One of the biggest complaints we hear from new visitors to Universal Studios is that it is so hard to get a reservation at the full-service restaurants inside the theme parks and at Universal CityWalk. Not only is availability limited, but there is no central phone number to call for dining reservations, unlike at Walt Disney World.
If you are confused about how and when to make dining reservations at Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure, Universal CityWalk or any of the official Universal hotel restaurants, don’t worry!
Refer to our Ultimate Guide to Universal Studios Dining Reservations for quick and easy links to every sit-down, table service restaurant that you will find at the Universal Orlando Resort.
There are 2 restaurants that accept reservations in Universal Studios theme park, 2 restaurants that accept reservations in Islands of Adventure, and 10 restaurants that accept reservations at Universal CityWalk.
Here are a few things to keep in mind before making Universal Orlando dining reservations:
- Guests staying at Universal Orlando premier hotels receive priority seating for dining reservations as one of the perks of their stay.
- While priority seating is helpful, it is not the same as reservations. See our FAQs section at the end for more details.
- The Universal Orlando premier hotels are Portofino Bay Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel, and the Royal Pacific Resort.
- All restaurants in this dining guide offer priority seating for the premier hotels unless otherwise noted.
- If you are staying at a premier hotel and cannot get a dining reservation, be sure to talk with the concierge at the hotel. They have a lot more availability than you might think and can often find you a table.
- Many of the restaurants at Universal Orlando Resort are not operated by Universal Studios.
- With different owners for many of the restaurants, that is why there is not one central reservation number.
- However, there is one central reservations page to make dining reservations. This website will direct you to the booking engines for each restaurant.
- You need theme park admission to eat at any restaurants inside Universal Studios or Islands of Adventure.
Related Post: Universal Studios Alcohol Policy and Where to Buy Drinks
Universal CityWalk Dining Reservations
Keep in mind that you will need to pay for parking to eat at any of the Universal CityWalk restaurants unless you use our tips for how to get free parking at Universal CityWalk.
All full-service restaurants are listed in alphabetical order.
Bubba Gump Shrimp Co.
Call 407-224-3663 with questions
Call 407-903-0044 for pickup orders
*First come, first serve – reservations not available
See the menu
Premier hotel guests do not receive priority seating.
Universal Studios Orlando Theme Park
Islands of Adventure Theme Park
Hard Rock Hotel
Portofino Bay Hotel
Cabana Bay Beach Resort
Though Cabana Bay does have restaurants, including Galaxy Bowl (which is super loud to eat in), there are no reservations available at their dining locations.
What Are the Hardest Dining Reservations to Get at Universal Studios?
There are some restaurants that are more popular than others at Universal Orlando Resort. If you want to try these full-service restaurants, make sure to book a reservation as soon as possible:
- Toothsome Chocolate Factory
- Mythos in Islands of Adventure
- Palm Restaurant at Hard Rock Hotel
- Bice Ristorante at Portofino Bay Hotel
- Mamma Della’s Ristorante Portofino Bay Hotel
How Far Out Do I Need to Make Universal Dining Reservations?
There’s a lot more flexibility, and less madness, with making Universal dining reservations compared to Walt Disney World reservations. However, as Universal Studios becomes more popular, it is becoming harder to find availability at sit-down restaurants.
While you can start booking reservations about 6 months ahead of time, you probably don’t need to.
If there is a specific restaurant that you definitely want to eat at, make reservations as soon as possible to guarantee a time and a date.
For specific dates where you need a dining reservation, such as a birthday or anniversary dinner, it is smart to book as soon as you can.
While you probably will find some dining reservations available a few weeks out before your visit, they are becoming harder to find for the most popular restaurants at the most popular times.
What is the Difference Between Priority Seating and Reservations?
Reservations give you a specific time frame in which you might be seated for dinner. Keep in mind, seating is based on availability, so your reservation time isn’t guaranteed if there is not an empty table yet.
Priority seating means that you will be called for your table before another guest that walked up to the restaurant and put their name on the list waiting for an open table just like you. So, you might be seated first with priority seating, but there is no guarantee of a time frame in which you will be seated.
Do I Need to Pay for Parking?
Yes, you will need to pay for parking at any Universal Orlando restaurant that you dine at, either in the theme parks, hotels or Universal CityWalk.
The theme parks and Universal CityWalk share a parking garage. There are limited ways to get free parking at Universal Studios that you could use in order to not have to pay a parking fee.
Can I Get My Parking Fee Validated?
Unfortunately, Universal Studios restaurants do not validate parking fees at the parking garage.
There are a few hotels that will still validate parking fees or offer a discounted valet rate when dining and purchasing a minimum amount of food. (Be sure to call ahead to confirm current policies.) These include:
- Bice Ristorante at Portofino Bay
- Mama Della’s Ristorante at Portofino Bay
- Jake’s American Bar at Royal Pacific
- Islands Dining Room at Royal Pacifi
- Strong Water Tavern at Sapphire Falls
- Amatista Cookhouse at Sapphire Falls
- The Palm at Hard Rock Hotel offers complimentary valet