How much do people REALLY spend on fish extender gifts?

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by lovewdwfun, Aug 29, 2018.

  1. ofcabbagesandkings

    ofcabbagesandkings DIS Veteran

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    I don't think you sound like a big grinch at all. This is our first and potentially only DCL trip, and I have been feeling FOMO about everything since I don't know if we'll ever have another chance. But I had to hit the pause button when I was about to sign up for FE groups because when I looked at the time and money investment before the trip, the space in our suitcase, and the time onboard to deliver the gifts, it just seemed like a lot of hassle that wouldn't be worth it in the end. I'm happy for people who enjoy it but I would rather take the same money I would have spent and get my kids one or two gifts in the onboard gift shop or at a port instead.
     
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  2. eeyoreandtink

    eeyoreandtink DIS Veteran

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    thanks! I saw sundae kits on etsy, but we prefer blizzards so went with that.
     
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  4. gilsan

    gilsan DIS Veteran

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    I have always kept my FE gifts under $10 closer to $5. I don't get individual gifts for each person I give a cabin gift. Usually, it is a magnet or two specific to the cruise and a Perler bead magnet of a favourite character for each person in the room. I like the gift to be small because we fly in and so it is easy for the recipient to pack to take home. I also don't want to spend too much money so if it does end up in the trash I didn't waste too much money on it lol. I mainly do the FE exchange for my daughter.


    IMG_9609.jpg
     
  5. mcd2745

    mcd2745 These Mickey pretzels are making me thirsty!

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    I've been somewhat surprised as well at the number of adults-only rooms that participate in FE exchanges (I don't have an issue with them, just wouldn't have expected as many as there are). Doesn't make you a grinch. The grinches are the ones who come back here after their cruise and complain about what they received. Or even worse, the ones who prior to their cruise, put out to their FE group, a list of things they don't want to receive. Both of those things take a heck of a lot of nerve.
     
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  6. Lisa F

    Lisa F is a very wise woman

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    Honestly one thing I didn't thinking about before getting the list is how much more I'd be shelling out than getting. For the kids, I gave them each two nice pins out of my personal collection (I don't trade pins anymore but I used to and I have a ton of older, well kept pins). One in their favorite character to keep, and one to trade. It did not cost me anything out of pocket now and hopefully the kids liked getting some interesting pins in their favorite character and then having a pin they could trade for something else they liked.

    But for the adults I had to buy stuff and admittedly it was because I didn't grasp it at the time, but I was thinking in terms of staterooms, not number of people and was a little put off by having to purchase like 23 or 24 "adult gifts" for 9 staterooms when my own "haul" was less than half that. that is what sound grinchy to me and it was just my own stupid miscalculation. I was thinking more in terms of a fun thing for my kid to do and I found myself shelling out a couple hundred bucks for adults I didn't know and never met and didn't find it a whole lot of fun! I'm sure all of those people were perfectly nice people and there was no "minimum amount set" and no other rules that others mention but the whole thing made me feel grumpy. but it was my own fault for thinking about it in terms of 9 staterooms and not "people." live and learn!
     
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  7. remlap

    remlap DIS Veteran

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    We have never participated in Fish Extender gifts before because we live on the West Coast and we didn't want to take time to deliver gifts on the two night cruises, and the longer cruises required flying and I wasn't going to pay to check a bag if I didn't have to. We finally signed up for a FE for the 2019 Panama Canal cruise departing out of San Diego as we could just Amtrak to the ship. Then we switched to the 2020 west bound departure from New Orleans. Since we had already had started the FE gifts we are going to continue on the WBPC and probably one-way check an extra bag. However, if anyone is expecting a $30+ gift from us, they will be very disappointed.
     
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  8. Jnayv

    Jnayv Earning My Ears

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    So thankful I came here and searched for fish extenders. I was one step away from signing up. Had all these crafty things planned...... I will toss the money somewhere else. Thanks to all who shared their experiences. So sad a high price and expectations have ruined a simple novelty.
     
  9. Karin1984

    Karin1984 DIS Veteran

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    I didn't participate on my cruise as I was travelling with hand luggage only. I probably won't participate next time because of trying to keep my house as clutter free as possible. And I am terrible at DIY or just finding decent gifts in general.

    I would like to do some kind of local candy / cookie etc exchange. Then I at least know what to bring. Dutch stroopwafels are usually a hit with US guests. ;-)

    The FE on my cruise was organized via Social media and I didn't hear any disappointment afterwards. Some were definitely impressed with some of the gifts. And kids seemed to love a personalized little magnet one guest had made.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2019
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  10. lindsay0526

    lindsay0526 Mouseketeer

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    Our cruise this June is full of my family, so the aunts are handling the FE exchange for the kids. There are only 7 kids, so it’s relatively easy, but I am trying to keeping it at $2/kid/night (still that adds up to $75 for our 5 night trip and most likely it will be closer to $100 once it is all done).

