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Disney Cruise Line Tip Thread

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This is the place to post your tips for enjoying a Disney Cruise Line Cruise.

Please keep it to tips only.

 

Let's start with member Momx4,Grandmax4's tips:

 

1. Early arrival gets an early boarding pass number.

 

2. The terminal opens 10 a.m.

 

3. Boarding starts around 11:30 to noon.

 

4. Keep a camera with you at ALL times, even in the terminal. characters will appear there for photos. There is an outdoor viewing area of the ship for photos.

 

5 Check in at kid's club table while waiting to board the ship. it saves you time on the ship.

 

6. Take a few ones. Some for room service tips and some to tip porters who take your bags at the termnal. $1 per bag is customary.

 

7. Take small bills for the islands. Many small shops don't have change.

 

8. If you're going to use your credit card on the islands, call your CC company first and tell them or you will have to wait on a phone call to OK all your purchases. This is a big hassle and can take 30 minutes or more.

 

9. Most shops who take credit cards require a $20 minimum purchase.

 

10 Take a camera to dinner each night, surprises happen all the time. You won't be alone. You will even see camcorders at dinner.

 

11. Arrive at all shows 20 minutes early for good seats.

 

12. Arrive at character meets 10 minutes early.

 

13 Princess meets arrive 15 minutes early.

 

14. On Castaway Cay if you want your photo taken with Captain Jack Sparrow, do NOT ride the tram to the beach area. It does NOT stop near him. You must walk in to the beach. The signs say 20 minute walk in it takes us 10 minutes. He will be along the way in the sand and the photos have the flying Dutchman behind you, great photo! Check the Navigator for times that he will be there.

 

15 There are characters along the way to the beach, it's OK to ride the tram for this. The lines are short and move quickly so it is a great opportunity to see characters without lines. Check the Navigator for times and places.

 

16 Characters also appear at the gazebo near Cookies BBQ on the island during the day.

 

17 The adult only beach has it's own area for lunch they often have steaks or lobster there as a special treat for the grown ups. But Cookies BBQ by family beach has more variety of other foods.

 

18 Dont miss the good-bye late the last night in the atrium. ALL of the characters will line up on the stairs and will pose for photos for you. This farwell party is really nice and fun.

 

19 Check for photos every day at shutters. Buy a package deal and save $$ if you don't buy enough photos for the package deal they will refund you the difference at the end of your cruise. If you buy a photo and then decide the next day you see one you want more, just bring back the one you bought and the receipt and tell them you want to exchange it and they will be happy to do this for you.

 

20. You can order warm chocolate chip cookies or Mickey ice cream bars from room service even though it is not on the menu. The warm cookies are available in the evenings only.

(Don't forget the milk for heaven's sake, there's an extra charge for it. Host Mick)

 

21. Bring 2 white pillowcases or a matte style picture frame in a zip lock baggie with water proof markers and leave at guest services desk and ask for it to be autographed and it will be returned to you the last night all signed by the characters. I also add a card with my name and room number on it just in case their card gets lost. I like to use dark colored markers, the light colors don't show up as well.

 

22. If you need to change dining times or make a Palos reservation go to Wave Bands club directly upon boarding to take care of this. The sooner you do it the better your chances of getting what you want.

 

23. If you have kids, leave a wake up call and then let them answer the phone. It will surprise them because Mickey will be on the phone telling them it is time to get up.

 

24 Afternoon matinees of the shows are great to see. They are the exact same show, they leave out nothing but it is less crowded and kids aren't as tired, plus it makes for a more leisurely evening. No need to rush to or from the shows due to your dinner time.

 

25. Pop is free in all restaurants and at the drink station on deck 9. But if you order it from waiter or buy it at a lounge or bar you will be charged for it plus a gratuity.

 

26. Stop by the drink station and grab a drink to take with you to the shows or movies instead of buying a can of pop there. If you want a snack, stop and grab pizza or hot dogs or fruit on deck 9 to take it with you. Again save money over buying a bunch of snacks for the kids.

 

27. At dinner kids can order from both the kid's or adult menus.

 

28. No need to book floats and bikes ahead of time for Castaway Cay. They have tons of them. Wait until you get there to make sure you're really going to need the floats or have time to ride the bikes before renting them. We always just walk up and do it at the beach.

 

29. If you want to do the banana boat ride or the ski-doo (eco tour) I would book them ahead of time. They do often have last minute openings so dont be afraid to ask when you arrive if you didn't book it and decided you'd like to do it.

 

30. If you rent bikes there are 2 nice trails just off the runway. The first one will have an observation tower. It has a great view of the island and ship. Bring your camera for this!! While up in the tower be sure and look around the base area of the tower. There are some whimsical things to see there too.

 

31. All the trails have ice cold water in big yellow barrels in wooden framed stands, so there's no need to carry your own unless you want to.

 

32. Find a cruise meets thread for your cruise and post there to get acquianted with others on your cruise.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/forumdisplay.php?f=451

 

I hope that this gives you some new information to help with your cruise

 

Mom x4,grandma x4

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Well Grandma just about sums it up pretty nicely. :D That's an awesome list!

