After going on DCL, is there disappointment when trying another cruise line?

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by briarrose1, Oct 28, 2012.

  1. briarrose1

    briarrose1 Disney Fanatic Since 1995♥

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    I've cruised other lines before DCL with mixed success. Now that we've tried and loved DCL, there are a few lines I've heard good things about (Princess, Celebrity, Azamara) but in some ways hesitant to try because DCL has just been super.

    It seems w/other lines, you have to pick your ship carefully, whereas w/DCL, they're all wonderful, of course there are just 4. ;)

    Have you tried other lines that were as satisfactory as DCL or have had cruisers regret?
     
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  3. PizzieDuster

    PizzieDuster DIS Veteran

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    Never regretted our other cruises. We loved all of our Royal Carribean cruises. My teens loved Royal over Disney. However, I do love cruising Disney. pixiedust: If I had to pick my favorite (even though you didn't ask me too, lol) I would pick our cruise on the Liberty of the Sea.
     
  4. candygirl83

    candygirl83 Mouseketeer

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    I've never been on a cruise but looking at all the cruises lines and doing my research DCL just looks better lol and seems better as well!
     
  5. sissy_ib

    sissy_ib DIS Veteran

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    It is going to depend on the person and their expectations. I have read several reports of seasoned cruisers disappointed with DCL. So it goes both ways.
     
  6. NancyIL

    NancyIL DIS Veteran

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    I sailed with HAL, Royal Caribbean, and Princess before my first Disney cruise on the Wonder. Unfortunately, the DCL cruise was with my elderly mother, and I couldn't wait to get off the ship and back to WDW! I have since cruised twice more on Disney, and also with Celebrity. DCL's ships are beautiful, but I haven't found their service to be superior to that of other cruise lines. In fact, the dining room servers on DCL cruises #2 and #3 rank at the very bottom of my 22 cruises.

    After my upcoming cruises on the Fantasy (Dec.) and Magic (May) - I will have sailed on all 4 Disney ships, and have no plans to book a future DCL cruise onboard. I do have future cruises booked on Celebrity and Royal Caribbean (Jan./Feb. 2014), and future cruise deposits paid on Princess and HAL.
     
  7. luvavacation

    luvavacation DIS Veteran

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    First, I have to let you know that my family is a very happy-go-lucky, young-at-heart type of family. We appreciate having experiences that bring happy tears to our eyes, for we are a family that focuses more on memory making while we still are living. DH and I will be the old people at Disney in a few years, hobbling around, smiling just because we are there. I realize not everyone is as lighthearted as we are, but we are the family that likes letting go of our "adult-ness" and being kids again at Disney. This does skew our view of some vacations! :)

    My family's first cruise, 19 years ago, was not on DCL, and after that cruise, DH said he would never cruise again. We felt like cattle being led here and there, with constant demands on emptying our pockets from unpleasant crewmembers. Not a good cruise, and a really terrible first cruise experience. Oh, and the ship was very old, with cockroach dust in the drawers and around the perimeter of the room. It was so, so bad.

    Years later, DH was finally convinced to try a 4-day Disney cruise. He was not happy about it, convinced he would hate it, but sucked it up for his little girls.

    Before the first day onboard was even over, DH already said he was only cruising Disney from that day forward. Mind you, we were a single income family (my part-time jobs were not big moneymakers!), but we live frugally all year, so when we do vacation, we like to feel that the money we spend is "worth it". DH felt that money spent on DCL was "worth it".

    We have cruised other lines since then, including our 8 DCL experiences. I have had DH join me and my girls on a couple of those other cruises, but for him, he doesn't enjoy them so much, and does not always care to join us. No matter how inexpensive, for DH, they just aren't "worth it".

    I am of a mind that I like to get away, and if that means a cheap cruise on a different line, I will go. I will board that ship with low expectations of the crew, cleanliness, and even safety, but I will be with people I love so I will enjoy myself. I may feel nickel-and-dimed at every turn, and constantly hear announcements regarding new ways to spend my money on board, but I am going to hang out with my family and explore some different ports, so I will enjoy the itinerary.

    And for my family, that is really what other cruise lines are all about - the itinerary, not the ship experience. We cruise DCL for the overall experience of the ship and crew, and though things may have changed from our first DCL experience 11 years ago, we still always disembark sad that the cruise is over. Can't say the same for the other lines we have sailed.

