• On Jan 1, 2012
    Tenay from WA Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    If I stay off-site or have not bought a vacation pkg yet, can I make dining reservations at the restaurants around the parks? If I cancel reservations will I be charged anything? Also, I think some make you prepay, will I be reimbursed if canceled?

    Hi, Tenay!  We have stayed off property quite often, especially with Grandma and Grandpa living in the area.  You can absolutely book your dining reservations at 180 days in advance, the same as if you were staying on property.  The only difference for guests not staying at a Walt Disney World resort hotel is that resort guests can book at 180 days in advance for up to 10 days - so 180 days +10.  If you are staying off property, you'll have to call back if you book at exactly 180 days out from your first vacation day.  

    For many dining experiences, you do not have to prepay or leave a credit card deposit when you make your reservations.  For any of the popular dinner shows, including the Hoop Dee Doo Revue or the Spirit of Aloha luau, as well as for Cinderella's Royal Table, you will have to make a prepayment in advance.  Your payment is fully refundable if you cancel your reservation at least 24 hours notice.  

    Several other restaurants, including some of the character meals like Chef Mickey's, and some of the signature dining restaurants such as Jiko and the California Grill do require a credit card guarantee.  Again, you must cancel at these locations at least 24 hours in advance or your credit card will be charged a fee of $10 per person in your reservation (the fee is $25 for Victoria and Albert's).

    To help me remember the reservations I know for sure I need to be at or cancel, I set an alarm to go off at least 24 hours ahead of time.  It reminds me of the reservation, and forces me to double check our schedule to make sure we're going to be able to make our meal.  

    Good luck and have a great time!
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Meet the Panelist: Anna, New Jersey

My name is Anna and I am a wife, mother to three daughters and a son-in-law, and earning my Grandmom ears. I'm a law student and former teacher. I have planned vacations for all sorts celebrations, but really enjoy DVC vacations, helping military families, and assisting those with special dietary needs.    Learn More About Anna

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