is a surefire way to ruin your day). Not all reservations are hard to get, and some amazing restaurants will even have same-day availability, which we’ll cover later.

If you want a quick counter service meal, no reservations are required.

When should I make dining reservations at Disney World?

Space 220 - Interior Epcot Restaurant

You can make Disney World dining reservations 60 days ahead of time. Check out the next part of this guide to find out exactly what time and the best ways to make your Disney World reservations as early as possible.

How many dining reservations can I make at Disney World?

There’s not really a limit to how many reservations you can make. Theoretically, you could make a reservation for every single meal of your vacation.

However, Disney’s system is smart enough that it won’t let you make reservations that will overlap. For instance, if you have a 1 pm reservation for 50s Prime Time Cafe and you try to make a reservation for 1:30 at The Brown Derby, Disney will make you cancel your first reservation in order to make the second reservation. There is nothing stopping someone else in your party from grabbing that 1:30 Brown Derby ADR, but you might not want to because of the next question.

Is there a cancellation fee for Disney World dining reservations?

Yes. Disney World has a no-show fee that varies depending on the restaurant, but it’s typically $10 per person. So be sure to cancel any reservations you aren’t going to use!

While Disney World previously had a 24-hour cancellation policy, guests can now use the My Disney Experience app to cancel their reservations up to 2 hours ahead of time. This does not apply to prepaid dining experiences. If you need to cancel the reservation within that 2 hour window, you’ll be prompted to call. You can find out how to cancel Disney Dining Reservations here.

Disney will typically waive the no-show fee if you need to cancel due to an emergency.

Disney Dining Tip: This cancellation policy can work to your benefit. Many people will wait until the last minute to cancel their reservations and avoid getting charged the cancellation fee. That means that many popular reservations like Be Our Guest and Ohana will magically start appearing a day ahead of time. This is a great time to check for last minute reservations.

How can I make an Advanced Dining Reservation?

You can use the My Disney Experience app or DisneyWorld.com to make ADRs. You can also call 407-WDW-DINE to call the phone line to speak to a Cast Member and make a reservation. We recommend using the app or website to be able to make your reservation as early as possible for your highest priority restaurants.

Check out our step-by-step guide to see how to make, modify, and cancel Disney World dining reservations via the app and online.

Is there a difference between breakfast, lunch, and dinner reservations at Disney World?

Yes. Some restaurants have a different menu for breakfast than lunch and dinner. While many Disney World restaurants used to have different lunch and dinner menus, we’ve found that most of them have consolidated those menus into the same offerings with the same prices. While the tip “Get lunch at a Disney World restaurant to save money” doesn’t apply like it used to, lunch can sometimes be an easier reservation to get than dinner.

When are the best times to eat at Disney World restaurants?

Fireworks over Magic Kingdom
The view of the fireworks from the California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort.

Most people will be trying to dine at the typical meal times: between 8-10 am for breakfast, 11 am – 1 pm for lunch, and 6-8 pm for dinner. So if you’re looking for easier times to get reservations, look to dine during off hours. That might mean a super early or super late breakfast, lunch at 2:30 pm, or dinner at 4:30 or 5 pm or after 8 pm.

Look out for the current showtimes for fireworks, because that can change the dining experience. For example, Ohana and the California Grill have great views of the Magic Kingdom fireworks, and they will pipe in the music to the restaurant while the show plays. At EPCOT, several restaurants sit on the water and give an awesome view of Harmonious, such as Rose & Crown, Spice Road Table, and La Hacienda de San Angel. In some cases, Disney charges extra for a premium view, like the Harmonious Fireworks Dining Package. But this isn’t the only way to dine while watching the fireworks.

Which restaurants have the hardest to get reservations?

Be Our Guest - Disney World Dining

Some restaurants are notoriously hard to get reservations for. Here are a few restaurants that you will want to get a reservation for as early as possible.

Check out our full list in The Hardest Dining Reservations to Get at Disney World in 2022.

Which restaurants have the easiest to get reservations?

Tiffins - Animal Kingdom - Tables in Wonderland Restaurant

There are plenty of restaurants at Disney World where it’s easy to grab a dinner reservation. However, this is the wrong question to ask. Sometimes, the reservations are easy to get because the food isn’t very good. That’s why I’ve put together a list of the Easiest Dining Reservations Worth Getting at Disney World.

What should I do if I don’t get a reservation?

If you aren’t able to get a reservation at a Disney World restaurant, don’t stress. We have a few ideas. From using OpenTable at Disney Springs to getting on a walk up list to utilizing mobile order, here’s everything you should do if you don’t have a reservation at Disney World.

Can I join a waitlist for Disney World restaurants?

My Disney Experience App Screens for Topolino's Terrace, Oga's Cantina, and Nomad Lounge at Disney World, each with a wait under 15 minutes

Yes! Disney World now has a great system called the Mobile Dine Walk-Up Waitlist. However, it’s a bit of a misnomer. You don’t actually have to walk up. You can join via the app and get a text once your table is ready.

Over 50 Disney World restaurants feature a waitlist, including some with the hardest to get reservations.

  • Be Our Guest
  • Cinderella’s Royal Table
  • Ohana
  • Oga’s Cantina
  • Nomad Lounge
  • 50’s Prime Time Cafe

You can find the full list in our Disney World Walk-Up Waitlist guide.

What should I do if I have a valid resort reservation, but I can’t make Disney World dining reservations early?

I ran into this very issue! My hotel reservation was linked to my account, but the Disney World website and app wouldn’t let me make reservations for my entire vacation starting 60 days ahead of time. The best solution is to call Disney at 407-WDW-DINE, but I laid out a few issues and solutions that you can try if you run into Disney World dining reservation problems here.

The Guide 2 Disney World Dining Reservations

For more must-know info and tips on scoring the best Disney World Dining Reservations, check out the other parts of this guide.

James Grosch

James is a lifelong Disney Parks fan. While at the parks, he loves finding new details, learning more about Disney World history, and taking pictures. His favorite WDW attractions include Rise of the Resistance, Spaceship Earth, and Tower of Terror.
James is a filmmaker and writer based in Atlanta, GA.

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