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mruhaak
01-07-2006, 09:55 AM
Hi-
This was our first cruise with Disney. I have cruised once before with Carnival and last year we cruised a 5 day on RCCL Voyager of the Seas. We were traveling with our 2.5DS, my DH's 85 yo grandmother and my mother. Neither of them had cruised before. I am also 17 weeks pregant. Whew!
We had a good time, but it was a little complicated by traveling with the crew we were traveling with.

With that said I am just going to review the cruise itself. I was VERY impressed with the Disney service. It was far and above those I experienced on the other two lines. They were just so much more friendlier. And they waited on you hand and foot...even at the buffets. On the other lines you get the food yourself, on Disney they serve it to you. Very impressive. The food itself was good. I have no complaints! The wait service was wonderful!

I was also impressed with the emphasis on cleanliness and avoiding the spread of illness on board. Our stateroom attendant was the friendliest I've had! Our state room Cat. 9 on Level 2 (2584) was great and I was SO glad we had the window because with a toddler we spent a lot more time in the room than I have on past cruises.

I only got to see two of the shows, Disney Dreams and Hercules. I loved Disney Dreams and nearly cried at the end (I am pregnant after all.) Hercules was ok... The ladies I was with have hearing problems and Hercules was a little loud for them.

The weather was great. Castaway Cay was a beautful day spent at the beach. Our son loved swimming, the water was cold, but after you stood in the sun for a little while it felt great!

Nassau I was not that excited about. Wouldn't be in a hurry to go back. We did not take an excursion, just checked out the shops. I really liked Cozumel last year, but this was dirtier and not as good of shopping. (That I saw.)

Our son 2.5, did not do well in Flounders. I have to agree with previous posters that it is too babyish and that there is a gap there for children 1 1/2 -3 who are not potty trained. There is no where for them to be. This is unusual for our son, he is very social and goes to daycare.

I definitely want to take another Disney cruise, but will probably wait until our children are old enough this time. So think I will wait until the youngest will be 3. Regardless of all the complications that we brought to the trip it was still very impressive! Very magical!! I would recommend it to any family with children. I might not recommend it to single adults however, unless they are huge Disney fans then yes by all means!!!

ripvanwinkle
01-07-2006, 11:28 AM
sounds like you had a great time. Thanks for sharing the trip details. :)

Tarabra
01-07-2006, 03:01 PM
Hey, I've been waiting to hear from you! Sounds like you were able to have a good time. I know in '04 my friend's mom and her 2 friend's were with us. They sort of put a damper on Cozumel for us. I thought our friends and my dh and I would rent a cheap and hit the beaches and bars, well. The 'ladies' didn't like that idea and instead of saying , 'just do what you want' they made us feel a little guilty. But still had fun. You'll have to fill us in a little more once you get settled.

mruhaak
01-09-2006, 09:46 AM
I was just so impressed with Disney as far as the service and entertainment for the kids (and big kids.) We had fun at the Pirate Night Dinner and both the Grandma's donned the bandanas too!

The Sail Away Party was really fun! Wish we would have been on Deck 10 instead of Deck 9 so we could watch as we left better. But the Grandma's had already gotten comfortable on Deck 9 and it seemed like too much to move them. DH was down in the crowd with DS on his shoulders dancing around. I got some great pictures/video of this.

I'm so glad we got upgraded to cabin with the porthole!

I have decided that we will wait unil our youngest (which I am carrying now) is 3 or 4 and then go again. I also would like to do a longer trip, probably a 7 day. We have discussed doing a more traditional Orlando vacation in the interm.

My husband preferred Voyager of the Seas for the Adult stuff. We really didn't get to do much as my son was very "needy". I think it was all just a lot for him to take in what with the flights to Orlando, etc. etc. It was hard for me because he wanted me to carry him a lot and I'm just not up to a lot of carrying as it wears me out really fast. This was all complicated by caring for the "Grandmas" who were sometimes a little confused as to what was going on and where to go.

Our last day in Orlando we went to Disney MGM and Alex got to meet JoJo and Goliath. He kept hugging them over and over and we pretty much had to pull him away. It was really cute. We also saw the Christmas light Display there which was really neat!

tekmnky
01-11-2006, 11:38 AM
Glad you had a good time on the cruise! I was on the Mariner of the Seas on Monday and watched you sail out ahead of us. I just stood there at the railing watching the Wonder cruise past and WISHING I WAS ON THE WONDER instead of Mariner!:sad1: Can't wait for my next Disney cruise!

mruhaak
01-11-2006, 02:37 PM
We saw the Mariner! We stood by people who were asking about it. I told them we had been on Voyager a year ago and what it was like. I was totally impressed with Disney for families. My husband wants to do a Voyager-style ship again! He really liked the ship!

