Disney Cruises are famous around the world for their customer service. Add to that amazing ports of call and signature experiences, and you have the makings of an unforgettable experience. Many aspects of a Disney Cruise are similar to those of other cruises. However, there are differences, so it helps to be “in the know” before you embark. Here are some great Disney Cruise hacks and a little good advice!
Once you’re all paid up, you can start getting ready for the exciting embarkation day. Arrive early to make the most of this day. Most cruises leave at 4:00, but check-in begins at 11:00, with embarkation commencing around noon. Arriving early lets you take advantage of the ship's amenities, though you may encounter a crowd. Expert Disney cruisers recommend showing up at about 12:30 so that you arrive after the rush of early guests but before the buses from Disney World arrive at 1:30. Accordingly, plan to take a limo or taxi to the terminal rather than traveling by a Disney bus.
As with other cruises, you won't have immediate access to your luggage, so keep a day bag with you. Put your swimsuit in your day bag so you can take advantage of the pool. Also, take this opportunity to sign up for shore excursions, make spa reservations and pick up wristbands for the Kids' Club.
The staterooms on Disney cruise ships are equipped with Wave Phones so you can stay in touch with your party while you roam. This means you don't have to chance using your cell phone, which would charge you outrageous “cellular at sea” fees.
One advantage to booking a cruise on the Dream or Fantasy ships is the “virtual porthole” that is included in inside rooms. This virtual porthole is a fun feature that you can turn off whenever you wish.
The Navigator is the Disney cruise line's version of the daily itinerary. It's filled with useful items like events and operating hours for the next day. Now, there's a Navigator app for both Apple and Android devices that you can use on the go. Just connect to the ship's WiFi network, which is complimentary for use with this app. One valuable feature of the app is the ability to text other members of your party within the app. This free messaging feature is a great time- and money-saver.
Certain onboard events on Disney cruises have limited availability. These typically are listed in the first issue of the Navigator. Look for the list of these events, such as “Tea with Alice” or build-your-own-gingerbread-house, when you board. Sign up early so you don't miss your chance.
For The Kids:
The Oceaneer Club and the Oceaneer Lab are designed to delight kids from the ages of three to 12. They succeed in spades, with most kids saying that these kids' clubs are the best part of the cruise. Disney cruises also boast clubs for tweens and teens, which are enormously popular.
Disney cruises are fun for the whole family, especially when you know a few insider's tips. Use this information to plan your next vacation.
Love Disney and Travel A Lot?
Consider buying or renting Disney Vacation Club (DVC) points online from a current DVC owner to save on the cost of the cruise. DVC points can be used for both Disney resorts and Disney cruises. Renting points is a bit easier because you won’t have to worry about how to sell Disney timeshare later.