Is there any hope???

Wendylet

Active Member
Original Poster
We are a group of 10 (6 adults and 4 children) heading to wdw at the beginning of May. We are doing lots of prep, especially as it pertains to dining and adrs. There are a couple reservations we are really hoping for but I think I am losing all hope as I keep looking as each day opens up for others to book and I never see them available. I thought I would ask the group their thoughts on whether these are attainable or if we shouldn’t even bother. The first is character breakfast at Tusker House. I really wanted this one for all of us as I was treating everyone. I don’t see this come up ever. The other is Sci Fi and again never see that one. Here we could have gone with a smaller group as others could have done quick service somewhere else. Does anyone have any advice or encouragement (or a reality check) regarding these two restaurants? Also can you clarify the booking procedure as we are going for 14 days and I realize the first ten days of the trip open at 60 days out but when do the remaining 4 days become available to book? Thanks to all for any help!
 

heatherhy01

Well-Known Member
Did you try splitting the group and looking for 5 & 5 instead of all 10 at once? You may be able to find 2 reservations around the same time but not exactly together. I know this may not be your ideal situation because you will probably all want to be seated together but if those restaurants are a MUST, this may be helpful?? Just a suggestion, not sure if it will work since I have never gone with a big group before.
 

"El Magnifico"

Ill mannered and morally sketchy
Premium Member
You've got plenty of time. Just keep checking. That's not to say that they will open up. But it's not impossible. There will be cancellations.
 

Wendylet

Active Member
Original Poster
Thanks for the input. Yes I have tried even reducing the number to 2 or 4 and those two spots just never seem to pop up. I guess I will just take it one day at a time and see what happens. Also make a backup plan…..
 

Chi84

Premium Member
I understand your frustration - we're going with a group of 9 in late April and I've been doing the same thing - looking as reservations open for others to book.

The thing is that when you look you're at the 60-day mark; people with resort reservations have already been booking those restaurants for 10 days. From your reference to the booking window, I assume you're staying at a Disney resort. With a more than 10-day stay, my feeling is that you have a good chance of getting what you want if you start by trying to book the restaurant you want most on the latest day you can book (day 10). Of course, I've never done this for 10 people - prior to this next trip our largest group was 6 - so I'll let others weigh in on the idea of splitting the group for reservations.

The usual tips apply. Be sure you are on MDE the minute your booking window opens. If others in your group are willing to help, they can do the same so some are trying to get one restaurant while the others are looking for different restaurants on different days. We generally divide up the work. If you don't get what you want, try using the reservation finder services. TouringPlans has a free one, but when they got a coveted 'Ohana reservation for us a few years ago I decided to support them by buying a subscription to the site. It's not expensive. I believe there is also a paid service (mousedining?) but I've never used it.

One good thing is that May is usually a lighter time of year. On the other hand, restaurant capacity will likely still be limited by labor and supply shortages and the 60-day mark makes the competition much greater. I don't know the answer to when the booking window for the other days will open.

I hope others who have more experience with large groups will also weigh in. (Apologies if I'm telling you a lot of things you already know, but better to err on the side of saying too much :)).
 
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Wendylet

Active Member
Original Poster
I understand your frustration - we're going with a group of 9 in late April and I've been doing the same thing - looking as reservations open for others to book.

The thing is that when you look you're at the 60-day mark; people with resort reservations have already been booking those restaurants for 10 days. From your reference to the booking window, I assume you're staying at a Disney resort. With a more than 10-day stay, my feeling is that you have a good chance of getting what you want if you start by trying to book the restaurant you want most on the latest day you can book (day 10). Of course, I've never done this for 10 people - prior to this next trip our largest group was 6 - so I'll let others weigh in on the idea of splitting the group for reservations.

The usual tips apply. Be sure you are on MDE the minute your booking window opens. If others in your group are willing to help, they can do the same so some are trying to get one restaurant while the others are looking for different restaurants on different days. We generally divide up the work. If you don't get what you want, try using the reservation finder services. TouringPlans has a free one, but when they got a coveted 'Ohana reservation for us a few years ago I decided to support them by buying a subscription to the site. It's not expensive. I believe there is also a paid service (mousedining?) but I've never used it.

One good thing is that May is usually a lighter time of year. On the other hand, restaurant capacity will likely still be limited by labor and supply shortages and the 60-day mark makes the competition much greater. I don't know the answer to when the booking window for the other days will open.

I hope others who have more experience with large groups will also weigh in. (Apologies if I'm telling you a lot of things you already know, but better to err on the side of saying too much :)).
Thank you so much for your in depth response. I know you feel my pain as you face your similar struggles! I do plan on having my daughter and myself on four devices trying to book so hopefully as you suggest we may start with the furthest dates out and work backwards. We can surely break up into small groups to get bookings but I find it disheartening that you don’t even see the restaurants pop up at all. Might have to temper expectations on this. Also I am in western Canada so the booking window here starts at 3:45 am, better have the coffee pot on! Best of luck to you getting what you desire. I’m sure our trips will be wonderful no matter what!!
 

nickys

Premium Member
As for the 14 days bookin

At 60 days out from check-in you’ll be able to book for the first 10 or 11 days (I think it’s 11 because of the “+10”).
At 59 days out you can then book for day 12
At 58 days out you can book for day 13
At 57 days out you can book for day 14
etc.

So for those hard to get reservations you should be able to get them for the later dates.

As far as I recall if you’re booking for a large group you might want to call, I think they have a group dining number. It might be easier and less stressful, as long as your heart is not set on getting Space220 on day 2 and so on. I think the one downside is that you would have to call to change or cancel.

