Written By – Dawn Gosdin
‘First things first, I’m a realist’ is playing in my head as I begin with my #1 important fact about DCL~ If you’re 21 or older, you can bring alcohol onboard as long as it fits in your carry-on bag (cannot exceed 22x14x9.) You are NOT allowed to drink your alcohol in public areas onboard, so drink it up in your cabin. If you want to bring your own champagne or wine to the dining room, they’ll charge you a corking fee. ($20) Hubby & I were fully loaded, in more ways than one, lol!
You are not required to have a passport if you’re a U.S. citizen & traveling a closed loop cruise (cruises that begin and end at the same port in the U.S.) However it would be wise to have one. If for any reason you need to fly home from a foreign port, it’s required.
You don’t have to book your Port Excursions through Disney at a premium. You can book them on your own for half the price, research peeps! The positive aspect of booking a Disney port excursion is “peace of mind” in knowing that IF the Disney port adventure runs later than planned, Disney will wait for you or they’ll arrange travel to the next port at their expense.
Until recently I had no idea what a “Fish Extender” was. Peeps would talk about them all the time on Disney forums and I’d just pretended I knew what they were talking about. So here it goes folks, don’t be in the dark like I was. Each of the Disney Cruise Line staterooms has a small silver fish or seahorse to the right or left of the door. Usually, it’s for the ship’s correspondence with you during your cruise, but those participating in a fish extender exchange hang a bag or special holder to the “fish” to serve as a mailbox. If you want to participate, you sign up (with Disney forums, not with DCL), provide your information and stateroom number, and make little goodies for each person or each cabin. I unfortunately missed the cutoff date on our cruise because of my late booking, but snagged a great rate on my room instead. Woot!
DCL is NOT totally all inclusive~ NOPE, your cruise fare includes a lot, but you’ll pay extra for a host of amenities. Alternative restaurants like Palo & Remy, specialty coffees and alcoholic beverages, shore excursions, spa treatments and gratuities.
Disney Cruise Line has a “cash-free” system on board the ship. When you arrive at the DCL terminal you will present a credit card or if you don’t want to give them a CC, give them cash or you can use both for your purchases, gratuities (if not prepaid) spa treatments, etc. If you applied cash & a credit card towards your onboard purchases. They will use all cash before charging your cc. They do this in increments of $350, once you reach that amount, they’ll retrieve it from your onboard credit.
Alcoholic beverages aboard most ships including Disney Cruise Line automatically charge an 18% gratuity included in the price of the drink. Don’t double tip, unless you feel their service was “to infinity & beyond” or you just like to give your money away & if that’s the case, send it my way, lol.
Seasickness~ Over-the-counter medication like Dramamine or Bonine will help. If you are very prone to seasickness, ask your doctor before you leave home for the Transdermal patch, available by prescription. Alternative remedies include ginger capsules and acupressure wristbands, available at most pharmacies. I’m usually prone to motion sickness, but I’ve never been seasick on a cruise ship, just sailboats-and I was a wee bit intoxicated, UGH☹
Parking at the port can be expensive, you can choose to park at a local Park & Cruise parking lot for half the price, I’ve done this at Port Canaveral on previous cruises & I had a nice experience. If you prefer to park at the port, here are the prices: 3-night cruise $60, 4-night cruise $75, 5-night cruise $90, 7-night cruise $120. If you want preferred parking it’ll cost you $20.00 extra, we did this on our recent cruise~ it’s gated and conveniently located by the DCL entrance.
Let’s be real, sometimes we want private adult-time & wish our own children would magically disappear~ especially other peeps children (sorry, but true). I have great news; adult exclusive areas actually exist on Disney Cruise Line. Activities such as; nightclubs, dining, pools & entertainment, for guests 18 & older. I foresee R&R in your future, ahhh!
Words associated with Cruise Lines
Embarkation~ board a ship or aircraft
Debarkation~ disembark a ship or aircraft.
Bow~ is the forward part of the hull of a ship or boat. Aka, the “pointy end” lol!
Port (referencing side of ship)~ the left-hand side of a vessel or aircraft, facing forward.
Forward~ toward the bow or front of a vessel or aircraft.
Starboard~ right-hand side of a ship or aircraft as one faces forward
Aft~ situated toward or at the stern or tail of a ship or boat.
Terminal~ a station with a public carrier, where passengers embark or disembark and where freight is received or discharged.
PORT~ city, town, or other place where ships load or unload.
DCL~ Disney Cruise Line
Midship~ area of the ship generally halfway between bow and stern along the length of the ship.
Muster Drill~ a safety drill run at the beginning of every cruise. Passengers are shown where to find their life vests, and where to assemble to prepare to enter their assigned lifeboats (muster station).
Tender~ a small boat used to get passengers ashore when a ship is at anchor instead of alongside a dock. Tenders are used regularly in islands with no dock facilities. Tenders often look like lifeboats.
Key to the World Card or Sail & Sign Card~ a magnetic stripe plastic card that works as your room key, boarding pass, identification card and onboard charge card during the cruise. For energy efficient ships like Disney Cruise Line, you also use to turn on lights in cabin.
Want more crazy articles from moi, don’t be afraid, visit my blog~ http://dawnsdorkydiary.com/ Have a magical day *O*