All-inclusive Vs. Disney Cruise

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by djarhansen, Oct 18, 2007.

  1. djarhansen

    djarhansen Mouseketeer

    Nov 20, 2006
    Hey eveybody!!!

    Now I know I am asking a bunch of Disney fans here (myself included) but I was wondering if anybody on here has ever done an Beaches all inclusive and a Disney cruise. Which did you like better? We did the DC in Feb and LOVED it. By the time we got the room we wanted (b/c we wanted a Verhanda) it cost us 7K for just our stateroom and that was when we pulled the kids from school. Well this year we want to go during spring break which almost doubles the cost for the exact same room!!! Did we think the cruise is worth it....I did (hubby has a hard time swallowing that kind of money for a week long vacation-but he will get over it :rolleyes1 ). Anyway, for that kind of money, we want to make sure we are going to be getting the best vacation. The Beaches resorts would be cheaper, but which is better with 3 kids and a very crabby husband tagging along complaining about the cost???:goodvibes

  2. frdeb1999

    frdeb1999 DIS Veteran

    May 30, 2007
    We have done both and prefer the DCL to Beaches. Our kids are older and they always were complaining that there was'nt a whole lot for them to do other then swimming and beach. They do have activities, but they just did'nt enjoy them nearly as much as they did with DCL. My 11 yr old loves the clubs on board. She said the CM's were more fun and made sure everyone was having a great time. You are however right about the cost. My hubby is the same way. He hates spending that much money, although he will be the first to admit he has a wonderful time!
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  4. stout

    stout Mouseketeer

    Jun 26, 2007
    We actually did both in 2006. But keep in mind this is coming from a family of two adults and one infant at the time. I agree that for my family DCL is better . . . more for us to do. Granted you can do some excursions through Beaches, the water activities were mostly free if I remember correctly, and some have resort exchange privileges, with DCL your "resort" is in a different location each day, giving you so much more to explore. IMO DCL has better service and food, and more of a variety of activities. That being said, your room at Beaches will have more space than the stateroom on DCL. If your family enjoys just swimming and relaxing each day, then because of the price, I would try Beaches and see if it is a good fit for your family. If you want the Disney entertainment and a new location to explore each day, then stick with DCL.
  5. Anjelica

    Anjelica DIS Veteran DVC Gold

    Oct 13, 2004
    We have done both and we prefer DCL. However, we did Beaches in Jamaica and I think my husband would probably still like to try the Beaches in Turks & Caicos - he didn't like the island Jamaica so that's probably what turned him off.
  6. lborne

    lborne It all started with a rabbit

    Sep 6, 2006
    Our friends have done both and prefered Beaches when compared to price. They have a 9 and 3 yr old. The only complaint they had was that the kids clubs are only open till 9 pm, and only till 6:00pm for 0-5 yr olds. So to have dinner just you and your husband, you need to schedule an in-room sitter, which is an additional cost.
  7. Lauri

    Lauri DIS Veteran

    Aug 19, 1999
    We have done both, and prefer DCL. We went to the Beaches in Turks and Caicos. The Island was beautiful, but there was not as much activity as we would have liked. The main activities seemed to involve alcohol starting at 9 AM. The food was not very good either.

    As far as all-inclusives, we much prefered Club Med Sandpiper in Florida. There were a ton of activities, and the food was much better.
  8. imsetuc

    imsetuc Experienced DISer

    Oct 17, 2007
    DCL or Beaches, the question is tough to answer, because you aren't totally comparing apples with apples. My family (single Dad with 2 daughters, now ages 13 and 9), have done both vacations, more than once. Here is my brief synopsis:

    Beaches (comparing Beaches Negril) advantages over DCL Cruise:
    --All activities are included in price (on resort activites, that is), including snorkeling, scuba diving (if certified), banana boat rides, water skiing, glass bottom boats, and the list goes on. Do do just one activity like this on a DCL cruise at port cost the family a large amount of money. If the kids didn't like the activity, you paid for it anyway on a DCL cruise. At Beaches, they can investigate and try different things out at, which doesn't cost any additional money.
    --If you drink alcoholic beverages, at Beaches, they are included, unlimited.
    --The pools are bigger and better for the kids and adults, including multiple water slides, lazy river, etc.
    --The sleeping rooms are bigger, if the room size is important to you. We are never in our room except when sleeping, so this doesn't matter.
    --More time to enjoy 1 location and all it has to offer, as you stay in the same location multiple days. Jamaica has a lot to offer, and a 1 day port only allows you to experience a small amount of what Jamaica offers.

    DCL Cruise advantages over Beaches:
    --The entertainment can't be beat on a DCL cruise
    --If you have a child (especially an older child, such as preteen or older) who isn't adventurous, such as water skiing, scuba, then the DCL cruise options are much better.
    --Outside of the unlimited active activities that Beaches offers, DCL cruise activities far outbeat the kids club activities at Beaches. My kids would get board sometimes with the Beaches programs.
    --DCL takes you to different ports which gives variety.

