Dining options already booked??

Discussion in 'Disneyland (California)' started by DisneyJade, Oct 6, 2018.

  1. DisneyJade

    DisneyJade 15 years on DIS and still only a Mousketeer! :p

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Messages:
    272
    Does this seem unusual?

    I thought Disneyland dining reservations were a little easier to get than WDW, but I'm having a hard time finding openings.

    Reservation windows started opening for our trip 3 or 4 days ago, and already, locations like Blue Bayou and Lamplight Lounge are already booked solid for lunch and dinner every day of our trip.

    We are going the week *after* Thanksgiving, on weekdays only, which crowd calendars are showing as low-moderate crowds. I'm really surprised that table service dining is this competitive for those circumstances. Is it just these two uber-popular locations? The fact that we have 5 people in our party? Crowd calendars are wrong, and it will be packed?

    TIA!
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2018
  2. DisneyJade

    DisneyJade 15 years on DIS and still only a Mousketeer! :p

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Messages:
    272
    sorry. accidental double post.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2018
  3. Avatar

    Advertisement


  4. BriannaRuth

    BriannaRuth DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 29, 2012
    Messages:
    1,516
    If you're trying to book Disneyland, yes that does sound unusual. Other than something like the F! dining packages, DL dining reservations are often available right up to the week of. What are you trying to book?
     
    DisneyJade likes this.
  5. BadPinkTink

    BadPinkTink DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2015
    Messages:
    2,559
    its possible its the number in your party. I just checked for Tuesday 27 November. No availability for Blue Bayou for 6 people. I then re did the search and plenty of availability for parties of 3 and 4.

    lunch.JPG dinner.JPG

    Just book 2 tables for 3 people and tell the host when you check in. Most of the tables in Blue Bayou are 4 top. For parties over 4 people they have to join 2 4 tops together. Thats possible why they are showing no availability for 5 people.

    Im a solo diner and in June I was seated at a 4 top table by the water. They dont
     
    DisneyJade likes this.
  6. theluckyrabbit

    theluckyrabbit Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2012
    Messages:
    6,885
    You can always try calling the Dine Line (714-781-DINE). Sometimes CMs on the phone can help with reservations for larger groups. Also, if you are flexible with your times/dates, CMs on the Dine Line can work to see what they can come up with to make your bookings happen.
     
    smartlabelprint and DisneyJade like this.
  7. DisneyJade

    DisneyJade 15 years on DIS and still only a Mousketeer! :p

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Messages:
    272
    Thanks. It must be that I'm trying to book a 5-top then. If I call the Dine Line, maybe I can explain that my 5 are three adults and two toddlers in high chairs, and that might make a difference.
     
    smartlabelprint and BadPinkTink like this.
  8. DisneyJade

    DisneyJade 15 years on DIS and still only a Mousketeer! :p

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Messages:
    272
    Update for anyone curious (and who doesn't think they need to plan meals that far out)… I called the Dine Line and (after 40 minutes on hold) spoke to someone who gave me some good information. First, she confirmed that Lamplight Lounge was, indeed, booked every hour of every day of my trip, citing the fact that it is a new restaurant. She also shared that some reservation times are held back for resort guests, so while I couldn't book Blue Bayou through the app or online, several times were available to me as a resort guest. Very interesting! Unfortunately, the times were still somewhat limited, since we are a five top, so we ended up not booking this restaurant either.

    I think part of the issue is that we are a group of 5, but I'm sure many other family parties are large as well, so I thought I would come back and share this info, for anyone with a bigger group hoping to book one of the most popular restaurants for an upcoming trip - book right away when your window opens!
     
  9. gigirl131

    gigirl131 oogieboogie

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2012
    Messages:
    22
    This happen to me when I tried to book online for Fantasmic! at BB. Nothing was available for 5 but I called the dine line and they were to reserve a table for a late dinner due to being onsite guests. Definitely not my first choice in time but I am praying its worth it since it will be our first time seeing the show since they implemented the FastPasses. But I have been calling randomly hoping someone cancels; not banking on it but still gonna try.
     
    smartlabelprint and DisneyJade like this.
  10. 22Tink

    22Tink BC, Canada

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2015
    Messages:
    3,313
    Interesting. We're going that same week and I had no issues getting everything we wanted, including Lamplight Lounge and Fantasmic! dining pkg. We're only a party of 2 so maybe that's why but I just checked again out of curiosity. Lamplight is not available for large parties but I could still book for our party of 2 any day and BB lunch is available for a party of 5 every day except Friday of that week. I can see the F! packages filling up because the show is only running on weekends but regular dining still has lots of availability. Maybe OP was just experiencing a glitch?
     
    smartlabelprint and DisneyJade like this.
  11. Pamela M

    Pamela M Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2016
    Messages:
    294
    I would continue to check the app to see if any openings pop up. You never know they might.

    Not that it will make you feel better but I really wanted to do the Halloween tea at Disneyland hotel. I called at 9am on the day the reservations opened and it was booked!

    The moral of the story is while you can get dining reservations closer to your trip if there is something you really want you have to be ready to reserve it the moment it is available.

    Hoping you get some pixie dust and can get a reservation to one of those restaurants.
     
    smartlabelprint and DisneyJade like this.
  12. figment_jii

    figment_jii DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2006
    Messages:
    21,931
    I think party size makes a big difference. There are probably a lot more tables geared for parties of four or less, but fewer tables for parties of six. I'm not sure, but I think the system is set to know that there are x tables for 2, y tables for 4, and z tables for 6 and then it fills them based on party sizes. So it might know that a party of two can be seated at a table for 4, it might not know that a four top plus a two top can be used to make a table for six.