    Every cruise line out there offers something the others do not. It may be slides, or pools, ports, or room layout, but you don't know until you try them to see what is most important to you. For my DH, it is the ship and crew, and he hasn't like any as much as DCL. For me and my girls, DCL is what we prefer over all others, but if there is a cruise going someplace we haven't been, and it's cost doesn't dent the savings account, we will give it a go. Until you try, you just don't know! :beach:
     
  8. Katski

    Katski Earning My Ears

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    I think it depends on your expectations going into the cruise. It also depends on who you cruise with. Most of my cruises are taken with just my husband so we prefer to avoid DCL in those situations because of all the kids. I know the adult areas are nice and all but I am a pediatrician so I like to get away from kids when I am on vacation :)

    RCL and Celebrity are definitely nice lines that offer a great experience. Carnival can be good if you choose a longer itinerary. The shorter trips on older ships tend to be "booze cruises" full of younger people just looking to get trashed and as such have little regard for others (of course, I am making huge generalizations here).

    Earlier this year, my husband and I took one of these shorter Carnival cruises knowing it would be like that but we wanted a quick trip to Cozumel to go diving -- cruising down was cheaper than flying! We spent a lot of time in the cabin catching up on sleep but knowing that going into it didn't lead to any disappointment :)

    I say try out some of the other lines and decide for yourself. There are definitely sales that will make it worth your while to explore.
     
  9. CruznLexi

    CruznLexi DIS Veteran

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    I have close to 40 cruises on 3 lines. RCI CCL and DCL. Every cruise line has thier followers I am one that after 24 cruises with RCI jumped to Disney. If you are a Disney fan you will love it. My reasons to love Disney they offer FL rates, they have free coke , wonderful cast members, decent food. I think the food is pretty good. Fireworks at sea. The new ship has the Aquaduck, mini golf. We went last year on the Carnival liberty and vowed not to ever go back. It is just an overall a better experience and would rather go on Disney.
     
  10. justmestace

    justmestace <br><img src="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis-sponsor/i

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    I had cruised only on DCL at least 8 times, all in suites, before I cruised on Princess, Carnival & Norwegian. Multiple cruises on the last two & not always in suites. I've never been disappointed because I love to cruise, love the ocean and enjoy visiting different places.
    I think your cruise or vacation, even your life, is what you make it.
     
  11. briarrose1

    briarrose1 Disney Fanatic Since 1995♥

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    Thanks for all your responses. We are huge Disney lovers and love cruising with them, and are ready to go again next year-already booked. Have tried several other lines and will give them a go again, but picking very carefully the actual ship and reading the ratings carefully.

    For those that mention the kid aspect on DCL, I find this line to have the most well behaved children AND adults, and I hardly see the kids at all. I read where someone advised a friend, if you don't want to deal with lots of kids, go on DCL. It's anti-intuitive, but they are so occupied with their activities, they are not running rampant on the ships like they were on Carnival and RCC.

    Looking forward to trying out new lines just for fun. But I know I will always come back to DCL:)
     
  12. mrsklamc

    mrsklamc <font color=blue>I apologize in advance, but what

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    We enjoyed both HAL and DCL, but our room condition, room steward, and the food were all better on HAL.
     
  13. ilovetexas

    ilovetexas DIS Veteran

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    Well, to answer your original question, I've cruised four different lines and enjoyed them all for different reasons.

    I must disagree with you regarding one thing, the behavior of the adults on DCL. I don't recall the kids bugging me one way or the other; for the most part kids are kids. The adults, on the other hand....WOW! I have never run into so many adults in one place that seemed to think they were entitled to whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted it than on the Fantasy in May. Cutting in lines, talking loudly during shows, griping at the CMs for minor nonsense, either treating their kids horribly or outright ignoring them, practically shoving others out of the way to get on the Aquaduck or to the food/drink areas on deck. I was shocked. Obviously it wasn't everyone on board, or even the majority, but it was a big enough percentage that it was very noticeable. I really felt bad for some of the CMs who were kind and pleasant and trying to do their jobs.

    I love to cruise and whichever line offers me the best price on the itinerary I want....I'm in!
     
  14. Rogillio

    Rogillio DIS Veteran

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    I've never been on a 'bad' vacation. Vacation is the time to forget about work and deadlines and bills and appointments and going grocery shopping and cooking dinner and cleaning the bathroom. Vacation is when you can leave the bed unmade and throw towels on the floor if you want to.

