Hello everyone! I appreciate your time and consideration on my question. I am curious what people think of 8am breakfast reservations in parks on days that do not have early morning EMH. I have a trip coming in September and I have managed to get us 8:00 or 8:05 breakfast reservations every morning(8:00am Akershus, 8:00am Be Our Guest, 8:05 Cinderella’s Royal Table, 8:05 Disney JR Play n Dine)
Normally I alway try to plan our September trips around the Early Morning EMH schedule. This year I picked what park we would visit based on lowest predicted crowd levels which gave me no early morning EMH. I am a big believer in getting to the park pre rope drop and hitting it hard in the morning. I have never been a big fan of eating in the park as I feel it wastes time you could otherwise be using in the park and it is expensive. I booked all of these meals with the hope and expectation that it would get me into the park early and maybe on to one or two rides before the rope drop stampede arrives.
What is your experience with 8:00am reservations? Did you find that it got you into the park and onto rides more quickly than just showing up for rope drop? What are your general thoughts on 8am breakfast reservations?
Be Our Guest is a great reservation to get to be able to get to 7DMT or Peter Pan before the crowd. Will you want to sign up any children for Jedi Academy? You can do that before your breakfast at H & V.
I think that a PPO reservations at BOG can get you ahead of crowd if the park opens at 9 (but hours can change and if it ends up opening at 8 then you waste valuable park time). The other 3 could get you in a little early if you rush through them. But would you really want to rush? Those are pricey character meals and I wouldn’t want to feel a time pressure to finish quickly.
I’m a big fan. We did PPO breakfasts last August at BOG, Garden Grill and Hollywood & Vine (for quicken access to to 7DMT, Soarin’ and JT signup) and they were all worth it. We hadn’t no problem finishing the two TS meals in time. Pay during your meal so you’re not waiting for the check at the end.
I really liked getting through security and into the parks before everyone else. I was overwhelmed the one day I planned a “later” start in AK and had to deal with the crowds to enter the park.
So, if you’re planning to do character meals anyway, I think it’s so worth it and it won’t take away from park touring time.
I have had mixed results. Most days have been good. Once at CP they were running so slow that we left without meeting two characters because we were losing park time. And similar happened at TH last time.
I think you need to make a meal reservation at a time when you’re going to really enjoy it, whether or not it helps with your “strategy.” It pains me to see people making reservations with a plan to sip and skip. These reservations are expensive, the food is usually good, and the experience is worth having. Take the time to take it all in.
I’m facing the same dilemma! Would a character meal at Epcot really give you an advantage over rope droppers if they’re let in around 8:45? I tend to agree with the above poster that it should be done when you can enjoy it…
We did H&V PPO for JTA advantage in 2016. We got in and seated by 8am. We were done eating our fill by around 8:30ish. However, our server was slow with the bill and we didn’t see 2 characters. We did not rush eating and should have been able to see the characters in the time we were there. However, they kept pulling those 2 characters from rotation and having them restart in the same area. Luckily, my kids saw the character they really wanted to see, Jake. We were able to make rope drop and were out of the restaurant by 8:50.
We have a BOG and GG PPO scheduled for next trip. My understanding is that GG gives you a distinct advantage for Soarin and people report not rushing through their meal, if they arrive by 8am. BOG works for a 9am opening if 7dmt is up and running.
To chime in again, I think this strategy really depends on the combination of restaurant and target ride. Some combinations work very well, but many do not. I think BOG+7DMT, GG+Soarin and H&V+JTA work well. Akershus+Elsa and Anna seems logical. I don’t think CP gives you an advantage and I’ve heard that CRT will very likely take more than an hour if you wan to enjoy the experience. And it’s so much more expensive that you probably don’t want to rush through it.
We also had a non-PPO breakfast at Tusker House and felt rushed to finish in time for a FP. We loved the food there and felt we missed out. Next trip, I’m planning a later breakfast and allocating significantly more time in my TP so we can fully enjoy it.
I book them every trip. But if it’s a meal I really want to have even if the hours change from a 9am opening to an 8 am opening, I always make a 2nd reservation for the same day around 10:30am, that way we are covered no matter what the hours are and we are using the morning hours to our advantage either way.
A friend of mine, who is a Disney scholar, told me that no matter what time your PPO reservation is, they will let you in. She said they will usually seat you based on arrival. We have 8:15 BOG and our plan is to get there around 7:30. We are going in Sept as well.
I also wouldn’t rush CRT to get on 7D once before RD. Too $. BOG I have twice and thought it was worth it.
We’ve been to H&V twice and it was terrible. For the price I doubt I’d rush it either. I recall going early to HS when sci-if did breakfast an hour pre-opening. It offered no advantage. I can’t tell you if H&V gives an advantage. I heard it does to sign up kids for Star Wars.