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Old 03-17-2011, 11:16 AM   #1
tjctoy
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Exclamation Disney Dream Review

We just completed a B2B, 4 day then a 3 day Disney Dream Cruise. We left March 6th for the first leg of our adventure. We arrived at Disney's Bay Lake Towers on March 4th for two nights in a 2 bedroom Magic Kingdom View Villa, needless to say we loved the view.

On March 4th at 9:30am we were picked up by Happy Limo [4 of us total] and we headed for the port. We arrived at the port at about 10:45am. It took us about 10 minutes to clear security and enter the terminal. It took no more then 10 more minutes for all of us to be checked in. There were 8 of us total, 4 seperate staterooms that varied from Outside stateroom with Large Port Window all the way up to Conceirge Level.

One thing everyone needs to be aware of is how Disney decideds who boards the ships first. Please understand that the old way of doing things is no longer applicable. Your boarding number is based on when you booked your trip, the earlier you book the earlier you board. Plantinum and Conceirge do not follow this formula. We meet people who arrived at the port at 9:10 and had number 35 for boarding. We received number 14 and boarded at about noon. Disney will work with people who are in a group and all have different boarding numbers. You now have no choice in getting the boarding picture taken because thats how they identify you for pictures later using the new picture system.

The rooms are listed as being ready at 1:30. We took are carry on luggage and went right to Cabbana's. To be honest this made the start on the cruise fantastic. To call this area a buffet is really unfair, food was great, area was large, food choices abundant, service was perfect. This is not your local buffet on a ship.

The rooms were ready and reminded us of the Disney Magic or Wonder. We had a room with a verandah, and to our suprise the verandah we had was a double sized version. 4 or more people could easily sit out there, we had 4 lounge chairs and table. A truely pleasant suprise. One of our party had the Family sized room with verandah, and that extra space they had was surprising, it added atleast 4 extra feet to the length of the room, and added 1 extra chair. Our other friends where in Conceirge which had the exact same size room as a family room but had many other amenities. The deck 13 deck area in Conceirge was amazing in my opinion, especially if you want silence for reading.

The Dream's size is remarkable, the feel of a new ship is hard to discribe. It smells like a new car you can't wait to drive. We had over 1250 children on the 4 day cruise and over 1000 on the 3 day, unless you were on deck you never would think that many children were onboard. I say Disney takes care of the kids better then anyone. This ship was bulit with them in mind from start to finish. I wanted to just go spend time looking at the kids area since they looked so cool. Deck 5 was a hopping deck with all the kid areas, the main theater and the movie theater, very easy to find your way around on this deck plus if you get lost any crew members would take you where you needed to go.

More to come in my next post, I will discuss all the restaurants and entertainment.

Tom
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:31 AM   #2
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Were you allowed to board with your conceirge friends? Were your reservations linked? Is that really true it goes by how long ago you booked? If so how long ago did you book for this cruise?
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:37 AM   #3
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One thing everyone needs to be aware of is how Disney decideds who boards the ships first. Please understand that the old way of doing things is no longer applicable. Your boarding number is based on when you booked your trip, the earlier you book the earlier you board. Plantinum and Conceirge do not follow this formula. We meet people who arrived at the port at 9:10 and had number 35 for boarding. We received number 14 and boarded at about noon. Disney will work with people who are in a group and all have different boarding numbers. You now have no choice in getting the boarding picture taken because thats how they identify you for pictures later using the new picture system.


Can anyone else confirm that this is true? When did you book your trip? Can you elaborate what you mean about the boarding picture? Thanks.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:42 AM   #4
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That is sort of crazy that they changed how Boarding numbers are assigned. Think about it...if you booked on opening day you might be preassigned to Boarding #3, but if you don't arrive at port until 1:30 it would be totally wasted! Plus, people who booked late could arrive at port at 10:00am, but be in the last boarding group! I think DCL will have some very restless people on their hands!
This does seem to go along with what I have read in other threads that there seems to be some odd things happening with boarding groups (one person getting a #4 and the person next to them getting #19).
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:42 AM   #5
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I hope this is true about the boarding process We booked back at the end of December for out May cruise
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:51 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbtrfly74 View Post
I hope this is true about the boarding process We booked back at the end of December for our May cruise
Booking 6 months out is not really early. Many people here on the DIS book Disney cruises over a year in advance. I booked my June 2012 cruise 21 month out (the week they became available). You get the best rates that way. My cruise is still 15 months away but it's already $800 more than when we booked.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:54 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbtrfly74 View Post
I hope this is true about the boarding process We booked back at the end of December for out May cruise
actually most people book more than a year in advance. We book 15 months out!


Thanks for the review!!
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:56 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbtrfly74 View Post
I hope this is true about the boarding process We booked back at the end of December for out May cruise
In which case you may be nowhere near the first few groups, unfortunately. We booked a year ago for our June 2011 cruise and the ship was already beginning to fill up.
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjctoy View Post
One thing everyone needs to be aware of is how Disney decideds who boards the ships first. Please understand that the old way of doing things is no longer applicable. Your boarding number is based on when you booked your trip, the earlier you book the earlier you board. Plantinum and Conceirge do not follow this formula. We meet people who arrived at the port at 9:10 and had number 35 for boarding. We received number 14 and boarded at about noon.
This is the first time I have read this. If this is accurate, why does DCL ask you to chose a port arrival time during the online check-in process?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tjctoy View Post
The rooms were ready and reminded us of the Disney Magic or Wonder. We had a room with a verandah, and to our suprise the verandah we had was a double sized version. 4 or more people could easily sit out there, we had 4 lounge chairs and table. A truely pleasant suprise.

