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Old 10-02-2013, 02:28 PM   #1
Cheshire Figment
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Exclamation New WDW Dining Reservations Policy

Disney has just announced that effective October 31, 2013, the reservations guarantee policy that has been in effect for selected restaurants will be in effect for all table service restaurants in the Parks and Resorts, and will include operating participants as well as Disney owned and operated.

Here are some questions and answers:

Why was my credit card charged?

As of October 31, our cancellation policy expanded to all table-service restaurants at Walt Disney World Resort (including operating participants). When booking a reservation at these restaurants, Guests are required to provide a credit card to hold a reservation and will be notified they will be charged $10 per person if the cancellation isn't made at least one day in advance. Other locations, such as Hoop-Dee-Do Musical Revue or Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show, require pre-paid reservations. Guests are reminded that the restaurant will charge the full pre-paid amount for each person in the party if the Guest is unable to cancel the reservation at least the day in advance.

What is your cancellation policy?

Beginning October 31, all table-service locations will begin using the cancellation policy already in place at select restaurants on property. When booking a reservation at these restaurants, Guests will be required to provide a credit card to hold a reservation and will be charged $10 per person if the cancellation isn't made at least the day in advance. Pre-paid locations will continue to retain the full, pre-paid amount if Guests are unable to honor the reservation and are unable to cancel the reservation one day in advance. Special dining events and packages such as Fantasmic! packages, New Years Eve dinners, Victoria & Albert's reservations may have different cancellation requirements.

When is the latest I can cancel my reservation without being charged a fee?

Guests can cancel up to 11:59 p.m. the day prior to their reservation without being charged.

Why have you expanded your cancellation policy?

Our policy reduces the number of no shows at our restaurants and ensures all of our Guests will have more opportunity to dine at our table service locations.

I am dining at a location after Oct. 31, but I booked it prior to the location utilizing the cancellation policy. Will my credit card be charged if I do not cancel within the cancellation window or do not honor my reservation?

Reservations booked on or after October 31 will be required to adhere to the cancellation policy. Guests who booked reservations before Oct. 31 were not informed of the policy or asked for their credit card information; therefore, these Guests will not be charged if they do not honor their reservations or cancel outside of the cancellation window. However, if the Guest makes modifications to the reservation on or after October 31, he or she will be informed of the cancellation policy, asked for credit card information, and must adhere to the cancellation policy.

How do I cancel a reservation?

A special phone line that only handles dining cancellations is available for Guest convenience: 407-WDW-CNCL (939-2625). Alternatively, dining reservations may be booked or cancelled by visiting any table-service restaurant podium, Walt Disney World Resort Hotel concierge or calling 407-WDW-DINE (939-3163) or DVC Member Services (for Members only). Guests may also make and cancel reservations by visiting www.DisneyWorld.com/Dining
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Old 10-02-2013, 02:33 PM   #2
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Personally I don't think this is all that bad....
For the love of Disney...
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Old 10-02-2013, 02:43 PM   #3
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Me neither. It is only good manners to cancel in good time
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Old 10-02-2013, 02:49 PM   #4
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The concept is good, but it removes any flexibility from an already complicated Disney vacation. We wouldn't double-book, but if we're too tired in the afternoon and want to relax and cancel our dinner reservation we'd pay a fee under the new policy. The current policy at popular locations makes sense, but expanding it to every table service does not. It's one more strike against us returning to the World anytime soon.
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Old 10-02-2013, 02:57 PM   #5
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I can only imagine the scheduling nightmare that exists at Disney. For their sake, I think it'll alleviate a small percentage of stress on that front.

Doesn't mean I like the idea of one more detail to try to remember. I think I'd better add a few more $ to my already ballooning vacation budget!
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Old 10-02-2013, 03:14 PM   #6
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Did it mention if there was any change to the policy around if you show up to an ADR with fewer people than the ADR was made for?

For our upcoming trip I had made a number of ADRs for 10 people but for some, we now know only 6 of us will make it. I called up the dining line and asked if there was an issue in showing up with less than the ADR number and was informed that the restaurant might charge us $10 per person that didn't show up (so in our case $40) - she said it depended on the restaurant

So given this effort to standardize things, just wondering if this aspect is being standardized as well.
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Old 10-02-2013, 03:49 PM   #7
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I think it's a good idea. It will put a stop to those that double book and then no show to one of them....

