February 1st, 2013 ~ 8 MAGICal days we can't wait for!!
To say my son & I are excited about this cruise is a ginormous, massive understatement. :hyper:
We had heard the rumors for years about a Disney ship coming right here to Galveston, but there are always crazy Disney-related rumors swirling around, you know? The day the rumor became official, we had lumps in our throats.
This will be our 5th journey on the Magic. Our last was several years ago, because both the cruise cost and especially airfare had just gone way above my sad little single parent budget. We've done Royal Caribbean since then (and are about to again) and love it as well, but nothing compares for us to the Magic. It's like an old friend to us, and I don't think we've ever been so excited about a trip. And the fact that we get a whole extra night on her is icing on the cake!! :goodvibes
We're in a secret porthole room this time, and I'm happy to have it, but I'm so used to a balcony... I'm hoping it doesn't drive me crazy to not have that. I love being out there late at night right before bed and early in the morning to help wake me up. But honestly, at this point, I think we would both bunk with the luggage just to be on that ship. :thumbsup2
So who else is with us?? Can't wait to chat! :banana:
(Gina) Gina (46), Tyler Dean (DS - 16) ~ Stateroom #7120 ~ Dining: Late ~ Celebrating TD's 17th birthday (2/24)
(JohnsPrincess) Lexi (32), John (37), Sebastian - DS (1) ~ Dining: Main ~ Celebrating Sebastian's 1-year birthday (2/1), and Lexi & John's 8th anniversary (2/9)
(sissy_ib) Amanda (30), Chris (30) ~ Celebrating 1 year anniversary
(AlaskanAbbott) Mike & Amber, Macylea (DD - 15), Mackenzie (DD - 8) ~ Stateroom #2079
Grandpa Mel, Caelan (DS - 17), James (DS - 15), Elijah (DS - turning 13) ~ Stateroom #2081
(onescrappymom) Jen (39), Jason (39), Reagan (9) and Maddie (2) ~ Stateroom #6608 ~ Celebrating 1st DCL cruise!
(MedicGoofy) Jenn (32) ~ Stateroom #7567 ~ Celebrating 1st DCL cruise!
(SkyCruiser) Jim & Brenda ~ Stateroom #2612
(CODisney) Carmen (25), Chris (26) ~ Celebrating 1st DCL cruise!
(Awaken) Pam & Richard with Michael (8) ~ First Disney cruise!!
I have added your thread to the cruise meet list :thumbsup2
Have a great cruise!
Hi Gina! We are already friends on Facebook! (Amanda Wentz) We just got off the Magic this morning, we are driving home now. (DH is driving, I'm catching up online :goodvibes) We did the eastern and got married a few days ago on St Thomas:lovestruc This was our first cruise and we loved it so much we booked for our first anniversary! We are in San Antonio so it's only a few hours drive for us to Galveston. My new BIL lives in Houston so we're hoping we can get him to drive us to the port and leave a car at his place. We had a Navagators veranda for the cruise we just got off but we booked an inside room for next time. We loved the balcony but the money saved will go a long way in paying for excursions and such! Plus it's just a quick elevator ride to deck 10 if I want to see anything!
Hi Amanda!! That is so stinkin' cool that we're already booked for the same cruise together! :banana: And congrats again on getting married!! St. Maarten is one of my favorite places... it must have been so beautiful to get married there!
So glad you enjoyed your first cruise... As you've already found it, it's addicting. LOL :goodvibes But won't it be so nice to save on the airfare next time and just be able to drive down?
What were your favorite things about the Magic??
On the way down we stopped to see my grandparents outside Tallahassee a few days, then WDW for 6 days, then the cruse. So getting there was not to bad. The 18 hour drive home however. :headache:
We looked at Alaska on the Wonder for later in 2013 but the airfare is what stopped us. The cruise itself was in the same price range, but at $350+ each in to Seattle and driving up or $550+ each into Vancouver plus an extra night in a hotel (no way I would fly in day of) it almost doubled the cost.
We are VERY excited about this cruise though. We only did an excursion at CC so for this next trip we are planing several. I want to see the Mayan ruins for sure. Maybe a dolphin swim as well.
What were my favorite thing about the Magic? Honestly I LOVED the movement of the ship at night. It was like being rocked to sleep. :laughing:
The shows were "Magical". We missed "Twice Charmed" because I fell asleep in the Rain Forest room! Another thing I enjoyed. But we loved "Dreams" and will be sure to catch "Twice Charmed" next time.
I liked how easy it was to get around. I knew where everything was by about day two. You can walk anywhere on the ship in 5 minutes! I don't have a reference for other ships but I loved how easy it was. The adults only programming was very nice as well. We enjoyed the wine tastings and I will be doing them again next trip and the piano at night in Sessions was just great. I wish I had gone down there more.
And my favorite thing was bingo. I won FIVE times! We only played 6 sessions! DH and I even won on the same card once! We went home ahead but I know my luck wont hold out. I need to budget for loosing next year!