    In my opinion, both of these type of vacations are great choices for the family, and they are both unique in their own way. When I do a vacation on the ocean vacation, I would definitely choose an all-inclusive like Beaches vs. the hotel stay and pay for everything. And when I do a cruise vacation, I choose none other than DCL now (as I have tried others, but DCL is the best!).

    My youngest daughter is very active, so she prefers the Beaches style, as she goes from sun up to sun down doing all the various active sports. Now she is 9, which the kids club doesn't do these things, so you know I must be active with her, which sometimes is wearing, but well worth it.

    My oldest daughter (13) loves the DCL style of activities, which this year she will get to enjoy the teen club for the first time. She enjoys the movies, the tourist stuff, the entertainment, etc.

    But either daughter would be elated with either choice of vacation, which generally we try to do 1 of each every year (or every other year if we do something else instead).

    Just my thoughts from an experienced traveler who has done both styles of vacations multiple times, and looking forward to a 15-day Disney Panama Canal cruise in May 2008 :yay:

  9. roliepolieoliefan

    roliepolieoliefan DIS Veteran

    Dec 4, 2000
    We've done both also and no offense to any previous poster, I really don't think you are going to get a biased opinion on this board. If you asked the same question on the Beaches message board, you would get totally different answers.

    We have been to Beaches Turks and Caicos twice and a DCL (4 night) also.

    DCL has alot more structured activities. Have to be here at this time and so on. ( But thats the way cruises are for the most part).

    Beaches is laid back, Yea there aren't as many activities but sometimes relaxation, unlimited food and alcohol , plus a very uncrowded beach and pools aren't a bad thing. It all depends what you're looking for.

    My kids (7 and 2) at the time LOVED the kids clubs at Beaches. We actually had to threaten the 7 yo to spend more time with his parents. :rolleyes: There is a gameroom with unlimited video games, all included. There are waterslides, a restaurant just for kids, plus adult only restaurants and bars also.

    We are doing a 7 night DCL in 2 weeks and yep you're right we can easily do Beaches cheaper. The kids want to try another DCL a 7 nighter this time since we've never done one.

    But next year, we will probably go back to Beaches. We love to relax, take in the sun and just do whatever. We don't like having to be structured. Since I didn't book our DCL 2 years in advance we have 2nd dinner seating. I also have to worry, are we going to get it changed, and if not is my 4 yo going to stay awake?

    I know we'll love DCL because we love Disney and DD is a Princess freak, but after this DCL we will probably just stick to the parks for our Disney fix and Beaches to relax.

    They are both great vacations. It just all depends what you want.
  10. TexasGirl

    TexasGirl DIS Veteran

    Jul 19, 2003
    We have done 5 DCL and wanted to try something new. We did not do Beaches. We almost did. We actually had them reserved (Beaches Negril) and ended up switching to FDR Pebbles.

    It was myself, DH, DD 7 and DS 2. We LOVED the vacation Nanny. What a difference that made to the enjoyment of the vacation. My DD LOVED the kids activities. I loved the relaxing pace...not go, go, go.

    It was CHEAPER than a DCL. That was a plus.

    I think it was about a tie for me between DCL and the FDR Pebbles all inclusive (Trewlawney, Jamaica) We did Pebbles in July and DCL in Oct.

    My daughter actually said she preferrred the all inclusive but it was close for her too. Food was no comparison. DCL wins hands down.

    My DH much preferred DCL. Both are great. I'd love to try a FDR resort again.
  11. djarhansen

    djarhansen Mouseketeer

    Nov 20, 2006
    Thanks everybody....lots of good points. My kids are 12, 7 and 5 and of course my boys are more go go go and would love all the adventurous activities and my daughter is more laid back and at a slower pace so would love to just relax on a raft in a pool. I will say that my oldest just walked into the room as I was reading your posts and the look on his face when he saw what I was looking at and then he said "are we going on another DC"? It was priceless! He had the time of his life on the last one! He loved the kids clubs so much, we never saw him. On the last day of the cruise when we were on CastAway Cay, I was running around trying to get some pics of him b/c I had none of him yet b/c he was always gone!!
  12. birkner

    birkner DIS Veteran

    Jan 22, 2006
    I agree with your post completely. As an aside, we are also going on the WB Panama Canal cruise. You should come by our thread and introduce yourself. We are a terrific bunch!!
  13. imsetuc

    imsetuc Experienced DISer

    Oct 17, 2007

    Thanks for the compliment.

    I have visited the WB Panama Canal thread. My only issue right now is there are what seems like dozens of pages posted everyday, and not time to read and sift through them all. You all are having a great chat time there, and I don't want to hinder it. I suggested on the thread another thread for info and a thread for the chatters, but that post quickly got buried as well.

    I hope as the cruise date draws closer it will become more informational about the cruise and each other, and not just a chat thread, as I don't have time to read through it all. But if people enjoy it, let them do it.

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