Newbe wtih adr questions


We are a family of 5 (ranging in ages from 5-71 yrs) going in May. Do we have to have advanced reservations with the Disney Magic with Dining meal plan? Can we just show up when we arrive at a restaurant and hope for a table? I am not sure how and if we can follow a schedule to decide on advanced reservations. How do we factor in travel times from our park/resort to the designate restaurant of the night? Help! Dawn


I made registration for all our meals and figured atleast an hour ahead just to make sure we got there on time. We would get there alittle early, but we would check in and just wander around the gift shops.


Welcome to DC Dawn!

To the best of my knowledge, you don’t need to have an ADR to use the dining plan.

IMO, it’s best to have an ADR. You can always cancel it and make a new ADR. Personally, I hate waiting… so I always have an ADR.

When in May are you going? That could make a difference.

Travel times are very random. What resort are you staying at?

Probably the most logical way of deciding where you’d like to make an ADR is to look at the park that you think you’re going to end up at meal time. Check the restaurants in that park and the surrounding resorts. Or… if you’re like me… I do the reverse. I figure out where I want to eat dinner, and then I schedule that park for that evening.

Just my 2 cents.



You don’t HAVE to have ADRs but I would strongly suggest them. It makes it alot easier to get a table if it is busy. We always make 1 ADR per day. With the meal plan I would suggest making dinner ADRs as these are the more expensive meals and will utilize the plan better. There are certain things that you MUST have an ADR to even have a prayer. Those would include CRT for sure, any princess meal really, Hoop De Doo and Mickey’s Backyard BBQ. Absolutely plan 1 hour intransit time from resort to restaurant to be sure to not be late.


Welcome to DC!

I just got back, and even in January, it was best to have ADR’s. There were several places where they couldn’t fit people in until after 8 without and ADR(so if you like a late meal, it’s okay, but I have a 5 year old and 8 year old who are used to eating at 5:30 or 6 every day.)


HELLO and WELCOME TO DC!!! You’ll find ALL of your Disney answers here!

As far as ADRs go, I would DEFINITELY have some planned for your trip! I know, it seems hard to plan exactly where you will be and what you will want to eat, but for the better sit down restaurants, a lot of time you won’t be able to get a table if you just walk up. It is ALWAYS better to have an ADR. If you can’t make it, all you have to do is cancel it…no biggie!

What I do is, plan my ADRs for the week looking at a plan of where I THINK we will be (we like to do 1 ADR per day…usually dinner, unless we do a character breakfast that day). Don’t get me wrong, I don’t stick to an EXACT schedule while I am there. But with a dinner ADR, I always know where I will end my day.

If you need to see your dining options at WDW, go to All Ears Net. Here’s the dining link:

The dining possibilities are ENDLESS! If you have any questions about particular restaurants, be sure to ask away. Chances are someone on DC has been there!


Like my esteemed collegues said above, it’s not completely necessary to have ADR’s, but it’s a good idea. There really isn’t that much planning involved. All you need to know is what park you’ll be in on a certain day, and what time you want to eat. That’s it. So I’d advise making them.

Just to give you an example… When we went in Dec, we met this nice family from Canada (I was disappointed cause I didn’t hear them day “eh” not even one time…HA!) and they were there on their 2nd trip to WDW. Even though they’d been before, they still didn’t have a grasp on the whole eating thing. They were on the dining plan and had come down without making any ADR’s figuring they could make them once they got to the Contemp (where they were staying). They were able to get most the places they wanted but they couldn’t get into Chef Mickey’s at all during their stay, and they were very disappointed about that. I remember them saying “we thought we could get in at Chef Mickey’s since we’re staying in theat hotel.” I had to tell them it didn’t work that way. Well, luckily, we were in the early stage of our trip and we had 2 breakfasts booked at Chef Mickey’s, one of which we had decided not to use. So we gave them our last name and the confirmation # so they were able to go. So I would at least suggest making ADR’s for the places you REALLY want to try… Have a great trip and…



Awww…Dewey. :wub: Who would have thought that you had a heart??? :heart: SO NICE OF YOU!!!


Hello and welcome to DC. May is a great time to go because the crowds are low. Last May we were able to get a table with a small 5 minute wait but I do recommend having a ADR, especially with some of the more popular restaurants.


Welcome to DC! I shan’t take any more time. I agree with everyone here. Make the ADRs.


WElcome to Disney Central. I have nothing more to add to what was already said. You should definately book an ADR for the restaurants you have your heart set on. At least book the one you intend to use as your sit down restaurant on the plan. If you change you mind once down there, it’s only a matter of making a call to cancel.


Everyone has already done such a great job answering your questions, but I did want to say “Welcome to DC”

I hope you enjoy planning your trip with us!! :c)

We love to hear ALL the details!


Welcome to DC everyone has given you great advice. Listen to it and make ADR’s. It will make your trip much smoother and if you dont make it no big deal.
Have a great trip.