Canadian First Time Cruise

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by canadianman30, Feb 7, 2012.

  1. canadianman30

    canadianman30 Earning My Ears

    Feb 7, 2012

    My wife and I (and 5 year old son) are planning a Disney Cruise for October 2013.

    Question about transportation logistics:
    Scenario 1
    Would it be better to fly in a day earlier, stay at a WDW resort then take DCL bus to the DCL terminal in Port Canaveral the following day (when the cruise is scheduled to depart)?

    Scenario 2
    Fly in a day earlier, then make our own way (rent a car or take a taxi) to a hotel at Coco Beach then make our own way to the DCL terminal (ie taxi)?

    What scenario would be better and more cost effective without too much hassel?

    Thank you
    Canadian Disney Fan
  2. Ted in Halifax

    Ted in Halifax Over a 2,000 mile drive from Disney!

    Jul 30, 2008

    I my opinion, both ideas are good. Never fly in the day of your cruise ... If you are thinking of WDW, they I would assume that you are going to the parks. This will add park passes to your budget, plus one way transportation (from WDW to PC).

    I would consider two ideas here: Your Scenario 2 or your Scenario 1 with more days added to make this worthwhile. The key here is finding your flight dates that are cheapest and then using these dates are the determinants of what you can do.

    The one question, I have is what time do you arrive on day 1?

    Budget wise, Scenario 2 is your best bet.

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  4. yesmylove

    yesmylove Mouseketeer

    Sep 8, 2006
    We are flying in 2 days earlier from Toronto, just incase there is a weather problem. We are taking our first cruise in April and don't want to take any changes. We are staying at WDW before and after the cruise and are using their buses to get to the port. It cost $70.00 per person return, I don't know if the fee is the same for kids. I don't know what it would cost to rent a car.
    Hope this helps.
  5. jerelle

    jerelle Jerelle

    Sep 28, 2010
    How exciting~you have lots of time to research and decide what you'd like to do.

    I would definitely recommend flying in a day earlier. Whether you stay at a resort and bus or rent a car would be totally up to you. Booking a room only at a WDW resort in October now(ish) you'd likely get a good price. If you were planning on visiting a park, then I agree with the above poster, in that you'd likely want more than half a day(this assuming your flight will arrive in the am-gathering your luggage and taking the Magical Express to the hotel usually takes us about 1.5 hrs) We didn't take Disney Transport to the pier-we rented a car(there are a few rental companies-like Budget @ DoubleTree Suites by Hilton in DTD which do one way rentals) You can take the Disney transportation from your resort to DTD and then walk across the street to the rental office-DH has done this many times and it's relatively painless.They may also do pickups-I think we did that once) Then you can drive to the Cocoa Beach office where they have a free shuttle to the port. Don't know if this is necessarily easier, but it's less costly and we like to drive ourselves.

    Likewise, you can rent a car one way from the airport and a) either do the same thing and stay at a WDW resort or b) stay somewhere in Cocoa Beach relatively inexpensively. Less travel the next day and the beach is lovely. Then you can either return the car you've rented or take a taxi to the port. Staying in Cocoa Beach is IMHO easier/cheaper to get any refreshments you'd like for your cruise, since you're not on the Disney resort.

    ** A suggestion about the parks-we like to do a day or two after we get off the ship(depending on if it is a holiday, which get VERY BUSY) because getting off that ship is so hard, that we're all happy we have something to look forward to. :)

    Have a wonderful vacation.
  6. joannalh

    joannalh Mouseketeer

    Jan 14, 2010
    I'm no expert, as we'll be doing our first cruise in March. But we're doing scenario 1. We're flying very early in the morning the day before our cruise and staying at a WDW resort but not going to a park. Then we're staying at a different WDW resort for two nights after our cruise, with one park day. There's no way I'd fly in the day of our cruise. I've had way too many delayed flights!
  7. Gigi22

    Gigi22 DIS Veteran

    Apr 11, 2009
    Coming in a day early, or two (or more) is always a good idea!
    If you only come in a day early, I wouldn't absolutely count on visiting any of the WDW parks that day, especially with a young child--the departure time of your international flight from Toronto may result in your having to get up in the *very early hours* of your travel day.
    Check in time at the WDW Resort is 4 p.m., with the availability of early check in being unpredictable at best. Your family may simply be too tired to enjoy the park experience that day.
    With the cost of park tickets, I would suggest planning to hang out at your resort pool or visiting Downtown Disney for a bit instead. If you were to come down two days early, then by all means, get one day WDW tickets and visit the Magic Kingdom on a non travel day.
    Of course, you know your family members, and their stamina best--do what you think you will all enjoy the most.
  8. Gigi22

    Gigi22 DIS Veteran

    Apr 11, 2009
    Double post, darn.
  9. canadianman30

    canadianman30 Earning My Ears

    Feb 7, 2012
    Good news everyone,

    We are now officially booked for the Disney Cruise on February 23, 2013 on the Disney Fantasy for a Eastern Caribbean cruise. Deposit has been paid and final payment is due mid December.

