How pre-park opening breakfast reservations work at Disney World – PREP102

All 4 Disney World parks have restaurants that open at 8 a.m., giving you a fantastic opportunity to eat before the park opens and maybe even position yourself in a prime spot to visit an attraction as soon as the park opens.

I'll get into the details of how that works, and also discuss news and a quick tip regarding Disney gift cards.

These are notes from this episode. There's much more info included in the audio so be sure to listen to the episode for a better explanation.

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Pre-park opening breakfast info

First, some basic things that are true for all pre-park opening breakfast reservations:

  • The earliest breakfast reservation time is almost always 8:00, regardless of when the park opens.
  • Disney will provide transportation to get you there, even though they often tell people that buses begin an hour before park opening. Magic Kingdom buses usually begin at 6:30, and buses for the other parks usually begin at 7 or 7:15. The resort monorail usually begins operating at 7 a.m.
  • At every park, there will be a special line for people with early reservations to enter. They'll check your name on the reservation list and then you'll be allowed into the park.

Magic Kingdom
Some things to know about Magic Kingdom pre-park opening reservations:

  • Park hours often change from 9 to 8 a.m. so you may want to make 2 reservations and then cancel later when you know which one you want to keep.
  • There will be PhotoPass photographers in the park to take pics.
  • The three restaurant options are Crystal Palace, Cinderella's Royal Table, and Be Our Guest. Be Our Guest will be the fastest and give you the best opportunity to position yourself for an attraction.

Epcot
A couple of things to know about Epcot breakfast reservations:

  • Akershus and Garden Grill are your two options (Garden Grill begins on November 8).
  • People entering through the International Gateway won't have any issues getting in early.

Hollywood Studios

  • Hollywood Studios often has park hours changes so I'd recommend making 2 reservations and then canceling the one you don't want.
  • The only restaurant option is Hollywood and Vine, which has Disney Jr. characters.
  • People interested in Jedi Training Academy might want to finish up eating just before the park opens to go jump in line.

Animal Kingdom
Just 1 option at Animal Kingdom (Tusker House), but it is good food and puts you in a great spot to ride Kilimanjaro Safaris after you're finished eating.

News

  • Be Our Guest breakfast is now a permanent option that opens up 180 days beforehand, just like all other restaurants.
  • Minnie's Holiday Dine is a dinner option at Hollywood & Vine at Hollywood Studios from November 7-January 3. The Fantasmic dinner package option is available online, and the non-Fantasmic option is available by calling 407-WDW-DINE.
  • Pizzafari (Quick Service restaurant at Animal Kingdom) is scheduled to be closed August 24-October 19, 2015.

Quick tip of the day

DisneyGiftCard.com can be used to not only purchase Disney gift cards, but it can be used to combine your cards into 1 card worth up to $1000.

Featured company

Today's featured company is Garden Grocer which is my favorite way to get groceries on Disney World trips. Check out my article on 8 ways to get groceries for Disney World trips for other options as well.

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57 Comments on "How pre-park opening breakfast reservations work at Disney World – PREP102"

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Hello! I am on a budget and would like to have breakfast at Epcot but spend the day at MK. Is it possible to do this without a Hopper ticket?

I have a early dining reservation for Be Our Guest at 8:20 for 3 people. We are a party of 5 people. Would they allow our whole family Early entrance into the park, even though the other two will not be eating at Be our guest due to lack of reservation. This was the only reservation I could get and my daughter loves B and B. But would hate to leave my husband and son behind at the gate. We would need to all be together to beat the rush to the mine train because i will have our infant… Read more »

I’m curious about this question and if it ever worked? We have run into the same situation & I’m hoping it all works out.

Did this work out for you? We are in the same boat!

Do we know how early you can snag a res for Tusker House? Would love to be able to eat before park opening and then either do Safari or Pandora rides.

I’ve been seeing reservations as early as 7:30 AM lately (for example today 4/19 there is a 7:30 for BOG available). Any insight on when Disney decides to open those up? It’s obviously on days when they pushed park opening up to 8 but those earlier times aren’t available at 180 days.

I just had 8:05 reservations at CRT last week, was able to get on SDMT twice afterwards, before the park opened! CRT isn’t always listed as on of the best ones for a PPO breakfast, but it worked out great for us!