 

A few more to add

 

--If you have already been on at least one Disney cruise, then when you check in you will be given a Castaway Club lanyard, your card is a different character than those on their first cruise AND you will have a Castaway Club gift waiting for you in your cabin. The kids receive gifts too.

 

--If you have a late flight out of Orlando after the cruise (6pm or later), then rent a car and spend the day at Sea World. It takes less time to explore than a Disney World park.

 

--Budget is the closest rental car company to the port and has a drop off at the airport.

 

--If you have young girls with you, bring princess costumes. Many little girls dress up on the ship.

 

--If you want the pool to yourself, head back early from Castaway Cay. From 12:30-2pm, most passengers will still be at the beach.

 

--If you have tots that aren't potty trained, the Wonder and Magic both have an infant/toddler splash area here...

 

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--The Mickey Slide is for ages 4 - 14 and 38" - 64" in height

 

 

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--The kids clubs do not take the kids to the Pirate Party. So if you have kids, you will have to sign them out and take them yourself. It's one party not to miss. This party will have fireworks.

 

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--Another tip for kids. Although the kids club graduation is at an incovenient time (something like 5pm on a port day), don't miss it. It is a real tear jerker. The kids receive a graduation shirt and graduation hat. If you have main seating dinner, you will be out in time, no problem.

 

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A few from our recent experience. . .

 

--Take refillable mugs with you for use at the drink station and on CC. In a pinch, the Castaway Club sports bottles work to keep your beverages dry in the event of a huge thundershower at CC! ;)

 

--Bring a bottle carabiner clip or water bottle lanyard with you on excursions, along with a bottle of water!

 

-- If you want the ambiance of candles, pick up a couple of battery-operated candles. Michael's craft store (and I'm sure elsewhere, too) sells tealight-sized ones for $2.99 that operate off button batteries. All the ambiance, none of the flame!

 

-- Take a watch or clock that lights up. I thought I could live without knowing what time it was overnight. I was wrong.

 

--Check the on-board shops right when they open on embarkation night. I snagged a half-price hoodie that I just adore!

 

--If you want to fly standby on your way home, DO NOT USE on-board check in. TSA will not allow you to change your flight after you are checked in via that program. (Learned that the hard way :(.)

 

mk

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If you are staying at a Port Canveral hotel the night before your cruise, Rusty's is a fun restaurant with reasonable prices and good food. If the weather is nice, sit outside. If you are on a Sunday Wonder sailing, have dinner around 4:30 on Saturday and you'll see the Magic leave the port and go right past you while you eat!

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UPDATE to my previous tip about Disney U Graduation - it has now been changed to FriendSHIP Rocks.

 

The kids get colored FriendSHIP Rocks t-shirts. The program is only for 3-10 year olds (11 and up did not participate)

 

Still has slideshow and appearance by Mickey & Minnie

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Your cruise is not over until you leave the ship. The final morning, why race to get off? You go when you want, so unless you have an early flight to catch, stay in your cabin, sleep (relatively) late, and relax. I head to the buffet, load up a tray and take it back for my family. We enjoy a relaxing breakfast on the balcony, no rush, and walk off when we're ready...or they toss us off. Howard

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If you like cheese, ask your waiter to have a cheese tray ready for you the next night at dinner. When you get to your table the next night a tray of various cheeses and crackers will be waiting. No extra charge.

 

 

 

 

No need to bring the big stroller from home thru the airport. Bring a cheap $10 umbrella stroller for going thru the airport.

 

After you get to the ship go to the purser’s office and check out a stroller. They will give you a pretty good 3 wheel stroller with large wheels that work well on uneven pavement like is found in most ports.

 

They charge a deposit but its 100% refunded upon bringing the stroller back to them after you leave the last island.

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i would like to add for those who might use a refillable mug as suggested above. Be prepared for a crew member to ask you to pour the beverage into a clean unused cup and then pour into your mug.

 

They try to stop the passing of germ on board very seriously and if you drink from your mug, then press it to the dispenser to get your pop the germs can transfer to the machine, then the next person puts their cup there and bingo, germs are spread.

 

 

So to save being embarassed you might want to fill their new cup and pour into your mug. Some will correct you, others are too shy to do this but I can say they prefer you to do it this way.

 

 

We are getting some great tips here. If I can think of any thing else I will be sure and post it here:)

 

mom x4,grandma x4

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Palo’s secret…

The best times will book well before you ever board the ship. It may book completely before the ship’s horn toots “When you wish upon a star.”

To get a reservation on the date and time that works best for you I recommend you book your dinner in advance online.

This alternative adult only restaurant is simply in demand.

There is an additional fee of $15 per guest to dine at Palo’s.

You can make your reservation online by setting up a free account at http://disneycruise.disney.go.com/

#1) Your cruise must be paid in full to make the reservation.

#2) When you can make your reservation:

105 days prior to departure for Concierge Level Guests

90 days prior to departure for Castaway Club Members

75 days prior to departure for First-time Cruiser

#3) You will need your DISNEY confirmation number. If you booked thru a travel agent, you may need to have them give this to you. Your Disney confirmation number may be different then your agents confirmation number.

Edited by Presentation

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I noticed in one of the posts someone said there's a charge for milk from room service. We have never been charged for milk from room service, along with tea, coffee, hot chocolate, orange juice and apple juice.

