Dining reservation "no shows" question

DVC Grandpa

DVC Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2002
Last year while spending Thanksgiving week at BCV, we opted to have our Thanksgiving dinner at Cape May. We called for reservations and although our desired times were already full we selected a time which would work for us.
On Thanksgiving Day I had a few occasions to walk past Cape May and noticed that the dining room was not full. Two days later I ask the CM about the lack of guest at the Thanksgiving diner and was told that many of the guests did not show up for there scheduled reservation. She also stated that many people had made multiple reservations at various places and then picked the one they wanted to go to and neglected to cancel the others.
This is where I have a question. As DVC members and persons who are more likely to desire reservations in the vicinity of the resorts, do you believe when making a reservation for a holiday, such as Thanksgiving, a credit card should be required and that in the event of a “no show’ that this card should be charged for a meal or two?
 

Chuck S

DVC Co-Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Feb 6, 2000
I think a CC should be required with a $10 no show fee for every ressie every day, and $20 on holidays.
 

sean-1966

DIS Veteran
Joined
Dec 4, 2005
Yea, I have to agree. It's a pain when you can't get the restaurant you want. Maybe a CC guarantee would help make people not take advantage of the system.
 
  • DebbieB

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 24, 1999
    They used to require a credit card guarantee on holidays. I know I had Mother's Day dinner a couple times at Cinderella's Castle and had to leave a card #.
     

    LIFERBABE

    DVC MEMBER @ BCV BWV OKW SSR BLT AKV
    Joined
    May 28, 2002
    I have been told by Disney Dining, that Credit Cards are required for certain Holiday Dining.

    Not all restaurants require it but alot of the most popular do.
     

    MinnieGirl33

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 16, 2003
    sean-1966 said:
    Yea, I have to agree. It's a pain when you can't get the restaurant you want. Maybe a CC guarantee would help make people not take advantage of the system.
    :thumbsup2
    I, for one, would not mind this at all. Definately something I hope the WDW Dine folks think about!
     

    Dean

    DIS Veteran<br><a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis
    Joined
    Aug 19, 1999
    I think a non refundable fee would even be a better choice. Say $5 per person up to $10 per for the more expensive or higher demand choices. Then take it off the bill. Maybe allow you to change without losing your fee.
     

    BCV23

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    Feb 11, 2002
    California Grill already charges a no show fee.

    But a problem I see is how long of a window do you give people who are running late. Is the AR cancelled and a family charged after 10 minutes. 10 minutes is what I've been told is the time in the system. We all know that there are times the monorail is slow or has a problem, the boat you were planning to take isn't running, a ride breaks down, etc..

    I also think the nature of WDW lends itself to changes in plans. Children get tired, sick, etc.. I hope they do figure out a way to keep people from making multiple ARs though. :sad2:
     

    Figment2

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 22, 2000
    This is a hot button for me at the moment. I'm not sure what the answer is but something does need to be done. This past Monday (5/8), we tried to change a 4:50 ressie at Brown Derby from 6 to 7 people. Couldn't do it unless we wanted to eat much, much later. We kept the original and were there with 5 people. We noticed a lot of empty tables and our server confirmed that no shows are up. He also said we probably could have shown up with 7 and been seated but it's taking a chance (one we thought about but decided not to try). The day before we couldn't find anyplace near or in the MK (including WL) for dinner unless we wanted to eat late. We even tried for Concourse steak house & California Grill.

    When friends & I travel we don't preplan a lot of dinners since we never know until the day before or that morning which park we'll go to. And, I don't think it's fair to make duplicate ADRs to cover all the bases. For our Oct. trip, I have one ADR made only because it's for 30 people (Crystal Palace on Oct. 30 just before MNSSHP). I would have gladly put down a deposit if asked. Maybe that is the answer.

    Cyn
     

    bicker

    DIS Veteran<br><img src="http://www.wdwinfo.com/di
    Joined
    Aug 19, 1999
    We all know that there are times the monorail is slow or has a problem, the boat you were planning to take isn't running, a ride breaks down, etc.. I also think the nature of WDW lends itself to changes in plans.
    I think that's really the root of the problem, an inherent conflict between the folks who want the system to have more integrity and folks who want the system to be more flexible. Clearly, with minor exception, it's all about flexibility now, as there are very few cases where CC guarantees are required and very few no-show fees. Nothing will please everyone, but perhaps a different balance will please more people than the current system.
     

    Chuck S

    DVC Co-Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2000
    I understand monorail/ride breakdown etc. But what about folks that don't show up at all? Maybe they should simply keep a list of ressies that do not call and cancel, and prcess it after the restaurat closes. That way, if they show up late, no problem, at least they showed up. But charge the true "no shows."
     

    flechette

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Nov 30, 2005
    What about in this case?


