Planning A Disney Cruise Line Vacation
Planning a vacation can be overwhelming, especially if youâre planning a Disney vacation. What travel dates are the best for you? What type of restaurants are you wanting to try? Do you want to save money or are you willing to splurge? What experiences do you want to have? There are so many questions that youâll have to ask yourself when planning a Disney Cruise Line vacation, and an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner can help. We always recommend Academy Travel for all of your vacation planning needs. so you can chat with an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner about your next Disney Cruise Line experience.
Working For Disney Cruise Line
Disney Cruise Line offers an enjoyable environment for families to get away from it all and spend time together. The company is recruiting for positions on board its vessels, as well as for shore-based jobs. The following are examples of the types of positions the company is looking to fill:
Book A Guarantee Cabin
Should a certain sailing or cabin category not sell as quickly as expected, Disney will open up guarantee fares.
These rates are slightly cheaper, but you only get to choose your cabin type and not the specific cabin. The fares require you to pay in full, are not refundable, and may come with other restrictions.
If youre looking for the cheapest way to get onboard, the rewards likely outweigh the risks of a guarantee fare.
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Look At Disneys Deal Page
The Disney Cruise Line website has a “special offers” section where it lists the occasional targeted deal. These can be promotions aimed at certain groups of people, such as Florida residents or active-duty military, or deals on particular sail dates or cabin types.
The deals dont come around so often, but its worth looking in case you can catch one that works for you and save some money on your Disney cruise. The deals on this page might also be for guarantee fares, so make sure you read the fine print before booking one.
Working For Disney Is Different On The Cruise Line
Right from the beginning, though, I stood out like a sore thumb.
I was the only American in this group to be training for a Disney Cruise Line position. In fact, once I got onboard, I found out I was one of only five Americansamong the approximately 900 crew members, and three of the Americans were behind-the-scenes in Human Resources and never had guest contact.
As long-time cruisers probably have realized, Americans arent common among ships crew members, mainly because the pay is so low. Citizens of other nations, though, can usually end up making a decent amount of money with currency exchanges, so foreign nationalities are common among cruise ship staff.
I was also different because I knew Disney. Almost no one in my training group had ever been to ANY Disney theme park. Much less the Walt Disney World Resort which is so close to the cruise terminal and is part of the cruise-land travel packages.
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Disney Signature Experiences Unit
Soon after a March 2018 conglomerate wide reorganization that formed Disney Parks, Experiences and Products segment division, Disney Cruise Line and New Vacation Operations was renamed Disney Signature Experiences along with a new president, Jeff Vahle.
Disney Cruise Line purchased in early March 2019 another Bahamas destination, Lighthouse Point property on the island of Eleuthera from the Bahamas Government. The cruise line was looking for another Bahamas location since the announcement of the third ship expansion in 2016.
In February 2020, Disney Wonder moved its home port to New Orleans. From March 14 until further notice, Disney Cruise Line ships have suspended operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Sailings resumed in July 2021 in the form of “Staycation Cruises”, closed loop cruises of 2 to 4 nights from the United Kingdom ports of Liverpool, Southampton, Newcastle, and Tilbury for London.
The Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy entered service in January 2011 and March 2012, respectively. These ships were built at Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. These new 129,690-ton ships are 339.5 m long and 36.8 m wide. They are two decks taller than the Disney Magic and Disney Wonder and have 1,250 staterooms each. The Disney Dream was the first ship to have a water coaster.
The Entertainment Business Is Our #1 Business
Many cruise lines dazzle passengers with their theatrical productions, but Disney Cruise Lines take it next level, Ashley Long, the cruise director on Disney Wonder, tells Readers Digest. Unlike other cruise lines that have entertainment, Disney is an entertainment company that has a cruise line, says Long. The focus, resources, and importance given to the onboard entertainment are unlike any other in the industry. So while the guests may see me hosting their Sail-Away party or introducing our Broadway-quality live shows at night , those moments only encompass about 20 percent of my responsibilities. Long also oversees all aspects of entertainment onboard including the Port Adventures shore excursion operations, the Youth Activities team, as well as the dedicated youth spaces, like the Disneys Oceaneers Club. A Disney Cruise is one of the ways you can experience Disney without splurging on a park ticket.
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Current Openings With Disney Cruise Line
- Recreation Staff Castaway Cay
- Human Resources Manager Castaway Cay
- Learning and Development Manager
- and others
Keep in mind that every job available with Disney Cruise Lines will have its own requirements and qualifications. For the most part, its a safe bet to assume that excellent customer service, strong communication skills and the ability to make guests feel welcomed at all times are some of the top requirements of each and every position.