We have breakfast res at Hollywood and Vine for 8:55 at HS. Is it possible to sign up for the Jedi Training before the reservation?

Hi Shannon. I was able to get 8:15 BOG reservations and 8:00 Garden Grill reservations for MK and Epcot in order to be in the parks before they opened during December 27-31. I just noticed that the hours for both parks have changed and they are now open at 8:00 for the regular crowds and at 7:00 for EMH. I’m not staying at a Disney resort so I wouldn’t be able to get in until 8:00. Should I keep these reservations or do rope drop?

Hello Shannon! We have a 9:10 am reservation for breakfast at Be Our Guest on a day when the park opens at 9:00 am. How early should we arrive at the park in order to avoid long waiting lines & will we be able to get in before the park opens? How long does it take to get to BOG restaurant from the entrance? Thanks in advance! 🙂

We also have a 9:10am reservation! What time did they allow you into the park? I hardly think 10 minutes is enough time to get there.

In your podcast you say that Tusker House has characters at all the meals, but I only see character dining for breakfast and lunch. Do you know if they will have characters at dinner in April of 2017?

Hello! I Have an 8:55am reservation at BOG with a park opening of 9am. What are the chances that we would be able to eat earlier than our scheduled reservation time?

I also have a BOG at 8:55am with park opening at 9am…curious to hear if anyone can let me know if we will be allowed in early.

I’m in the same boat with an 8:50 reservation. How early do they let you in the gate? BOG wasn’t accepting lunch reservations, much less breakfast, last time we were at WDW.

Were you able to get into the park earlier?

Were you able to get in early? If so how much earlier? We have 850a BOG reservations. Park opening at 9a. T Want to get in line for 7DMT but will it be too late? No fast pass available.

Hi Shannon! Your site is wonderful and full of so much helpful info, thanks!

My family of 4 has 8 am reservations @ CRT on Monday, 9/12/16. Hours have been updated and now MK opens at 8 am. Will they allow us in a little early or will we be entering with the crowds?

We will be at Disney 9/3-9/11 of 2016, I specially planned a 8:00 am Royal Table breakfast on our first day Sunday 9/4 for our daughters. I wanted the experience of walking down main street and castle pics. I have since learned people can pay extra to get in at 7:45am on Sundays an Tuesday through 9/30. So disappointed, how early can I get in? Will it be possible to beat some of this crowd?
Sounds like I’m going to paying A LOT of money without getting the experience I truly wanted.

Hi! If I have a 10:00 breakfast reservation at the Garden in Epcot, can I still get in early, at *am? The park opens at 9:00.

My reservation is now at 9:00. Will that make a difference?

We have an 8:30 breakfast at Akerhaus, according to the website the new Frozen ride (opening a few days before we arrive) will not open until 11am. The only fast pass we could get was at 3:50pm (we were planning on being out of the park by then). My question is, should we finish breakfast and get in line for the frozen ride? How long does the breakfast typically take? I hate to walk all the way back to the front for other attractions with 2 infants and 2 small children only to turn around and head back 30 minutes… Read more »

We have an 8:10am dining reservation for BOG. Will we be able to pick up our rented stroller when we enter the park for our reservation?

Hey Shannon! Thanks so much for providing such a great resource. I have a question about the bus schedule. I just finished an online chat with a Disney rep, and was told I would have to take an 8 am bus, to try and make it to an 8:05 reservation at MK. Do buses still run at 6:30 and they just don’t publicize it? Thanks!

We have an ADR at Chef Mickey’s at 7:10am .. staying at POP. Can we rely on that 6:30am MK bus or should we maybe find a taxi? Thanks!

Hey there! We are preparing for our trip and are in this same situation – what did you guys end up doing to get to your reservation?

Hello Shannon!

We are staying outside Disney resorts but we can make reservations for Be our Guest restaurant at 8:05 that day. We were wondering if we can enter the park before 8:05am for the reservation even being outside guests? Also it is our first time at Disney and we don’t know at what time outside guest can enter the parking lots.

Thank you so much for this blog!

We made a 8am BOG on Saturday the 5th of December. I just realized that the park opens at 8am that day. Will they let us in the park a little before the general crowd of people? I can’t imagine being on time for our reservation if we have to get in line with everyone.

We have 8:10 reservation at BOG also Dec. 5, I called today and they recommended we show up around 7:30 and they would def. let us in pre-park open time to get to the restaurant early but they do not officially open the restaurant until 8. I was ok with that.

