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Old 12-29-2013, 11:02 AM   #1
Brewersprts
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DCL or WDW

So we've contemplated going on a Disney cruise line. We love disney and love the beach. Going for a 5 day/4 night cruise would equal out to about what we would pay for those 5 days at disney (considering that we're going 10 days which is what we would do normally).

My question is, you guys that love DCL, would you chose to be on board instead of at WDW?

It just seems to me that it would get boring pretty quick. I want to maximize my enjoyment while on vacation. The water is beautiful but sitting there looking at it to by would get old very quick, especially with 5 people in one cabin. Is there really enough activities to keep both the kids and adults preoccupied for the whole trip?

I so think that DCL has some really cool stuff going on. And it sure would be a lot less walking, less standing in lines, and we wouldn't have to spend all night trying to remember where the car is parked.
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:33 AM   #2
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My grandson is about as hyper as kids can be, but he prefers cruising to WDW. You don't just sit and stare at the water, unless that's what you want to do. The kids can attend activities in the kids clubs, or not, and/or watch a movie, and attend the award-winning live stage performances at night. The adults can have a spa day, or attend their own activities.

The 4-day cruises out of Port Canaveral stop at Castaway Cay, full of water/beach activities, and a beach barbeque.

The Dream and the Fantasy have the Aqua Duck; the Magic has the Aqua Dunk.

Have you seen the video of a DCL cruise?

When you priced the 4-day cruise, did you check out the price of connecting staterooms? Depending on the category, the two rooms may be cheaper than cramming everyone into one room, plus you'd have an extra bathroom and more space to spread out, and to put your stuff.
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:37 AM   #3
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We just did a 4 day and then 2 days at WDW. I love the cruise. It's all the magic and none of the hassles, no FP, no ADR, no mad scrambling for characters, waiting for a bus, standing in line.

The only line was for the AquaDuck and we just sat there all day at the pool and only jumped in line when it was like 10min or so.

The level of service is also far superior to anything at WDW. Now you pay $35 for a breakfast buffet with mediocre service and tables crammed together. We ate breakfast outside every morning at a leisurely pace.
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Old 12-29-2013, 12:01 PM   #4
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It really is a different kind of a vacation. As I tell everyone who asks me, a Disney Cruise lets you spend as little or as much time with your kids as you would like. We don't dump our kids at the kids club when they open and collect them when they close, but having those clubs lets us do beer tasting, or a spa treatment or just have a coffee with each other and know our kids are still having a blast.

We actually prefer to do things on the ship with the kids and they are typically the ones who tell us to go away. They love the kids clubs that much. So really, if you are looking for the opportunity to relax and still spend time with your kids DCL is perfect. No need for another vacation when you get home from your vacation like returning from WDW and waiting to take the kids to school so you can have a minute to yourself!
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Old 12-29-2013, 12:22 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stefanospops View Post
It really is a different kind of a vacation. As I tell everyone who asks me, a Disney Cruise lets you spend as little or as much time with your kids as you would like. We don't dump our kids at the kids club when they open and collect them when they close, but having those clubs lets us do beer tasting, or a spa treatment or just have a coffee with each other and know our kids are still having a blast.

We actually prefer to do things on the ship with the kids and they are typically the ones who tell us to go away. They love the kids clubs that much. So really, if you are looking for the opportunity to relax and still spend time with your kids DCL is perfect. No need for another vacation when you get home from your vacation like returning from WDW and waiting to take the kids to school so you can have a minute to yourself!
Yes agreed. When we get back from WDW we are always exhausted.