 

 

Take the time to enjoy some type of room service in your cabin or on your verandah. It's nice to have snack while getting dressed or eat breakfast while getting ready for the day. We usually have room service b'fast and order the All Hands on Deck cheese platter (although it can be hit or miss on the variety/quantity of cheeses/crackers), Mickey ice cream bars and cookies several times throughout our cruise. We keep $1's in the top drawer so they are handy to tip the room service delivery person.

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Yes, you can order Mickey ice cream bars at dinner. My college son orders these instead of fancy desserts. It's so cute to see the face of the waiter when the college boy orders a Mickey bar.

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Could anyone post how much the laundry is? And if it takes quarters or dollars?

Also I know Castaway Cay has life jackets for kids, but does the boat have them too?

 

I have heard it's great to take a surge protector strip to plug in all your stuff.

And an over the door hanger is helpful (anyone know where to get a cheap one at?)

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Could anyone post how much the laundry is? And if it takes quarters or dollars?

Also I know Castaway Cay has life jackets for kids, but does the boat have them too?

 

I have heard it's great to take a surge protector strip to plug in all your stuff.

And an over the door hanger is helpful (anyone know where to get a cheap one at?)

 

 

I can answer a little bit of your questions.

Laundry takes quaters. They have a dollar bill changer in the laundry room. But be sure to have really flat un torn bills. They wont take it other wise.

If the machine is out of order or wont take your bills go to guest services and tell them it didnt work and they will sell you quarters. They have a machine for small boxes of deterdent and fabric softener too.

Iron is free. Sorry I dont know how much it costs to wash, I think it took $1.0 to get the dryer to work but I dont remember for how long.

I try to avoid the laundry on vacation:D

 

Door hanger, wal mart, k-mart have great prices.

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Just returned from the Wonder 2 weeks ago....we did one load of laundry and each thing cost a dollar (soap, washer, dryer). I thought it was very reasonable (cheaper than at the Disney resorts). The only negative was that not all floors have a laundry room, so you may need a bag or something to carry your clothes in.

 

:)

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Heres a few before you board tips:

 

When you pack, put a few things into a small carry on or a backpack. Like a change of clothes in case of unexpected weather, or a bathing suit.Also put in what ever is valuable like jewelry, and paperwork, passports etc.

The backpack comes in handy for excursions etc.

 

When you are traveling to the port, heres a fun game to keep the kids occupied. After the speed limit change on the 528 where it splits to go to KSC or to the port, keep watching slightly to the left as you get closer to the port.When you climb one of the hills, you can see the ships in port.

 

Keep a camera handy, as you will never know who or what youll see. When we were on the 4 day in Sept, we almost got run over by Chip in Dale while we were waiting for an elevator before the ship left port. 2 minutes later, we shared a glass elevator with Minnie. There was no one else around.

 

DSC_0210.jpg

 

 

Speaking of cameras, if you have a digital camera, back up your pictures often. I backup mine in 2 places daily. We had dinner with a family that had camera issues and they lost all of their pics for the previous month.Carry an extra card for your camera so if you do have an issue, you can swap cards without affecting your memories.

 

If you have a standard 35 mm film camera, make sure you take film with you. Shutters no longer carries film and no longer does onboard processing.One of the onboard stores still carries film, but I would not be surprised to see it gone in the future.

 

If you have a wireless laptop, and a regional provider, (like Verizon)be carefull of what connection you use. Disney has onboard wireless, and will charge you for the service.You will know if you get Disneys signal as it will pop up a page that will require you to choose a plan.

 

If you want to purchase a gift such as a sailaway pack, make sure you order prior to 48 hours before the ship sails.5oopm est for the 4 day that leaves on Sun. These are provided by an outside company and not Disney.(This is printed on the bottom of the order page, in really small print and easy to miss.) If you miss the deadline, print off the catalog page, and bring it with you to the terminal. Go to the back of the terminal to the gift shop in the snack shop, and show them what you want. If not go to Guest Services, onboard, before the ship leaves port,and you can order there also, as there are generally a few extras brought out to the ship.

 

This one I cannot stress enough.

READ THE NAVIGATOR AND READ IT OFTEN!

The Navigator, has everything that you need to know in it from arrival times to charachter meet and greets.

Edited by truck1

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Do they do the graduation on the 4 night?

 

Can you bring a bottle of wine and/or champagne on board?

 

Any pros/cons of late seating with a 5 & 4 year old?

 

What deck do you embark on?

 

How early should we be at the port?

 

What do they do on Pirate's night at dinner?

 

 

Do they do the graduation on the 4 night?

 

As of September they did. I dont see that changing anytime in the near future.

 

Any pros/cons of late seating with a 5 & 4 year old?

 

Depends on the children. If they are used to a late dinner, no big deal.

Theres always different palces to get a snack if they cant wait till dinner.

 

Can you bring a bottle of wine and/or champagne on board?

As far as I know yes, but someone who has more knowledge in this area can answer.

 

What deck do you embark on?

 

Deck 3 midships

 

How early should we be at the port?

 

Depends on you. You can be there as early as 1000 and be one of the first on the ship. Or if you choose to be one of the last you can get there later. I beleive that the latest anyone can board is around 330ish. Keep in mind that if you board later, there will be some lines for the buffets for lunch. Or if you get there at 1000, you will have time to kill in the term. You can leave and come back, but if you go across the street to your car say, youll have to be rescreened.

