Disney Cruise Line: Excursions Character Meets And Adult Dining Oh My
Im often asked: I just booked my Disney Cruise, when can I start booking my excursions? Unlike other cruise lines, the timeframe for booking your excursions and activities on the Disney Cruise Line is based on how many times you have previously sailed with the Disney Cruise Line or if you are sailing in a Concierge stateroom.
Print Port Arrival Form
This is the final step, which is very important. You will need to print your Port Arrival Form, and make sure you pack this along with you to bring to the port. This is what you will present when you arrive at the port.
Once youve completed all those steps, you will be set to sail! Make sure to install the Disney Navigator app on your smartphone as that is where you will keep track of your schedule during your sailing. Youll also be able to message with family members to keep in touch on the ship. Make sure everyone downloads the app BEFORE you get on the ship as internet access is limited and very expensive once you board.
Our preferred travel agency is Click the Mouse. They specialize in Disney destinations and will help you plan out all the little details. Best part is that their services are FREE when you book your vacation with them. Personalized service at no extra cost to you! To get a quote from a Click the Mouse travel agent for a Disney Cruise, simply fill out the info below and they will be back in touch with you:
Create Your Own Costumes
Almost everyone dresses up for the popular Pirate Night deck party, and while pirate “makeovers” are available onboard, you can save considerable bucks bringing your own costume from home — even if it’s just an eye patch and a ripped T-shirt. The cruise line does distribute free bandanas which you can wear as a head covering.
You’ll also want to bring your own glow-in-the dark sticks and necklaces for the nighttime deck party, as they are much cheaper to buy at home. The same bring-your-own credo applies to Marvel Comics and “Star Wars” costumes for the theme cruises. And don’t forget to pack your daughter’s princess costume, so she can make a good impression on Cinderella, Belle and the other Disney royalty. Look for knockoff deals online or find cheap costumes at thrift stores.
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If At First You Dont Succeed
Try, try again. Remember that phrase? Yep it works here too. Sometimes people book cruise excursions and then have to cancel later. Or sometimes people cancel their entire cruise, making any excursions associated with their reservation become available. Just like Fast Passes and Dining reservations, cancellations happen all the time and could mean a Disney Cruise Line excursion youve been hoping for might just open for you at the right time.
We hope these tips make planning a Disney Cruise a little less stressful! And as always, remember, youre going on a Disney Cruise, so its going to be fabulous no matter what you do!
Castaway Cay Watercraft Ski Adventure
This is the only way to rent a jet ski on Castaway Cay. It is a timed, guided excursion. The cost for 1 hour is $183 and you need to be at least 18 years old to drive a Wave Runner. Passengers must be 8 and up.
The guide will take you out to open waters before returning to Boat Beach after about 1 hour. Guests must weigh less than 375 pounds.
This activity is suspended right now.
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Theres Something Better Than A Mickey
Yes, the perennial park favorite is available at mealtimes and through room service, but the best mouse-shaped treat is at Cove Cafe. Order up a cappuccino, ask for Mickeys face on it, and prepare to enjoy your jolt of caffeine with some extra magic. Itll cost a couple bucks, but the joy of sipping and snapping a Mickeyccino will always outshine the complimentary coffee served on board.
The Kids Areas Arent Always Off
Activities at Marvels Avengers Academy and Star Wars: Millennium Falcon play areas are reserved for young ones, but all kids club spaces empty out for the open house,” when anyone can wander in and check out Vibes arcade games or OceaneerLabs high-tech designs. Dont skip out on Andys Room, either, which brings “Toy Story”to life while making for incredible Instagram snaps.
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Important Things To Do During Your Disney Cruise Online Check
A Disney Cruise is a lot more relaxing than a Disney World vacation. There isnt as much go-go-go, and you really can take it at a slow pace and just be zen for the duration of your sailing. Because of that, a Disney Cruise is a bit easier to plan, yet there still are things that you need to know about during the online check-in process. There are things that you can completely miss out on if you are not in the know.
If this is your very first Disney Cruise, then you will be able to do your online check-in 75 days before sailing. The window opens up at midnight online and I strongly suggest being ready to check-in as soon as it opens. Make sure that you are logged in to your disneycruise.com account before it hits midnight and be ready to go!
What youll need in hand:
- your disneycruise.com login and password
- passports for all cruisers
- pre and/or post hotel stay information
The very first thing you want to do before you click on Online Check-In is book the onboard activities. Those book up very quickly and if you dont do it quick enough, you could end up with no available times to book. Decide which ones are the most important to book and then go to book them in that order. Youll find the booking for those when you look at your daily itinerary. You can go to each individual day and then select Add Activities.
