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Walt Disney World to enact credit card cancellation policy for many dining reservations

by Leah Zanolla
Oct 12, 2011

The Disney online community is abuzz with news that Walt Disney World will begin a new cancellation policy for many of its popular restaurants (full list below) beginning October 26, 2011. This move can be interpreted as an attempt to discourage guests from making multiple reservations at different locations for the same time period and only using one, resulting in perceived "no availability" at many popular on-property restaurants. According to the policy, new advance dining reservations (ADR) made as of October 26th will require a credit card hold. If a reservation is not canceled at least 24 hours in advance, the credit card will be charged $10 for each guest on the reservation. As always, certain exceptions apply, such as prepaid locations (i.e. Cinderella's Royal Table, Mickey's Backyard BBQ) as well as special dining events (i.e. fireworks dinner packages, Victoria and Albert's). These locations may have different cancellation deadlines and penalties. While this policy does not go into effect for another two weeks, DISBoards members have raised numerous questions regarding the specifics of how this policy will be enforced.

"Housemouse" expresses the following concern, "I'm thinking of a scenario where a child(or adult) comes down with a stomach bug in the morning which will necessitate skipping the planned lunch or dinner, or both for that matter, for that day. It could amount to a nice little chunk of change for something you have no control over. Especially if the rest of the party can't go."

This raises another issue around the question of how a party will be penalized if one or more people on the reservation can not attend, but the rest of the party can. DISBoards member "Colleen27" states, "I'm curious to see how it plays out, particularly in regard to changes in the party size. As far as I know there's no way in the current ADR system to change the party size on an established reservation - you have to cancel and re-book. Unless that changes this policy is setting up a situation where anyone who has someone drop out of their travel party any time between the 180 mark and the trip will be forced to give up their ADRs and start over rebooking or pay a cancellation fee for the missing person in order to keep their character/signature meal plans."

As with any policy instituted at a Disney park, only time will tell if and how well it works when put into action. Disney has announced the creation of a dedicated phone number (407-WDW-CNCL) to be used only for cancelling dining reservations. If you'd like to join the DISBoards conversation on this new policy, click here.

The following is a list of dining locations participating in the credit card guarantee policy:

Locations Requiring Credit Card Guarantee (penalty will be $10/guest)
* 1900 Park Fare
* Princess Storybook Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall
* Artist Point
* California Grill
* Cape May Cafe
* Chef Mickey's Buffet
* Citricos
* The Crystal Palace
* Flying Fish Cafe
* The Garden Grill
* Hollywood and Vine
* Jiko - The Cooking Place
* Le Cellier Steakhouse
* Narcoossee's
* Ohana
* Tusker House Restaurant
* The Hollywood Brown Derby
* Victoria and Albert's ($25/per guest)
* Yachtsman Steakhouse

Pre-paid Locations (penalty will be full price of meals on reservation)
* Cinderella's Royal Table
* Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue
* Mickey's Backyard BBQ
* Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show at Luau Cove



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