    Talking to our travel agent, for $100 difference we got bumped up to a Category 5 state room. She found us a room on Deck 6, 4 rooms down from the elevator mid ship. There were rooms available at the back of the ship for a Category 6. We also got a 5:45 dinning room time.

    Didnt know that for gratuities they pre charge your room key $250.

    We still have to book air fare (probably in the summer) and look into a car rental and hotels for 2 nights pre cruise and 2 nights after the cruise.

    Canadian Disney fan
  10. shillee

    shillee Mouseketeer

    Jul 16, 2002

    Congrats on booking the cruise. I am sure you will love it :) We just got off the 7 day Eastern on Saturday and I want to be back there already!

    We did 'scenario 1'...we flew in on the Friday (thank goodness as a snowstorm hit Ottawa and we were one of the last flights to get out as it was hitting). We took the Disney bus from the Boardwalk on Saturday ($70 pp for people over the age of 3). We had Magical Express to get from the airport to Disney. Paid to get from Disney to port and then port to airport (that is the $70 pp). You can always look at renting a car and driving yourself and if needed you can add the port transfers up to a week in advance was what our travel agent had told us before.

    We also ended up renting DVC points for our stay at the Boardwalk - awesome way to get a great hotel for a much better rate if there are no other deals available!
  11. CanadianDisneyDad

    CanadianDisneyDad All you need is Faith, Trust and a Little Pixie Du

    Jun 3, 2008

    We booked thru Disney on both previous cruises and flew our from Calgary on Friday, thru Toronto with a overnigh at Orlando Airport Hyatt. Then takign the shuttle to port.

    Last year the week before we left the NE got hit by some wicked storms delaying flights 2 days. We did find an alternate route thru Dallas just in case but by the time we flew it was cleared up. Out first cruise we were stuck at Pierson for 2.5 hours waiting for our connection, had that been same day we could have missed out ship. Fortunately booking it all thru Disney if a plane is late with abuss load of passengers on it they will delay the ship, as they have done in the past.

    I ALWAYS like to get there early and relax just in case something does go wrong, which I have NO control over (weather, airport delays etc).

    cheers and enjoy the cruise
  12. Fºoºz

    Fºoºz DIS Veteran

    Aug 20, 1999
    joannalh ... I like the way you think :thumbsup2

    Yes, I agree with everyone to always fly in the day before your cruise as you never know about delays etc (especially for us Canadians). The great thing is that you have lots of time to plan :surfweb: for your exciting adventure ... and there is a lot of great tips and advice to be had here :disrocks:
  13. Cobrastrike

    Cobrastrike Mouseketeer

    Feb 24, 2011
    We drive ourselves from London to Detroit on Thurs after work. Overnight at a hotel with park n fly and catch a flight out on Fri morning. When we get to Orlando we rent a car and drive ourselves to a hotel at Port Canaveral (Usually Radisson at the Port because of their awesome pool). This gives us the freedom to explore or go shopping after we check in. Sat morning we turn the rental in and take the rental company's shuttle to the cruise terminal. We've found this is less stressful as we're not worried about delayed/cancelled flights. We leave from Detroit because we've found flights to be cheaper than out of Toronto, and we can fly with Delta to take advantage of the on-board check-in at the end of the cruise (see below).

    For the trip home, we get on the DCL bus to the airport and fly back to Detroit the day we get off the ship. When we land we just drive across the border and home. Because we fly Delta to a major US airport, we use the on-board airline check-in process on the ship. The last night of the cruise you get your airline luggage tags and boarding passes for everyone. When you put your luggage out that night, Disney takes care of it up until you land at your home airport (in the US-wasn't available to Canadian airports last cruise). This means you don't have to go searching for all your bags once you get off the ship, or check them in at the airport. Also when you get to Orlando airport, you don't have wait in line at the ticket counter; just walk right to the TSA screening point, and then off to your gate. We love the how convenient this process is.
  14. PrincessTrisha

    PrincessTrisha DIS Veteran

    Dec 10, 2004
    I'd vote for the car and the hotel in Port Canaveral. You'll be able to stop and pick up pop/water/alcohol/sunscreen etc for on board having your own car and won't have to worry about flying with any liquids.

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