So Much fun for a Disney Fan-Ta-See onboard (fantasy) 9-27-14 Western Caribbean

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Meets' started by mindy327, Mar 25, 2013.

  1. mindy327

    mindy327 DIS Veteran

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    Hi Everyone! Welcome to our Cruise Meet. This posting will be updated with information ongoing.



    Below is the information for the Fish Extender Exchanger

    Welcome to the Fish Extender Exchange for the September 27, 2014 Disney Fantasy Western Caribbean 7 Night Cruise!
    The Fish Extender Group is now CLOSED for new participants.



    Please PM Beth Dis name \PerryMookie if you are interested in participating with the following information....

    DISer name
    Family name and individual names if desired
    Ages of individuals inside the cabin
    Cabin Room Number
    Any allergies
    preference for alcohol (if it would be given would you like one)
    email address
    Example:

    Disneylover
    The Jones Family
    Sue 35, Bob 40, Mary 8, Johnny 5
    Cabin 12345
    No allergies
    yes
    123@yahoo.com



    For those who are new to this fun cruise experience, a fish extender group is basically a gift exchange, with a little extra pixie dust! The Fish Extender itself is a pocket panel you hang from the fish shaped hook outside your stateroom. Families that join the FE group hang the Fish Extender outside their cabin and then, once the cruise gets underway, participants deliver little gifts to the others participating in the group by leaving them as a surprise in the fish extender pockets on certain days of the cruise. One fun aspect of taking part in a fish extender group is checking in throughout the day to see what little goodies are waiting!

    It's a ton of fun, not just for kids, and you can either give one gift to each cabin, or a gift to each person in the cabin. You can give gifts a few times throughout the cruise or just once. There are no rules regarding gifts (no minimum or maximum dollar value). Often times, the gifts are handmade, but not always. No real set rules, just exchange and have fun! Gifts can be homemade or store bought, Disney, non-Disney, totally up to you! That's part of the fun . . . the variety of neat things that everyone brings!

    The list will be emailed to you with the participating cabins and the group, if it gets too large will be split at about 15-20 depending upon the number of cabins. The groups will have a deadline to join to not overwhelm the givers. Happy Exchange everybody!
     
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  3. mrsoc

    mrsoc Earning My Ears

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    Hi Mindy,

    I thought I was the only one for a while there... I am super excited to have booked my families first disney cruise. My husband and I will be cruising with our 2 kids, dd who will be 10 and ds, will be 6 when we go. Do you have any insider tips?
    Thanks,
    Gena
     
  4. mindy327

    mindy327 DIS Veteran

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    EEEEkkkk! Gena,

    I am so happy that I am not the only one booked for this long awaiting cruise.
    This will be our fourth Disney Cruise and I am sure there will be way more "seasoned" cruisers than we are on this thread in the future, but we have definitely learned what to do and what NOT to do on the past cruises we have taken.
    We have a DD who will be 12 on the cruise and a DS who will be 10. My extended family will be joining us and my niece and nephew are going too. She will be 10 and my nephew will be 6. Perhaps I see pen pals in the future! ;) If this is your first cruise, just prepare to become addicted!!! I know I did after our first cruise. Here are a few tips (but I am sure others could add to this list)

    1. Do not over pack. Pack and take out half of what you think you need.
    2. Bring an over the door shoe holder. Miracle for clutter.
    3. Bring lots of 1$ bills for tips.
    4. Bring a pillowcase (especially for your first cruise) and drop it off with sharpie markers to Guest Services... They give it back to you with ALL the character signatures on it! Great Souvie.
    5. Be sure to bring a night light. Dollar tree works great.
    6. Do not try to see everything...
    7. Buy the passporters Disney cruise book. Great info to read.
    8. Biggest tip- Pack your swim suits on boarding day. You can eat and go straight to the EMPTY pools. Most do not know this and they have to wait to get their luggage delivered as your kids enjoy the aquaduck with no lines.
    Lastly, read the boards and read some more. Come here to ask questions. :)
     
  5. mrsoc

    mrsoc Earning My Ears

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    Hi Mindy,

    Thank you for the tips. I am learning alot from reading the posts. Do you fly into MCO? If so, do you take the disney transportation or another company? I guess I will have to shop around, I thought $70 per person was alot from Disney.