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Old 10-02-2013, 06:54 PM   #8
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We've stopped booking ADRs at WDW because of all these changes. Most regulars would agree that the quality of food isn't there and the service isn't there mostly because they are rushing you though your meal for the next customer. Now we just eat whereever there is an open table at the moment or non ADR places like Kona Sushi Bar ( which they are diminishing that experience by moving the sushi chefs to kona café) or take our car offsite for same quality food at a fraction of the cost. One day in advance is ridiculous especially when they act like people are standing at the hostess booth for a table. I would say more like 2-3 hours before would be more appropriate. Also, $10 a person penalty is insane! For a family of 4 to pay $40 for a missed meal is crazy. Maybe $10...MAYBE. As we've gotten older spending everyday of our trip in the parks is not really our thing anymore. We find ourselves going elsewhere for our vacations with much less planning involved.
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Old 10-02-2013, 08:57 PM   #9
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I don't like this new policy. We never double book for a meal, but for example, at about lunch time on the Saturday of our recent vacation we decided we didn't want to take all the transportation required to go to our dinner ADR at trails end at FE, so I cancelled on the MDE iPhone app, now I guess we won't have that flexibility. so I guess we will consider eating at a lot more QS than TS now which means less money for Disney overall if we reduce the number of TS we eat as we pay OOP.
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:42 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by CynJ View Post
Side question: Won't the new MDE system prevent people from double booking ADRs?
Yes, there's a certain time frame within which you can't book another ADR, something around 2 hours or so, I've been using MDE recently and noticed that.

Also, the Disneyland reservation system is changing to be the same as WDW as of tomorrow, and they are doing this exact same thing, $10/person for canceling less than 1 day ahead of time.

I agree, would be nice to know when that "1 day" period starts...
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Old 10-03-2013, 08:05 AM   #11
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Red face

Unfortunately there are some guests who are abusing the system. Try walking up to a restaurant. Hopefully this will free up restaurants so that there can be more walk ups.

I just will be more careful about booking restaurants.
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Old 10-03-2013, 08:37 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Kimberle View Post
I still don't understand the "1 day prior" cancellation policy. If you have a 8am b/fast ADR on 8/5, does your "day" mean 7:59am the prior day (8/4) or 11:59 the prior day (8/4) or 11:59 2 days before (8/3)????

I wish they would make it a flat 3 or 4 hours prior.

Everything is becoming so complicated. You have no flexibility in your ADR's, you have to book your fast passes weeks in advance. You can't depend on WDW transportation because it often breaks down, sits in traffic, and/or takes forever to arrive.

Shoot, why not just require everybody to pre-order exactly what food they want at what time and location 6 months before your trip.
I have mixed feelings about this. I understand the premise, but the implementation, again, is what I take issue with. I would prefer a 4 hours prior set amount of time as well. Sometimes we are just too tired or not hungry. Like a pp mentioned, there are numerous walk ups who get turned away, so not sure about the 24 hours prior being necessary. Disney falters at times when they do things like this. This is all overkill.

I will say that we've had a few slots for ADR's unscheduled when we visited and were able to snag same day/couple of hours before reservations. It can happen. Hopefully, with this it can happen with more frequency now, given all the insane preplanning, prearranging that clearly has become part of a Disney vacation. Gone are the days of winging it.
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Old 10-05-2013, 07:57 AM   #13
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But the app doesn't work on the credit card guarantee places does it? We are here now and I was looking for a flying fish reservation for tonight. When I tried from the app, it said I had to call.
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Old 10-05-2013, 09:26 AM   #14
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i always get a kick out of the, "we dont like this because we dont do this" group. actually its about time. i cant count how many times i have heard a kiosk cast member turn someone away, many someones, and then we sit down and there are many empty tables throughout our whole meal. no shows for sure. i have heard people talking about getting two and deciding at the last minute depending on where they find themselves on property at the designated time, heck, i have, over the years, seen that very thing discussed on these boards. i myself was guilty of it a couple years ago. we were very late and knew we would not make it to Sci Fi anywhere near the time and just went in to Olivia's..........i did not call..............i still feel ashamed.........
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Old 10-05-2013, 12:25 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by basketlacey View Post
But the app doesn't work on the credit card guarantee places does it? We are here now and I was looking for a flying fish reservation for tonight. When I tried from the app, it said I had to call.
Good point. I figured they had added a way to tie your CC/Room Charge to your account -maybe not? Doesn't seem like it would be such a hard thing to do -unless same day ressies out of MDE will be excluded. Not sure if they clarified that in the new policy.
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