Here are the FREE activities that you need to book a time slot for :
Here are activities and/or experiences that you can book that are an additional cost:
Tips For Disney Online Check
- Once your Disney Cruise is booked, you can sign into your Disney account and check-in online. This is highly recommended as it streamlines the boarding process and gives you the option to select your Port Arrival Time. Go to My Disney Cruise and My Reservations as seen in the image below. This is where you can easily check-in to your Disney Cruise. There are 7 sections in the online check-in process as seen below. You can check-in each guest traveling with you.
- During the online check in you are required to enter your transportation plans on embarkation and debarkation day. This, of course, will depend on the port and your travel plans before and after the cruise. Again, you will want to plan ahead. You can drive your own car, rent a car, use Uber or Lyft, book a local shuttle, or use Disney ground transportation . With a little planning, you can determine which transportation option is best for you.
- Keep in mind that fees per person can really add up for a large family. Finding your own transportation is usually less expensive when traveling with three or more people. For a detailed list of transportation options to and from each port, and a list of hotels near each port that offer ground transportation to the port, see this article on mousesavers.com.
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Castaway Cay Sandbar Beach Adventure
If you want an adventurous Disney Castaway Cay excursion this could be the one for you. Guests start on a Zodiac Rigid Hull inflatable and take a fast ride out to a deserted sandbar.
You get away from the crowds and can sunbathe or swim as you want. Guests 21 and older can enjoy a sampling of Bahamian rum.
This Castaway Cay port excursion is for ages 8 to 70. The cost is $77 per person.
This activity is suspended right now.
Start With A Short Cruise
Disney puts a lot of focus on shorter three- and four-day cruises to the Bahamas and the company’s idyllic private island, Castaway Cay. These cruises tend to have higher per diems than longer sailings but are a way to get onboard without breaking the bank.
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The Different Types Of Shore Excursions
Cruise lines offer a mind-boggling array of tours — everything from basic snorkeling trips to more involved, overnight tours to see Beijing and the Great Wall of China. Here’s a primer on what you can expect to see on offer.
Active vs. Sightseeing Tours: Shore excursions cover all levels of activity and interest and vary greatly, depending on what’s available in each destination. Active tours could be anything from water sports to ziplining, hiking, biking and dog-sledding. Activity-based trips might feature a day at the spa or beach, a pleasure cruise on a sailboat, wine or food tasting, a cultural performance or a visit to a museum. Sightseeing excursions are typically bus tours that take passengers to the highlights and shopping areas of the port city or nearby destinations. Remember that excursions look different in different parts of the world. In the Caribbean, you’ll find options like snorkeling with sting rays or transportation to private beaches European tours focus more on sightseeing — for example, full-day tours from the port of Livorno to the museums and cathedrals of Florence or multi-hour lunches, featuring local produce, meats and wine at a farmhouse in Tuscany.
Book The Special Character Breakfast
For cruises that are 7 days or more, youll likely have the option to attend a free breakfast with some beloved Disney characters. In the On Board Fun section, see what is available to you. Tickets go fast and you must have a ticket. Just like with other Character Meet and Greets, I suggest you book it, even if youre not sure you want to do it. Cancel later if you decide not to attend.
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How To Book Disney Cruise Line/ship Vacations
There are 2 options when it comes to booking a Disney cruise.
Book A Disney Cruise Through Disney
Simply go to the Disney Cruise Line website and find a Disney cruise via their cruise listing page. Here you will find the available cruises sorted by Ports of Departure, Ports of Call, Disney Cruise Ship, or Port Adventures.
After selecting your itinerary, youll select your stateroom, make your full or partial payment, or a deposit to secure your reservation.
You can also Disney Cruise Line at 951-3532 and make your reservations over the phone. Guests must be 18+ or have permission from a parent or guardian
Book a Disney Cruise Through a Disney Travel Agent
If this is your first Disney Cruise Line adventure, then the best advice we could give you is to book through a travel agency that specializes in Disney vacations. We prefer this route over going it alone and booking a vacation package directly through Disney.
There are a few reasons why booking with a Disney travel agent is the way to go.
For starters, their services are entirely free to you, the client. Yes, its true! Disney pays these agents a small commission to help youbut at no time do you pay anything extra.
Lastly, a Disney travel agent will book all of your reservations for you. They take care of all the details so that you dont have to. Relax and feel secure in knowing that everything is taken care of and will be done correctly.
Disney Cruise Excursions Tips For Booking
Our love for Disney Cruise line grows a little each time we set sail, and we like to think we are getting pretty good at this whole cruise thing. That is, until recently, when we started working out the details of our Alaska Disney Cruise and had to book our Disney cruise excursions. So weve gathered some of our favorite tips for booking Disney Cruise Line Excursions to help you out!
