After much thought and deliberation, you finally decided where to stay when vacationing at the Walt Disney World Resort. Now that you’ve booked, you may be wondering if it’s necessary to make any reservation requests. Quite honestly, it all depends on what you really need or want from your resort. In this article, I’ll discuss several topics that may help you decide whether or not you should make resort reservation requests. If you do decide that you’ll be making requests, I’ll give you advice on how to do so.
DIStracted Tip: After reading this article and prior to making any requests, you should visit our resort pages to get a feel for the resort you have chosen. We have pages for each of the Walt Disney World resorts and they are chock-full of helpful information, maps, pictures and DIStracted Tips.
Do you have to make room requests?
No. Guests are not required to make any room requests when making their reservations or when they do online check-in. However, guests who choose to complete online check-in are given the opportunity to make limited requests. If no requests are made, the Disney room assigner will place you in a room in the category that you booked.
If you will be using the room simply as a place to lay your head at night, you probably won’t need to make any requests. Some people like to go-with-the-flow and take whatever room and location are assigned to them. Want to be surprised? Let the room assigners sprinkle the pixie dust and find out where you’ll be when you get there.
Do you need to make requests?
In some situations, it is best that you have requests noted on your reservation in an attempt to get what you need. Let’s talk about a few of those occasions.
Someone in your party has a need for an accessible room due to medical reasons:
This may have been a bookable category when you made your Walt Disney World Resort reservation. If you have an accessible room reservation, you shouldn’t have to make any other requests. If this was not the case, you can call (407) 939-7675. For more information, visit the Walt Disney World Special Needs page.
Someone in your party has mobility issues such as the inability to walk long distances or climb stairs:
After doing your research on our resort pages, you should have a general idea of where things are located within your resort and know whether or not there are elevators on the resort property. This information will be of great help when you call (407) 939-5277 to make a location request. If you have additional questions, the cast members will be more than happy to make location suggestions.
Someone in your party has medical issues that require a special room cleaning prior to our arrival:
For those with respiratory, allergy or immune system issues, the Walt Disney World Resort offers a free VIP room cleaning upon request. Your request can be made by calling (407) 939-7675. Please keep in mind that this is for special needs only. If this is not the case for you, please do not ask for VIP room cleaning.
You have more than one room booked and the travel party consists of more children than adults:
In this scenario, Walt Disney World Resort will do everything that they can to assign connecting rooms. You will need to let the Disney cast member know that there are more children than adults on the reservation and need a connecting room for that reason. Please note that this is a request and Disney cannot make any guarantees. Although it’s not a guarantee, it’s rare that you hear of this kind of travel party not getting their request of connecting rooms.
- You are traveling with more than one party and you would like connecting rooms (rooms that are connected by an interior door) or adjoining rooms (rooms next to each other): When making this request, you should ask that the Disney cast member “link” your reservations as well. This will let the room assigner know that you are all traveling together. You will need to have all reservation numbers and the names and contact information of the primary guests handy when you make the phone call to (407) 939-5277. When and if you and the other parties do online check-in, make sure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to making requests and that each make the same requests. We have traveled with multiple parties and our request for adjoining rooms was granted each time.
Can you request a specific view or preferred location?
Yes. However, if you feel that won’t enjoy your stay unless you have a specific view or a preferred location, you should pay the extra money and actually book that category if it is available. Having said this, you can make the request(s) and hope that the requests are met.
Just this past May, while doing online check-in at the Caribbean Beach Resort, I was given the option to request a water view room which is a bookable category and Trinidad North which is a preferred location and also a bookable category. I had not booked a water view nor a preferred location but they were two of my choices. It’s important to note that just because they are options, it doesn’t mean that every person who booked a standard view room and checked those categories is going to get a free room upgrade simply because they checked them.
Can you put in a request to be close to transportation?
This is a request that you can make. Before adding this as one of your requests, be sure to look at the resort map and find the transportation stops. Some resorts have multiple transportation locations.
For instance, three of the moderate resorts have bus stops located throughout the resort. It would almost be a waste of a request to ask to be near a bus stop as you’ll most likely have a fairly short walk to a stop anyway. This is especially true at Port Orleans French Quarter. It is a small resort and the walk to the bus stop is minimal. At the majority of the deluxe resorts, villas and the two Port Orleans Resorts, there is more than one mode of transportation (i.e. a bus stop AND a monorail or a bus stop AND a boat) so the room assigner would have to make the decision of which one to place you near as they can’t place you near both.
The best use of the “close to transportation” request would be for guests staying in a value resort as they have only one main bus stop and there could be a long walk if your room is at the back of the resort.
Will Walt Disney World guarantee my requests?
Stated plain and simply. No. Guests making their requests due to medical needs and issues will, in all likelihood, be granted their requests. As I said above, they will also try to accommodate parties that have more children than adults. The following is a quote from the resort reservation confirmation I received when I booked our 2015 trip:
“For Guests with disabilities who require accessible accommodations, specific information and assistance can be requested through Disney regarding accessible room availability, bedding options, amenities, restrictions, and advance reservation notice requirements. Disney will also contact its third party hotel provider(s) on a Guest’s behalf as necessary. All accommodations are subject to availability.”
My experience with requests
In all of our twenty-one trips to Walt Disney World, I’ve made requests approximately half of those times. The majority of my requests were acknowledged and received. I’ve even received a free room upgrade twice. This is what was stated in the resort reservation confirmation I received when I booked our 2015 trip:
“Adjacent rooms, connecting rooms or specific room location and types of rooms or bedding are on a “request basis only” and are subject to availability at the time of check-in. These requests for specific room type or location may result in additional charges to be paid directly to the hotel.”
How many requests can you make?
There are no set restrictions on how many requests a guest may make. But, that doesn’t mean that you can go crazy with the requests either. As a general rule, you should limit your requests to your top three. You’ll want to be sure to list your preferences in the order of importance to you. For example: 1) The XYZ section of the resort; 2) Ground floor; 3) Near the resort food court/restaurant. Try not to overwhelm the room assigner with your requests. They won’t know what is most important to you and may just choose one over the others.
You want to make requests but how and when do you make them?
As I explained earlier, some requests are best and more easily made over the telephone. You can use the numbers that I provided. The more basic requests can be made during the online check-in process. Be aware that your request may not be an available selection when checking in online. You may need to call.
If you book your reservation online, you should call (407) 939-5277 anytime after your initial booking and ask that the requests be noted on your reservation. If you make your reservations by telephone, simply ask that they make the notations when you are done booking.
Approximately seven days prior to your arrival, room assignments are made. Two weeks prior to your check-in, you may want to call Disney Travel. You can confirm that your requests are still in their system by calling. This is not necessary but, if you are like me, you’ll feel better after receiving this confirmation.
Hopefully, I’ve provided enough information for you to decide whether or not you’d benefit from making reservation requests. As I said, it’s not always necessary to even make any requests. But, if you want or need them, you now know how to make them.
Should you have questions, feel free to comment below and we’ll do our very best to answer them for you.