 

1100 is not a bad time as you can get in, get checked in, and not have too much of a wait to board.

 

What do they do on Pirate's night at dinner?

They have a dinner themed after Pirates in the Carribean. With out spoiling it for you, its alot of fun and entertaining. If you or your children have pirates clothing, that would be the night to wear it.If not they supply bandanas for everyone.

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:) Great tips! A few things I would add:

  • Take a carry on bag and wear your bathing suite(weather permitting) so you can go swimming after your welcome lunch if you get there early. Don't forget the suncreen!
  • DO NOT book Dinner and Brunch at Palo's on the same day. The Brunch is so rich, tasty, rich and tasty that you will want a light dinner. Gotta eat the chicken parm. The Brunch is outstanding! The Dinner is also a winner!
  • Play Bingo. Uh, we made the mistake of not playing last cruise in June a person won $13k on the last day.
  • If you like ethnic foods like Indian, Filipino, Thai etc just ask your Head Server and he or she will recommend what is available. They will have it for you the next day for dinner if you like. My wife had a lovely dish of Indian curry with flat bread. Since the crew is mostly international they tend to have a chef in the kitchen from their country who will prepare something for them. They are more than happy to share and appreciate the fact that you appreciate their culture through food.
  • Inform your Head Server if you want to switch meal times due to an excursion. Since many people take excusions switching meal times on those days are easier.
  • Make sure you review your charges especially if you had any Spa treatments. It took me over 30 mins to settle a charge from the Spa on the last day. They charged a Spa treatment twice and couldn't get a hold of the Spa Manager to override the error. Terrible! Oh yes, if you are not interested in their sales pitch just tell them. If the person persists do not hesitate to speak with the Manager and or the service desk personnel on the ship.
  • Get to know your fellow cruisers, it makes for a fun time when you see them during the week to exchange sea stories. You Castaway Members make sure you befriend first time cruisers on what you know. You will see them with their heads spinning saying "WOW"!

See you in May!

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Private and Free Tea party for the little princess and princesses at heart

Palo’s has Lunch, Dinner and a afternoon tea, all adults only.

But what about your little princess? She wants to have a tea party also!

Disney has this covered but you need to get to the guest service counter early your first day. The name of this keeps changing. It’s been the Tea with Wendy Darling, story time with Bell, and tea with Alice and The Mad Hatter.

Just get to the guest service counter and tell them you want tickets for the princess tea party. It’s free but you must have a ticket and it’s a small event so the tickets go fast.

It’s mostly a mother / daughter thing but that’s not a rule. Some Mothers / son’s, some fathers / daughters, some families.

It’s held on a sea day.

Bring your camera!

(note – I don’t know if this is offered on cruises shorter then 7 days)

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Hi...this is the first time we have cruised. The tips are very helpful but have just one question:

 

In the Booklet we received from Disney, it is suggested that we check in on-line. Is this a lengthy process? It is also mentioned in that you "make a copy" and take it with you??

 

I haven't attempted this as yet but wondered if anyone can give me suggestions about this. I believe I have to insert my Reservation# and date of birth and then proceed?

 

We're truly looking forward to this cruise (key west, castaway, cozumel, grand caymans). On Disney Magic Cruise.

 

I understand some of the excursions are already filled up. Does this mean we cannot get on those particular excursions when we are on ship?

 

Thanks for the help!

 

 

Howdy, on line check in is really easy to do. Just have your reservation number and birthday and name and your all set. Yes you need to print it off, sign a couple of places and bring it with you. Or you can just fill out the documents you received in the mail about 10 to 14 days prior to the cruise and bring them with you. Either way will work just fine.

 

Usually there are still a few opening for excusrions, once you board go to the shore excursion desk on deck 3 atrium area as soon as they open. Your Navigator will be in your room and it will list the time for it to be open. The people at the shore excusrion desk can tell you if an excusrion is filled up or not and can book you.

Some people do cancel once their on the ship, so dont be afraid to check back even if they say its going to be filled.

But have a second choice in case it is filled.

Ones like swimming with the Dolphins are usually full and stay that way.

 

we just returned from a Western cruise about 6 weeks ago, it was great!!!

Be sure and look on the roll call thread here for your cruise date. Post there to get aquainted with others on your cruise. That is always a lot of fun. If you dont see your date, then start a thread yourself and others will join you.

 

I have done a ton of DCL cruises, just look at my signature, so if I can help with any questions please ask. If I dont know the answer someone else here will.

People are very friendly and helpful here.

 

mom x4,grandma x4

Edited by mom x4,grandma x4

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Put your kids in the club! Ours loved it. This made it such a great cruise for us. We got to be pretty good friends with one of the counselors, Josh, and have booked another cruise on the Magic when he will be back on the ship. Our son did not want to leave (he's 3).

 

Wait to buy anything in the gift shop until the last day or two, they had some great sales the last 2 days of our cruise.

 

get childcare and go to Palo!