Oh and don’t try and add everyone’s names to the reservations. You only need a lead name and add “n” guests.

Also If you do try for some yourself, bear in mind that only the lead person can modify them. So if booking for 2 groups it would be easier to have someone else use their MDE account - even if they just give you their sign-on details.

If you book table 1 for 6 with “Wendy” as the lead name, you can change it.
If you book table 2 for 4 with “Joe” as the lead name from your MDE account, you can’t modify it. So ideally have Joe open his own MDE account and either ask him to book or let you have his password and you can sign on as Joe and book. Then “Joe” can be the lead name and also modify if necessary.
 
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RememberWhen

Well-Known Member
Couple of things. We’ve got a group of 17 with a short trip coming up in February. Many places are not doing reservations for more than 8. I would definitely look to split your group into 5:5 or 4:6. Show up a little wary and ask if they can try to seat the tables near each other. (After a few days you might be happy not to all be at one table anyway…)

Also, book your reservations on the website instead of the app. You can then designate any of your family and friends as the lead person on the reservation without needing their login info (though it’s definitely useful to have that).

When booking multiple reservations for a large group at the same time, do NOT list all the people. And you have to make the reservation that you’re lead on, last. So for my trip we have a reservation for 5 at 5:05 under my mom, a reservation for 5 at 5:05 under my sister, and a reservation for 7 at 5:15 under me. I made them all, in that order.

If you’re already past 60 days, definitely check out touringplans reservation finder. We’ve had lots of success.
 

Wendylet

Active Member
Original Poster
Couple of things. We’ve got a group of 17 with a short trip coming up in February. Many places are not doing reservations for more than 8. I would definitely look to split your group into 5:5 or 4:6. Show up a little wary and ask if they can try to seat the tables near each other. (After a few days you might be happy not to all be at one table anyway…)

Also, book your reservations on the website instead of the app. You can then designate any of your family and friends as the lead person on the reservation without needing their login info (though it’s definitely useful to have that).

When booking multiple reservations for a large group at the same time, do NOT list all the people. And you have to make the reservation that you’re lead on, last. So for my trip we have a reservation for 5 at 5:05 under my mom, a reservation for 5 at 5:05 under my sister, and a reservation for 7 at 5:15 under me. I made them all, in that order.

If you’re already past 60 days, definitely check out touringplans reservation finder. We’ve had lots of success.
That is very helpful. Can you tell me why it’s important to book yourself last? Since I am new at this just trying to understand the implications of doing that.
 

gmajew

Well-Known Member
That is very helpful. Can you tell me why it’s important to book yourself last? Since I am new at this just trying to understand the implications of doing that.
This is good advice but their our a lot of restaurants that will take groups of 14 as I just did it a few weeks ago….

but this tech worked for those we could not get as one.
 

RememberWhen

Well-Known Member
That is very helpful. Can you tell me why it’s important to book yourself last? Since I am new at this just trying to understand the implications of doing that.
If you’re booking the reservations and you book one with you as the lead, the system will see that your already have a reservation at that time. It won’t let you book another one. You’ll have to login as someone else out cancel the one you have.
 

RememberWhen

Well-Known Member
This is good advice but their our a lot of restaurants that will take groups of 14 as I just did it a few weeks ago….

but this tech worked for those we could not get as one.
You’re right. It depends on the restaurant. We were able to get 12 for Oga’s, and 10 for Boma. Try for the larger number first. If that doesn’t work, try splitting. If that doesn’t work, try touringplans.
 

Wendylet

Active Member
Original Poster
If you’re booking the reservations and you book one with you as the lead, the system will see that your already have a reservation at that time. It won’t let you book another one. You’ll have to login as someone else out cancel the one you have.
That makes sense! Thanks so much.
 

danyoung56

Well-Known Member
I've eaten at both of those locations many times, and have never had any trouble booking. Course, I'm a party of 1, so I'm sure that makes a big difference. My best advice is to go with small groups, like 4 3 and 3.
 

nickys

Premium Member
Also, book your reservations on the website instead of the app. You can then designate any of your family and friends as the lead person on the reservation without needing their login info (though it’s definitely useful to have that).
This is definitely a useful strategy.

However this is an example of where you will not be able to modify or cancel that reservation yourself. Although you booked it, because the lead name is different to yours the system prevents any modification to it.
 

Diamond Dot

Well-Known Member
We are a group of 10 (6 adults and 4 children) heading to wdw at the beginning of May. We are doing lots of prep, especially as it pertains to dining and adrs. There are a couple reservations we are really hoping for but I think I am losing all hope as I keep looking as each day opens up for others to book and I never see them available. I thought I would ask the group their thoughts on whether these are attainable or if we shouldn’t even bother. The first is character breakfast at Tusker House. I really wanted this one for all of us as I was treating everyone. I don’t see this come up ever. The other is Sci Fi and again never see that one. Here we could have gone with a smaller group as others could have done quick service somewhere else. Does anyone have any advice or encouragement (or a reality check) regarding these two restaurants? Also can you clarify the booking procedure as we are going for 14 days and I realize the first ten days of the trip open at 60 days out but when do the remaining 4 days become available to book? Thanks to all for any help!
Isn't it 60 days out to book ADRs? I'm going mid March and my dates are only opening up now
 

castlecake2.0

Well-Known Member
Sci Fi has been impossible lately. As mentioned above try looking for parties of 4 and 6 around the same times. Most restaurant table assignors will see the same last name and try to get you all together (not guaranteed) you can also go to the restaurant earlier in the day and request this. Just keep checking, as people finalize plans they may drop reservations that you can scoop up.
 

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