FP planning

I will never claim to be an expert with WDW planning, but we have used TP for our trip in 2017. We had HUGE success with TP, so naturally, I went back to it. I’m scanning the forum, watching for new changes, hours, tips, recommendations, etc.
Now, I completely understand that a lot of the TP tours will rely on ADR’s, and I am completely aware that the ADR’s I’m aiming for may not be available, changing all TP’s and FP goals.
I will have a family of 5 scheduled for May 27-June 3, 2020, at CBR with a dining plan. 3 of us are return visitors, 2 will be 1st timers. I think with 3 ages pre-teen to teen and 2 adults, we will aim mostly for rides and attractions, characters optional. I have made note to look for FP’s that would have 3 and then for a 2 in the same hour time frame. And I have noted to start with the most difficult ADR and work backwards, (BOG 8am if at all possible).
I’m seeing a lot of “not able to get”, “struggle finding”, “what do I drop” on the boards. Will I be running into this much struggle with a family of 5? I’m starting to really get concerned now regarding ADR’s and FP’s for 5. It was so easy in 2017, but with all the changes at WDW, I can feel the anxiety creeping in. This is a HS Graduation trip, and I want to make the most memories for the Grad and for the 2 that have never experienced WDW before, not spend all day hungry standing in lines.

We’re a family of 5 too, and it can be a little more challenging than smaller families, but I don’t think it will be too bad.

You’re staying onsite, so 60 day FastPasses. And right now looks like pretty moderate crowd levels. I doubt you’ll have too much trouble. Might have to split your FastPasses into 2/3, which is moderately annoying.

I wouldn’t worry at all about ADRs - with reservation finder, you’ll probably eventually get pretty close to what you want, even if you don’t get it right away. FPs will be the trickier ones.

At the end of the day, it is what it is, and you plan the best you can, but it doesn’t have to be the perfect trip for it to be fun. Try to focus on the big picture, rather than one reservation/ride/show. (as a fellow overplanner and anxiety sufferer, easier said than done sometimes!)


I think you’ll be fine. Any ADRs and FPs you are unable to secure prior to will likely come available during your trip. I traveled with a group of 5 this July and was able to pick up SDFP drops for FOP multiple times, SDD, TT, etc all in groups of 5. We also secured dinners at AP, BOG, PPO BOG and GG without too much trouble. We started planning the trip outside of 60 days but quite a bit after 180.


A group of 5 isn’t any real issue. In my experience it’s when you start to need FFP / ADR for 8 or more you need to split up or be flexible.

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I think you are over stressing, which I can totally relate to now that I’m 18 days from leaving.

You are staying at a Disney Resort so you can make all of your ADRs starting 180 days from your check in date for the whole stay. You got this. Start with the hardest ADRs first at 6 AM Eastern time. Rope in others to help, if you need to. If you share your desired ADRs, people can offer their advice on which ones to book first.

My hardest ADRs were California Grill and Story Book Dining. I rallied DH, DD, and DS to get up for ADRs at 2:55 AM PDT! We couldn’t get CG for Day 1 but we got several reservations for it later in the trip. We got SB for Day 1 and several more for later in the trip. I’ve held on to all of them until I did FPP.

From everything I’ve read here, you don’t have to get an 8 AM PPO at BOG to be let in at 7:45. All PPO times will be let in at 7:45. BOG PPO was available for us at exactly 180 at 6 AM but we passed on it. Later when I decided I wanted it, I used Reservation Finder and lurked for months before I got 8:10 by lurking. I was always too late with the notification from Reservation Finder. Then last night, Disney announced an 8 AM opening for the morning I have BOG PPO! :rage: But the up side was that by opening 1 hour earlier, I got FPPs for 7DMT at 8:30 AM, eliminating the need for BOG PPO. It pains me to cancel the BOG PPO because I worked so hard to get it. At 180+ days, I would recommend hoarding some extra ADRs for the same restaurant until plans firm up.

For FPPs reservation, start with your hardest FPPs. They tend to be the headliners in each park.

I was going to rope in DH for FPPs. But I got confused with our window. I thought the FPP window was 60 days from our first day in the park. The window is 60 days from check in. I realized my mistake on my way to work. I logged on to MDE around 11:30 AM Eastern time, 5 1/2 hours after my FPP window opened. I only have 4 people in my party but I knew I wasn’t going to be able to get 7DMT for Day 1 or FOP for Day 2, even if I had logged in at 6 AM Eastern time. But I got SDD for Day 4 and 6; 7DMT for Day 7; and Test Track for Day 3 and 8. We will be RDing FOP on EMH day. In 20 minutes, I had all my FPP slots reserved. I spent the next 2 days modifying to improve the times but I had the FPPs I wanted. Then, there are same day drops.

I doubt you will be hungry or standing in lines all day. WDW has food and snacks at every turn! QS has more than burgers, hot dogs, and pizza. Plugging your attractions, meals, and breaks into TP will give you an idea of how much time you might stand in line. If you post your TPs here, others will provide you great suggestions. With all the prep you are doing, I’m sure your family will have a good time, with good food, and minimal wait times.

Now, I will go back to rearranging my TPs for the umpteenth time. I’m sure I’ll have to redo HS once they announce more hours, too.

Happy planning!


There’s not too many “probably won’t get” adr’s. The res finder is a wonder tool. Don’t play into the whole adr at 180 farce. The prices for the quality should not lead to any stress about an ADR - unless you have a lil princess and need a Cindy’s Table meal, or you HAVE to be at Prime Time at exactly 12:15pm, or V&A, and a few others. I wouldn’t even stress over a ppo bog. Res Finder for the win, generally always. I don’t plan my day around adr’s,(if you couldn’t tell.) That’s the last piece of my puzzle. Once I figure out park days, then fastpasses, then which special events, then nighttime “spectaculars,” then I figure out what time we’ll be needing a meal, and get an adr for the best option for where we’ll be. I’ll worry about adr’s like 45 days out. We have never gotten skunked for anything, but there was one time I just couldn’t score a Prime Time before 1pm, and I just couldn’t make 1pm work.

You’ll also be very surprised at how things open up the night before - when folks are dropping reservations to avoid the fee.

I just do not worry about ADR’s at all. Trust me, we eat. Pretty well, too.

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Exactly. I have 3 ADRS over 10 nights. We are going to wing the rest with QS, lounges, and spur of the day reservation.