 

If you get to autograph signings about 5-10 minutes early, you won't have to wait long or at all. Once it starts, the line gets long. We were told to be everywhere 15 minutes early...didn't really need that on the 7-day, we found 5 minutes early was usually plenty if there was something we really wanted to do. Only exception is the 'Til we meet again' 'show' on the last night. That was completely crazy. If you've seen the characters all week, don't bother. We loved the whole week, but this was nuts...all the characters, but also just about all the passengers crowding into the atrium.

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Thank you so much for this thread - great information! Fantastic, in fact!

 

Some additional questions:

 

1) Is there any charge for room service? Assuming it's available 24x7?

2) In Palo's, can you order more than one meal? I'm a good eater and love to try a bit of everything on a cruise.

3) I believe there are fridge's in the room - are they enough to cool down drinks and water?

 

Thanks so much!

 

-jtslater

 

 

Room service is free and 24/7 accept the last morning of the cruise. They do have a few extra items you can order that cost extra, but they are off to one side and clearly priced for you. We take soem ones for tipping for room service.

 

Not sure about Palos.

The fridge is cool enough for us to keep water in or pop. If you want extra cold beverages ask your room host for a ice bucket full of ice and put your drinks in it to get icy cold. You can even ask them to bring new ice everyday at a specific time if you want.

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After March 15, 2009 you can order baby supplies off the Disney website and have them delivered to your cabin. This includes diapers and baby food among other things. :D

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Reminder,

This is a tip thread. To keep the thread tidy, non-tip posts will disappear. If you have a question, feel free to start a new thread.

Keep the tips coming.

Edited by Host Mick

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L2ConD user_offline.gif

Cool Cruiser

 

 

icon14.gifThanks to all & a few of your best tips!

I just wanted to tell you salty cruisers how much I have appreciated all their advice to us newbies. I know it's boring/annoying/frustrating to see the same questions so much, but thanks for being patient and answering our questions!

 

I also wanted to throw in that some of the very best tips I've gotten from this board are:

 

-- wrapping my dollar tips around a KitKat fun-sized bar for the room

service waiters (they seem to love the candy surprise)

 

-- the over-the-door shoe bag trick

 

-- taking a power strip and a night light

 

-- taking a fast-food type drink holder for runs up to Deck 9 for soft

drinks.

 

I know there are a bunch more, but those are just the first ones that popped into my pea-brain. :D

 

Thanks!!!

 

 

(forwarded by: )

Edited by Host Mick

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We thought we were in for a real ride, or a high baby sitting bill when we could only get a late seating (8:15) for dinners. That is our 20 month old's normal bedtime. How "wonderful" when we chose to bring her portable DVD player along. I know all you purists and developmental Psychologists might cringe, but we fed her ahead of time and once the fussy stuff started at the table, it was her 101 Dalmatians DVD to the rescue! We got to enjoy our dinners and we were the envy of all toddler mothers with melt downs in the dinning room.

 

Older kids won't need this the dinning is entertainment enough... and I'm sure we will take some heat for even suggesting it but it worked like a charm! Remember, two is not the age of reason... They run on snacks an raw emotion... They just want what they usually have, same food ,same stories ect. (and you :) She got something she knew from home and we ate "en pace".

progress.gifedit.gif

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Just got back today from a wonderful 7 day cruise, and wanted to post my comments before I forgot. I booked a cat 12, and was upgraded to a cat 10. Inside, but okay. Try to avoid 2 aft, that part of the boat is very noisy when docking and undocking.

Based on others comments, I packed..

1. a light up travel alarm clock- good idea to have esp in those dark inside cabins.

2. 2 extension cords (I only needed one)

3. larger plastic drink cups. I drink diet coke and used these alot. I was surprised to find that you can get sodas in the dining rooms for free. I think it would be a good idea to bring a collapsible cardboard drink carrier if you will be carrying drinks for more than 2 people.

4. clothes pins for the retractable clothes line in the shower.

 

 

*Bring some fun magnets for the outside cabin door....makes it easier to find your room, plus its fun for the kids.

*Bring a small dry eraser board (with markers) that can hang outside the cabin door on the fish hanger. Its nice to leave where you are notes for others in your party.

*They put magarine out on the dinner tables, but they do have real butter, you just have to ask for it.

*I brought an iron, but there are 3 laundry rooms on the ship that have regular size irons. Each room has change machines that will change $1, $5 and $10. bills into quarters. Each machine costs a $1.00 and they also sell laundry supplies there.

*Our room had 20 hangers, so I was able to hang up most of our clothes.

*Disney provided bars of soap, shampoo, conditioner and lotion in the bathroom. We also had a blowdryer that worked pretty well.

*My 7 yr old loved the kids club.

*When checking in, they asked if I wanted my sons room card to have charging privledges. I said no, but next time I will. I accidently grabbed his card a few times, and was unable to use it to charge drinks, etc. I had to go to my room to get the card with charge capabilties.

*Pirate night was Tuesday (St Croix), lots of people dressed like pirates. They provided pirate bandanas. They had fireworks about 10:30 that night. Nice, but late for the kids.

*If you have walkie talkies, bring them. I noticed lots of people with them and it seemed like a great idea.

*If you are flying, use the Disney transportation. They totally took care of the luggage. And provided the return luggage tags on the last night. I used online check in, and had my luggage out by 10 pm on Friday night. The next time I saw my luggage, was at my final destination airport. You will pay for your bags after you exit the ship but before you board the buses to take you to the airport.