Some of the open positions listed above are jobs that will be done aboard the cruise ship, while others are ones that are typically carried out on the shore.
In order to apply to these positions, youll need to contact a representative to discuss the employment opportunities further. Its always a good idea to have your questions ready ahead of time so that you can be prepared and ready during your conversation.
Be open to learning about all the available employment opportunities with Disney Cruise Lines. If youve always dreamed about traveling the world while also being able to earn money and work for a great company, these positions may be exactly what you are searching for.
The sooner that you contact the representative and find out the application details and qualifications needed, the sooner that youll be one step closer to living the digital nomad lifestyle. Just thinkthis time next year, you may find yourself cruising around the open waters, surrounded by great coworkers and working for a truly incredible company.
Do You Get Any Time Off When Working On A Cruise Ship
Though some crew members, such as the dining staff, had a more structured work schedule and were allowed half days off every now and then or large blocks of personal time, the Cruise Staff never had that luxury.
With only six to eight people on staff at any time, we all worked around the clock. Typical days would start at 8 a.m. and not end until well after midnight, especially if you were hosting a deck party or acting as DJ for a club.
We actually had staff meetings at 2 a.m., the only time when one of us wasnt working, so even if your work day ended at 10 p.m., you couldnt really get much sleep because you had to be in a meeting at 2 a.m.
We also had staff meetings while we were docked in Port Canaveral, the only time that we really had the opportunity to run errands, get a haircut or go to Wal-Mart. Though some other crew members had the luxury of being able to go into town all day while in our home port, the Cruise Staff always had to be back on the ship well before lunchtime, because we were all expected to be a part of the receiving line for newly embarking guests, as well as manning the Excursion Desk.
The windows were never at the same time, might only occur every one to two hours, and there was never a specified amount of time that the window was open.
Though there were many challenges in trying to disembark the Disney Wonder as a crew member, there were many reasons to stay onboard.
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Disney Cruise Line Finalizes Deal To Sail Year
by Holly Ramey·December 14, 2021
As we have been reporting, Disney Cruise Line was finalizing a deal to have one of their ships sail year-round from Fort Lauderdale, Florida at Port Everglades. Today, Broward County, Florida where Fort Lauderdale is located and home of Port Everglades, have come officially announced that a deal with Disney Cruise Line has been reached.
With news of todays deal, this means that a Disney Cruise Line cruise ship will sail from year-round from Port Everglades beginning as early as Fall 2023. The 15-year deal also includes three 5-year extensions.
ð³ï¸The secret is OUT! Line will sail out of Broward Countyâs starting in the fall of 2023. In true celebrity fashion, we rolled out the red carpet this morning to welcome Captain Minnie and Disney executives to celebrate this milestone announcement.
â Broward County Government
In addition, a second Disney Cruise Line vessel will also sail from Port Everglades seasonally beginning in 2025. It is not known at this time which ship will call Fort Lauderdale its home port nor which second ship will join it in 2025.
The deal with Broward County also gives Disney Cruise Line a dedicated terminal at Port Everglades and makes getting to the port a breeze as Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport being just a few miles down the highway.
Make Your Own Costumes
Even when its not Halloween, costumes are always acceptable clothing on a Disney cruise. If your little princess or pirate demands to dress up every day onboard, you can easily bust your budget buying costumes .
Save money by making your own. For pirate night, tie an old bandana around your head and a red scarf around your waist, make an eye patch from construction paper and string, and cut up the bottom and sleeves of a white or striped shirt for that outlaw chic look. Capture the essence of Snow white with a dark blue shirt, yellow skirt, and red hair bow. Look for dresses at Goodwill or thrift stores that you can accessorize into a Disney ballgown. If you can sew, hit the craft store and work your magic.
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How To Do Your Disney Cruise Online Check
The Disney Dream continues the Disney Cruise Line tradition of blending the elegant grace of early 20th century transatlantic ocean liners with contemporary design to create one of the most stylish and spectacular cruise ships afloat. The Disney Dream offers modern features, new innovations and unmistakable Disney touches.
If youve never sailed on Disney before, then you are able to do your online check in 75 days prior to your sail date.
Those that have sailed 5 times and under can log in at 90 days and those that have sailed 5-10 are at 105 days and 10+ can complete their check-in at 120 days prior to sail date. Concierge guests can also complete their check in 120 days ahead.
