Little Known Tips and Tricks for Your Disney Cruise Line Vacation
Wanting to take your Disney Cruise Line vacation to the next level? Then, this article is just for you! I have put together some of my favorite Disney Cruise Line Tips and Tricks to ensure you will have the most magical – and stress-free – vacation at sea!
1. Download the Disney Cruise Line Navigator App ASAP
The first thing you should do right after you book your Disney Cruise Line vacation is head over to the app store on your smartphone and download the Disney Cruise Line Navigator app.
In addition to giving you an adorable daily countdown to your cruise, it’s also a great way to get familiar with the ship by checking out the deck plans before you set sail.
2. Be Prepared to Eat!
Do you love to eat like me? Then, a Disney Cruise Line vacation is perfect for you! When you sail with Disney Cruise Line, you are sure to find something to eat pretty much 24/7.
There’s the always popular rotational dining that allows Guests to rotate throughout three separate themed dining rooms each night of your cruise. Even better? Your dining room wait staff remains the same regardless of which dining room you are in each evening. These waiters and waitresses pretty much become your best friend and learn your favorite drinks and what you might be anticipating next.
There’s also a buffet available pretty much at any time during the day and some grab-and-go options serving up hamburgers, hot dogs, and other favorites ready for you to enjoy whenever the mood strikes.
But, that’s not all! All Disney Cruise Line vacations include 24-hour room service at no extra charge!
3. You’ll Be Surprised at the Variety of Activities and What’s Included
Another tip and trick I offer for Disney Cruise Line guests are to be prepared for a wide variety of activities available – and how many of these activities are included in your cruise fare.
There are Broadway-caliber shows, amazing pools with water slides, Goofy golf, and so much more! You most likely won’t be able to experience all there is to offer on just one Disney Cruise – that’s why it’s super-important to book a placeholder while onboard and get another cruise on the books with a discount. (Keep reading for more info!)
Oh, and did I mention the fireworks at sea and the pirate night?! Arrrrrrrr, matey!
4. Schedule Onboard Activites and Shore Excursions When Your Booking Window Opens
This might be one of my most important Disney Cruise Line tips and tricks! Disney Cruise Line Guests are able to select their preferred onboard activities like the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique and wine-tasting seminars at a certain time frame before their cruise.
The exact date your booking window opens is determined by your Castaway Club tier or how many times you have sailed with Disney in the past.
75 days prior to sail date
Silver Castaway Club Member
90 days prior to sail date
Gold Castaway Club Member
105 days prior to sail date
Concierge Guests and Platinum Castaway Club Member
5. Complete Online Check-In 30 Days Prior to Sailing
As important as booking your port excursions and onboard activities as soon as your window opens is completing your online check-in when that window opens. The online check-in opens 30 days in advance for all Guests.
During your online check-in, you will select your port arrival time which determines which time you can board the ship. You will also be able to book character meet and greet reservations such as the Royal Gathering and nursery reservations.
If you are sailing on a Pixar Day at Sea cruise, this is also when you can lock in your Hey Howdy Breakfast with Woody.
6. Take Advantage of Adults-Only Time
Another favorite Disney Cruise Line tip and trick is to make sure you have plenty of adults-only time scheduled.
Drop the kids off at one of the amazing kid’s clubs and enjoy some time dedicated to just adults! And, there definitely isn’t a shortage of things for just the adults to do!
Check out some of the adult-only dining restaurants and enjoy a meal without having to cut up someone else’s food.
Or, check out one of the beverage-tasting seminars and go home and show all your friends and family your newly-learned sommelier skills.
There’s also the Senses Spa….. Ahhhhhh!
Make sure to schedule some time too to check out the adults-only pools onboard and the adults-only beach if your voyage takes you to Disney’s private island oasis, Castaway Cay.
Trust me when I say a Disney Cruise is not just for kids!
7. Chill Out with Funnel Vision
Grab the family – or not! – and catch a movie under the stars with Funnel Vision.
Each night on the pool deck, you can catch a Disney movie. That’s right: You can swim and enjoy a movie at the same time! Sometimes, during football season, you might be able to catch the Game of the Week on the big Funnel! I think one of my favorite things ever is watching a Monday Night Football at sea under the stars!
8. Catch the Latest Movies
Did you know that during your Disney Cruise Line vacation, you can check out the latest Disney/Pixar/Star Wars/Marvel movie to hit the box office?
That’s right! If a movie you have been waiting patiently to see debuts at the same time as your cruise, you can still catch a showing of it onboard in the movie theater. How neat is that?!
9. Don’t Forget to Pack…
There are several items Guests sailing with Disney Cruise Line forget to or don’t think to pack. While I have a comprehensive list I provide to my clients, a few of them are water bottles and extra swimsuits.
Pack water bottles for the entire family! Disney Cruise Line does offer complimentary soft drinks in addition to water, coffee, tea, and fruit juices. When you walk past a beverage station, simply fill up your bottle and enjoy without having to make another stop just a few minutes later!
I’m an over-packer myself but I always suggest bringing a minimum of three bathing suits – even if you are going on just a three-night cruise. Trust me!
10. Pack a Carry On with Your Necessities
When you arrive at the port prior to your departure, Disney Cruise Line will collect all of your luggage and bring it to your stateroom. While this service is invaluable, it does take a few hours for your luggage to magically appear.
I’m sure you don’t want to wait to get the fun started so that’s why I always advise packing your swimsuits and sunscreen in your carry-on bag. It’s also a good idea to pack medications or other necessities in your carry-on bag too.
11. SAVE on Your Next Disney Cruise
Did you know there are several ways to save on your next Disney Cruise!
One of the best tips I can give if you are looking to get the best rate available is to book early. As the ship fills up, the prices also go up. So, lock your reservations in with a deposit as soon as you think of a Disney Cruise Line vacation.
Speaking of deposits: From now until February 17, 2023, you can lock in a Disney Cruise by simply paying 50% of the usual deposit.
Make sure to also speak to your travel advisor like myself about the current Disney+ Kids Sail Free Offer and guaranteed staterooms.
Finally, let’s talk about those placeholders! A placeholder is a reservation for a future cruise that can only be made while you are on a current sailing that gives you 10% off on your next cruise!
When purchasing a placeholder, you do not have to select the exact sail date of your next cruise but you do have to take it within two years from when you purchase it. It’s a great way to save…and always have a cruise on the books!
What are your favorite Disney Cruise Line tips and tricks? Let us know in the comments below!
Looking for more tips and tricks and the most magical and stress-free cruise vacation? Fill out the form below or send an email to Holly@MickeyTravels.com for a FREE, no-obligation quote!
As an agent with MickeyTravels (a Platinum Earmarked Agency) and Let’s Adventure Travel, I will be on hand to help you with everything from finding your perfect package and I offer competitive onboard credits! I work with all Disney Cruise Line and all other cruise Lines outside of Disney including Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, etc. Best of all, my services are absolutely FREE. Get in touch via email at Holly@MickeyTravels.com or call 954.401.9577. Also, make sure to CLICK HERE to follow along with my Facebook page for all things Disney and giveaways!
Image Credit: Disney