Our trip in March, we are planning BOG breakfast @ 8:05 for our first day in MK and not sure if we should use our last TS credit for Crystal Palace for 2nd day in MK. I just can’t seem to decide if breakfast is best way to use last credit. The rest of our trip we have plans for BOG dinner, Akershus, Hollywood & Vine, & Cont Mickey. Any help is helpful! Thank you!

I’ve heard from several people about being able to get in line early if they came from an early reservation at Be Our Guest. We also made 8:00 reservations for Crystal Palace and Hollywood and Vine. Will we be able to enter lines early at these places too?

Hi Shannon, Do they let all pre-park ADR’s in at the same time? So are 8am’s let in at the same time as 8:30’s? If so, do they really seat people by reservation time once they get to the restaurant, or is it kind of who ever gets to the restaurant first, gets seated first? we have an 8am for BOG breakfast in October and I’m starting to wonder if we will really have an advantage over people who have ADR’s a little later than ours.

If you have an 9am ADR and the park opens at 9am, do they still have the dedicated early breakfast entry line to let you in at 8:45ish? We’ve actually been told to just get in the ‘regular’ line when our reservation matches the opening time, although then we were a bit late getting to the restaurant.

I am wondering the same thing. We have a ADR at BOG at 8 and the parks hours that day are 8-midnight(no EMH on this day) wondering if we can get in even a few minutes before the crowd so we are not late and we don’t want to waste time! Let me know if you find out anything.

So just to clarify the magic kingdom buses start running at 6:30am even if magic kingdom doesn’t open until 9am? Just planning transportation and don’t want to waste money on a taxi but also don’t want to miss our 8am reservation on a day the park “currently ” doesn’t open until 9. Thanks. Love all your info!

Thank you for your work on this blog/website. I have gone back to you time and time again in planning our trip to WDW in October. Great job!

We have a few 8 am breakfast reservations during our trip. Just wondering if it’s easy enough to rent a stroller with the early entrance?

Similarly, if I want to get a scooter before we go to an 8:05 breakfast I can’t get one? If I remember correctly, last year we got there early, rented the scooter, and then the park opened. Is that not so?

Hi Shannon,

I have breakfast reservations at Be Our Guest for 8:10 on 8/14. Any idea what time will I be allowed into the park? I would love to take some pics before the crowds. Thanks

Hi Shannon! I’m loving all of your advice, as always. I would like to provide a testimony to what you have said regarding an 8am breakfast at Be Our Guest putting you in prime position to meet Anna & Elsa. While I was able to obtain fast passes for Seven Dwarfs just over a week in advance when we booked, I had no such luck with Anna & Elsa, and they were a major priority for me. We booked an 8am reservation as Be Our Guest (which, surprisingly, was easy to get), ordered our food online the night before and… Read more »

Just another testimony, unfortunately from another point of view….we had an 8:05 BOG and we’re waiting in line for 7Dmt at 8:40 and the CM did not release our line until after the rope drop crowd had already gotten in the attraction line. 7DMT was down that morning and didn’t start running until 9:30. We wish a CM had warned us, but no, didn’t happen! So these early rides are definitely not something that is guaranteed, they are really just a bonus if it happens!

I have 8:10 am breakfast reservations at BOG for my daughter and I. My husband and son are planning to meet us in line at Anna & Elsa (couldn’t get a FP or reservations for 4). 1.) should we be done at BOG before 9am (plan on preordering food) 2.) is it acceptable if my husband & son meet up with us in line to meet Anna & Elsa after rope drop? Thanks! I’m obsessed with your site!!!

Thank you!

Would you recommend using the International Gateway entrance for Epcot over the main entrance if you have 8am reservations (we’re staying at Art of Animation)? We have an 8am Garden Grill reservation.

Hi Shannon! I love listening to your podcasts, following you on Facebook and Pinterest and your website. We are a family of four planning our first trip to Disney in December. I made a breakfast reservation for Crystal Palace on 12/20/15 through WDW Table Finder. Its at 7:25am. You mentioned in your podcast that breakfast almost always starts at 8am. I wanted an 8am time but 7:25am was all they had at the time. Do you think this time is accurate and we really have a reservation at that time? Thank you so much! : )

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