Tip for Checking Dining Availability on MDE App

When booking dining reservations lately I’ve had my share of woes since restaurant options are so limited and those that are open are operating at reduced capacity. So similar to many others I’m sure, I’ve had to repeatedly check the app in the weeks leading up to our trip to see if anything opens up at our preferred restaurants. Frustratingly, on the app it always seemed as though you had to search all available dining options for a given day, instead of focusing on the restaurant you were looking for. However, thanks to a helpful mom on Facebook (gotta love the Facebook moms!), I learned you actually can check availability at one specific restaurant.

Here is how to focus your dining search on one particular restaurant when using the My Disney Experience app:

First, on the main screen of the app, instead of clicking the little “+” button in the center of the bottom row like you normally would when creating a dining reservation, click the icon immediately to the left of that plus sign. It is the little pin icon for checking a map (see below). This is the icon you usually use to check wait times in the parks.

(I’m an exquisite artist, yes?)

Next, go to the top where it says “Wait Times” in the center, and click the little down arrow. You will be given more options of things to view on the map instead of Wait Times.

When you select the little down arrow, you will be given the choices shown below. Select “Dining.”

Look at all those options! Who knew you could view so many things besides wait times?!

At this point, you could proceed to scroll through the map and select restaurants right off the map, or you can click “Show List” as shown below. This will take you to a full alphabetical list of all of the restaurants. If you don’t see one you are looking for, check your filters.

From the list, I selected Chef Mickeys, as an example. When you select the restaurant of your choice, you are taken to the screen shown below (for that respective restaurant). You will be given the option to “Reserve Dining.” This is also a good place to join the walk-up list if you are already there and don’t have a reservation.

Update: I just learned you can also get to this exact screen if you search for your preferred restaurant using the magnifying glass at the bottom right on the Home Screen. Saves a click or two !

After selecting “Reserve Dining,” it will take you to the screen below, where you can pick you party size and select you preferred date. From this screen you can easily toggle between dates and check the availability at your preferred restaurant for all the days on your trip in a matter of a couple minutes. You just have to keep switching days and times to check all of the availability, since unfortunately you can’t check availability for a full week at one time. That would be awesome if they added that capability!

Lastly, keep in mind that you can play around with your party size. As noted in my post below, you are given the option to add a guest when you check into your reservation, so in my experience, you can always create a reservation for one fewer guest than your actual party size. That might help some of you find availability if you have an odd party size and could benefit from trimming it down by one guest!

Party size when booking dining

Hope these tips help you stalk the dining availability on the app! It takes a few clicks to get to where you need to be, but in my opinion it’s much more user friendly than looking at every restaurant available for a given day.

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