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-   -   First time cruiser... Alaska (http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3150910)

Jen1330 08-01-2013 04:20 PM

First time cruiser... Alaska
 
Hi everyone,

My fiancé and I are looking at doing the Disney Alaskan cruise in July 2014 for our honeymoon. Is there anything I should know about booking it? Are there certain times when tix may be cheaper? Any and all advice is welcome!

clten 08-01-2013 05:12 PM

Since you are looking for July of next year, my booking advice is the sooner the better. DCL is target marketed to families so most summer sailings fill without the need for promotions or specials. And as the ships fill, the price goes up. For summer sailings, the only specials that may come out are last minute deals to fill up remaining cabins (although Alaska being a special itinerary on one of the classic ships, it doesn't usually have that problem) and with it being your honeymoon, I know you aren't going to risk waiting until May 2014 to see if you can save a few hundred dollars!

Spwhoney 08-01-2013 11:41 PM

I agree, earlier the better. I don't know your room preference, but could not go to Alaska without a balcony. Yes it will be cold and windy, but it is amazing to sit on your balcony watching the scenery go by. Just amazing.

disneymath 08-01-2013 11:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Spwhoney (Post 49155727)
I agree, earlier the better. I don't know your room preference, but could not go to Alaska without a balcony. Yes it will be cold and windy, but it is amazing to sit on your balcony watching the scenery go by. Just amazing.

This is where the Navigator's verandahs - which are more closed in but still open air - are great. You get a bit more protection from the elements along with a more private feeling - and these are also the lowest category veranda type (cost the least).

DCL Alaska was our first ever cruise - loved the Nav. verandah!

sqektoy 08-02-2013 12:38 AM

We sailed the Alaskan June 3-10 2013 and booked on board for July 21-28 2014. The last 2 weeks in July were less expensive than the first 2 weeks BUT I can also tell you that the prices have already gone up for all of July Alaskan sailings since we booked. We had a Cat 7A Navigators verandah this year and booked the same for next. It was PERFECT for scenery viewing and wind control. Best. Vacation. Ever.

Seamama 08-02-2013 12:48 AM

thanks!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by disneymath (Post 49155778)
This is where the Navigator's verandahs - which are more closed in but still open air - are great. You get a bit more protection from the elements along with a more private feeling - and these are also the lowest category veranda type (cost the least).

DCL Alaska was our first ever cruise - loved the Nav. verandah!

Excellent tip- thanks! So are the views slightly obstructed but not really bad enough to be an issue?

disneymath 08-02-2013 12:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Seamama (Post 49156108)

Excellent tip- thanks! So are the views slightly obstructed but not really bad enough to be an issue?

Regular verandah has a rectangular opening across the whole veranda, the Nav has a large rounded rectangular open air window-like cut out. Hope the link below works.

http://land.allears.net/reviewpost/s...hp?product=303

Mackie Mouse 08-02-2013 01:13 PM

We cruised Alaska kidless this summer (don't have 'em yet, we're still pretty young!) and loved every moment of it. We did not cruise with a verandah - never have - and felt like we made excellent use of our budget by taking some lengthier/more expensive excursions. Be aware - the excursions in Alaska are pricey, but all are worth it. You can definitely save a bit of money by booking confidently and safely on your own (not through DCL), and honestly, if your budget allows either a verandah or some excursion splurges, I would do the latter. We stayed relatively far aft and had ample access to the "secret" area of deck 7, which was great. When we wanted to take in the views, our window was more than adequate, and it wasn't hard at all to venture out onto deck 4 to get some open air, either.

Happy to provide some advice about adult-only activities or honeymoon tips - we also took our honeymoon with DCL (Western Caribbean on the Magic) in 2009! Just ask away.

fredandkell 08-02-2013 05:01 PM

I will chime in and say that I've cruised Alaska (LOVED IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!). I would either go with an inside room or a balcony room. (Skip the oceanview room.)

Inside advantages: In Alaska, the sun goes down really, really late, and it comes up really, really, reeeeeaaaaaalllllllllllyyyy early. We had an oceanview room, and we'd wake up every day, like, Is it breakfast time yet? and look at the clock and it'd be 3 am. :crazy2: And it's cheaper, obviously.

Balcony advantages: You want to spend a lot of time on deck admiring the scenery, so I'd recommend one if you don't mind the extra light. With an ocean-view room, we were pressing our noses on the glass a lot and ended up going to the public decks anyway.

lisettemac 08-02-2013 05:44 PM

Interesting - we just sailed Alaska and had an outside stateroom and loved it! Our friends we were traveling with had a verandah and enjoyed it. I don't know that it's necessary, but it can be convenient especially on Tracy Arm day.

I wouldn't say don't get an outside stateroom because of the light - they have blackout curtains. I never had a problem with waking up early due to the light because I closed the curtains. :confused3

Seamama 08-02-2013 05:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by disneymath (Post 49156131)
Regular verandah has a rectangular opening across the whole veranda, the Nav has a large rounded rectangular open air window-like cut out. Hope the link below works.

http://land.allears.net/reviewpost/s...hp?product=303

Awesome, thanks so much for the explanation and link!

fredandkell 08-02-2013 08:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lisettemac (Post 49163209)
Interesting - we just sailed Alaska and had an outside stateroom and loved it! Our friends we were traveling with had a verandah and enjoyed it. I don't know that it's necessary, but it can be convenient especially on Tracy Arm day.

I wouldn't say don't get an outside stateroom because of the light - they have blackout curtains. I never had a problem with waking up early due to the light because I closed the curtains. :confused3

As did we...but the pesky light shone around them! :banana:

disneymath 08-02-2013 10:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Seamama (Post 49163253)

Awesome, thanks so much for the explanation and link!

No problem! Whatever you end up choosing, you'll have an amazing voyage!

CruznLexi 08-03-2013 01:44 AM

Stay at the Pan Pacific!

Jen1330 08-03-2013 04:46 AM

Thanks to everyone!! We just got back from a vacation to Europe (where he proposed!), so I'll be making plans for the wedding date on Monday. I guess as soon as I have a date, I'll book the cruise!

A couple other questions:
1. Can you use Disney gift cards to pay off the cruise?

2. How much is generally due at booking versus final payment?

3. Is it cheaper to make flight plans myself or do it through the Disney site when booking the cruise? Same for hotel accommodations?

Thanks for all your help!!


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