My son did NOT want to leave the club. We would keep checking back and then sometimes we forced him to come with us for fun
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Old 12-29-2013, 02:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewersprts View Post
So we've contemplated going on a Disney cruise line. We love disney and love the beach. Going for a 5 day/4 night cruise would equal out to about what we would pay for those 5 days at disney (considering that we're going 10 days which is what we would do normally). My question is, you guys that love DCL, would you chose to be on board instead of at WDW? It just seems to me that it would get boring pretty quick. I want to maximize my enjoyment while on vacation. The water is beautiful but sitting there looking at it to by would get old very quick, especially with 5 people in one cabin. Is there really enough activities to keep both the kids and adults preoccupied for the whole trip? I so think that DCL has some really cool stuff going on. And it sure would be a lot less walking, less standing in lines, and we wouldn't have to spend all night trying to remember where the car is parked.
As someone who lives relatively close to WDW and can get FLR discounted tickets, we avoid WDW like the plague. Going on DCL cruise simply cannot be compared. The service, the ship, port adventures, etc is bar none. Compare that with long lines, ridiculously overpriced junk food and drinks, exposed to hot and humid weather, parks at capacity crowds. No thanks. All 4 of us prefer cruising. Our kids (8,3) LOVE cruising. They always talk about the ships, they remember all of the servers names, about the movies, the kids' clubs, the movies, the plays. We simply do not spend a dime in wdw and save the money to go on as many dcl cruises as its responsibly possible.
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Old 12-29-2013, 02:34 PM   #7
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A 4-night cruise isn't quite 4 full days. You board around noon on day 1, and you have to be off the ship right after breakfast on day 5.

It's worth doing a Disney cruise at least once to see if you like it. I love to cruise, but I would still choose WDW over a DCL cruise to the Bahamas or Caribbean. If the cruise were to a more interesting destination, a cruise would probably win over WDW.

Last edited by NancyIL; 12-29-2013 at 03:44 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 12-29-2013, 03:42 PM   #8
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Truthfully I'm having a hard time with this same question. DH and I have a WDW vacation planned for Sept. DH wanted to do a 4-5 day vacation sooner than Sept. so we booked another one at WDW for May. I however want to go on the cruise much more at this point. We have been on both the Dream and Fantasy and enjoyed ourselves so much. It's so relaxing. Unfortunaetly, or fortunately, we are DVC members so it makes a little more sense financially to go to WDW in May than on DCL. Although that has not stopped me from checking and double checking for any discounts or keeping my fingers crossed for good VGT rates. And no you don't get bored easily. There is so many things to do. You can do as much or as little as you'd like. WDW is sooo much fun but you are exhausted afterwards. When we get off DCL we are completely relaxed.
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Old 12-29-2013, 04:16 PM   #9
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When my kids were about 12 and 8

and dad had been doing a spring break trip to wdw with them annually for a few years (mom is a CPA specializing in TAX ... I got the kids & me OUT OF THE WAY)

and we had done a Christmas DCL cruise (inaugural year)

I asked my kids "do you want to go to Disney World again this year" .... they said NO, we want to cruise again .....

a little research proved that the cruise was less $$ that the park admission plus food plus hotel .. (even on a last minute booking at that time)

Hmmmmm

And since after 3 or 4 days chasing them around the park I needed a vacation when we got back; but on the ship they LOVED the clubs and I could sit by the pool and read and had a beeper in case the kids needed me .... and they could eat from the kids buffet (happy happy) while I could still have table service ..... (I made them eat 2 meals a day with me .. no abandoning)

We cruised for the next 3 years!

DS had such good memories that he did his honeymoon on Wonder in the Med ... 10 days.
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Old 12-29-2013, 04:36 PM   #10
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We took our first cruise this past September, a Dream 4 night, sandwiched in between 3-4 days at WDW on each end. I was reluctant to cruise, but DD 9 really wanted to try it, so after two years of her bugging me about it I gave in.

Well, she absolutely loved it and doesn't want to go back to the parks for more than one or two days at a time. She didn't even want to go into the parks after the cruise, though I already had everything planned. She said she didn't want to do all that walking and waiting (even though we go at slower times of year, we still seem to wait for everything...the bus, the turnstiles, rope drop, shows, food, etc).