Disney Cruise Line And Salary Information
Dedicated to employee welfare, Disney provides excellent salary options to workers and supplies crew member with bi-weekly paychecks. Deckhands typically earn between $1,000 and $2,000 per month. Youth activities specialists may earn between $1,400 and $1,600 a month. In addition to salary options, employees enjoy lucrative work benefits. Qualified associates earn employment benefits, such as 401 retirement plans, medical, dental, and vision coverage, paid time off, disability coverage, and life insurance options. Workers also enjoy job perks, such as laundry services, theme park admissions, hotel discounts, merchandise discounts, internet cafes, crew gyms equipped with state-of-the-art exercise equipment, and crew dining areas.
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What Crew Members Eat On The Disney Cruise Line
One of the biggest cultural differences of all was the food.
In the crew mess below decks, the cafeteria is a display of multicultural tastes. Never in my life had I seen broths served with every meal, yet apparently this is common in many countries, so there was always a large vat of some type of broth liquid available. Rice is also a mainstay, and there was plenty of it.
There were more hot teas to chose from than I had ever been used to before. Yet for all of the nods towards other countrys culinary tastes, there was rarely a supply of American food, such as sandwiches, hamburgers, pastas, etc.
This might sound like a blessing in disguise, since American diets are traditionally too heavy with too many calories. Yet, when youre working for 18 hours a day on your feet doing very physical activities, you need some substance to get you through the day and we were definitely NOT getting it.
The food situation became so bad that my boss, knowing my journalism background, asked me to write a letter to DCL management to increase the foods available and their quality. The lack of edible food in the cafeteria was a situation affecting everyone.
And if you remember my description of our crew rooms in a previous article, there was no room to store food even if you were able to purchase it.
You might be wondering to yourself, why was it so hard to get off the ship to get food? After all, guests can come and go whenever youre in port. Not crew members.
Who You Are Expected To Tip
You are expected to tip your Dining Room serving team that rotates with you to each dining location for dinner every night of your cruise, as well as your Stateroom Host or Hostess. You are also expected to tip the Dining Manager, your servers at Palo or Remy , as well as Room Service, if you order it.
Disneys recommended gratuity amount per guest, per cruise:
Dining Room Server
- 4-night: $18
- 7-night: $31.50
Dining Manager, Room Service, and Palo/Remy servers: Tip at your discretion, but generally no less than 18%. If you utilize Senses Spa & Salon services, an 18% gratuity is automatically applied to your bill. Additionally, a 15% gratuity is automatically added to all bar, beverage, wine, and deck service tabs. Keep this in mind if you plan to take advantage of amenities like these that are not included in the base price of your Disney Cruise Line vacation.
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Working With The Cruise Director
Learning the ropes of hosting dance parties and deck parties was pretty simple. My job as a Cruise Staff crew member was simply making sure that people had a great time, whether it was dancing in the crowds during the Sail Away party or talking with guests before the Disney Theatre performances.
Other parts of my job required much more training.
On embarkation days, the Cruise Staff manned the shore excursions desk, booking shore excursions and answering questions about what was available at our ports of call. I had to become familiar with the most popular shore excursion destinations, so during the first two cruises I was able to take shore excursions along with guests so that I would be able to answer guest questions on future sailings.
On subsequent sailings, a member of the Cruise Staff was sometimes assigned to be onboard a shore excursion in case problems arose, so I frequently was able to enjoy a boat tour around Nassau or a trip to Atlantis.
Each activity that we hosted onboard had its own set of challenges.
After the first few sailings, I was finally starting to get used to my new position. Hosting dance parties and teaching guests how to do the Electric Slide had become second nature to me. Preparing the Disney Theatre for each production was my nighttime ritual. I was equally adept at exercising with Goofy on the sports deck as I was hosting the elegant Captains reception with everyone dressed in their finest.
Getting Off A Cruise Ship As A Crew Member
When most people dream about getting a job on a cruise ship and sailing the world, they imagine working onboard a ship while still being able to enjoy the freedoms and little luxuries of being a guest. They think, Wouldnt it be nice to work as a waiter onboard, and get to explore Cozumel or Nassau during the day before heading to work for the rest of the night?
Unfortunately, it doesnt work that way.
The most important difference between cruise line guests and crew members is the sheer frustration in just trying to disembark the ship.
Its important to point out that this has nothing to do with the Disney Cruise Line itself. Its just the nature of the industry and a myriad of Customs rules.
As a guest, you anxiously await the general disembarking announcement of each port day so that you can start walking down the gangway and begin exploring the port of call. Just because the ship is in a port of call, though, doesnt mean that the crew members will be disembarking, too.
When we were in ports during the sailing, such as Nassau, the crew were allowed to get off the ship along with everyone else. However, you actually needed the time to do it.
Crew members schedules are highly erratic and rarely are you given an eight-hour time span in which to work, like most jobs on dry land. You might be scheduled for work for an hour, with an hour break, and then work again for a couple of hours with 30 minutes off.
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