So muchSo much is included in the price of a Disney Cruise.  But be careful when you hear people refer to one as “all-inclusive.”  Inclusive?  Yes!  All?  Not quite.  Fear not, the items NOT included are discretionary.  Let’s break it down.

 

    • Cruise Fare – this includes cost of the cruise, meals, taxes, and port fees for each destination on your itinerary.  (Yes, it costs a lot to dock a ship for the day.  But should something arise and a port is not able to be fulfilled – rough seas, weather – you will receive a credit on your account.)
    • Food – the three Main Dining Rooms through which you will rotate each evening are all included.  Each restaurant has a different theme – Tangled, Little Mermaid, Cinderella, The Princess & The Frog, a garden in Versailles, and Animator’s Palate – one of the most exciting restaurants at sea.  And if you find you like something A LOT?  Order another.  Seriously.  No limit on how much you can have at dinner.  (Bring stretchy pants)
    • Special dietary requests – Vegetarian? vegan? GF? Keto? Paleo?  Note this in your reservation.  Your server team will be happy to accommodate you.  You can even special order with them for the following night to make dining more seamless.  Have a baby?  They will puree vegetables for your little one.
    • Buffet – the Cabanas buffet is open for lunch when you board, and breakfast and lunch most days of your cruise.  Times will be listed in your Daily Navigator provided to you each night at turndown.  You can also check the Navigator app you should download to your phone prior to sailing.  Eat up!  While selections vary daily, you will find items like crab claws/legs, shrimp, roast beef, breads, salads, sides of all ilk, and desserts galore.   The only limitation is the strength of your waistband.
    • Quick Service Outlets – Indulge in hamburgers, wraps, pizza, fruit, fries, and more at this collection of food outlets located on the pool deck.  You will even find vegetarian, vegan, and GF selections.
    • Castaway Cay and lunch – A stop at Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay, is a tropical dream come true.  Spend the day playing in the blue Bahamian waters, lounging in the sun, or snoozing in a hammock.  The day is yours!  A wonderful bbq lunch is included – locations on the Family Beach side as well as at Serenity Bay, the adults only beach.  Soft drinks, water, milk, soft serve ice cream, cookies, too!  DCL addict tip:  Grab two cookies from the buffet and head to the soft serve machine to make yourself an ice cream sandwich!
    • Cove Cafe treats – the coffee beverages are additional cost, but if you are looking for a quick snack, there is always a selection of complimentary mini pastries or charcuterie selections (later in the day) available at this adult only coffee shop
    • Beverages – There are drink stations on the upper outside pool deck and inside Cabanas.  All soft drinks, tea, coffee, water found there are free flowing and included.  Cartons of milk (yes, soy and almond, too) are available inside Cabanas.
    • ICE CREAM! Everyone’s favorite stop on the pool deck level are the soft serve ice cream machines.  Cones are readily available, and the flavors vary, but you will always find vanilla and chocolate.  Upper limit?  Um, I honestly haven’t found one yet.  In fact, I think when they see my son’s name on the manifest, they stock extra.
    • Room Service – always a big ticket item in a hotel, indulge away while at sea.  With the exception of canned soft drinks or boxed candy, all items are included in your cruise fare.  Enjoy breakfast on your verandah or catch a late night snack of warm cookies and milk before bedtime.
    • Shows – Disney is lauded for its Broadway caliber onboard shows.  You will typically have three stage shows during your cruise (they will change things up/add shows for Nordic cruises, Alaska, etc).  Currently on the Wonder:  The Golden Mickeys – a wonderful make believe awards show for your favorite characters; Frozen, A Musical Spectacular (I have seen it, it is, including the incredible way they make it snow on you in the auditorium), and the heartwarming Disney Dreams – An Enchanted Classic.  On the Magic: Tangled, The Musical, Disney Dreams, and Twice Charmed – An Original Twist on the Cinderella Story; On the Dream: Beauty & The Beast, The Golden Mickeys, and Disney’s Believe; and on the Fantasy: Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular, Disney Wishes, Disney’s Believe.
    • Special Performers – Disney attracts high quality entertainment like comedians (adult and family oriented), and musical groups throughout the ship for your enjoyment
    • Character Greetings – while some of them do require signing up ahead of the cruise (Frozen characters, etc), other character meet and greets will be listed in your Navigator – all are complimentary.  Just head to the assigned area and wait your turn to hug Stitch or bop noses with Pluto
    • Sail Away Deck Party – just after the mandatory muster drill, head topside to join your favorite characters, cast members, and fellow cruisers for an amped up party – the perfect way to sail away!  Mickey, Minnie, Goofy and the gang will be there singing, dancing, and starting your cruise off with an infectious smile.
    • Pirate Night! – Ahoy, matey – bring yer pirate gear and get ready for a fun filled night of swashbuckling!  (While not found on every itinerary, if you are sailing the Caribbean or Bahamas, you will have Pirate Night) Yes, people dress up – and I do not just mean the children.  Pirate night will have a special themed menu in the main dining rooms, a show up on deck, and the evening is capped off with a spectacular fireworks display (Disney fireworks are allowed at sea as they are specially made and biodegradable – they actually turn into fish food when they hit the water.)
    • Captain’s Reception on formal night – available on longer cruises where a formal night is listed, dress your best and head to the atrium for complimentary passed beverages and picture taking
    • Classes – your Navigator will be full of fun opportunities like learning how to fold napkins into the shapes you find at your table each evening.  Towel folding will have you making animal creations just like you find each night in your stateroom.  Animation classes, cooking demonstrations, karaoke, games and more are all included and so much fun!
    • On Demand Movies – The staterooms on the Dream, Fantasy, and Magic have your favorite Disney movies at the push of a button.  Whether you love the originals or the live action, you are sure to find your favorites available in the privacy of your cabin.  Wonder will be getting her upgrade to On Demand soon.
    • Buena Vista Theater – grab some popcorn and head in to see the latest Disney offerings on the big screen at sea.  And if you are lucky enough to be cruising when a new movie comes out?  Look for its Premear At Sea!  Movies play daily from  830am-midnite+.  Check the Navigator for listings.
    • Sports Deck – Feeling active?  Head up top to the sports deck – depending on the ship you will find basketball, even putt putt golf.  Love shuffleboard?  Head to Deck four where the equipment is always waiting.
    • Fitness Center – catch an early morning workout in the fitness center.  Great equipment and the best views you’ll ever work out to!  (Organized classes do have a nominal fee and are listed in the Navigator)
    • Bug Spray – worried about flying critters at your port stop?  Along with hand sanitizer, you will always find bug repellent available at a station set up as you disembark
    • In room Amenities – all staterooms are supplied with H2O brand Shampoo, Conditioner, Body Lotion, and bar soap.  Concierge level provides Elemis Shampoo, Conditioner, Body Wash, Lotion, and Bar soap.  Your stateroom host will replenish it each day as you use it.
    • Kids Clubs – with the exception of the nursery for the smallest of the littles ($9 per hour), all other kids’ clubs are included!  Whether you have a 5 year old, 13, or 17 year old – there is a club for them to hang out in, make friends, do fun activities, etc.  There were cruises where we had to demand our children come back and have family dinner – that is how much fun they were having.
    • Midship Detective Agency – on the Dream and Fantasy indulge your inner sleuth as each clue, talking picture, monitor leads you to the next as you endeavor to solve the mystery!

