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Old 02-05-2013, 01:17 PM   #1
DaniMoon
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Reservations about ADRs

It's been quite a few years since we've been to WDW, and this will be the first time staying on property (AoA). We are going the beginning of October, me, DH, DD6 & DD5. (As of now, no Dining Plan). We will be there eight days/nights.

I do plan to do Chef Mickey for dinner the day we arrive. We will be in at 12:40 and don't want to do a park, but figure this will be a nice introduction to the WDW and work on a good night's sleep. This is the only ADR I am confident about. I am not a structured person, so trying to make ADRs on specific days goes against my grain. The only other meal that is a definite would be Norway's Akershus so my daughter gets a Princess fix.

Since I'm not a structured person and not sure how well my kids will handle the days, I'm thinking breakfast ADRs will work better than trying to schedule our day around lunch or dinner ADRs.

Does that sound like a good plan of attack. I know I have some time to figure things out, but I'm getting a bit obsessive and so happy to find this forum, it's been so helpful already.

Thank you.
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Old 02-05-2013, 01:43 PM   #2
GillianP1301
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I can kinda relate to where you are coming from. I love to plan and I also love structure, but I struggle a bit with ADRs. I love to plan where I'll be on what day and what I want to see, but I don't like being bound to a specific time for my meals, I just find I tend to worry about the time leading up to it and what I'll have time for and if I'll be stuck in a line somewhere, etc... I also know that my DS5 will not last a full day in a park and leaving and going back later does not work well for us either.

My trip last August was my first time with ADRs, we were on the DDP and I took the same approach that you are thinking about, which was to use my TS meals mostly for breakfasts and in our case, mostly character dining for my son. Breakfast is his best meal of the day, so this ended up working really well for us. It got our day started really well and then we could spend the rest of the day touring the park at our leisure. I did make a couple of exceptions, one was for Garden Grill for dinner that I ended up having to move up 2 hours because we were running out of steam that day. Fortunately, they were able to oblige.

For my trip coming up this August, I'm not on the DDP, but still plan to book ADRs for most of our breakfasts again.
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Old 02-05-2013, 02:10 PM   #3
DaniMoon
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Thank you Gillian. You reminded me of another good point. Breakfast is the only meal my DS might actually eat more than two bites. I wasn't even thinking about that.
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Old 02-05-2013, 02:32 PM   #4
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You have reservations about reservations?

Now that I have that out of my system, here's my thoughts.

Do you have a particular time of day where you like to sit down together for a bigger or longer meal? Is the time of this meal consistent? If yes, this is a good time for a TS ADR. I've found that sticking with a schedule that's fairly close to our at home schedule makes for much happier kids and consequently much happier parents because of it. An ADR forces us to stop and take that time to sit together without running around.

Is there a reason you want more ADRs than the ones you've listed? You aren't using a dining plan so there's no rule saying that you're required to book an ADR every day or even any other prescribed number of TS meals.

If you're not particular about where you eat, you can usually get a TS ADR in or near the park you're at. It's easiest if you load the dining app into your phone (though I guess that's now the Magic+ app? I'm not up on the apps but there is an app for that) and search that way rather than walking around and approaching each restaurant asking. This is at least true if you're not going at a super busy holiday time. Flexibility is VERY important if you're doing this and it'll be important to be willing to eat CS if you can't get into a TS restaurant that interests you.
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Old 02-05-2013, 04:04 PM   #5
DaniMoon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clanmcculloch View Post
You have reservations about reservations?

Now that I have that out of my system, here's my thoughts.

Do you have a particular time of day where you like to sit down together for a bigger or longer meal? Is the time of this meal consistent? If yes, this is a good time for a TS ADR. I've found that sticking with a schedule that's fairly close to our at home schedule makes for much happier kids and consequently much happier parents because of it. An ADR forces us to stop and take that time to sit together without running around.

Is there a reason you want more ADRs than the ones you've listed? You aren't using a dining plan so there's no rule saying that you're required to book an ADR every day or even any other prescribed number of TS meals.

If you're not particular about where you eat, you can usually get a TS ADR in or near the park you're at. It's easiest if you load the dining app into your phone (though I guess that's now the Magic+ app? I'm not up on the apps but there is an app for that) and search that way rather than walking around and approaching each restaurant asking. This is at least true if you're not going at a super busy holiday time. Flexibility is VERY important if you're doing this and it'll be important to be willing to eat CS if you can't get into a TS restaurant that interests you.

Thanks for the input. We are not a structured family at home either. Our dinner is never at a set time due to a few extra curricular activities and work schedules. But breakfast we do usually have the four of us together 5 days a week, and it is my son's best meal, he is a picky eater but eats a good breakfast.

I am definitely not planning ADRs for every day of the trip, I think one or two more (for a total of 3 or 4) is plenty. I'm thinking maybe one in each park?

I will definitely have to check into the app and figure that out as I do want to do some TS dinners at the parks, but am willing to be flexible because I realize those will be more for me and the kids really won't care if it's TS or CS . . . I just have to keep reminding myself that.

Thanks.
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