We took pictures of your ship sailing. If I could figure out how to post them I would. Did you have fun?

tekmnky
01-12-2006, 12:12 AM
We saw the Mariner! We stood by people who were asking about it. I told them we had been on Voyager a year ago and what it was like. I was totally impressed with Disney for families. My husband wants to do a Voyager-style ship again! He really liked the ship!

We took pictures of your ship sailing. If I could figure out how to post them I would. Did you have fun?

Yeah, it was fun (for the most part ;) )! We were on a quickie Western Caribbean. Ocho Rios, Jamaica was fun - I did the Original Canopy zip-line excursion, I had been really aching to do that. Grand Cayman was pretty, but when we left the Cayman Islands the weather started going downhill and the seas got a little sloppy. Tendering into Cozumel was a challenge and at 3:20 pm the Captain stopped allowing folks to go ashore 'cuz he wanted to limit the number of folks that had to be tendered back aboard. The trip back to Port Canaveral was rock 'n roll all the way back.

The ship is beautiful, but I hate the casino (I lost in there :rotfl2: )! Probably won't sail her again, though - think I'm sticking with DCL from here on out.

mruhaak
01-12-2006, 09:07 AM
Yes, we were off the Wonder before the weather turned bad later that week. We just spent a cool day at Disney MGM. Which didn't bother us because we're used to cool weather.

I remember it being pretty bumpy on our trip back from Cozumel last year too though. Does everyone have to tender to Cozumel now? I loved Cozumel and didn't care for Nassau at all.

tekmnky
01-12-2006, 02:40 PM
Does everyone have to tender to Cozumel now? I loved Cozumel and didn't care for Nassau at all.

Yeah, all the piers are in pieces, so all the ships are having to tender in until the hurricane damage to the piers can be repaired (and from the looks of things there, it's gonna be quite awhile before those piers are fixed).

I really didn't get a chance to do much in Cozumel except walk around the shopping district - the excursion I had booked was cancelled due to the weather/sea conditions (as were all water-going excursions, pretty much). As for Nassau, I've been there several times now so I usually just get off the ship to walk around a bit and then spend the rest of the day onboard.

mruhaak
01-12-2006, 02:48 PM
I am a huge margarita fan so that could be why I loved Cozumel...loved the food and drinks. And I was pregnant on the Wonder trip so no drinks for me
:sad1:

We walked around Nassau and did some shopping, but I enjoyed the shopping in Cozumel better. Of course I don't know what it's like since the hurricane.

At Nassau we ended up back on the ship and were able to take DS swimming and he also went down the Mickey slide at 2 1/2. I was pretty impressed! It was a fun afternoon anyway.

I don't think we went to any shows on Voyager except the Ice Skating Show which was really great. I really enjoyed the 2 Disney shows I was able to make it to. DS 2.5 slept through Hercules.

southjerseymom
01-12-2006, 08:27 PM
Curious if you could give me some feedback about how the "older" folks enjoyed the cruise. We are taking my 79yo Mom with us in Feb. My 3 and 5 yo are over the moon that MomMom is coming....I just wanted to know how your grandmother liked it - and whether you have any suggestions to make the trip easier. Thanks!

mruhaak
01-13-2006, 08:36 AM
I think she had a good time. She is 85 and walks with a cane. Sometimes her speed was an issue and she is very independent and doesn't want any help with anything. She has a hearing aid and I think the shows and sail-away party were little loud for her, but she just sat back from the action.

She had never been on a cruise before so she said she is so happy that we asked her to come along and it was an experience she thought she would never have. I think actually the part was the hardest on her was our experiences at the airports coming and going. Sometimes she got a little overwhelmed because she didn't understand what was going on and she was always the type of person who likes to be in control!

We were a little concerned about her during the lifeboat drill as we were on the side of the boat where the sun was shining and it was very hot. And she went really early so stood in the sun for a very long time. They were very strict about people standing in those lines and I thought they could have been a little more compassionate for an old lady standing in the sun.