*I was concerned about the weight of my bags (I didnt want to overpack my bags), but if you call Guest Services, they will bring a scale to you to make sure the bag weight is acceptable to you.

*We didn't book a tour in St Croix, but the beach to the left of the boat is nice.

*The Atlantis submarine tour in St Thomas was great. We booked the 9:40 am tour, and was back by 12:30.

*My return flight was at 11:55 am. I left the boat by 8 am, was at the airport by 9 am. There was plenty of time to make a 11 am flight (Disney recommends at later than 12:30 flight....)

Enjoy!!

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Yes there is but I think they would consider it advertising for a private business if i listed the place, which is against the rules here.

Please e-mail me and I will give you the information

 

sixtoedfrog@yahoo.com Please put something on the subject line, like gifts or DCL so I will open it. I dont open anything that I dont recognise.

 

Kathy

 

This would be OK with us.

We allow mentions of private businesses in response to real requests for information. Travel agents excepted.

It would be better is it was on a new thread.

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Wow, thanks for all the suggestions/tips....here's one I didn't read....do you suggest brining alcohol and bottled water in your suitcase? Also, are the rooms real small?

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Wow, thanks for all the suggestions/tips....here's one I didn't read....do you suggest brining alcohol and bottled water in your suitcase? Also, are the rooms real small?

 

 

Do NOT pack water or alcohol in your checked suitcases or I guarantee they will be broken and all over your clothes. Put them in you carry on luggage and you'll be fine:)

 

Different category rooms are different sizes.

But compared to other lines DCL does have more square footage per room.

We have always had enough room and I have been in an inside room, ocean view and all 3 verandahs rooms. I tend to feel a bit closed in sometimes but I had NO trouble on DCL. Plenty of drawers for storage too.

 

Of course you'll find your not in the room accept to change for dinner and to sleep, unless you have a child who needs to nap. So the room really doesnt make any difference to many people.

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Thanks x4.....I was thinking more for the storage of luggage....also, do you suggest decorating the door. I've seen posts about magnets? Do you buy them, make them? any info would be great!

 

 

There is a large closet to hang clothes and beneath the clothes you can put suitcases. We had 2 large ones in there. On the other side by the safe you can put a small suitcase. If they are not too large they will slide under the bed too.

 

Decorating the doors is a lot of fun. every cruise we walk every deck to see every door, just to look for door magnets. They are so much fun to see, plus late at night when your tired its much easier to find your room. If you have kids, they also will find your room easier.

 

Plus it is really alot of fun to do.

I buy magnetic sheets to make mine. DCL will allow magnets only . You arnt allowed to attach them any other way to the door due to damage it could cause.

Some places sell the magnetic paper in a roll, that doesn like to lay flat and is more diffeicult to work with, so dotn buy it unless your experienced working with it.

Just get a package of the sheets. They are the same size as a sheet of paper and you find them usually with the speciality computer paper, Like forms for making cards, business cards, iron on transfer etc... I think there are 5 pages per pack and will cost about $11.00 depending on where you get them.

 

I have found them at some Walmarts, not all. Stpales and Michaels crafts store. You might even google search on line and find them that way too.

 

Then you have 2 good easy options to make them.

since they come the same size as paper you can print off a picture from your computer and they look professional.

 

here is a site for a few that work for that size, you have to save them to your documents and print from there.

 

http://s205.photobucket.com/albums/bb317/rumblytumbly_bucket/Blanks/

There are hundreds to choose from if you keep your eyes open. Some of these have blank places where if you have a paint program you can write a message on them too. Or just buy letters that are stickers and put on the signs.

 

You can also look in craft stores orscrapbook stores at stickers and make up your own design and stick them on the magnetic sheet to amke a sign. I have done it many times. They have tons of Disney stickers, tropical stickers, even some with the names of some of the islands you go to.

 

Just lay it all out before applying the stickers because there is NO fixing after that. There are some 3D stickers that really look great but they are more spendy.

Kids and grandkids love to use the stickers to make their own signs too. Your door will hold 4 or 5 signs if you place them carefully or change to a new one each day.

 

I made oen for Pirste night and put it out on that day, one for Castaway Cay and put it out the night before we arrived there etc..

 

Some people will have a Happy Birthday or Anniversary message on them too.

 

Remember there is NO right or wrong. Just make it any way you like and have FUN with it!!

 

If you want i will post photos of a few signs, I think I still have some on my laptop.

 

Kathy

Edited by mom x4,grandma x4

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Here is some that were printed off the computer and I added writing.

 

 

DSC03445-1.jpg

 

 

 

DSC03444-1.jpg

 

 

 

DSC03443-1.jpg

 

 

I will have to look for the ones made from stickers. I dont seem to see them right now but I will look later and if i find them I will post them too.

 

 

Another fun thing to you, especially if you have kids but I do it for myself is to make a countdown chain to hang in the house.

 

I cut loops from plain old construction paper and wrote the numbers counting down to how many days before we cruise.

I add disney stickers on special days like birthdays and at the month and week m akrs to celebrate another week or months closer. Then the last day I have either a sticker of a plane and a cruise ship or a car full of luggage with Goofy driving it headed for the port.

