• On Jan 12, 2022
    Esther from TX Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    At what specific time of day do dining reservations open? On the day I'm told I can make reservations, the system does not recognize my trip at 1:00 am even though the reservation system shows "open". By 7:00 am no reservations are available

    Hello Esther,

    Making dining reservations for your Walt Disney World vacation can be so exciting, since it means your trip is just a couple of months away. However, it can be challenging to book everything that's on your "must do" list.

    Restaurant availability for many Disney World restaurants typically opens up at 5:45 a.m. ET for each new day. At 7:00 a.m. you can begin booking special dining events like dessert parties when they are available. I have a couple hints to share that might make your reservation process go smoother.

    First, be flexible. This sounds obvious, but make a list of restaurants you REALLY want to go to, and then choose a couple of back up options. Our family tends to plan trips after the 60 day window, so we often have to make reservations at our second choice restaurants. A lot of times we end up being pleasantly surprised and find a new favorite to add to the list. On our last trip we had a great meal at Jungle Navigation Co. LTD Skipper Canteen. You'll find just as many puns and dad jokes here as you will on Jungle Cruise. If you go, try the Falls Family Falafel for starters.

    Along with being flexible with WHERE you dine, be flexible with WHEN you dine. You may have your heart set on starting your vacation in Magic Kingdom at Cinderella's Royal Table and then hop over to Disney's Contemporary Resort for dinner and fireworks at California Grill. That sounds like an amazing plan, but sometimes if you can't get that coveted reservation on day one of your vacation, if you look at day 4, you'll see that times are available. I like to plan my resort days after I figure out where I'm going to eat.

    Finally, don't give up. When guests are planning, they often overbook. As their vacation gets closer, they realize they don't need three table service meals per day, so they start to cancel. We've been able to get some great same day dinner reservation while on vacation.

    Hope this helps. Happy planning, and have a magical vacation!

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Meet the Panelist: Diane, Georgia

After spending 25 years in RI, my husband and I relocated to GA with our youngest, who is now in high school. I took my first trip to Walt Disney World when I was 11 and I have traveled many times since then with all different party sizes. From creating our first itinerary as a honeymooner to later creating magical experiences for our multigenerational family gatherings, every aspect of planning a vacation has been pure joy to me.  Learn More About Diane

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