    We have been on cruises in the past prior to having kids (Carnival & RCL). This is a whole new ballgame bringing the kids though. We love Disney and try to go to WDW every 2 yrs (we have a timeshare in Orlando). We toyed with the idea of doing a shorter cruise and then spending time in the parks, but the parks aren't a relaxing vacation, you know with all the running around and lines. Have you ever cruised in September before? I was thinking it won't be too crowded with school having just started, what are your thoughts?

    Thanks,
    Gena
     
  6. mindy327

    mindy327 DIS Veteran

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    These are some great questions...
    We have used Disney transportation in the past. It is fun to ride the MICKEY BUS as my kids call them, but it can add up. We have looked at both ways hiring a transportation company vs. Disney Magical Express. The bus plays Disney videos for the guests so my kids like it but this round we are opting for the FL tours company to take us. Here is my justification... 1. It is cheaper. About 180$ worth cheaper. 2. We can get to the port early. More time for the ship being empty. We are flying to MCO as usual via Southwest. FREE BAGS!!!
    After arriving on the 26th we will be staying 1 night at the Port Orleans French Quarters. My kids love their pool and we can venture downtown Disney for a few.

    I totally get the parks vs Cruise being busy and relaxing. They both are great but one (the parks) when all said and done, you neeeeeed an vacation from your vacation. We just got back from WDW the same weekend last of Sept into October that the cruise will be on...(we WON an all expenses paid trip from Disney Online) for 9 days in the parks and the weather was very humid but bearable. Im an AZ native so any humidity is killer to us. LOL. But never on a cruise the last of September. We were exhausted by the end of our trip. Even with "lazy days" to just relax by the pool. We do Disneyland a lot and enjoy the charm more so than HUGE WDW but each are very different. You will find the Boat to be a great adventure. Lots to see and do.

    Just be SURE to buy travel insurance if you have not already to protect the possibility of a hurricane. I cant even imaging spending all of that money and get rocked by the sea all week! We have never been on any other cruise line, and it is sad that I got DCL addicted. Im too afraid to try any other cruise line with my kiddos. DH and I are going to mexico next March though on Carnival for our 15th anniversary... So we will see how it goes. DCL=Floating RITZ. :rotfl2:
     
  7. mrsoc

    mrsoc Earning My Ears

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    Mindy,

    I will look into the ground transportation options more. With planning this trip so far in advance it gives us time to save, save, save. I am worried that something would happen in transport (either plane or bus) and we would miss the cruise. We haven't booked travel ins yet, how would that work? Would it cover If our flight was delayed and we missed the ship? How much does it cost and who did you use?

    That's great that you are staying a night at a disney hotel. Smart!! We have never stayed on disney property because of our timeshare. I would like to though.... We were at wdw last October with extended family. It's a lot of work going with other people! (Especially your inlaws)

    I have been to Disneyland a few times when I was a kid, many times to wdw as an adult. My husband and I love it and now we got our kids hooked. We live in Pennsylvania (originally from ny) so it's a short 2 hour flight.

    We will be celebrating our 12th wedding anniversary on the fantasy, 9/28.

    Now onto the questions, you have become my go to girl... We booked a cat7a navigators verandah on the 8th deck. Have you stayed in one prior? I did some research and know the balcony might be smaller or obstructed and we are fine with that.
    Have you ever requested your dining table for only your family of 4? Is that something I can call them and ask in advance? We have had some experiences before with other table mates and would rather just sit the four of us, especially since we will be with the kids.
    What's your experience been with the kids clubs? I've read some mixed reviews... I should read your review ;). Have you sailed on a 7 day dcl already? Been to castaway cay?

    Thanks again for your help!
    Gena
     
  8. mindy327

    mindy327 DIS Veteran

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    Good morning Gena! The ground transportation page is at the top of the disboards forum under DCL... Has some great info and a link to the company they recommend. That is who we are using for transportation. From the airport to the WDW resort we are just using the FREE Magical Express transportation so we wont have to get our bags. They just go straight to our rooms and it saves money. From the resort we will order pickup from the transport service at 9am and be at the port by 10am. Ready to get on the gorgeous ship, and they will take us to the Airport after the cruise. Way cheaper than the three leg transportation by Disney. And plus we still ride the Mickey Bus to the resort. Everyone is happy. :lmao:

    Travel insurance is imo critical especially during hurricane season. We purchased it when we booked our cruise through our wonderful travel agency we ALWAYS use. They are DCL experts. It covers everything!!!! Preexistings (which my DH has a chronic disease going through treatments) missing flights, Missing luggage etc. We use a company called travelinsured.com. It was about 200$ for all four of us.