 

either when I get up each morning or before i go to bed I will remove one link for each day. I am a gluten for punishment. I do them a year out and string it all over my place:) But its so exciting as it gets shorter and shorter.

 

kids love to make these. With my grandkids when it starts to get 3 months away one link (when theya re over) they take off and it sends them on a Pirate scavenget hunt. It leads them to a treasure map then They get eyepatches, bandanas, pirtae candy, what ever i can find and they save non edible things for the cruise.

Also we do a tropical beach party hunt for new beach clothes (mom helps) sunglasses, suntan lotion, disney themed hair brushes and barettes, disney pens to write postcards with on the ship. just what ever you want.

 

That helps to pass the time, and it keeps the excitement at full speed ahead too.

 

If you havnt already done it go to the DCL website and order the free DVD and have a Disney movie night. watch your favorite Disney movie and then surprize them with the new DVD.

 

Kathy

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Thanks again kathy...we are going on the Disney Wonder 4 day cruise June 7th!

 

 

I dont know what you like to do but here are my experiences at Nassau.

First dont be put off by the old buildings and run down look of the port area, there is plenty of great stuff to see and do there.

be aware as you go through the port security building there will be a few people asking if they can braid your hairs or if you need a taxi, just say No thanks and keep walking. Many are upset by this but it is just their way to make a living.

 

Never have these people braid your hair. Have it done on the ship or Castaway Cay. I have seen the ladies at Nassau do someones hair, then use the same comb on the next person without washing it out. Plus they throw all the combs in their pockets with others that have been used already. Yucky!! The ship is sanitary.

 

Ok the buggies are often kinda shaggy looking but it really is fun to take a horse and carriage ride there. You cant miss them. As you walk to the first road on the sidewalk they are on your left. They charge by how long you want to ride. You dicker back and forth and will average 15 to 20 dollars per person for about a 30 minute narrated tour. Traffic is loud in some parts and makes it hard to hear but this is something you normally dont expeirence.

I always look for things I dont get to do at home.

 

Also, everyone will talk about the straw market which is under a big white canvas and can be spotted from deck 10 on the hsip. Again when you walk to the first road, turn right and walk down about 4 blocks, you cant miss it. Be warned this place is crowded, small rows and everyone says they have the best deal. But if you like to dicker prices, this is the place to go. If you buys clothing, check it over carefully, i have seen a few open seams, but for the most part it is good stuff. They sell things made from hand carved wood that I love. Its the far right as you face it. Usually the man is there carving for you to see and sometimes a painter is there too. Fascinating to watch them work.

 

If you go out the back of the straw market and walk 2 blocks up you will see a big purple building. That is the pirate museum. It is a great museum and allow an hour to see it all. You buy admission tickets in the gift shop. Last time we went it was $12 per adult, and $7 per child.

 

If you want to just shop as you exit the back of the straw market, turn left and you will have blocks and blocks of stores and look down side streets too. Many cheap small stores there and there are 2 other open air markets if you watch for them. If you go to Atlantis side, it gets very expensive for souvenirs.

 

Also the 2 hour historical city tour was great, not boring at all, I was surprized. we went in a 10 person van, our driver was great and knew everything about his country. We saw 2 forts, one was a guided tour, Queen Annes staircase, a couple of historical houses you cant go in.

 

Plus each place had people selling souvenirs too.

 

We did the glass bottom boat excursion and didnt see a darn thing.:(

Plus the boat was dirty and the jar the free punch was in looked gross. It may of changed now, I dont know. I do realize there is no guarantee you will see any fish on this type of excursion but that is what you pay for. Plus it was too windy to go out to see the ship wreck. So I give a thumbs down to this one, although others have seen oodles of fish.

 

The Harbour tour is a relaxing scenic boat ride out the harbour and you see lots of famous peoples homes and yachts. They tell you whose houses they are and then you get to feed some fish at the turn around point. This is not exciting but if you just want an easy quiet boat ride it was nice and I enjoyed taking photos of some of the houses . The guides were great.

 

Atlantis aquarium is awesome!!! I dont usually like aquariums but this one is an A+ in my book. The tours do move fast but you can go back on your own after its over and really go at your leisure. The windows are almost floor to ceiling so kids can easily see. The these is great .

Part of this excursion takes you outside to see more large fish under a small eating area. There are a few steps there, so if you have a stroller make sure it can be easily folded up, like an unbrella style.

Afterwards take time to explore the hotel lobby area or the casino.

 

The huge statues are great photo ops and some of the huge chandeliers of blown glass cost 1 million each make beautiful photos.

I will warn you the snack bar there is very expensive!!

 

There is a beach within walking distance of there too. If you want to stay longer than your tour bus its no problem to grab a taxi to get back to the ship. Its very close. They usually have buses running every 30 minutes most of the day, or close to it. Also if you walk down to the harbour from Atlantis you can get a water taxi for $11 that lets you off right next to the port. We have done that many times too.

 

I advise you take a bottle of water for each person from the ship. They sell them ice cold as you exit the ship. There are NO water fountains anywhere. water is precious there and very expensive to buy.

