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Old 12-22-2013, 04:50 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 21

Which one? Feb Dream or Magic (+VGT)

Hi All. Been lurking for a few weeks and today's the day to decide.

I, my wife, our 7 year old son and 3 year old daughter have a window for a Last minute-ish cruise. I am the only one who has cruised at all-- was able to be on the Dream for work reasons once. The rest of the family are experienced at WDW and DL-- we almost always go off season for crowds and deals.

I was looking at the Dream 2/23 4-nighter. I liked the Dream and figured my family would too. Also thought my son was more likely to try the Aquaduck (as opposed to the Aquadunk) since he can ride with us and it seems less scary.

Now the 2/24 Magic 4 night is an option also because the rooms are cheaper as is the airfare. What else am I giving up if we go this route? I like the idea of fewer passengers at CC. I can't find a thread (or even a website) comparing the ships head to head or pluses and minuses. I'm generally aware of the differences but wondering if there are feeling from those who are experienced one way or the other, and looking for tips such as "animators is better on this one. kids club better here, etc."

Another thing: as I mentioned, airfare is playing into this and its my impetus to book now. Some good rates in general right now. I'm trying to get in early (winter storms have me concerned) and can create. I can get a flight in at 12:30am the night before the Dream cruise. It's a great rate. But the wiggle room concerns me. Feel free to tell me I'm wrong to make this a concern.

One other question: VGT, etc for these seem to be in play. I get the restriction on refunds etc. Doesn't bother me too much. (well it does, but that's not anybody's problem here.) But here's my question: I'm not worried about them picking a room for me. Should I? Are there terrible things that could happen if I we get a real stinker?

Thanks for any help anyone can provide, including pointing me to similar posts (haven't found answers to above on other threads yet.)

Merry Christmas.
wltdzny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-22-2013, 05:06 PM   #2
Might be why the rum is always gone
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Greater Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,714

If you can swing it at all I'd consider giving yourself at least one day of buffer. Arriving at midnight the day of your cruise will mean you are probably going to be exhausted, even if you do make it without issue. My MIL just came last week and way delayed 5+ hours. She had to make a second connection. If she had missed it we would have been looking at the next day. Easy for weather-related delays in the winter to affect vacation plans.

Both ships are great but I prefer the Magic to the Dream, especially with the updates. I'm also all for experiencing something new! Everyone has their preferences but until you do it how will you know?

In general I think the kids clubs on the classics are favored. The new areas on the Magic have been a hit.

Animators is different on the Magic vs the Dream (no Crush show) but there is a new show. Since your little one hasn't experienced any of them I'm not sure you could consider that a negative.

Good luck deciding!
121 Days at Sea
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Old 12-22-2013, 06:22 PM   #3
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Saint Louis, Mo
Posts: 188

Subscribing b/c we are trying to figure out the exact same thing. We are in a position for a last minute trip, we would do a 4 day cruise and then a few days at WDW. We actually prefer to cruise 1st then do the parks. I am leaning toward the Dream simply b/c it leaves on Sunday and also I think there might be more to do for my ds who will turn 14 the week after we go. We also have a 4.5 year old daughter but I know there will be plenty for her on either boat. I am def open to opinions/recommendations also. Thanks!
The Thompson Gang
and Peanut

1st trip to MK: Grad Nite 92
All Star Movies: 1/2004
SSR and 3 nght Wonder: 1/2006

Our first MNSSHP at OKW 10/2006
MVMCCP 12/08 Off-site
ASM and WWOHP 3/12
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Old 12-22-2013, 07:52 PM   #4
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Bentonville, Ar.
Posts: 100

I think your kids would LOVE the Magic. My 6 yr old granddaughter loved the new slide/water area and the new Oceoneers areas.
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Old 12-22-2013, 09:53 PM   #5
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 496

Here's two reviews I've posted recently in different threads.

Posted early December:
As far as overall ships, my personal preference is the larger ships. Our first was the Fantasy, so we got spoiled early. I like the larger atrium and having more space for the indoor parties. We have been on all 4 ships between July 2012 and now (got addicted quick). However, my DD is 6 and absolutely loved the Magic this past week. She enjoyed both the re-imagined Oceaneers Club and Lab, as well as the new pool, slide, and water lab areas on deck 9. Seeing the age of your kids, I think they would love those areas. If they are competent in water, you take a birds eye view from deck 10 and watch them go up and down the slide steps and then oversee the whole water lab area between the smoke stack and the upper front decks. (That area is only a wading pool.)

================================================== ==========================================

Posted late December:
We've been on all 4 ships in the last 18 months. Our first was the Fantasy; our last trip was the re-imagined Magic. It was our first trip on it too. I personally like the openness of the larger ships, but here are the perks I liked on the Magic.
- Aqua Dunk - depending on ages in your party, this may or may not be a big hit. My 6 y/o DD rode the first day; loved and hated it all at the same time and was too scared to go again. It has a 48" height requirement. My 15 y/o and I rode it and both liked it.

- Aqua Lab - the new lab is awesome! I like that it, the yellow Mickey slide and the wading pool all run together. You have to go up one deck then a spiral staircase to get to the slide. I would stand on deck 10 so I could see down over the top of all of it plus watch her up the steps.

- Cabanas - the buffet is now open entry Cabanas like on the Fantasy and not the waiting line like on the Wonder. People are still transitioning and the staff was standing at entrances telling everyone to walk up anywhere.

- the Vibe - the 15 y/o said it was more comfortable than the others. I think she said this was the best one she had been in. Don't remember if she gave any specifics.

- Oceaneers club and lab are connected now. There is a "secret" hallway where they've narrowed the atrium seating on deck 5 and used part of that hall to connect the two clubs. DD had a blast in the lab/club and spent more time there on the last trip than previous trips combined. A lot of that is age, but the counselors and activities were great too!
Disney Fantasy - June/July 2012
Disney Dream - January 2013
Disney Wonder - June/July 2013
Disney Magic - November 2013
Disney Magic - January 2014
Disney Fantasy - June/July 2014

Anxiously Waiting for
Wonder - November 2014
Wonder - May 2015
Dream - November 2015
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Old 12-23-2013, 10:20 AM   #6
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 21

Thanks very much for the responses!

We are this close to booking the Dream. The itch to show them this ship (they've heard the stories) plus that darn aqua duck, are just proving tough to ignore. Despite logic that says otherwise.

Still thinking of a VGT. And nervous about it. I will look into insurance.

We booked flights that arrive 48 hours before sail.
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Old 03-03-2014, 12:59 PM   #7
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 21

Closing the loop on this for future searchers. We did the dream and it was great. I thought my son would like aqua duck and he did. A lot. VGT also was a hit.
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