    The Navigator verandahs are great. Outside air and extra seating space. We have not opted for one this round... Doing a large porthole room catagory 8D. But for your first DC its a good choice. :thumbsup2

    I hear ya about the table mates... Although Disney does pretty good about pairing families with kids the same age. We only had table mates once, but awkward. Other cruises we have always had 9+ people in our family and they just stick us together. But I DO know you can request a table for 4. I remember seeing tables with just 4 people thinking, "why didnt I think of asking for that table!" I say ask, all they can say is no.

    The kids clubs.... Well lets just say I dont see my kids for 7 days when we go. We have done 1 4 day and 2 7 day cruises. Im addicted to DCL now so 7 days is minimum for us. My kiddos LOVE the kids clubs, and make great friends onboard. Some my DD still writes and talks to every now and then. They are HUGE and very well organized with tons to see and do. Perhaps google Disney cruise Fantasy Navigators and take a look at some of the activities they can do. I did see they make cupcakes on the fantasy, and my kids are already looking forward to it. They plan just as much as we do. And last Castaway Cay, well not much for Snorkeling, but fun to do. Not scary at all, and I am terrified of ocean water... Go figure. But no colorful fish or anything. Just grass and man made things to see but clear blue water and white beach sand. Kids clubs on shore, and lunch. AHHHH... ICING ON THE CAKE! We LOVE Castaway Cay. Hope this help :) Ask anything and I will answer as much as I know and can help. Min. Have a great day. :goodvibes
     
  9. mrsoc

    mrsoc Earning My Ears

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    Mindy,

    It didn't take much to convince DH to go with dcl transportation from mco to cruise and back. I looked up the pricing for fl tours and a few others ( not a huge difference) and what sold us was not having to worry about the luggage when we got off the plane.

    Thanks for the info on travel ins as well, we are looking into it. My husband thought it was going to be a lot more money.

    I am super excited to go on the cruise. Do you think it's going to be fully booked? Where is everyone else on this cruise!? When did you book? We booked last weekend.

    Do you decorate your cabin door? Did you make your own fe? I was looking at some pics, lots of ideas. Do you get gifts for each person in cabin or just group?

    I saw your links from YouTube. The video that won the contest was great. And I would never be able to keep the vacation a secret. You have a lovely family. I'm still reading your trip review....

    Have a good day!
    Gena
     
  10. mindy327

    mindy327 DIS Veteran

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    the last one we were on was FULL with Kids sail free... Even to capacity it was not bad at all. The ships are so big, that you really can not tell the difference. The kids clubs were exceptionally busy though. As far as others on this cruise, they will come and join in on the forum. We're really far out so they will come as we go along. (For those joining Gena and I, be sure to introduce yourself. We'll be keeping a roll call)
    We booked while we were on board last cruise and did push backs to get the 10% discount. We try to cruise every 3 years or so.... Wish I could do it more but with DHs illness it seems to be suffice.
    We really enjoy doing the door decorating and FErs. Usually, the group decides how it is divided. If there are a lot of cabins joining in on the list sometimes they get divided sometimes not. Last one we divided them by those who show up on the list. So you dont have to make 50 gifts for 50 cabins. Allows for more personalization of the gifts given, and they got divided by day. So 3 would deliver Day 1, 3 would deliver day 2 etc. We were given a day to deliver and the gift is what ever you choose to give. The list is overseen by a volunteer who keeps tabs of those interested and ages in the group of each room. Some may not choose to disclose the info so just a gift for the cabin is what we did. It was different on the other cruises we have done as far as organization, but the one explanation above seemed to work best in keeping the group organized.

    Thanks for the compliment for our video... My DH is a video production specialist so we did have an edge on everyone who entered. We were chosen by Disney as the winner through a judging system and they obviously got our jokes. WOOKIE FOR THE WIN! We had a blast going and Spending time at the World all on Disney's Dollar. We could have chosen any resort to stay at but we realllyyy like POR. Call us crazy.
    Our Mexican Riviera cruise the kids knew we were going Just not when. We had told them that we were going to Disneyland for the weekend which is not uncommon to them so they had nooo clue, but it was really fun to surprise them like that. We have surprised them with Disneyland trips a lot. We just jump in the car and start driving, and they catch on after we get out of the city though. We live 5 hours away so quick trips are frequent.
    I did the one trip report 5 years ago but never had the time to do another one... Learned that they are a lot of work. :rotfl2: but glad I did that one, just never got the time to cut and paste our pics from the other ones. I keep it up in my sig to find it easily. Its fun to go back and read it every now and again.

