Please share experiences with solo Disney cruising.

Discussion in 'Disney for Adults and Solo Travelers' started by disneyandme, Jun 6, 2018.

  1. disneyandme

    disneyandme DIS Veteran

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    I am thinking of taking a Disney cruise when my kids are with their Dad. I've never cruised before so I'd like to try a Disney cruise. What can you tell me about solo cruising?
     
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  2. Disneypeach

    Disneypeach Fan of the Fort

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    I've done it many times and love it. Doing the WBTA in September solo. Seated with other "single" travelers at dinner and have found them to be fun. The cost is the biggest hurtle...DCL charges (like many other lines) a 100% single supplement. You pay as tho you are two people except for the port fees. There are lots of things to keep you occupied or just grab a lounge chair and watch the water go by. Plus, for me as an introvert, sailing on DCL gives me more in common with others on board...traveling, cruising and Disney!
    Go for it!:sail:
     
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  4. YawningDodo

    YawningDodo DIS Veteran

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    I did my first cruise this January, and it was a solo Disney cruise. I loved it and I'm planning another one for 2020!
    • It's an very relaxing vacation, especially compared to visiting the Disney parks. Particularly as a solo cruiser there's no pressure to be anywhere at any particular time apart from where your mood takes you.
    • I never felt lonely even though I abstained from data packages and had no connection with the outside world. I'm an introvert, but I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the company of all the people I met, from my tablemate at dinner to another solo cruiser who became my bingo buddy after we'd run into each other once or twice and ate together at the solo cruisin' lunch. The CMs who lead activities are very friendly, too, and seem to make a point of learning your name.
    • People in general were friendly. That partly depends on the attitude you bring into it; I made a point of being courteous to others and simply not engaging if anyone was behaving poorly, and my memories of interactions with other guests are overwhelmingly positive.
    • There are a ton of things to do if you want to keep busy. The two sea days of my cruise were packed (one of them was MDAS, though, so I expected that). There tend to be fewer activities scheduled on port days, though, so keep that in mind if you want to stay on the ship instead of going into port.
    • There are also a ton of opportunities to just relax and not do much of anything. One day I spent four hours just lounging on the top deck, drinking cocktails, reading my book, and occasionally getting up to ride the AquaDunk.
    • Food. Food everywhere. It may sound silly, but I think the constant availability of food was one of the things that made my lizard brain go "oh, I can completely relax here." No worrying about cooking or bills, just eat what you want when you want (packaged foods, popcorn, and alcohol are extra, though; rule of thumb is that if they ask for your room key you're getting charged).
    • At dinner, you may or may not be assigned to a table with other solos or other adult travelers (you can request a private table if you'd rather eat alone). Disney does not seem to seat solos with families with children. I was seated with one other solo traveler; while we were from very different demographics I found him to be a highly engaging conversational partner. My bingo buddy, who ate during the other dining period, had a table to herself--she hadn't requested privacy, but apparently they didn't have a match for her.
    • Dinner is a big affair; expect to spend an hour or more at it every evening. The dishes are generally fairly small, so you can eat multiple courses without making yourself sick and try a bunch of different things each night.
    • The shows are pretty dang good. Some are a little lighter on plot than others, but they all have great production values and the performers on my cruise were phenomenal.
    I'm sure I'm missing some points--but if you want more info on anything, feel free to ask! Also, you may get more replies if you ask about this in the cruise forum; there are a couple users there who regularly go on solo cruises.
     
  5. brad813

    brad813 DIS Veteran

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    I haven't with Disney, but with Carnival. The really great thing about solo cruising is you never have to worry about what anyone else wants to do. You can just do your own thing(I usually end up in a piano bar in the evenings, but not sure if Disney has bars on their ships). At meals in the dining room, remember you can ask for multiple apps, entrees, or desserts so you are free to try whatever you want. Like others have said, the dreaded single supplement usually has you paying for two people. I have seen lines drop it down as far as 125% before, but those deals are rare and I have never heard of Disney doing it. NCL has their own thing with Studio cabins for solos available on some ships, but that is kind of an outlier. You will probably love it, but a word of advice as a new cruiser. Take some motion sickness medicine with you of some sort. You may get sea sick until you get your sea legs, even with the stabilizers. I prefer the trans-scopalimine patches myself, but dramamine works just as well.
     
  6. brad813

    brad813 DIS Veteran

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    Just a note on dinner, it is a fine dining experience, so 2-3 hours is common. More kids will be at the early seating so if you prefer to avoid children at dinner, go for late dining and take the extra time for a light snack or before dinner drink(if available on the ship). Also, formal nights will not be on the first night or the night before disembarkation.
     
  7. YawningDodo

    YawningDodo DIS Veteran

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    That estimate seems a little long to me; the first seating is less than 3 hours before the second and they have to get everyone out and flip the tables within that time frame. At the 8:15 seating, I want to say the earliest I finished dinner and left the MDR was 9:35. Closer to 10:00 was the norm, but I felt like my tablemate and I were middle of the pack to late in terms of how long we lingered--not dead last to leave by any means, but by the time we'd be done a fair number of families would already have finished and left.
     
  8. YawningDodo

    YawningDodo DIS Veteran

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    Ah--just saw your other reply (should have scrolled up!) The Magic has a piano bar named Keys; it's the only one of the lounges to be adults-only 24/7 (the other lounges become adults-only after a certain point in the evening). On my cruise there was live music in there every night. I'm guessing the other ships have the same or similar.
     
  9. brad813

    brad813 DIS Veteran

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    It's a little different for every line, but my experience has always been at least 2 hours from beginning to end, though shore days go a little faster because they have fewer people to serve. I always get late dining and am usually out around 10-ish.
     
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  10. wisteria1019

    wisteria1019 A dream is a wish your heart makes

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    I love cruising, have sailed 25 plus times on several lines. Now that I am a solo traveler, I can't bring myself to pay double for just myself.
     

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