What was your cabin number? Where was it on the ship?

Thanks!
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:19 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asreitzel View Post
That is sort of crazy that they changed how Boarding numbers are assigned. Think about it...if you booked on opening day you might be preassigned to Boarding #3, but if you don't arrive at port until 1:30 it would be totally wasted! Plus, people who booked late could arrive at port at 10:00am, but be in the last boarding group! I think DCL will have some very restless people on their hands!
This does seem to go along with what I have read in other threads that there seems to be some odd things happening with boarding groups (one person getting a #4 and the person next to them getting #19).


Will they really MAKE You wait if you booked later than someone that arrives at 1:30 and you arrived at 10:30????????
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjctoy View Post
We just completed a B2B, 4 day then a 3 day Disney Dream Cruise. We left March 6th for the first leg of our adventure. We arrived at Disney's Bay Lake Towers on March 4th for two nights in a 2 bedroom Magic Kingdom View Villa, needless to say we loved the view.

On March 4th at 9:30am we were picked up by Happy Limo [4 of us total] and we headed for the port. We arrived at the port at about 10:45am. It took us about 10 minutes to clear security and enter the terminal. It took no more then 10 more minutes for all of us to be checked in. There were 8 of us total, 4 seperate staterooms that varied from Outside stateroom with Large Port Window all the way up to Conceirge Level.

One thing everyone needs to be aware of is how Disney decideds who boards the ships first. Please understand that the old way of doing things is no longer applicable. Your boarding number is based on when you booked your trip, the earlier you book the earlier you board. Plantinum and Conceirge do not follow this formula. We meet people who arrived at the port at 9:10 and had number 35 for boarding. We received number 14 and boarded at about noon. Disney will work with people who are in a group and all have different boarding numbers. You now have no choice in getting the boarding picture taken because thats how they identify you for pictures later using the new picture system.

The rooms are listed as being ready at 1:30. We took are carry on luggage and went right to Cabbana's. To be honest this made the start on the cruise fantastic. To call this area a buffet is really unfair, food was great, area was large, food choices abundant, service was perfect. This is not your local buffet on a ship.

The rooms were ready and reminded us of the Disney Magic or Wonder. We had a room with a verandah, and to our suprise the verandah we had was a double sized version. 4 or more people could easily sit out there, we had 4 lounge chairs and table. A truely pleasant suprise. One of our party had the Family sized room with verandah, and that extra space they had was surprising, it added atleast 4 extra feet to the length of the room, and added 1 extra chair. Our other friends where in Conceirge which had the exact same size room as a family room but had many other amenities. The deck 13 deck area in Conceirge was amazing in my opinion, especially if you want silence for reading.

The Dream's size is remarkable, the feel of a new ship is hard to discribe. It smells like a new car you can't wait to drive. We had over 1250 children on the 4 day cruise and over 1000 on the 3 day, unless you were on deck you never would think that many children were onboard. I say Disney takes care of the kids better then anyone. This ship was bulit with them in mind from start to finish. I wanted to just go spend time looking at the kids area since they looked so cool. Deck 5 was a hopping deck with all the kid areas, the main theater and the movie theater, very easy to find your way around on this deck plus if you get lost any crew members would take you where you needed to go.

More to come in my next post, I will discuss all the restaurants and entertainment.

Tom

Thanks for the review How was the B2B process for you? I have been reading differing responses lately, where some people had only minimal waits (off the ship at 9:30, back on at 10:15, etc) and others didn't get back onboard until 11:45

I was really looking forward to that extra time on the ship before regular boarding starts and I hope that will still be the case.
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:33 PM   #12
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This seems fishy (the boarding process) are there any other recent cruisers out there who can share some insight about their experiences with boarding? Is there a link between the time the trip was booked and the boarding number?
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:42 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by edk35 View Post


Will they really MAKE You wait if you booked later than someone that arrives at 1:30 and you arrived at 10:30????????
They wouldn't make you wait until the 1:30 people arrived. They would move on calling the next Boarding groups. I'm just saying that in this case the low boarding number would be totally wasted on a late arrival.

However, if this is correct, someone could arrive at noon and board almost immediately (if they booked early and are in one of the early Boarding groups) while people who had been sitting there for hours would still be waiting.
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:42 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by aidtrismommy View Post
This seems fishy (the boarding process) are there any other recent cruisers out there who can share some insight about their experiences with boarding? Is there a link between the time the trip was booked and the boarding number?
Oh man. That will really stink if that's the case!
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Old 03-17-2011, 12:46 PM   #15
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The new boarding process seems ridiculous. I thought they were having a problem with crowding in the terminal. Isn't this going to make it worse?
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