    Glad you figured out your transportation... With 4 in the family I would have chosen your option. Disney. but with 9 of us going its cheaper to do the fltours route. You will enjoy not having to get luggage! That is the biggest perk of all. 547 Days to go....:cool1:
     
  11. mrsoc

    mrsoc Earning My Ears

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    Mindy,

    It's all coming together. I called dcl and requested a table for 4 at main seatings, they said no problem. Now we wait and wait and wait.
    Happy Easter!


    <a href="http://distickers.com/ticker/"><img src="http://distickers.com/ticker/tickers/dqkocs7mxlqblb8x.png" alt="DIStickers.com Ticker" border="0"/></a>
     
  12. IrishCowboy

    IrishCowboy DIS Veteran<br><a href="http://www.disboards.com/s

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    I have added your thread to the cruise meet list :goodvibes

    Have a great cruise!
     
  13. alohabob

    alohabob Mouseketeer

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    Permission to come aboard? Hi everyone booked this cruise a few days ago.
    Name is Bob wife is Barbara and this will be our 9th Disney cruise second on the Fantasy......great ship!
    No kids here just two adult children (us) we are Disney nuts and cruising just helps us get a Disney fix more often. So looking forward to Castaway Cay with a drink in my hand and my toes in the sand. Can't wait to sail and me all you folks. We love doing the Food & Wine at Epcot so a nice relaxing cruise before hand is great.
    __________________
     
  14. alohabob

    alohabob Mouseketeer

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    WooHoo

    Rumors have been flying around that Disney Cruise Line is poised to make a huge announcement this month at their press event on April 25 and 26. The RUMORED announcement is that there will be two new ships built! These will be mid-size ships. They will be bigger than the Magic and Wonder, but smaller than the Dream and Fantasy. The ships would be christened in 2015 and 2016.
     
  15. mrsoc

    mrsoc Earning My Ears

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    Hi Bob,

    Glad to have you aboard.

    Gena
    First time on Dcl
     
  16. alohabob

    alohabob Mouseketeer

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    Been a long time since anyone posted so I'll just say 508 days too go :confused3:sad1::sad:
     
  17. mindy327

    mindy327 DIS Veteran

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    Well looking into our shore excursions... I know Im crazy, but I am really looking forward to doing the inner tube floating tour on the river in Jamaica. This is what our family is going to book. http://chukkacaribbean.com/tour/river-tubing/#.UZOOWaI3uSo The price is much less than the one Disney offers and the exact same tour. :cool1: Anything to save some mooolah!
     
  18. alohabob

    alohabob Mouseketeer

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    477 days :woohoo::yay:
     
  19. mindy327

    mindy327 DIS Veteran

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    I know how you feel! I find myself checking my countdown app constantly! It
    Is going to be a looooong 477 days! :/
     
  20. CruiseCrazy44

    CruiseCrazy44 Mouseketeer

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    Hi everyone! My family is going on this cruise too! I am so excited! This will be our second cruise. We went on our first cruise November of 2011 on the Dream and I am hooked. I can't imagine a better way to vacation! This time we will be a family of four rather than five as my oldest is now 19 and serving in the Army in Korea! My remaining children, both boys will be almost ten and seventeen by the time we sail. The first time we boarded the Dream my youngest, almost seven, walked around with his jaw on the floor saying "This is FIVE STAR man!" he had never seen such luxury! We are in a standard inside stateroom on deck two, trying to avoid excessive rocking. I know I've got a ton of questions, but I thought I'd just introduce myself.
     
  21. CruiseCrazy44

    CruiseCrazy44 Mouseketeer

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    I guess my biggest question is about the fe things. Do people spend a lot of money on these things? When I first read about them I thought it was just like Holocene in reverse where people would see people's bags and come by and put trinkets and candy in them. Now I'm wondering how much people spend and how many people you end up making/giving stuff to?
     

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