She loved, loved, loved Oceaneers Club/Lab and I couldn't get her out of there. We had breakfast and dinner together, and spent the day together on Castaway Cay. We saw one movie together. The rest of the time she spent in the Club/Lab. She is really looking forward to moving up to the Edge on our next cruise. She also actually enjoyed getting dressed and going to dinner each night. Normally she only likes buffets or quick service meals. We spent nearly two hours at dinner each night, and she liked it, amazing. Our serving crew was awesome, and our tablemates were perfectly compatible with us. She really liked the all you care to eat ice cream station and had some once or twice each day. She loved the Aquaduck too.

I enjoyed the shows (didn't watch the variety show), the movie theater, dinners (food itself was just good, not great, but the overall experience was very enjoyable), the general atmosphere of the ship, the great service, Castaway Cay, and just sitting on our verandah watching the water.

I would alternate parks vacations with cruise vacations, as I still really enjoy the parks, although I liked the cruise far better than I thought I would. We're booked on a 7 night Fantasy Eastern next year, and planning only one park day prior to the cruise. DD wins.
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Old 12-29-2013, 06:03 PM   #11
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Did our first cruise in 2013 and it quickly became our favorite Disney vacation. Disneyland a close second. WDW becoming a distant third.

The cruise is so relaxing. Adult pool area is great. Lots to do, great food, swimming was only a short portion of our day. Aqua duck actually was stressful, as I felt like I had to do that daily. LOL

Number of guests are fixed onboard. No lines, no wait, you go where you want/need to be exactly when you need to so time is so much more valuable. Getting to dinner, you walk right to the table, drinks are already there.

Our kids loved the club too, but wasn't the center of their lives. Family time was at 9&7.

Excursions make for a change of pace. However, one day we had ship to ourselves in morning and got off after lunch and explored San Juan. No extra expenses for that excursion.

I get a bit motion sick, but even that couldn't keep me away.
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Old 12-29-2013, 06:13 PM   #12
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Just came back from 8 nights at WDW... I love the parks and as beautiful as the decorations are for Xmas we seemed to be there a couple days too long. We call it "too much magic".

I know my DS10 much prefers the pace of the cruise vs the waiting and walking of WDW. We've been doing a spring break cruise the past few years and love love love DCL!
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Old 12-29-2013, 06:31 PM   #13
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I enjoy WDW. (I love DLR more.) We did our first 6 day vacation at WDW this year and for us, 6 days is too long! 3-4 days is a good amount.

But after being reluctant to go on a cruise originally, I love cruising. I thought I would get bored and there would be nothing to do. I was wrong. You can do as much as you want or as little as you want! I would totally try the cruise.
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Old 12-29-2013, 07:06 PM   #14
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My choice would be a cruise over a land based vacation to WDW / Orlando. In my opinion cruises are more relaxing and stress free.

I will state that a trip to WDW is something that cannot be matched and I would probably choose that over DCL if that was the only vacation I would ever be able to take my children on.
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Old 12-29-2013, 07:18 PM   #15
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We love WDW but I wanted to try the cruise, too. I couldn't go to Orlando and not go to the parks so we did 4 days at WDW and a 3 night cruise. The 4 night was my preference but the schedule didn't work. As soon as we got on the ship we were hooked. This is a relaxing Disney vacation! The 3 night was way too short and we booked a 7 night on board. My kids were almost 8 when we first cruised and we have been on 2 more since that first cruise. We have been back to WDW for a quick trip in between but we all would choose DCL over WDW in a heartbeat.

We love the service, atmosphere, restaurants, shows and all the new things to do on the Fantasy. My kids don't like the kids clubs, they never have, but we all find lots of things to do together, and DH and I let them hang out some for a bit so we could go to mixology class.

We love seeing the ports and doing different excursions and we love exploring the ship. Not to say we won't go back to WDW (I want to see new Fantasyland!), but given a choice, we all vote DCL.
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