    My TA made dinner reservations for us for Wednesday night 5/3 that were supposed to be for Thursday 5/4- and the email confirmation said Thursday. Obviously we no showed on Wed cause - well we didn't know we were expected, then didn't have a reservation for Thursday when we wanted to eat.

    How to handle that?

    I'd favor only allowing 1 reservation for the entire party every 3 or 4 hours. No making reservations for a party of 4 at 6pm for Le Cellier AND reservations @ 8pm for Rose and Crown - but allowing those reservations for a party of 2 at each (assuming party size is 4 to start with) :thumbsup2

    I agree something needs to be done - I'm just not sure a fine/fee is the answer



    .
     

    bicker

    DIS Veteran<br><img src="http://www.wdwinfo.com/di
    Joined
    Aug 19, 1999
    I'd favor only allowing 1 reservation for the entire party every 3 or 4 hours.
    How'd you enforce that, without limiting ADRs to Disney resort guests only? The furthest you could go down that path is one reservation per credit card every 3 or 4 hours... and lots of us have lots of credit cards.
     

    BCV23

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    Good point flechette. We have also had a CM give us an 8pm AR for Kona when I requested 8am. We caught that when the AR wasn't anywhere to be found but what if the times had been reversed. We would have been a noshow for breakfast through no fault of our own. We've also had our name misspelled which could potentially cause problems.

    I did notice the CM who made ARs for our next trip was very careful about the spelling of our name. Good for her. :thumbsup2

    Although at first thought I liked Chuck's suggestion, I rather doubt it will happen at least at the park restaurants. WDW is too guest friendly and there are probably guests who have no idea how to go about cancelling an AR when they are inside a park. And the wait times on the phone can be hard even from your room. A few years ago, we had a 6pm AR for Flying Fish on 1/1. We were tired, I had hurt my knee and we decided to do room service at BCV. I called Disney Dining to cancel at 5:40 and finally got through at 6:10 on my watch anyway. Our reservation...PS in those days...had already been cancelled automatically BTW. But my point is that I don't think most guests would stay on hold for half an hour to cancel an AR.

    I do wonder how many of those no shows ARE double bookings though. Folks who do that should be lined up and shot I think. :darth:
     

    Chuck S

    DVC Co-Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2000
    flechette said:
    What about in this case?


    My TA made dinner reservations for us for Wednesday night 5/3 that were supposed to be for Thursday 5/4- and the email confirmation said Thursday. Obviously we no showed on Wed cause - well we didn't know we were expected, then didn't have a reservation for Thursday when we wanted to eat.
    I assume the email confirmation was from your TA, not Disney? If so, it is your TAs problem and the TA should re-imburse you if there were a credit card required.
     

    bicker

    DIS Veteran<br><img src="http://www.wdwinfo.com/di
    Joined
    Aug 19, 1999
    No-shows are a problem surely, but I don't think canceling late causes any less of a problem.

    I know most of the restaurants have switched away from the paper lists (which clear couldn't get updated by someone pressing some keys in a reservation center :)) and are now using the automated system exclusively, but can someone at CRO really make a change in their system and expect that it will be readily apparent on the screens in the park?
     

    Chuck S

    DVC Co-Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2000
    I don't know about an "instant" change in the system, but we did make a lunch ressie 30 minutes out once, at OKW, for Chefs de France. When we arrived they had us in the system.
     

    BCV23

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    I don't remember the last time I saw a CM at a podium use anything other than the computer. :confused3 Where have you still noticed paper lists, bicker?

    We too have made last minute reservations and been in the system. Last week we were going to do lunch at Casey's but decided last minute to got to GF Cafe. I made one for about 45 minutes later and we were in the system. A few years back, I think it had to be an hour out.
     

    BCV23

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    Oh, and bicker I doubt last minute cancelleations are a big problem at most of the restaurants. There always seem to be people walking up for reservations at the park restaurants. That is also true at the most popular resort restaurants from what I've seen. The quieter resort spots have room anyway. And cancelling for legitimate family reasons is far different than cancelling one AR because you have double booked and decided on another.

    I do wonder what prompted the change at CG. It is getting very hard to get ARs there though so maybe they just wanted to ensure people who really wanted to dine there had a chance. :confused3
     

    DVC Grandpa

    DVC Member
    Joined
    Jun 6, 2002
    On November 25, 2005 we tried to make a reservation for November 26, 2005 for a party of 10 at All Star Café (Disney’s Wide World of Sports) but the reservation system showed only three tables for two available. The CM at the Beach Club called over to the All Star Café and the manager said he didn’t think that it would be filled and suggested we try without reservations. We did try and arrived at 6:30pm and found approximately ten guest along with about the same number of servers in the café. They did have a sports event that day but it was to be over prior to out requested reservation time. If we hadn’t had a car, we would never taken the chance that we could get seated, all the grand kids enjoyed the dining experience.
     

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