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Old 02-02-2014, 03:08 PM   #1
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Cruise or wdw or both help

Dad of 5 month old and a 4 year old here in need of some help. We just returned from our send come consecutive year of wdw had a great time.
Now that we are back I'm planing January 2015 vacation. I was thinking about doing something different then wdw. Cruise was my first thought but I'm very nervous my daughter and wife won't be as happy with a cruise as being in Disney. I have about 7 grand for the vacation itself. Not including plane tickets.
Little background on what we do in Disney. My daughter loves characters. We search for them in parks ride the major attractions for young kids and eat atleast one character meal a day. Any suggestions would be great.
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Old 02-02-2014, 03:12 PM   #2
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I'll let those with little ones chime in but it sounds like a cruise would be great for you! January is a nice, less expensive time to sail. After the crush of people/activity/scheduling required for WDW taking a cruise can be much more relaxing. There are tons of character meeting times in some new outfits.

Another plus is that your stateroom is only steps away. With little ones and for nap time that's a huge bonus. Even if you stay on property, that is not something easily available at WDW.

Good luck in making your decision!
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Old 02-02-2014, 03:13 PM   #3
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How about a cruise and then time at the beach? My kids love the Disney vero beach resort. My soon to be 5 year old asks to go back all the time!
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Old 02-02-2014, 03:31 PM   #4
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I vote for both. We are going on our first cruise next December. We have made many trips to WDW and wanted to try something different, too. That said, I know all 5 of us would be really disappointed to be so close to WDW and not go. We decided on a 4-night cruise followed by a weekend at the parks.
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Old 02-02-2014, 08:33 PM   #5
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If you do both WDW and DCL, I would suggest doing WDW first. You can then relax on the cruise.

FWIW, the characters are on the cruise as well and are listed in the navigator so you know when and where and don't have to scout all around to find them....
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Old 02-02-2014, 11:41 PM   #6
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Cruise Cruise Cruise! We are spoiled and don't really care to go back to Disney too often - you can't beat the service on the Crusie ships.
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Old 02-02-2014, 11:49 PM   #7
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I love both. But they are vastly different vacations. If you do both then make sure it is WDW then DCL. On DCL it's all about you, in WDW you're just another face in the crowd. I've learned the hard way. When I get off a cruise then head to WDW, its quite disappointing.
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Old 02-03-2014, 12:18 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by dsnydaddy View Post
I love both. But they are vastly different vacations. If you do both then make sure it is WDW then DCL. On DCL it's all about you, in WDW you're just another face in the crowd. I've learned the hard way. When I get off a cruise then head to WDW, its quite disappointing.
Agreed, the cruise really spoils you. WDW is just a place for us to stay pre-cruise. Don't get me wrong we still like going but it doesn't compare to the cruise treatment. As far as characters go, the meet and greets on the ship are better in our opinion. The lines are shorter and even the interactions seem better. Unfortunately no rides on the ships, just water slides. We have a 4 year old and the clubs are a major hit for her.

If you are looking at Jan 2015 you will have a 5yo and a 17 month old at the time. The 17 month old has more limited options for activities. He/She can go to the nursery but not the clubs. Also the water play areas would be restricted to the swim diaper splash areas. On the wonder this area is terrible. The re-imagined magic ship has a better area but still it is paltry compared to the Nemo's reef on the newer ships. If that is important to you then consider the newer ships.

As for character breakfast, there is not one on the newer ships at this time, and on the classics it is not on all itineraries.
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Old 02-03-2014, 07:50 AM   #9
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I'm a serious disney parks fan and after going many years my dh convinced me to try a Disney cruise. We did a 4 night. It was a great way to experience cruising without committing to a 7 night (and much cheaper). We loved it. We asked the kids if they want to go back to Disney or cruise again and they all said CRUISE!
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Old 02-03-2014, 09:31 AM   #10
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We like to do a day or two at WDW before going a cruise. It gives us a nice dose of the parks but allows us to relax on the cruise too. We have a 4 1/2 year old and a 10 month old.
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Old 02-03-2014, 09:36 AM   #11
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Agree with everyone above. The cruise is definitely better for meeting characters. Not only can you plan ahead (using the Navigators the night before) which characters you want to meet, but you can also run into many characters around the ship.

The shows are also a great place to see characters. My children loved the shows. My 7 yo son also really enjoys the kid clubs. It was also great to be able to travel light, being able to run back to the room for naps, clothing changes, or just a break. We are not huge rides people, so the cruise is more our style.

Having said all of that, we are planning our third DCL cruise this November but plan to go to the parks for 2-3 days before the cruise. We haven't been to WDW in four years, so can't pass up the opportunity to drop in.
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Old 02-03-2014, 09:42 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Minnie321 View Post
Cruise Cruise Cruise! We are spoiled and don't really care to go back to Disney too often - you can't beat the service on the Crusie ships.
For the love of Disney...
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Old 02-03-2014, 10:07 AM   #13
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I would do both. try a 3 or 4 day cruise and do a few days at disney. I like doing the longer part of the vacation second because it makes leaving the first part easier for us at least

We really enjoy the disney cruises and I think the crowds and cost would be lower in January. Before we started staying concierge though the crowds on the ship kind of got to us. its nice being able to get away in the lounge (if on the dream or fantasy) or sundeck. As an example the concierge staff were really helpful with cancelling an excursion last minute when we knew our son needed a quiet day (not always something you can predict). In my opinion the characters are easy to find on the ships and there is almost always at least a few to meet. keep an eye on the flyer you get in your room for that. I don't believe there are character meals though. I do believe they do an alice tea party or something like that on one or more ship (or used to). Not the fantasy though.

It also sounds like you all really enjoy disney so maybe completely skipping it this year when you aren't 100% on the cruise would be a mistake. jmho. I think knowing you're going back to what you know you enjoy will make you feel good about the trip over all and allow you to really look forward to trying the cruise.

have fun whatever you decide!

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Old 02-03-2014, 10:08 AM   #14
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We go on our first disney cruise in August but also plan on gng to wdw and one of their waterparks 3 days before our cruise! It is kinda pricey but I've been planning this since jan of last year so we had enough time to save and plan it out. Our trip with flight, park tickets and cruise will probably be around 10k!
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