Of course she always had to take the elevator. One thing I noticed from previous cruises was that you never had to wait for an elevator for too long. One thing that was fun- she donned a pirate bandana on pirate night and had a drink!

cruzincricketts
01-14-2006, 10:40 AM
I did this cruise back to back with the next 3 nter and am so glad we had good weather because it was really cold the next few nights.

Is Stacy Berry out there? I met her at breakfast CC day but lost the phone #. Thought it would be fun to meet in town to compare photos.

This was my first cruise with my 3 girls alone and Disney made it a great success! I felt sorry for DH joining us later and we had done everythin gand with good weather!

mruhaak
01-16-2006, 08:44 AM
I heard the weather was bad the cruise after us! I'm so glad we lucked out!

dawne577
01-17-2006, 10:00 PM
We, too, were on this cruise. It was our third on Disney.
Reactions:

Embarkation: Great, as usual. The new system is an improvement on the already good system.

Beach Blanket Buffet: Lunch menu seemed a let down. The fact that the staff had to portion out everything was not a plus. They weren't doing this to increase service--it was to avoid illness. The room across the hall from us was ill and one morning they had to clean up (using surgical masks and machines) in Parrot Cay because someone had gotten ill. Hopefully, this strategy kept everything under control.
They had to shift people from other jobs to help with the serving, and there was often a problem with communication.
The breakfast menu at Beach Blanket, on the other hand, struck us as being exceptionally good.

Waiters in Dining Room: Our waiters this time were definitely not as good as those we had on our previous trips.

Cleanliness of Ship: The walls in the hallways were dirty in many spots and there didn't seem to be as much maintenance going on as usual. Our room steward was efficient--but that's all.

Weather: Fantastic! Just as everyone has said.

Castaway Cay: The adult beach was fantastic! Almost no one there and the shallow water was warm and beautiful. On the downside, there was no lobster burgers! Come on Disney. Raising your prices and not sinking any money into building new ships--then cutting corners?

Palo: Almost no one was even close to being dressed up for dinner. Most of the guys were wearing kaki pants (generally no belt) and very casual shirts. The romance is gone.

mruhaak
01-18-2006, 01:09 PM
Beach Blanket Buffet: Lunch menu seemed a let down. The fact that the staff had to portion out everything was not a plus. They weren't doing this to increase service--it was to avoid illness. The room across the hall from us was ill and one morning they had to clean up (using surgical masks and machines) in Parrot Cay because someone had gotten ill. Hopefully, this strategy kept everything under control.
They had to shift people from other jobs to help with the serving, and there was often a problem with communication.
The breakfast menu at Beach Blanket, on the other hand, struck us as being exceptionally good.

Waiters in Dining Room: Our waiters this time were definitely not as good as those we had on our previous trips.

Cleanliness of Ship: The walls in the hallways were dirty in many spots and there didn't seem to be as much maintenance going on as usual. Our room steward was efficient--but that's all.

Weather: Fantastic! Just as everyone has said.



I guess I think the fact that they were going to such extremes to avoid illness WAS a plus! I didn't get sick nor did anyone in my party and am so glad not. Especially since I'm pregnant and we had a toddler and an elderly person with us.

I didn't notice dirty hallways. But I was pretty busy trying to keep up with my DH and chasing my 2.5DS most of the time so probably wouldn't have!

We had really good waiters (Boris & Kevin.)

The biggest plus over other cruiselines I've cruised with was disembarkation. Wow... you pretty much just walked off. Very very smooth. Getting on was nearly as easy. We barely had to wait in line. On our RCCL cruise last year we literally waited for a couple of hours. That would not have gone well with our toddler!

dawne577
01-18-2006, 07:31 PM
I
The biggest plus over other cruiselines I've cruised with was disembarkation. Wow... you pretty much just walked off. Very very smooth. Getting on was nearly as easy. We barely had to wait in line. On our RCCL cruise last year we literally waited for a couple of hours. That would not have gone well with our toddler!

Absolutely. They are tops in embarkation and debarkation. Plus, their sailaway parties are outstanding--especially compared to Princess.

The waiters are just a matter of chance. Not that ours were bad--but compared to the super ones we had before, they were a let down.

mruhaak
01-19-2006, 08:37 AM
Sort of makes you wonder why it has to be so long on other ships (embark/disembark) doesn't it?

But of course the ship we were on last time was much larger too...