Just back from our first cruise! 5 night double dip on Dream

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by littlebitsmom, Apr 12, 2012.

  1. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    This was the first cruise for everyone in our family. We had so much fun that we booked another while we were on board! Now the hard part will be waiting until May 2013.

    I was very disappointed in the Atlantis Aquaventure excursion. I can't believe we paid over $450 for the 3 of us for that :( Other than that, the trip was amazing and I can't wait to go back!
     
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  3. bajadahl

    bajadahl I am the Pirate your mom warned you about!!!

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    So any tips for all of us other newbies on the boards? Our first cruise is the Dream double dip in June.
     
  4. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    A few things I can think of right off hand that I wish I would have known are...

    1. you don't need beach towels. I packed a few and could have saved a ton of space in my suitcase

    2. you don't need to bring many casual clothes - we were either in our swim attire or in our dinner clothes. We way overpacked.

    3. Shop early! I browsed the first couple of nights in the shops, and when I went back to buy, 2 things I wanted were sold out. I was very surprised by this b/c it looks like Disney is really missing out on opportunities to make money.

    4. Don't underestimate the power of the Caribbean sun! I wore SPF 15 in hopes I would get a tan, but I got majorly sunburned and was miserable the last 2 days of the trip. I would have much rather been white as a ghost than to feel as bad as I did.
     
  5. scrapycruiser

    scrapycruiser DIS Veteran

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    What didn't you like about the Atlantis Aquaventure? We have booked it for June :scared1:
     
  6. asimaaliyah

    asimaaliyah Earning My Ears

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    I wondered about the beach towel thing. We are flying into Orlando the day before and staying 2 days at a resort for two days after the cruise. I wondered about the beach towels for the resort. Maybe I'll call the resort to see if towels they have towels around the pool. Thanks for that tip :)

    Also what do you mean we don't need many casual clothes. I have shorts for the girls and a few pairs of capris in case it gets cool in the evening. We're sailing in May. I wasn't sure if it would get cool at night or not. And the thing that's taking up the most room in our bags is our clothes for dinner. I'm not even sure we'll eat in the MDR each night but since this is our first cruise and its an opportunity to maybe try something we probably won't try again at dinner, I packed for just in case we go to the MDR, I wasn't sure of appropriate attire for dinner so I do believe I overpacked for just in case. I've seen where people dressed up in formal wear and in some instances where people wore casual clothes even shorts which are frowned upon. LOL Dinner confuses me for sure. :confused3 I didn't pack anything formal but I did pack sort of dressy clothes for my daughters, my hubby and myself. Did I overdo it? What did you see for dinner attire on your cruise. We're only doing the 3 day cruise.

    Thanks
     
  7. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    I see you're from NN! I grew up in Gloucester and my family is still there
    :)

    If you really want to do the Aquaventure, I would suggest grabbing a taxi as soon as the ship docks and going by yourself. When we booked the excursion, the 8:45 time was full so we had to do 9:45. I thought we were getting off the boat at that time, but 9:45 was just the beginning of a long process. We had to wait in line outside the Walt Disney Theatre and then show our tickets upon entering. Then we had to wait in another line to get our wristbands. Then we had to go sit down and wait to be called to leave the boat. Then we had to wait to catch a shuttle bus. Then when you get to Atlantis, you have to walk for like 20 minutes to even get to the waterpark. It was almost noon by the time we got there! And of course, all the loungers were taken so we had nowhere to leave our stuff.

    I thought Atlantis was poorly run. It was a beautiful place with great potential. But after being on a Disney ship, you could tell the difference. The staff were not helpful, the bathrooms were extremely dirty, etc. Also, there was practically no signage and they had run out of maps. We couldn't find where anything was, nor did we know what was even available to do. Our son is 7 and was scared of a lot of the larger slides, but we could never find more kid friendly options b/c we didn't have a map!

    There were 4 other ships in port that day, and the Aquaventure was packed! The lines were so long that we spent most of the day waiting. Also, they give you a voucher for lunch. There were 6 or 7 people in front of us in line, but it took at least 30 minutes just to get our food. They had the same person cashiering and getting the order together, and they wouldn't start taking the next person's order until the first person's order was complete. It was a terrible process and we wasted so much time just eating lunch.