    Some of my ideas have been:
    • a magic towel from the dollar store with a Mickey head soap from Etsy
    • a glow stick sword (dollar store) with pirate tattoos for pirate night
    • an ice cream set- red cups, black spoons and a little container of red, black and white sprinkles (I’m not worrying about chocolate syrup...)
    • a vintage Disney comic
    Even if we weren’t doing it in a group, I would probably have done it by myself anyways. I do little gifts for the kids when we go to DisneyWorld, so I’m used to doing this for my kids. I don’t want to get into a group and receive a bunch of candy/sweets (there’s plenty on the ship) and I don’t want to get into a group where there are “expectations of a certain amount.” I like to sprinkle pixie dust my own way. :tinker:
     
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  11. lovewdwfun

    lovewdwfun Mouseketeer

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    I am the OP here. I see this is somehow still on the front page, so just wanted to chime in again and say we ended up loving the FE exchange! We bought Mickey ornaments for each stateroom ($10 each) and for the kid exchange did Disney Pez and beach balls.


    We received some great gifts. I liked the personalized blankets so much I bought them as gifts for our upcoming Alaska cruise (about $17 each). But we got less expensive gifts and also loved them! My 2 year-old absolutely adored getting dollar store coloring books and other activities.

    I now see FEs as part of the cost of the cruise - or specifically, a souvenir budget for my kids. On my second cruise, I signed up for an family FE exchange, a kids one, and a snack one. We are a FE family!
     
  12. dcassetta

    dcassetta DIS Veteran

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    I'm sorry you felt that way about gifts for the adults in your FE group. I personally love pins, and have given them as FE gifts to adults in the past. So, if you do decide to try FE again in the future, I think adults would like trading pins just as much as the kids. And, that will save you a lot of money.
     
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  13. dcassetta

    dcassetta DIS Veteran

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    I would be thrilled to receive an FE gift like this. The cruise magnets are beautiful, and the characters are so cute!
     
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  14. lucyddr

    lucyddr Working Mom of twins!

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    To the person who said they didn't want food items, please know that your opinion certainly isn't ours. I LOVE candy bars, little Pringles cans, and other pre-packaged snacks, not cheaply purchased on the ship, our kids can enjoy in the room before bed when we don't want to leave the cabin. Plus, I don't have to deal with packing them up to bring them home!
     
  15. lady9

    lady9 DIS Veteran

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    Not sure if we were on the same cruise but we received Mickey head coasters on one cruise. We love them! We have them on our end tables. We use them and remember what a great cruise we had. I was given a make up bag that I use frequently. I am a teacher and took it to school filled with items I sometimes need-think Tums and Tylenol! plus a comb, hair ties, stain remover, etc. My colleagues call it my "Magic Bag" and know they are welcome to whatever they need.
     
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  16. Chubbasmom

    Chubbasmom Earning My Ears

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    We had plans to do this but after reading these posts we changed our mind and decided to do it amongst our group. We are four cabins in our party so we will just enjoy treating one another
     
  17. hardis5

    hardis5 DIS Veteran

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    We've done numerous times (DW managing a few that were for all and a Christmas decoration). We always tried to tailor the "gifts" to the age of the younger ones and would do gift cards or pins for the tweens, but whether craft for decorations (supplies costing when bought in smaller qty) or an accumulation of bought/made stuff, we'd end up spending $10-15+pp (or cabin with a decoration) being realistic about the costs. One time focusing on the gifts and packing the FE actually was forgotten. To us the cost was less important than hoping the recipient enjoyed the thought of (especially the young ones which is why we really participated in FE's for) and the kids enjoying seeing the FE with stuff when returning to the cabin.

    The more we sailed and we became efficient in packing in not having the bag space and seeing some of more absurd "rules" or guidelines others running were trying to put in place, a lot of the fun in participating has disappeared.

    Other PP's idea of stuffing one's own cabins FE I think is a great idea and we may try that with our youngest our next sailing though he is getting to the point of aging out of the young fun of FE's and we may just do small somethings in the cabin.
     
  18. Lisa F

    Lisa F is a very wise woman

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    my latest cruise the FE guideline is $15-20+ per cabin and no dollar store items. It's per cabin not per person but you're talking close to a couple hundred $$ to participate.
     
  19. Kennywood

    Kennywood Kennywood

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    When we participated in the FE, one of the things we gave was a custom CD. It had songs relevant to cruising and also the ports we would visit. Mixed in with those songs, we also added the song clips from the ship's horns. It took a while to make the first one, but all the other ones were easy.
     
  20. TestingH2O

    TestingH2O DIS Veteran

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    We got a CD like this once and loved it. DD actually still asks to listen to it when we are getting close to cruising.
     
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  21. KELLY

    KELLY DIS Veteran

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    We are doing a one cabin mickey exchange gift and the tsum tsum exchange. We are on the cruise for 10 nights and the limit is suppose to be 25-30 a state room. I went over and spent 50.00 but there is 4 people. Also the tsum tsum exchange is four cabins so that was another 50.00. When you break it down it is about 15.00 each. I may pixie dust a few cabins as well. But 10 cabins is a lot and not something I want to do. It sounds great but one cabin is good for me. There are other options our Cruise there is a lot of different exchanges.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2019

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