    In terms of Lamplight Lounge, while I think being new does factor in, I also think it doesn't take all that many reservations. I was trying to guess whether or not they include the bar stools and the communal table into account when taking reservations (I wouldn't be surprised if those didn't count), but if not, that doesn't leave all that many tables in general.
     
  13. gottalovepluto

    gottalovepluto DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2014
    Messages:
    7,614
    Yeah, that x # of tables for 2,3,4 etc is how I’ve seen the system work as well. But I think something has changed. I tried to find a table for 5 or 6 at Blue Bayou in the days just opened and there was nothing for lunch. Nothing. I started to go through the whole calendar but that was too time consuming after going through the first 3 weeks open for reservations (and nothing was open at lunch for 5/6). Dinner was available at one time for only the few most recently opened dates but only at very inconvenient times (like 8pm/9pm/4pm).

    The idea that every single Blue Bayou lunch that could accommodate 5 or 6 people for the next 60 days is booked is ridiculous. Unless Disney specifically did not open any availability. Likewise Disney might have only opened a super early dinner and very late dinner for 5/6 groups. If I were planning a DLR trip and needed reservations I’d find out the moment they are supposed to go live and try to book then. Which is a complete 180, treating DLR like WDW- which will suck considering how bad DLR is about consistently opening reservations on time, or even on the right day! Also, I’d plan how I could split the party 2/3, 3/3 etc because it very well might be split or no decently timed reservation.

    Idk about the other restaurants and parties of 5/6. From a fam of 5 that loves Blue Bayou this development sucks. A lot.

    Also surprising is that even using the hotel preferred reservations where Disney dining calls the restaurants to get you booked that OP wasn’t able to get decent times this far out. If I recall right last year the week after thanksgiving was reported on here to be the quietest the parks were in the post-Thanksgiving to New Years period.
     
    smartlabelprint and DisneyJade like this.
  14. figment_jii

    figment_jii DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2006
    Messages:
    21,931
    We'll probably never know exactly how the system works, but it might be back to the case where the system is very party size specific. I tried a few random dates for parties of 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. There were plenty of times for 2s, 3s, and 4s. There were a few times for 5s, but none for 6s. So obviously, the system isn't seeing a party of 5 the same way it sees a party of 6.
     
    smartlabelprint and DisneyJade like this.
  15. Dooble2020

    Dooble2020 Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2018
    Messages:
    1
    I booked the River Belle Terrace F! package for the Saturday after Thanksgiving. The Dine Line CM told me there were no reservations for 2 people but she could book one for 4 people and then modify it which is what she did. So there may be only so many reservations for each table size as has been said before.
     
    smartlabelprint and DisneyJade like this.
  16. mymaxisbig

    mymaxisbig Registered

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2018
    Messages:
    19

    We are going the week after thanksgiving as well. Sunday - Thursday. I had no trouble getting reservations for BB, skyline lounge and Lamplight. Maybe you should have done it 60 days out like most others do?

    Your best bet is to check daily for any cancellations
     
    DisneyJade likes this.
  17. cmwade77

    cmwade77 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2005
    Messages:
    5,470
    Just a heads up, while Lamplight lounge does offer SOME reservations, it realistically is mostly a walk-up location. Blue Bayou is a busy restaurant, so that is one that is hard, especially with the Fantasmic! packages being sold there. Almost everything else should still be available for your dates.
     
    smartlabelprint and DisneyJade like this.
  18. DisneyJade

    DisneyJade 15 years on DIS and still only a Mousketeer! :p

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Messages:
    272
    I really appreciate all of the insight here. It’s been interesting to read and consider. I’m sorry to hear another poster with a party of 5 is having the same problem. This has been a good lesson for me. I always thought you could book DL restaurants just a couple weeks out, but the combination of our party size and popular choices mean we’ll do 60-day reservations in the future, even for slow weeks!
     
    smartlabelprint likes this.
  19. theluckyrabbit

    theluckyrabbit Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2012
    Messages:
    6,885
    I also think part of the issue here are the locations in question. Lamplight Lounge is not set up like a family restaurant, but like a bar lounge. So there aren't that many larger tables in general. And there aren't that many reservation openings there to begin with -- we're local, usually a smaller party, and still have trouble getting reservations there any time we want. It's just the way LL is set up. BB isn't a very large restaurant, and larger tables can book quickly, especially during peak hours. And it does seem like Disney is fiddling with the PS reservation system in some way. I've noticed some changes in the way tables get booked -- it isn't quite as easy as it was earlier in the year -- so I wonder if Disney is tinkering with this in preparation for SWGE.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2018
  20. SOCALMouseMommy

    SOCALMouseMommy DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2017
    Messages:
    1,433
    I would call back closer to your stay to see if you can pick up something. People will cancel their reservations to avoid the fee so something might pop up, even for a party of 5.
     
    DisneyJade and smartlabelprint like this.
  21. mizlizstl

    mizlizstl Liz

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2015
    Messages:
    45
    I had something similar happen with booking a F! package for Blue Bayou - I'm dining solo and when inputting a table of 1 there were no reservations across any times, but changing to a 2-top opened up so many times. I booked for 2 :confused3
     
    DisneyJade and smartlabelprint like this.

Share This Page