    We left at 4 to get back to the ship for our 5:45 dinner time. We could have certainly skipped dinner, but after eating in the dining rooms you won't want to!

    So, my advice would be to get to Atlantis yourself so you'll have much more time. All the waiting burned a lot of the time we could have spent there. Also, print your own map before you get there. The only downside to this option is you do run a risk of it being sold out.
     
  8. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    I loved the availability of the beach towels. They had tons and you just helped yourself to them. They also had lots of towel return areas where you just put the used ones.

    Re: casual clothes

    For my 7 year old son, we just packed him shorts and t-shirts or polos for dinner. He wore that to dinner and then to the after dinner activities.

    For dinner, DH usually wore khaki pants and a golf shirt or button down shirt. I wore either a casual skirt and top, sundress, or capris with a knit top. But we also packed shorts and very casual tops (think t-shirts for him and tank tops for me) for each day. We went straight from our bathing attire to our dinner clothes. Then we just wore our dinner attire for the rest of the night. So we had all these casual clothes we never wore. Does that make sense?

    To be honest with you, I didn't really pay much attention to what people were wearing. I was in a food coma as I'm sure a lot of people are. The food is just amazing and that's about all you can focus on - lol. I did happen to notice some people were really dressed up and others were very casual. You are sitting down anyways, so I don't think it makes much difference what you wear.
     
  9. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    I thought of another thing. They offer guided tours at both 1:00 and 2:00 right after boarding. I would highly recommend doing this. It's on your Personal Navigator, but most people don't even notice it. We did the 1:00 and there were only about 15 other people taking the tour.
     
  10. Alztybrn

    Alztybrn Was there life before TIVO?

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    What itinerary did you have? Do you have any Navigators you could share?
     
  11. StaciMay

    StaciMay I love Disney!

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    How was the water temp at castaway cay?
     
  12. Niebz

    Niebz DIS Veteran

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    I'd love to see navigators too if you have them.:goodvibes
     
  13. MelissaE1

    MelissaE1 Truly believes in the Magic

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    The 3 night cruises are the most casual, and you will have a "dress up optional" type night for one evening. So if you are worried about overpacking, just bring casual stuff for each night. I notice you mentioned capris, they are fine for your daughters and/or yourself for the dining room. If you love to dress up, though, go for it! Some people will do this as well.

    I highly suggest eating in the MDRs each night for dinner so you don't miss one of them. You won't regret it! :)
     
  14. DLW8

    DLW8 DIS Veteran

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    You will need fewer clothes than you think. For dinner, especially on the 3 night, you can wear the same pair of capris with different tops for 2 out of the 3 nights. do not over pack (it's easy to do). My DD likes a different outfit each night, but for me, I would mix & match. For DS, he wore nice shorts and a polo for dinner (again, mix and match) and DH wore khakis and a polo or button down shirt (mix and match).

    During the day, I packed as I do for WDW with a different complete outfit for each day. But, we were in bathing suits most of the day with shorts/T or coverup, so definitely didn't need separate outfits for each day.

    You will see a vast variance for dinner. Some people really dress up (even on the 3 night) where others will be semi dressed up down to casual. Wear what is comfortable for you.
     
  15. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    Our 5 night itinerary was...

    At Sea
    CC
    Nassau
    CC

    I have Navigators from each day except Nassau. I'll post later tonight after my kids go to bed.
     
  16. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    I have to admit the water was freezing! I didn't get in on the first CC day, but was determined to on the last day. It was fine once you got used to it. My DH and DS jumped right in. There were a couple of fun things to do that required you to swim out to them, so I'm glad I got in on the 2nd day we were there.
     
  17. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    Will post later tonight after I get the kids in bed :cool1:
     
  18. bajadahl

    bajadahl I am the Pirate your mom warned you about!!!

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    Thanks for the tips.... We were able to get an early checkin at 11:00 am so we will definitely do the ships tour. I hope the water is warmer in June.....well either that or the hot air makes the cold water feel great. Anyway, Thanks, I am also looking forward to seeing your navigators.
     
  19. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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  20. adamki

    adamki Earning My Ears

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    A scanner would be your best bet. Try setting the scanner to 300ppi and see how it looks.
     
  21. littlebitsmom

    littlebitsmom Mouseketeer

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    I don't have a scanner. Sorry :(
     

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