Disney World Online ADR System Live For Public

by on June 16, 2009 28 Comments

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Disney has quietly launched a booking system for Advance Dining Reservations through the disneyworld.com website. You can find the bookings through their Restaurants section (it hasn’t been integrated into their ‘book’ section yet). Want to book that ADR for Le Cellier online? You can now. See the example for Boma below:

The system allows you to choose a specific night (or range of nights up to five days), a time, number of adults / children. If you don’t get availability for your dates/times, Disney will suggest alternate availabilities. No word yet on how this affects booking windows, booking strategies, or how exactly Disney is preventing abuse of the system. UPDATE: Disney is using Captcha to prevent mass automation of reservations (thanks Brian!). See WDW Today episode 578 and our recent post on ADR booking windows for more information. Please leave a comment below with your experiences with booking online.

See more screenshots after the jump:

After picking a restaurant, you choose the dates/times/number of people:

It then searches and hopefully returns with availability. If you get in or not, it’ll suggest similar restaurants (this time, very appropriate alternates):

Then, you’ve added the reservation to a ‘shopping cart’. We assume that this essentially “holds” the ADR for you until you’ve added them all to your cart, and then you proceeed with the check out:

Posted on June 16, 2009

28 Responses to “Disney World Online ADR System Live For Public”

  • It isn’t awful—I just used it to book three meals for our July “water parks only” trip. The search tool is surprisingly flexible. The date range feature isn’t that useful—it gives you the first match even close, rather than showing you the various times available on each day. The suggestions are moderately useful—sometimes I got reasonable alternatives sometimes not. (If I’m looking for T-Rex, Narcoosee’s is probably not the first alternative that makes sense.)
    Slightly glitchy here and there, but not bad.

    If you try to double-book, you are told:

    “It appears that 2 or more of your dining offers are within one hour of each other. If the offers are for the same dining party, please remove the conflicting offer(s). If these offers are for different parties, please continue with your booking.”

    So, it mostly trusts guests to do the right thing after telling them what the right thing is—which is not much different than the current system, really.

    They also use Captchas to make bulk-booking harder. Unless you have a fleet of developing-world “employees” solving captchas for you (as the ticket scalpers do) it will be tricky. 😉

    The blurbs for some locations state a credit card guarantee is required, but the key information says there isn’t. My guess—it will happen eventually.

  • I have been trying it out (my ADR window opens on June 19th). Anyway, it is frustrating/confusing to try and link your reservation number so you’re able to book the 90+10 for resort guests. I cannot do the 90 +10 because I do not have the phone number my TA put it under. I must admit if you only want to do an ADR for day 90 it is quite easy.

  • So, this only works if you are 90 days out?
    I’m new to all of this – planning my family trip for October (for 8! and not staying at a Disney Resort) and want to book an ADR at Crystal Palace on Oct 25th, prior to our night at MNSSHP. do I have to wait until July 25th to use the on line ADR booking?

  • Works good for me! I got Rose & Crown in time to see Illuminations when we go in August, something I’d been unable to do when I called yesterday and spoke with a CM on the dining reservations line. That said, the alternate suggestions are not always the most logical ones. Still, I’m thrilled to have this option.

    I’m not doing a 90+10 reservation, and I did not link it to my resort reservation, though, so I can’t comment on that one.

    I also like that they have real pdf files of many restaurant menus there. If they keep them updated, this can be a really nice feature.

  • by Joshua Grant on June 16, 2009, at 5:12 pm EST

    I think this system is really nice (could use some tweeks though) and will free up Reservation Cast Members for more difficult questions 🙂

    A question though: Anyone know when you add a birthday to the reservation, do they actually do anything with that?

    My partner’s birthday was a few weeks ago and I booked our vacation to WDW for his present….

    Our trip is in August, but wanted to see if they did anything special at the restaurants for birthdays (even if it isn’t that specific day)??


    • by Barb Woodruff on June 16, 2009, at 5:23 pm EST

      I was there for my birthday and we ate at Mama Melrose’s. They offered me any dessert off the menu for free!

  • by Margot Culhane on June 16, 2009, at 7:11 pm EST

    I just made several reservations for an upcoming trip (June/July) and I got reservations for 5 dates/times that I couldn’t get thru the phone reservations just a few days ago. I could see one or two of those happening but 5??? So this is great! I have been wondering if they would let us cancel reservations online. I get irritated paying for a long distance call and waiting on hold to make cancellations. Usually I just wait til I get to the park that day or the hotel…but it would free up things in a more timely way if they made cancellations easier.
    Anyway – this was easy. I didn’t tie it to my resort reservation cauz I was too excited to try it out!

    • My ADR window doesn’t open up until next month – but can I get my reservation number in now, so it’s ready to go next month? I’m excited this is up and running in time for my ADR’s – no long distance calls and on hold for long periods of time! Do we know yet when it will let you start booking? Midnight or 7 am?

  • While I’m thrilled about this option, it came just one week too late for our end-of-August trip. Thankfully, Suzy at MEI had access to the TA-only site and was able to book everything we wanted for us.
    That said, this “service” is plagued by the same issues that infest the re-designed Disney site. Who built this thing? It is awfully buggy. Did you notice, next to “Sort By” on the top menu bar, there are two buttons that appear to be for condensed view vs. list view? But when you click the condensed view button, things go completely haywire (at least on Firefox).
    I just checked the disneyworld.ca site – no obvious link to the ADR system from the restaurant pages.

  • I just made 3 more reservations for our upcoming trip in July. It is easy, no problems and love the online reservations. Just print out your confirmations and you are done. No more long distance charges and long waits.

  • I’m in Canada, so I’ll still be booking by phone.
    Thanks for the info – this site is great!

  • by Margot Culhane on June 17, 2009, at 10:36 am EST

    YAY! You can cancel online by logging in and clicking my reservations. Just put in the reservation number and the phone number you used when booking, even if you booked over the phone. It just took a few minutes to cancel the phone reservations I had made when I couldn’t get what I wanted…which I COULD get online!

  • by Sue Holleran on June 17, 2009, at 9:42 pm EST

    I made ADR’s online last eve for our trip in Aug. I actually changed 2 that I had made previously by phone & actually ended up with the restaurants I wanted in the first place!! It was very easy, quick & as I’m celebrating my birthday there I could put in a birthday celebration for that night. I’m assuming they do something or else why would they ask the question?? I could be wrong though. The only thing I noticed was that you had to work with the times as they go 1hr brfore & 1 after the time you put in.
    I do like the online process much better than being on hold FOREVER!!!

  • Um, I’m not sure if anyone else has noticed this or if I’m just out to lunch, but when I check the online reservation system, it only lets you make ADR’s 89 days out, not 90. For example, when I used the 90 day calculator (http://pscalculator.net/pscalc.php) for Sep 19, it gives Jun 21 as the opening of the 90 day window. But when I try to use the online reservation system on Jun 21, it only allows me to book up to Sep 18.
    Today is the opening of the 90 day window for my own trip. I will try to book online but if I can’t, I will see if I can use the old tried and true phone method to make my ADR’s. If I can do it over the phone and not online, that will confirm my suspicion that the online system is one day behind. Results to follow tonight.

    • Hmm, my mistake I guess. I just booked all my ADR’s for my trip on Sep 20, online on the first day I was supposed to be able to. I’m sure when I checked last night though that I couldn’t even book for the 19th much less the 20th. Maybe because it was afterbusiness hours?

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