 

Also take in your purse a travel size, toilet paper, seat cover and hand sanitizer. many times the bathrooms are out of supplies and no soap or towels. Plus many have an attendant if you tip them you get some toilet paper:D Not all bathrooms but a few are like that.

 

The bathrooms in the upstairs of the port building are usually pretty clean, the one in the pirate museum is ok too. Of course Atlantis is spotless.

But the public restrooms you see signs for are NOT up to our standards.

Or you could get a cork and not have to worry about it. Ha Ha!! Sorry I couldnt resisit!! Many times its just a porta potty.

 

I havnt done the Ardasta (spelling) gardens yet. It rained us out but people say it is very nice.

I havnt done the snorkeling there, my daughter and her family did it and said it was good, not spectacular but worth the money.

You see more snorkeling at Castaway Cay in her opinion.

 

Thats all i can think of for Nassau for now. As you can tell I have been there many times.

 

Kathy

Edited by mom x4,grandma x4

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Sorry no soda water that i've seen. You might ask your waiter if they have any in the restaurant? Its not on the menu but it cant hurt to ask. I know they have ginger ale if requested for upset stomach. Some people use soda water for stomach acid too, so maybe they have it?

 

Also there is Preludes by the Walt Disney theater where they sell snacks at show time. They sell cans a pop, you could ask them too. It is all coke products on board.

 

You can bring your own in your carryon bags, they wont say anything. many people bring Pepsi because they dont like coke. Just DONT put in checked luggage, keep in carry on or it will get broken and make a mess.

 

I know if your flying you cant bring that much liquid but they might have it at one of the eateries at OIA. If your spending the night before you can probably find a store close by and get some too.

 

 

Kathy

Edited by mom x4,grandma x4

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I have seen the issue pop up several times in threads, so I figured Id post this. This is the link to the US Passports Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative regarding travel on cruises etc. Please keep inmind this change on a fairly regular basis, so next year there could be something different.

 

WHTI

 

 

Heres a printed version of what is there regarding children since that appears to be the number one issue lately.

 

LAND AND SEA TRAVEL

The following summarizes information available on the Department of Homeland Security’s website.

  • CURRENTLY:
    All U.S. citizens must show proof of identity and proof of U.S. citizenship when entering the United States from Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and the countries of the Caribbean by land or sea.
     
    Acceptable documents include: U.S. Passport Book, U.S. Passport Card, or other document approved by the Department of Homeland Security.
     
    U.S. citizens who do not have a single document verifying identity and citizenship must present both an identification and citizenship document; for example, a driver’s license and a copy of a birth certificate or naturalization certificate.
  • LATER:
    On June 1, 2009, the U.S. government will implement the full requirements of the land and sea phase of WHTI. The proposed rules require most U.S. citizens entering the United States at sea or land ports of entry to have a passport, passport card, or other travel document approved by the Department of Homeland Security.
    • CHILDREN: U.S. citizen children under the age of 16 will be able to present the original or copy of their birth certificate, or other proof of U.S. citizenship such as a naturalization certificate or citizenship card.
       
      Groups of U.S. citizen children ages 16 through 18, when traveling with a school or religious group, social organization, or sports team, will be able to enter under adult supervision with originals or copies of their birth certificates or other proof of citizenship. See the Department of Homeland Security's GetYouHome.gov for more information on the changing travel requirements.

 

 

U.S. PASSPORT AND WHTI COMPLIANT DOCUMENTS:

 

U.S. Passport: U.S. citizens may present a valid U.S. passport when traveling via air, land or sea between the U.S. and the aforementioned Western Hemisphere countries.

The U.S. Passport Card: We began production of the U.S. Passport Card on July 14, 2008. The passport card is only valid for re-entry into the United States at land border crossings and sea ports-of-entry from Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean region, and Bermuda.

WHTI-Compliant Travel Documents for U.S. citizen travel via land or sea, as of January 31, 2008:

Trusted Traveler Cards (NEXUS, SENTRI, or FAST)

State Issued Enhanced Driver's License (when available)

Enhanced Tribal Cards (when available)

U.S. Military Identification with Military Travel Orders

U.S. Merchant Mariner Document when traveling in conjunction with official maritime business

Native American Tribal Photo Identification Card

Form I-872 American Indian Card

Edited by truck1

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Just to add to the above statement, after June 1st, the birth certificate rule applies to childeren under 16 only, on closed loop cruises.( A cruise that leaves and returns to a US port) If at all possible, the easier document to carry would be a passport, since the rule applies to cruises only. If you want to travel to say Europe for a European Disney cruies, youll need one anyway. Also, if you have an issue in any foreign port, youll need one to board a flight home.

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  • DO NOT book Dinner and Brunch at Palo's on the same day. The Brunch is so rich, tasty, rich and tasty that you will want a light dinner. Gotta eat the chicken parm. The Brunch is outstanding! The Dinner is also a winner!

 

But if that's the only way you'll be able to do both, GO FOR IT! We did! Thought we'd explode... but it was worth it! We spent about 5 or 6 total hours in Palo that day!

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For those of us that need our cell phones, you must remember to put it in Airplane mode before you turn it off. Otherwise if you get texts or get a lot of voice messages from friends and family, you will see charges. Check with your wireless company to get more information.

 

My friend did that and found out that with her I Phone, she can take her sim card out and do a few things without charges.

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