    NOT INCLUDED

    To better budget for your onboard fun, here are items that are not included in the cruise fare.

            • Gratuities – Auto gratuities for your stateroom host and three person server team are added to your onboard account and are $13.50 per day, per person in your cabin, children included.  They may be prepaid as a credit on your account by calling DeeAna at Archer Luxury Travel, or they will simply be added and charged against your form of payment on the cruise.  Bar and Specialty beverages (like Cove Cafe) will have an gratuity added – you may add more before you sign if you wish. Note – the porters at the DCL terminals do not work for Disney, so please bring some cash for tipping them as they handle your bags.
            • DCL transportation – the buses are a great way to get from the airport to the cruise port.  They are $39 per person and must be reserved in advance.
            • Nursery time – as specified above, nursery time is $9 an hour
            • Virtual Sports Simulator – located on the Dream and Fantasy, book either 30 minutes or an hour to virtually play your faves – soccer, golf, baseball, etc
            • Alcoholic and Specialty beverages – all are charged to your onboard account, even the non-alcoholic drinks offered in the main dining rooms each evening.
            • Cove Cafe 18 and up – Inventive coffee drinks, even some “adulted” up with alcohol
            • Adult dining 18 and over – Palo (located on all four ships) is Italian and an additional $40 per person.  Remy (located on the Dream and Fantasy) is French and Michelin level fine dining.  It is an additional $125 per person.  Palo offers cocktails, wine/wine pairings.  Remy offers items such as upgraded beef, truffles, caviar, a water menu, wine, cocktails, and wine pairings.   These are additional.  And please, when tipping in these restaurants, tip according to what these meals would cost on dry land ($$), NOT on the upcharge.
            • Concession treats – boxed movie snacks, popcorn, canned drinks, beverages in special Disney themed cups are not included and may be charged to your stateroom
            • Various Classes – Mixology, Martini Tastings, Whiskey Tastings, Champagne Tastings, etc – nominally priced for the amount of alcohol provided.  Seriously, Mixology is an hour long course for $25.  You will need a nap or a deck chair when it is over!
            • Gift shops – there are a variety of shops available on all four ships (and on Castaway Cay) from duty free alcohol to Tiffanys (only on the Fantasy).  Children’s apparel is plentiful as are adult options.  And yes, Disney toys galore.
            • Vanellope’s (Dream) and Sweet on You (Fantasy) – indulge in incredible treats, soccer ball sized sundaes, gelato, and pastries.
            • Juice Bar – Located in the Senses Spa on the Dream and Fantasy, you’ll find smoothies, juices, health in a glass, and incredible views while you sip.
            • Bibbiti Bobbiti Boutique – located on all four ships, your little ones can indulge their inner Princess, pirate, Disney captain, even Star Wars character with a makeover!  Prices vary depending on package purchased.
            • Fitness Classes – various organized classes and private training are available for an additional charge.
            • Senses Spa – located on all four ships (with massages available on Castaway Cay as well), a wide variety of treatments from facials to massages to teeth whitening and fillers are available.  Head to their open house on embarkation day and enter for a chance to win a spa gift certificate!
            • Castaway Cay extras – Bike, tube, and float rentals are available on the island.  Alcoholic beverages are located at a number of bars across the island and servers roam the beaches to take your orders as well.  Cabanas are a wonderful indulgence and range from $399 – $949 (price varies a bit based on off season/in season)

          No matter what your onboard budget, I promise there is no end to the fun and adventure you can have on your Disney Cruise!  Next up?