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When to Arrive For Your Disney Cruise
By Savvy Diva

 

Here is a great tip when planning your Disney Cruise: Arrive the day before!
Your DCL ship is going to leave the port at its designated departure time, whether you are on it or not. Now, I fully believe that your vacation, aka stress-free time, should start the moment you leave the house! So why stress about travel beyond your control?
Airlines are not perfect. Traffic is never perfect. I have heard of several people and families that missed their ship because their flight was delayed. Sometimes travel insurance covers these incidents, and sometimes the person can catch a new flight to the next cruise port. But why stress about this in the first place?
Besides the idea of being stress-free, there’s also squeezing in the maximum amount of fun on the cruise ship. The ship typically begins boarding at 11 am for a 4 pm departure, so if you are able to arrive at port in the morning, you can have lunch on the ship or just go ahead and jump in the pool before everyone else!
Every port is different, so do your research. I prefer departing from Port Canaveral in Florida, which means flying in to MCO Orlando. Orlando’s airport has a Hyatt Regency right there in the main building! You can fly in, walk into the hotel & check in. Simple. Orlando’s airport is pretty big and there are lots of places to eat and shop, including a Disney store! Or you could take advantage of the Hyatt’s rooftop pool. I am not endorsing  Hyatt in any way; it’s just the simplest to get to. There are lots of great hotels close by the airport, and most will provide transportation to and from their hotel for free. You could also stay at one of the hotels in Port Canaveral and enjoy the ocean air that much sooner. Another tip: Wait until the last minute and use a travel site like Hotwire to book your hotel for the night & get a great discounted rate!
Did you know that you can take your own snacks, drinks, and alcohol on board a Disney Cruise? There are restrictions, so please check the DCL website before you go. Here’s my next tip: Hire a taxi to take you to one of the close grocery stores, like the Publix or WalMart that’s about five miles away. Once there you can purchase the things you couldn’t take on the plane with you, like a bottle of wine or Pepsi products (DCL is Coke exclusive).
Here’s another tip: Add a Walt Disney World stay before your cruise! This is where a travel agent would come in handy. Spend the night before your cruise in one of Disney’s great hotels, or plan several days ahead and enjoy the parks!
Life doesn’t always allow it, but if you can, schedule that extra day before your cruise. You won’t regret it!
Ready to book your next Disney vacation? Contact Patricia Payne from All for Dreams Travel here for a free quote! All for Dreams Travel is an Independent Agency with Gateway to Magic Travel, an  Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, and best of all, her services are completely free to you!!

Savvy Diva is a huge fan of Walt Disney World & the Disney Cruise Line, and she's all about saving money and making vacations stress-free. She lives in Kansas City, Missouri with her husband and son.