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Old 12-28-2012, 01:25 AM   #1
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Dreams Unlimited vs. Small World Vacation

Hi there- we are looking to get the best rate possible on our cruise, and have considered quotes through Dreams Unlimited, Small World Vacations and Costco. What experience do you have with any of these agencies? All quotes are relatively the exact same with the same offerings, so I'm wondering how to choose on (literally two of them have the exact same quote & OBC offerings). Is OBC negotiable? Will TAs add on upgrades or extra OBC for booking with them over another one to secure business? I typically do my own bookings, but was considering a travel agent this time around.

Thanks for any info you can offer!
DCL: Disney Magic - Eastern Carribbean- 2001; HAL Oosterdam - Mexican Riviera - 2011; Disney Wonder - Mexican Riviera - 2012; Disney Magic - Western Carribbean - 2013

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Old 12-28-2012, 01:32 AM   #2
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DCL does not allow one agency to undercut another--the price is the same. It is the service aspect that differs.

With the amount of OBC being offered these days, the agencies don't have much wiggle room. It's not very reasonable to expect someone to throw an extra OBC your way to secure the business as they are already stretching it pretty thin.

Costco gives a very generous gift card AFTER the cruise. Many other agencies give an OBC. The OBC will be less than the dollar value of the gift card, but remember that Costo makes money off the items purchased with the card. When an agency gives an OBC, that is money that they are paying back to DCL in order to credit your account.
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Old 12-28-2012, 07:56 AM   #3
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I just tried a TA for our next cruise. I did not select DU because all contact with them is by email. I like the fact that the other company has a phone and you can talk to them. We have not required any extra attention from them, but I just like the peace of mind to having someone to call if I have a problem. I do not like waiting on an email.
Carnival Holiday-1992,NCL Norway-1996,Carnival Ecstasy-1998,Carnival Tropicale-1999,RCCL Voyager of the Seas-2001,RCCL Mariner of the Seas- 2004,HAL Zuiderdam-2004,HAL Westerdam-February 2007,Disney Magic-April 2007.Carnival Liberty-May 2008,DCL Fantasy- May 2012, CCL Freedom-Aug 2012, DCL Fantasy April 2013,NCL Jewel-Aug 2014, DCL Wonder Sept. 2014, CCL Liberty Oct 2014, Nov 2014 (B2B) RCCL Enchantment Nov 2014, CCL Liberty Nov-Dec 14 (B2B) CCL Glory Jan 15
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:33 AM   #4
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I just booked a second cruise though Small World. My TA is Anne Cook and I LOVE her. She is great. Really prompt about responding, she got me the exact room I wanted and she calls back promptly. I wish I had used her to book our cruise in April. (I mistakingly just booked that myself though Disney). I tried DU but I was less impressed. I have never used Costco to book a cruise but a few years ago when we lived on the West Coast I used them for a trip to DL. They were fine and professional as well. Good luck.

(Me and DH), (DD12), (DS11), (DS7),(DD7) &
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:36 AM   #5
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We are using dreams unlimited and have been very happy with them so far. Our agent gets back to us very quickly, even on weekends and off times with any questions we have, and has been very good about our date switching!
me and DH DD10, DD8, DD6 Thanks Kook!
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:38 AM   #6
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I am using Small World, they have been amazing and prompt. I have never tried DU though. My TA through Small World has sail numerous times and gave me more info than I thought possible, any question I asked she knew the answer to from her own experiences.
2001 - AS Sports
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:44 AM   #7
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I have experience with Lisa Reese at

she is absolutely amazing. She assisted us with every small detail and was constantly available to us. LOVE her.
03' AllStar Movies
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'10 POR took our niece Patience with us!
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:46 AM   #8
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I have never used DU or Small World, but both have great reputations. I use MouseFan travel. Great service via phone and/or email.

As someone else said, price of the cruise is going to be the same it just depends on if the TA offers an OBC or not.
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:49 AM   #9
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The Costco cash card we get after the cruise is more than double any OBC. Since DCL removed the discount from booking a suite onboard there is no reason to book one onboard.

2015 and 2016 Aulani so no cruises on these years!

02/11/2004 Wonder Cabin 8532 - 4 Night Bahamas
02/03/2005 Wonder Cabin 8532 - 3 Day WDW and 4 Night Bahamas
02/04/2006 Magic Cabin 8532 - 7 Night Eastern
02/01/2007 Wonder Cabin 8532 - 4 Night Bahamas
02/04/2007 Wonder Cabin 8532 - 3 Night Bahamas
02/08/2008 Magic Cabin 8532 - 7 Night Eastern
02/07/2009 Magic Cabin 8532 - 7 Night Western
02/07/2010 Wonder Cabin 8532 - 4 Night Bahamas
02/27/2011 Dream Cabin 12506- & Cabana #3 Inaugural 4Night Bahamas
03/03/2011 Dream Cabin 12506- Missed CC - Inaugural 3 Night Bahamas
04/21/2012 Fantasy Cabin 12506 & Cabana #4- Inaugural 7 Night Eastern
04/20/2013 WDW Poly & Fantasy Cabin 12506 & Cabana 4- 7 Night Eastern
03/08/2014 WDW Poly & Fantasy Cabin 12506& Cabana 3- 7 Night Eastern
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:13 PM   #10
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I booked through Small World Vacations and had a great experience!
Momma DD DS =

Disney Magic Western Caribbean 2013
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:28 PM   #11
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Another vote for Small World; we've used them for several cruises (Steph) and always had great service.
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:58 PM   #12
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Please, please, please, remember to use the full URL of the TA agency you post. It is the only way the board filter can do its job to see if the agency you post is allowed to be posted on this board.

Thank you.

31 DCL Cruises and Counting!
Disney Magic - 19 times - Official Maiden Voyage July 30, 1998, Re-imagined Magic October 27, 2013
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:04 PM   #13
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I used Kathy at She's been great! Super fast response and very easy to work with!

We also got a nice OBC!
Disney Dream 2013 ~ Wilderness Lodge/All Star Movies 2011 ~ Animal Kingdom Lodge/Coronado Springs 2010 ~ Hard Rock Hotel 2008
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:26 PM   #14
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Mary @ helped me remendously!
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:46 PM   #15
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We have used Dreams Unlimited many, many times and our agent, Merrie Thomas, is the best! She answers emails at night and on weekends and finds things out for you if she doesn't know off hand (silly things- like "is the hair dryer on the wall in the bathroom or in a drawer?") Also, we've gotten OBC both times we've booked cruises with them and even a complimentary bottle of champagne on our first cruise. Also fabulous for WDW trips. If a lower room-only rate is released, they will credit your reservation.
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