Disney Dining Reservations: When to Book [+Free Calculator]
Let’s be honest: The stress of planning Disney dining reservations can feel like a FastPass+ to family therapy. Why? Disney World has over 400 restaurants to choose from and knowing what, when, and how to book can be overwhelming. To make matters more complicated, snagging reservations to restaurants with the highest demand feels like reservation gladiators. Throw COVID closures into the mix and vacation planning suddenly becomes scarier than the Tower of Terror.
We have three resources to ensure your Disney vacation planning process has a fairy tale ending
But don’t fret. We have three resources to ensure your Disney vacation planning process has a fairy tale ending:
1. Our Disney Dining Reservation Calculator: You enter the first day of the trip (check-in date), we'll tell you when to book your Disney dining, lodging, events, and more.
2. A complete list of every Disney World Restaurant that accepts reservations: This spreadsheet includes a list of all Disney restaurants that accept reservations, where they're located, which offer character experiences and/or events, and which are in high demand. Not enough? It also indicates which restaurants are temporarily closed during COVID.
3. A list of travel advisors who specialize in Disney: If you're not a travel professional already, you may just decide you want to find one to do the heavy lifting. We'll show you where you can find one here.
Our tools will help you choose your restaurant and ensure you make your reservation ASAP so you have the best chance at snagging a reservation at Disney dining hot spots, making your Disney vacation go from meh to magical . . . like Pixie dust!
It’s a lot cheaper than Family Therapy.
Behold: Our Disney Dining Reservation Calculator
Modesty aside, one might go as far as to call this resource the Excalibur of Disney reservation calculators. Why?
1. You can plan your trip to three Disney properties (Disney World, Disneyland, and Disney Cruise Lines).
2. It goes way beyond dining reservations. You can also find the best time to book lodging, events, and more.
With our calculator, all you need to do is enter your check-in date and it will populate with the earliest date you can book your dining reservations and all the other fun stuff. Wield its power below:
How to use our Disney Reservation Calculator
Pretty snazzy, eh? Our Disney planning calculator will alert you to the earliest dates you can book lodging, dining, and tours/events. It will also tell you deadlines for purchasing Memory Maker at a discount and customizing your FastPass+ and Magic Band.
Our calculator will alert you to the earliest dates you can book lodging, dining, events and more. It will also tell you deadlines for purchasing Memory Maker at a discount and customizing your FastPass+ and Magic Band.
If you’re a travel agent, you can use the calculator to book on behalf of your client or you can direct your client to the calculator so they can make their own Disney dining reservations. If you’re booking for yourself, then have at it!
How do you use it? You can use it in five easy peasy steps:
1. Enter Disney arrival date: For this date, you'll enter the check-in date. (If it’s a Disney cruise, enter your embarkation day).
2. Enter the Trip Name: This is especially helpful if you're an agent booking multiple Disney itineraries. That when, when you receive our email with a list of booking dates, it will be attached to a trip name. Speaking of which . . .
3. Wait for an email from us: We highly recommend getting these dates in an email. If you requested a follow-up email, we'll send one out with all the info listed on the calculator. (Psst! Check your spam folder if you don't see it.)
Create calendar alerts: This is especially important for your highest demand bookings
4. Book those baddies!
Okay, fabo. You know when you need to book your restaurant, but what are the options? Read on:
A Complete List of Disney World Restaurants & Dining Events that Accept Reservations
Okay, so you know when you need to make your Disney dining reservations. How do you decide which restaurants to aim for? We decided to go an extra step to aid your Disney dining reservations. (Hey, it’s Disney! It’s all about being extra, right?!)
Our list of Disney restaurants indicates which theme park restaurants are located in (or surrounding), which offer character dining, which are temporarily unavailable due to COVID, and which restaurants are hot commodities.
Below is a spreadsheet of every Disney World restaurant that accepts reservations. Our list of Disney restaurants indicates which theme park restaurants are located in (or close to), which offer character dining, which are temporarily unavailable due to COVID, and which restaurants are hot commodities. (Seriously, you need to books those bad boys right away).
