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Old 05-23-2013, 01:09 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 11

First time on Disney, first time with 18mo LO - questions and advice, please!

Brand new to these boards, migrated here from Cruise Critic after discovering that all the conversation for DCL seems to be here and not there!

My DW and I are experienced cruisers, having been on Carnival/HAL/RCCL in recent years, but are new to Disney. Decided to give it a try now that our DS Luke will be with us - he'll be 18 months when we cruise in October. Another reason we decided to take the plunge with DCL are the offers from Galveston on the Wonder - having a 7A for the three of us for $2,300 seemed like a deal that doesn't come around often. We're on the seven night Bahamas itinerary with Key West, CC, and Nassau - all places that none of us have ever been.

I'm doing my best to search around through the boards to find answers, but we definitely have some specific questions that I'd love some help with, especially for those of you who have traveled with kids under 2.

Other than the nursery and the splash zone, what good options will we find on the Wonder that will keep DS happy and entertained? He's a very spirited child who loves to be physically active and has a limited attention span even for kids his age. He's always on the go, but he also is a pretty happy go lucky kid who loves new places and checking out things he hasn't seen before, along with a love for being outside. Anyone out there with a child who has a similar personality, and what your experience was like?

I'm the type who has no problem with the idea of leaving DS in the nursery for an hour or two a day, but not sure if DW is on the same page. DS tends to have quite a bit of separation anxiety and a fear of strangers, and I'm hoping this improves over the next few months as he gets a little older. Do the Wave phones really work everywhere on the ship, and can we rely on them if we leave him at the nursery and staff needs to get in touch with us? From what I've read so far, it sounds like almost everyone has had a positive experience with the nursery. Anything we should be aware of or concerned about?

We live in Arizona, so there will be a two hour time change to Houston and a three hour change in the Bahamas. Right now, we're on late dining and waitlisted for main - I'm having a hard time deciding what would be best, since I don't know how DS will respond to the time change. Normally he eats dinner around 6 and is in bed at 8, so if he stays on that time main dining doesn't seem like a good idea. BUT, if his body doesn't adjust to the new time, maybe late dinner would be perfect for him?

We're planning to take the Disney shuttles to/from IAH/Galveston, and I know we won't need his car seat for that. What about hotel shuttles the night before, or anything in port? I hate to lug his car seat everywhere just for one quick hotel shuttle ride.

Palo brunch or Palo dinner? What kind of food is served for brunch?

Any recent Wonder cruisers happen to remember what draft beer is on tap? I know different bars serve different things, and each ship has different beers. We're both beer snobs!

How do kids our son's age seem to react to character appearances? He's freaked out with Santa and the Easter Bunny so far, but he'll be older by the cruise. And what does their tolerance seem to be for the live shows? He seems fascinated when singing/dancing is on our TV at home.

Any preferred dinner rotation on Wonder, since we'll be in one of the restaurants three times? Which of the main restaurants open for breakfast/lunch? Does one of them serve a buffet while another has a menu to order from?

Are DOTD's really only $3.95 if you buy the glass on the first day, and draft beer only around $4-5? Coming from Carnival, that seems like such a better price than what I've seen!

What are the best adult activities on the cruise, if we're only going to end up using the nursery occasionally and for two hours at most?

Right now we're a 7A guarantee - odds of being upgraded to a higher category? Any experience with upsells, which I've taken advantage of on other lines in the past?

Finally, what items are really important to bring along for our DS that we might not think about?

Thanks in advance to everyone for your help and knowledge! Glad to find this place and look forward to joining our cruise group here and learning more about DCL!
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