Heading to Walt Disney World? Here are 8 things to know before dining at Walt Disney World Table Service Restaurants:
1. You need a reservation – I know planning your meals 6 months in advance is frankly annoying, but if you don’t follow the masses than you will miss out on some of the best table service restaurants that Walt Disney World has to offer.
2. You can arrive 15 minutes early – Your reservation time is not a guaranteed time to be seated it is just a guarantee of having a table around that time. There will be multiple families that will have the same reservation time as you. If you arrive 15 minutes early, you are snagging a spot in front of the line of people who have booked the same time as you.
3. Don’t expect to be seated immediately – You likely aren’t to be seated as soon as you arrive even if you have a reservation time. Reservations are booked back to back and don’t always allow for turning over the table. Plan to wait at least 5-15 minutes at every meal and you’ll have a better attitude for it. Stressing and grumping because you aren’t seated immediately isn’t going to help you be seated any faster! Trust me from experience.
4. Ask for a glass of water too – The parks are hot and you need to hydrate. Order a glass of water along with your other beverage. Plus if your other beverage runs low, you’ll have the glass of water as back up until your server gets back to you.
5. Let them know what you are celebrating – If you didn’t have it marked on your reservation, let the restaurant know what you are celebrating. Most restaurants provide a free cupcake or dessert for anniversaries and birthdays. You might even get a signed card too!
6. Ask for an adult portion of a kid’s meal – If your child wants a kids meal but they are considered a Disney adult (10 and older), you can ask the restaurant for an adult portion of a kids meal. They will get a little more food and you won’t pay as much as an adult entree on the menu. I really only suggest this tip for those that aren’t on the dining plan. Otherwise it is not a good value.
7. Ask for a drink to go – Most restaurants will provide you with a drink to go if you ask. This is a great way to stay hydrated in the Florida heat.
8. Tip well – Disney servers work hard. I know the bill is already high, but factor in paying 18-20% in tip too when budgeting for your Table Service meals.
Learn more about Walt Disney World Dining and get suggestions for where to eat, how to use the Disney Dining Plan and more.