Also the "Behind the Scenes" seminars. I got to meet Cathy Carver which was incredible. Plus I got a few great pins for answering questions correctly!
I looked in to doing Royal Caribbean out of Galveston and they are somewhat cheaper. But a few things are keeping us on DCL.
One, since we booked on board we do have a $200 OBC from Disney. This really helps make up the price difference.
Two, DCL is an 8 night not 7, also helping make up the difference.
Three, one RC itinerary goes to Jamaica which I have no interest in and the other only goes to two ports.
Four, the only "extras" RC has I would want to do, SCUBA in the pool and Zip Line, are not offered on the ship we would be on!
I have read many long time cruisers complaining about DCL doing the same ports year after year but they are all new to us! Even Key West is a new adventure for us.
Holy cow... better you than me, my friend! LOL I don't even like the commute to and from work every day -- No way could I drive to Florida and back!! Even the flight seems too long! When it's time for vacation, I want to BE there... and when it's time to come home, I just want to get home.
I looooooove the Rain Forest room!! Omg, those heated tile loungers are just to die for... especially with nothing but the sound of the fountain. :cloud9: I don't see how anyone could stay awake in there!! Lol. Definitely looking forward to that again!
I really couldn't care less about the ports, as long as it's the Caribbean, and Key West is a ginormous waste of a good sea day to me. :rolleyes: But I am HUGELY excited about going back to Costa Maya -- getting to tour the ruins at Chacchoben with David of Native Sons was pretty much the coolest thing I have ever gotten to see and do. But I am a total dork when it comes to that stuff, so... But my son didn't fall far from that tree, so we're both way excited about getting to go back there. :goodvibes
A $200 OBC definitely makes a big difference! And I agree with you -- the Jamaica itinerary holds zero appeal for me. But I'm not sure which one only goes to two ports -- we're going to Roatan, Cozumel, & Belize in a couple weeks. (insert wild I'm-so-ready-to-go-NOW dance here :yay: )
I can't wait -- DS & I are going to go down and welcome the Magic to Galveston in September (if it's not the middle of the night) and hopefully watch her first sailaway from there too. Just can't wait to see her docked there!! :woohoo:
We just got off the Wonder on Sunday, and it was WONDER-ful! Our first cruise ever, and now we're spoiled :) We do WDW every year, but we thought we would try a cruise, and now no one wants to do WDW next year so we booked the 2-1-2013 out of Galveston! Mainly because we wanted an extra day, and we hoped the flight would be shorter for us, we live in Alaska. Airfair right now is RIDICULOUS!! $650 pp, and we have 8 of us! I'm hoping it goes down at some point, right now airfare is more than our cruise! I don't know a thing about the ports, I've never been to any of them, so we are excited to find out what adventures await us. We did the zipline and dolphin swim in Puerta Vallarta, and parasailing in Cabo. My kids like to spend time in the ocean, that's thier favorite activity, but we deff want to see the Mayan ruins, and whatever else that's a "must-do"
my family is:
DS- James 14.5
DD- Macylea 14.5
Grandpa Mel (my dad who always travels with us)
I also have a son in college, who won't be with us, since we are paying enough for him to be in school, he doesn't need to take 8 of them off:lmao:
We are excited about Galveston too. This last trip we spent two days before the trip in Long Beach and had sooo much fun just playing on the beach. I'd like to find someplace very close to the beach to stay the day before, if possible.
Anyway, that's us! OH!! We did FE's this trip and LOVED it, I'm game again!!
I don't know enough about the area yet but I'm sure you will find plenty to do, beach and otherwise.
Welcome, Amber!! :wave:
Holy smokes, I can't imagine paying that kind of airfare for even myself, much less for 8 people!! I'm crossing my fingers for you that it comes down a LOT between now and then.
Is your son 17 now? My DS turns 16 in a couple of weeks, so he'll be almost 17 by next cruise. He was only turning-12 last time we were on the Magic, so he can't wait to check out the teen club and activities onboard!
We still have our FE's from last time, and can't wait to do that again this time. So fun!
If either of you needs info on Galveston over the next year, please don't hesitate to ask! :)
I am hoping that there will be some sales between now and then too, but either way, I'm going!!! I have been looking at the ports, and I think the kids are going to have a blast.
My son Caelan is 16, but will be 17 on March 2...so he will be less than a month from 18 on the boat. He had a great time on the Wonder. I was worried his age would make it not as much fun, but he found many things to enjoy. He spent some time at the Vibe, though he said that it's geared toward the younger teens, 14 and 15 year olds. (my 14 year olds LOVED it!!!) He also spent a lot of time just sunbathing. He had a CM let him swim in the adult pool, it was almost empty, and he looks like a 18 year old, so he was very happy to have a nice relaxing swim, in a pool not crowded with little kids. I think that the 16/17 year olds are probably the most forgotten on the ship, if they're the "older" kind of kids, which my son is. He had no desire to swim in the "kid stew", and wasn't technically old enough for the adult pool. Still, he said he wanted to do another cruise next year instead of going to WDW, so I guess he enjoyed it enough :). My 3rd son is more of a "young" teen, and I think he will enjoy the Vibe until he's 18 and they kick him out :lmao: so I think it depends on each kid.
