Hi Lovelies. I am back with one last Disney Post. The Ultimate Disney Cruise Guide. If you are looking for specific tips to booking your Disney Cruise check out my post here. This post is a recap of everything you need to know for your first ever Disney Cruise.
Before You Sail Away
- Book early. You’ll save money, get a good room, and have more time to pay it of (if you don’t pay in full).
- Be sure to do your online check-in early. This will ensure you get in one of the early boarding groups and onto the ship earlier.
- Book all of your activities ahead of time. This will help you get what you want and know how much you’ll need to spend.
- Purchase your Photo Package before you sail. It’s a hassle to do it on the boat. Trust me, this is one I wish I knew about before I went.
- Check travel documents and print all of your paperwork. Most importantly, don’t forget your passport!
What To Pack
- Check all activities and pack accordingly. Include comfortable shoes, beach wear, casual travel clothing and any special event clothing.
- Check for a black tie night, pirate night or any other themed evenings. Make sure you have all of the proper attire.
- Bring alcohol with you. You are allowed a 6 pack of beer or 2 bottles of wine (per legal adult) when you board the ship and from each port. You can save money by packing your own beverages. However, don’t plan on saving money on booze at the port stops, they certainly charge a premium at the local stores!
- If you plan on running the 5K race on the island, be sure to bring your running gear. Seems like an obvious tip, but in the madness of packing, it’s easy to forget.
- Bring extra bathing suits, and extra clothes. It can be hot, humid and the rain can be unpredictable.
Castaway Cay Tips
- Get off the ship early. It’s better to get your activities done as soon as possible so you don’t have to be pressed with time in the afternoon.
- Save your seats on the beach with towels as soon as you get there.
- Rent bikes and do the bike ride first thing before it gets hot. 1-2 hours is all you need.
- Be prepared to walk. The shuttle service can be slow and it’s not that far back to the ship if you want to get back.
- You MUST snorkel. As expected, Disney did a great job with their snorkeling area. They have a sunken boat, submarine and other fun things to look at. Plus, tons of cool fish. We packed our own snorkel gear, but they do offer rentals if you would rather go that route.
- If your kids can make it until 8pm, choose the late dining option. There are a ton of places for food. You won’t go hungry while you wait and this gives you the opportunity to take advantage of more of the amenities on the ship during the day.
- Get breakfast early. The buffet at Cabanas is great, but after 8am it can get packed. Get in, get out, and start your day.
- The dinner restaurants are a prefixed menu, but you can order as much or as little as you like. Don’t be afraid to get that extra appetizer. The portions are small and all the food is great. Splurge a little, you’re on vacation!
- If you decide to buy alcohol on the ship, the wine service at dinner is a great option. You get 3 bottles and can take them with you when you leave the restaurant. They have a couple different pricing options, but we brought wine on our first day and then did the wine service and it was plenty for our entire cruise.
Disney Cruise Guide Extra Information
- If you board before the rooms are open, you can eat, swim or do character meet and greets. So, be sure to pack what you need in a back pack. You will not receive your luggage until later in the day.
- If you want to enjoy the Aquaduck ride, be prepared to wait. To enjoy the water slide and the shortest line, get up and out early or go right before the pirate party when the line dies down.
- Tipping- The service is amazing. Disney will give you a recommended amount per day and this will be automatically charged to your card. These charges are per person and include, your waiter, the assistant, the restaurant manager, and your room host. If you don’t agree with the charges you will need to visit guest services before you disembark the ship. It’s not required, but it’s a nice gesture for a little extra cash for extraordinary service.
- If utilizing the kids club, be sure to turn in your Oceaneer band before disembarking. They are not souvenirs! This will save you $13 per band.
Have you been on a Disney Cruise? Do have any must have tips for the ultimate Disney Cruise Guide?