We are naturally explorers and many times, we are choosing the cruise based on its itinerary, rather than any other factor. So we generally book cruises that we know a little about and want to explore more. Many cruise ports are set up for tourists and theres usually plenty of walkable things to do right off the port. Cruise excursions have always been more of an afterthought for us and if we see something we particularly love and want to do, then we will book it, but otherwise, we just google what there is to do at each port and take time to explore and get to know the area a little. We love having the freedom of being on our own and have never been big travel tour people, so its always just worked.
But when we started planning our Alaska cruise, we realized that our past history of exploring little towns by foot was not really going to work. We also realized how little we actually know about Alaska! It was actually a pretty overwhelming and stressful experience, simply because we werent prepared.
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Tips For The Using The Youth Clubs On A Disney Cruise
The Youth Clubs are AWESOME on a Disney Cruise! The challenge is not getting your kids to go to the youth clubs, the challenge is getting them to leave. There are two Oceaneer youth clubs for kids 3 to 12, the Edge for kids 11 to 14, and Vibe for teens 14 to 18. There is also the sweetest Small World Nursery for little ones under three. Each club has specially trained Disney counselors that lead really fun activities and ensure that each child is having the time of their life. Here are a few tips and tricks weve found to be helpful.
You Can Request The Best Seat In The House
Always dreamed of sitting stage side at Tianas Place or enjoying dinner in those gorgeous Enchanted Garden booths? Well, its not entirely luck of the draw for who ends up at each table. Nothing is guaranteed, but requests for a certain table can always be added to your Disney Cruise Line reservation, and they are worth the extra phone call.
The Wild Side Teen Adventure
There is a special excursion for teens available on Castaway Cay. Teens must be at least 14 to participate. This experience includes snorkeling, biking, and a high-speed boat ride.
The excursion starts with snorkeling in the Snorkel Lagoon. Then you will ride around the island on a bike.
For most teens, the highlight of this Disney Castaway Cay excursion is the high-speed boat ride.
The cost of this Castaway Cay activity is $54.
This activity is suspended right now.
The 5 Dates You Must Know Before Booking Your Disney Cruise
Before you book that Disney Cruise, there are 5 dates that you absolutely need to know. Make sure you figure out what these calendar dates are for the cruise you are planning to book and write them in your planner or type reminders in your phone.
Are you thinking about taking a Disney Cruise?
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Bring Your Own Snorkels
Castaway Cay is a wonderful spot for snorkeling and spotting colorful fish in the clear blue sea. You may even see Disney pirate treasure under the water. Naturally, the cruise line charges for rental snorkels. You can save by bringing your own equipment, which you can use again.
Pack Your Own Souvenirs
The gift shops on Disney Cruise Line naturally sell all sorts of Disney merchandise from autograph books and stuffed animals to Mickey Mouse ears. Your kids are going to want it all, and you’ll feel bad saying no.
To save face and your dollars, better to hit Target or Walmart before you leave home for Disney merchandise you can surprise the kids with once onboard. Bring an autograph book — either purchased or handmade — in which the kids can collect autographs from all the Disney characters they will meet. Pack the mouse ears you have at home. Maybe find a discounted stuffed animal or Princess doll, you can gift to your littles once onboard.
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Disney Cruise Lines Best Bar Isnt Located Where Youd Think
There are plenty of well-themed watering holes in the adults-only area of the ships, but on the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy, Meridian is the place to be. The upscale bar and lounge is intended for diners at surcharge restaurants Palo and Remy, but it is open to all adults adhering to its business casual dress code. Though known for their martinis, Meridian also offers a cigar bar, custom craft cocktails, and a gin & tonic cart, as well as a private deck hosting a picture-perfect view of nightly sunsets.
Shore Excursions Vs Independent Exploration
One of the biggest questions cruisers have is whether or not to take a ship-sponsored shore excursion. The answer banks on your budget, as well as your inclinations. Shore tours vary in price, depending on the cruise line, and can run you anywhere from $40 per person for a simple beach break to hundreds of dollars each for such higher-priced options as helicopter rides, golf outings and long-day or overnight tours. Taking a tour in every port can quickly inflate your onboard bill.
Shore excursions are worth it if you want to venture to attractions that are located far from the pier, learn more about an area through a guide or participate in physical activities where gear is required . However, if all you want to do is walk around town, shop or visit the beach, it could be much cheaper and less time-consuming to get a map and do it on your own. For instance, in St. Thomas, the shops are a stone’s throw from the ship, but beaches are a cab ride away. And, in tiny Monte Carlo, the castle, cathedral and casino are all within walking distance of your ship. Don’t forget about arranging your own transportation, too. In Hawaii, many ports offer rental agency pickups. In Barcelona, you can easily use a combination of local buses, the subway and hop-on, hop-off tourist buses to get around.
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