Now that we understand the FE's, I am excited to do it again. My dad loved it too, and he plans on making personalized ones for the next cruise.
I figure that the airfare may be twice as much, but I have our FE made, all our Pirate Costumes, and formal wear bought. This next cruise should be a breeze:goodvibes
I just booked my trip last night for the 8 night on FEb 1/13. Am already counting down the days until we sail:banana:
List of people going : ME:cool1: I will be a solo cruising doing my second cruise ever and it being my first solo cruise ever!
I can't wait to hit the ports that are lined up. Have been to Cozumel before on a vaca and it's soooo beautiful. Key West and Costa Maya look amazing as well. Am also happy at an extra day at sea:)
Can't wait to get to know everyone and hopefully meet some people on the Magic:thumbsup2:thumbsup2
Hi Jenn! Welcome to the party! I can tell already that this is going to be a great group!! :woohoo:
Cruising solo on DCL is great fun -- it has been just my son and I for every cruise so far, and since I am only graced with his presence at dinner (because that's the rule!), I am solo the rest of the time. I always go to the singles/single parents/solo travelers get-togethers that they host, and have always had such a good time and met some great new friends. It's also a great way to get to know the cruise staff, and they do such an awesome job of working hard to include us solo types in whatever fun is going on. It has always felt like grownup summer camp to me. :cloud9:
Sorry to all that it is taking me so long to reply... We sail on Mariner of the Seas in less than two weeks (*dances wildly*) so I've been busy preparing for that. :banana:
I just can't wait for the Magic to finally get here... DS & I are going to definitely be there to welcome her and to watch her sail away for the first time from beautiful Galveston. I know it's in September, but I need to find out the exact dates!
Talk to y'all soon!
Welcome! Solo traqvel sounds fantastic, having 6 kids I never get to do anything alone...expect the bathroom, and even that's not always private:lmao:
And Gina, you have to let me know how your experience is with the RCL. I am seriously thinking about booking for 2014, by then we'll be down to 4 kids at home and they will be all be tweens and older. I'd love an honest comparison.
We were on Voyager in Feb. 2010, when my son was just turning 14, and he had an absolute BALL. He made a bunch of new friends in the teen club whom he still talks to, and we both really enjoyed the amenities of the ship. Here is my comparison:
RCI pros -
If you can snag one early enough, the corner aft balconies are HUGE. You could have a party out there. And the cabin is huge too! But you have to book way early. We have the same stateroom for this time on Mariner, and we booked the first week of January last year.
Way more pools and pool space, and a wonderful adult-only pool area.
The Promenade is SO cool! Like a really nice mall. And the Café Promenade is a really great place to get snacks day or night.
Lots of activities for older kids/teens – rock climbing wall, inline skating track, ice skating, mini golf.
RCI cons –(Really, I can’t think of too many!)
Sodas are extra – a pain when you’re used to just popping over to the drink station by the pool on DCL. Unlimited soda cards are available to buy.
DCL pros –
While I have met exceptional staff on both lines, DCL gets the slight edge here. I can’t even put my finger on it… just a Disney sort of difference, you know?
Fireworks at sea!
If you’re a huge Disney fan, as I think we all here are, there is just something… well, magical… about Pluto hopping in an elevator with you. Or turning a corner, and running into Cinderella. :goodvibes
The ships are so elegant and beautiful, like nothing else at sea. The Disney touches are even more delightful, because they’re so subtle.
The cruise staff is the best I have ever encountered on three cruise lines.
Rotational dining is so cool and different!
DCL does the best job of the lines I’ve been on at keeping the adult areas truly adult-only. Many times, at the adult hot tub under the stars at night, you’d never guess there was a kid onboard.
DCL cons –
Seriously, who was in charge of the swimming pools when the ships were designed??
Rotational dining can feel odd if you’re at, say, Parrot Cay on formal night.
Way, way too many kids. WAY too many. But it comes with the territory, and we get around a lot of it by sailing when all the kids whose uncool parents won’t let them miss are in school. :thumbsup2
Not as much for older kids to do.
Did I mention price?
Honestly, I would be totally happy with either RCI or DCL. But DCL gets the win simply because it’s a marriage of my two favorite things in the universe – cruising, and The Mouse. I get to be at sea, and I get to be surrounded by Disney touches that just make me smile from the inside out. :cloud9:
But they are both amazing vacations and premium lines, and I am so excited about both!!
If there’s anything specific you’d like me to compare between the two, just let me know!
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