Before you launch in, here's a legend for our spreadsheet since I got a little emoji happy:
👑= Offers character dining
🔥= Reserve ASAP
🏨= Restaurant is located in a on-property resort (not in theme park)
🎟= Dining Event
🚫= Restaurant or event is temporarily unavailable due to COVID
You can see for yourself:
Our Disney dining calculator and spreadsheet are a dynamic duo. Together, they'll help you prioritize and book your Disney dining reservations.
A Quick Note on Disney Dining Events
I don’t want to be a Debbie Downer, but just about all Disney Dining events are unavailable at the time of posting this. Sad face.
The exception? Good Morning Breakfast with Goofy and His Pals at the Ravello. Let’s hear it for the dogs. (Are we biased toward dogs, you ask? Yes. We definitely are, and Steph’s (HAR founder) FB page dedicated entirely to her pooch is here to prove it.)
Disney's Dining Reservation Policy During COVID
Pre-COVID Disney guests used to be able to book dining reservations 180 day in advance. But now, all guests are able to make their Disney dining reservations 60 days in advance.
If you’re staying in the park at a Disney resort, you can book 60 days out plus 10 days into your total trip.
But those staying on property still get an added advantage: If you’re staying on-property (aka, at a Disney theme park resort), you can book 60 days out plus 10 days into your total trip. This means you'll have a better shot at Disney's most popular restaurants (like Le Cellier) if you book them out a little later into your trip.
If you're staying off property, you can only book 60 days out, exactly. This means no booking ahead for your entire trip if you want to take full advantage of the 60 day lead time.
How Early can I book my reservations?
Want to take it to another level? For those who are die-hards ready to book their Disney dining reservations right out of the gate 60 days out, here's the earliest time of day when you can book different Disney Products:
Disney World: 6am EST online (or on the My Disney Experience app) or by phone 7am EST at (407) WDW-DINE
Disneyland: 10am EST online or by phone at (714) 781-DINE
Disney Cruise Lines: Midnight (12:00am) EST online
Find a Disney Agent
Even with our handy Disney dining reservation calculator, it’s no walk in the park to book a Disney trip. Maybe you’ve never been and you’re not sure what theme park you want to stay close to (or far from?) or which restaurants would be the best for you. Or perhaps you can’t (or don’t want to) keep up with the spinning carousel of COVID closure updates.
A travel advisor can book your Disney trip in their sleep. If you don’t want to whittle away your spare time planning your Disney trip, consider reaching out to a travel agent.
A good travel advisor will know Disney inside and out, will save you oodles of time (no joke . . . I'm talking hours here). Heck, why not let someone else stress over your deadlines?
These agents are a great start to planning your Disney vacation!
- Dina Farmer, Lily and Magnolia Travel
- Jennifer Lloyd, Elite Travel
- Denise Lorentzen, Dreams Travel Consulting
- Nikki Miller, Travel With Nikki
- Dana Okumura, No Worries Travel
- Connie Saunders, CEO of Total Travel and Events Inc.
- Laurie Zeller, Travel Agent with Travel Leaders Apple Valley
Where else can you find Disney agents? You can also find Disney advisors listed on ASTA (American Society of Travel Advisors) here.
Become a Disney Agent
So you're a Disney fanatic who's not scared to spend some quality time surfing the net? You want to book trips for yourself and other Disney fanatics? Host Agency Reviews' 7 Day Setup is your first step! Check it out to see if it's a good fit for you!
We also have about a bazillion Disney resources. (Okay, only 5 but who's counting?)
- The Best Disney Travel Agent Share their Booking Secrets
- The Travel Agent's Guide to HAR's Disney World Planning & Booking Cheatsheet
- Disney Cruise Lines 101 for Travel Agents
- Disney World Tips and Tricks: Travel Agents Tell All
- Top Tips for Travel Agents Booking Disneyland
Your tumble down the Disney click hole begins here! Questions? Comments? Juicy gossip about COVID updates at Disney World? Dish in the comments below!