Last Updated: January 2021
From Be Our Guest to California Grill, certain Walt Disney World ADRs (advanced dining reservations) are particularly hard to get – and if you’re anything like us, booking 180 days out often isn’t an option! We tend to plan our trips just a few months in advance, so we miss the opening window almost every time.
However, if you aren’t able to get your favorite dining reservation for any reason, have no fear! We’ve found the best kept secret for ADRs and have used it multiple times to find reservations for ‘Ohana, Be Our Guest, Chef Mickey’s, and more!
Touring Plans Reservation Finder
This magical tool is called the Reservation Finder and can be found on Touring Plans, a longstanding Disney site that is a wealth of knowledge. In order to use the tool, you’ll first need to create a basic (a.k.a. FREE!) account here. Note: As they state on the page, if you see an error related to the “Verify you are a human!” process, keep refreshing the page. It can be a little finicky, but it will work eventually!
Once you have an account, log in to Touring Plans and head to the Reservation Finder page! To find this page on Touring Plans’ website, just search for “disney dining” in their search bar – it will come up as the second organic result!
Creating Your Request
Now the fun begins. The Reservation Finder allows you to have up to two simultaneous requests, so you can either create two variations of the same request (i.e. one looking for lunch reservations and one looking for dinner reservations at Be Our Guest), or you can create two completely separate requests (i.e. one looking for dinner reservations at California Grill and one looking for breakfast reservations at Tusker House)!
To start, click the big red “Add New Request” button. Here, you can choose your desired restaurant, party size, date range, and meal/time! For meal/time, you can either choose a meal (breakfast, lunch, or dinner), or you can choose an exact time. Note that Touring Plans will search one hour before and one hour after that time (so if you choose 6:00 PM, it will search from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM).
We also highly recommend including both your email address and phone number. You have to be ready to act quickly when you get the notification that they’ve found an availability and we find that we don’t check our email frequently enough to act within minutes, so for us, a text definitely works best!
Once you’re happy with your request, click the green save icon to the right of the text message box! You can check back in on the Status if you’re curious, but other than that, you’re done! Touring Plans will send you an email and/or text as soon as they find a reservation within your desired requirements.
Booking Your Reservation
Once Touring Plans has found you an available reservation, it is up to you to book it! So definitely be prepared to jump onto My Disney Experience and get it reserved. Remember that you can cancel most reservations up to 24 hours in advance (a few require 48 hours), so it’s better to book it while you can and then cancel it if you decide you don’t want or need it!
Touring Plans stops their search once they have found you a reservation. If you were unable to book the reservation, didn’t see it quickly enough, or weren’t happy with the day/time, you’ll need to log back in and restart the search using the black arrow button! On the flip side, if you were able to get the reservation and want to look for another, you’re now able to do so! You just can’t have more than two live at one time.
We have had tons of success with this tool and have been able to snag prime time reservations for our favorite hard to book restaurants! As long as you’re ready to jump on My Disney Experience as soon as you get the text from Touring Plans, you should be able to book a wide variety of hard-to-get Disney dining reservations!
Have you ever used the Touring Plans Reservation Finder? Or do you have any other tips for snagging hard-to-get Disney dining reservations? Let us know in the comments!