    On vacation you wake up every morning with an attitude of expectancy and expect good things to happen and expect to have fun in whatever adventure you do. On vacation, you forget about your credit card bills and spend with reckless abandon.

    Oh wait, you asked about being on a different cruise line. Uh....yeah, things are different. But you are going to have fun by gosh and by golly and it desn't matter that its a different company. You are on vacation with your family....quality time with the ones you love. Who cares if the menu selection is not 'as good' as it could be or the rooms are 15% smaller.

    In other words, expect to have a good time and you will. Like someone said, 'don't sweat the small stuff....and when you're on vacation, it's all small stuff'
     
  15. mommy2jack

    mommy2jack Mouseketeer

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    I don't have a lot of cruise experience but I have cruised on DCL twice, once in 2000with my family and once in 2004 on my honeymoon. In 2008 we took a 10 day Royal Caribbean cruise. DH and I agreed that the 10 days aboard the RC ship, while enjoyable was lacking a lot of the Disney Magic we fell in love with during our (much shorter) 4 day Disney cruise... The RC ship was HUGE, it had an ice rink and casino, but lacked a movie theater and the stage shows were just ok. The dining options were boring! We don't gamble and I think a lot of the other cruise ships use their casinos as their night time entertainment. We were just bored most of the time and honestly nothing really WOWED us on that cruise... since then we have been dreaming of a 7 day Disney cruise... it's just more our style! Looking like we might FINALLY get to go on one in 2014 (If they ever release the dates!). I honestly think it just depends on the person and their cruise style!
     
  16. bwvBound

    bwvBound DVC SSR & other timeshare

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    Disney was our very cruise (Sept 1998) and it launched a really great habit of frequent cruising for many years. That first cruise validated that we liked cruising but it also informed us that we didn't much care for Disney's way of doing it.

    We had no troubles shifting from DCL to NCL, Holland America, Celebrity, Marine Expeditions and similar. For us, at that time, the destinations were more important than the ship and these lines gave us the world, including Antartica! NCL used to offer wonderful onboard lectures through their life enrichment program on the art, people, culture, architecture, and historical significance of the various ports in our journey. Marine Expeditions offered us great adventure first-hand, rather than being held back at a "safe" observation distance.

    We returned to DCL in 2005 for the return Panama Canal itinerary. It was our second time through the canal but my parent's first. The canal wasn't high on Mom's "to-do" list and Disney wasn't high on Dad's but Disney through the canal was just what we needed to get them onboard, so to speak. The Magic was lovely but Disney's staff, once again, let us down. They still hadn't nailed the art of passenger logistics.

    Our third and final DCL cruise was in April 2011, a Pacific Coastal transition on the Wonder. That cruise started poorly with embarkation delays and remained troubled thoughout. It was a lousy experience and we won't hurry back.

    Given, I hold Disney to high standards. My expectations are high. But frankly, DCL has failed me and no longer deserves my business. I'd rather pay less, go farther and enjoy a greater variety of experiences. Basically, my disappointment in DCL increases as I experience other lines rather than the stated question.
     
  17. mrsklamc

    mrsklamc <font color=blue>I apologize in advance, but what

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    Prior to '98 though they weren't DCL were they? Didn't they have a contract with another line or something like that?
     
  18. bwvBound

    bwvBound DVC SSR & other timeshare

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    Oh, sorry - typo. That should have been Sept 1998. It was on the Magic.
    Good catch - thx!
     
  19. NancyIL

    NancyIL DIS Veteran

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    Maybe YOU spend with "reckless abandon" - but I am almost as budget-conscious when I travel as when I'm at home. That's what allows me to take longer trips or travel more frequently.
     
  20. NancyIL

    NancyIL DIS Veteran

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    I cruise primarily for the destinations, and I'd also rather pay less, go farther, and enjoy a greater variety of experiences. Although I wouldn't say I am "disappointed" in Disney - their service fails to wow me as it does others.
     
  21. kcashner

    kcashner DIS Veteran

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    Totally agree with the above.

    We were on Celebrity this summer. There were several things I liked better than DCL (better food, they have Splenda, better prices, enforced "adult areas" --these were actually listed as "children 16 and under are permitted in this area during the following hours"). However, there is no question that DCL has better entertainment and a much younger adult crowd. DCL also has better scheduling: the few interesting activities available on Celebrity all seemed to be scheduled at the same time. We didn't encounter any of the entitlement parents that seem to populate at least some DCL cruises. Service was organized differently, but similar in quality to DCL. (stateroom host, dinner).
     

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