25th Anniversary - 3 day Disney cruise!

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Stephen Orr, Apr 14, 2006.

  1. Stephen Orr

    Stephen Orr Screenwriter

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    My wife and I have hemmed and hawed around for the past few months about how to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary coming up next month. Finally, we took the plunge and set up to go on the 3-day Disney Caribbean cruise to Nassau and Castaway Cay. This will be our first cruise, ever.

    I hit the various boards and other sites where people post their good and bad experiences. Seems that overall, Disney gets generally high marks and an extraordinary return customer rate.

    This is the first time since our honeymoon (a delayed trip to DisneyWorld in 1983) that we been so excited about a getaway just to ourselves.

    Looking forward to hearing from fellow HTFers about your experiences with DCL.
     
  2. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    Did a 7 day cruise about 14 months ago, and had a great time. The ship is extraordinarily clean, well-kept, and there are always numerous things to do (and eat). And eat [​IMG]

    You can go, go, go or rest, rest, rest. Many cruise ships rely on gambling to while away the hours at sea. The closest Disney gets is Bingo (which still draws a crowd). My advice is to enjoy the ship (DCL ships are classic and beautiful, unlike most of what sets sail...modern cruise ships are missing the fundamental lines and craftmanship I found on the Disney ships), enjoy the sea, and eat. The ice cream bar and hot dog/burger place are ALWAYS open, and always free.
     
  3. Stephen Orr

    Stephen Orr Screenwriter

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    Thanks!

    We've booked our own flight reservations (and saved a ton of $), and still need to get from Orlando to Port Canaveral. I assume there are a lot of places that shuttle between the Orlando airport and the cruise ship area of PC. Any recommendations?
     
  4. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    When are you landing? The morning of, or night before?

    There are shuttles from several hotels to the ship, if you staying the night before. There are plenty of shuttle opportunities to get from MCO (Orlando airport) to PCAN, but depending on when you land, there might be a Disney shuttle right to the ship. If you are going MCO to a hotel, you might have to use one of the random shuttle services. There will be several, so comparison shop.
     
  5. Stephen Orr

    Stephen Orr Screenwriter

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    We're landing the night before, staying at the Best Western closest to the airport. I spoke to a Disney rep, who said their motorcoaches begin running at 10 a.m. If we use them, we want to get to PC as early as possible....
     
  6. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    Stephen,
    They exist but you pay out the nose for them. Usually $50-$75 each way. You are better off scheduling it thru the cruise line or your travel agent which still aren't cheap. We ended up renting a car and staying at a hotel in Port Canaveral who also gave us free parking for the time we were on our cruise. It was a Radisson in Port Canaveral.

    Be prepared though when you are on your cruise.

    They always want pictures.
    You get a bill when your cruise is done which includes the tips you have encountered throughout your trip.
    If you get seasick at all, be prepared and bring some dramamine. You can get some at the drug store. The ship has patches but they are uber expensive.
    You don't get any soft drinks on the ship unless you buy their coke card which run $20 or so.

    And try to research your excursions before you go. There are several sites with juicy information to read on it.
     
  7. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    I got a coke card. I recommend it. I believe Stephen is in (or was in) the Navy, so sea sickness might not affect you. It didn't bother me at all, but my family was affected pretty hard. As Shane stated, buy toiletries before getting on...the store is expensive for stuff like that.

    Once tyou get onto the ship, they'll be making the lists for the excursions at different locations. You'll be in a heck of a line the day you check in (so you want to check in as early as possible), so plan ahead to make sure you get to every list you want to be a part of.

    Do some research online before you go. That should help you and your wife determine what's most important.

    And I don't recommend filling the days up. Sometimes it's nice to just walk around the ship. That's still my favorite part, and it was free [​IMG]
     
  8. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    Don't be so sure about sea sickness not affecting someone. I know a few naval guys who have never seen the inside of a naval ship yet. In fact one of them is headed to Kuwait next month. He'll be flying though but he still won't see the inside of a naval ship. He's a landlocked sailor.
     
  9. Stephen Orr

    Stephen Orr Screenwriter

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    I spent much time on the Saratoga in the early 80's, and on the Eisenhower in the early 90s. I've also ridden all manner of smaller ship and boat, as well as aircraft, in my former job as a journalist for All Hands and Navy Marine Corps News.

    That said, I'm now a school teacher, and will be taking my Dramamine.

    We plan on spending most of day two on the ship when it's in Nassau.
     
  10. Stephen Orr

    Stephen Orr Screenwriter

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    It turns out we've already paid for the Disney transfer from the Orlando airport to the port and back, so all we have to do is give 'em our luggage on Thursday, and pick it back up Sunday. Leave the driving to Disney!

    We're also renting snorkling equipment all day in Castaway Cay, along with a bike and floats.

    There's a rumor that one of the ships from Pirates of the Caribbean may be docked there by the time we arrive. We'll see.

    We're skipping Palo this first time around, and enjoying the (later) dinner rotation at the other three sit-down restaurants. Late works for us, since we have no children with us, and I'd assume that most families would go for early dinners.
     
  11. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Really?? Wow, I would never leave the ice cream bar...

    Mmmmmm ice cream....

    Jay
     
  12. Stephen Orr

    Stephen Orr Screenwriter

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    Well, the ice cream and dessert bars out out for us. I'm diabetic, and my wife doesn't do wheat, sugar or flour. (Don't laugh, she's lost about 75 lbs in the past year and a half!) I suppose the cruise is kind of a reward...
     
  13. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    We did late dinners, and it was hard on the kids (went with both sisters and my parents...big crowd). The regular restaurants are fine, though our experience at Palo was uniquely special. Our "normal" waiter had a brother working at Palo, and he asked him to take care of us. And his brother did just that [​IMG] The regular restaurants are quite good as well.

    Seeing one of the ships from POTC would be awesome. Take a camera...you might get lucky [​IMG] Glad you worked out ground transportation.
     
  14. Jordan_E

    Jordan_E Cinematographer

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    A few years back, we went on a cruise and hit some bad weather...OMG, I never thought I would get sea sick, but it was terrible! Better to be prepared.
     

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