by Military Diva
The Disney Company has offered generous discounts to members of the U.S. Military for most of this century. It is easy to locate details and pricing for the Disney Parks Armed Forces Salute room and ticket discounts. You can do a quick internet search and find page after page offering information.
But the details of the Disney Cruise Line Military discounts have always been more elusive. You could spend hours on the DCL site plugging in various dates and destinations and still come up with nothing! It has led most cruisers to believe there weren’t any discounts to be found.
However, that is not the case. Disney Cruise Line does offer significant military discounts. According to official Disney details, the discount is limited to 50 staterooms per cruise. That doesn’t necessarily mean every cruise will have 50 staterooms. It means the maximum number of staterooms won’t exceed 50 per ship. In my experience, it seems as if these discounts are offered at the last-minute as a way to fill open staterooms on current sailings.There really doesn’t appear to be any rhyme or reason to the discount offered, and they are very hard to predict.
Thankfully, the Disney Company has made it a bit easier to locate these deals!
Members of the military can now navigate to the Disney Cruise website, scroll to the bottom of the page, click Special Offers under “Cruises and Destinations” and then click ” Special U.S. Military Rates”. (Or use this link!!)
You can now view current military specials offered on upcoming Disney Cruises! This new page highlights available cruise dates, destinations, booking windows (for example book between April 23-April 30), and eligibility restrictions. Clicking on a specific cruise offer also details the ship, room category and an estimate of cruise fare for two guests. And the best part, this page is updated with new sailings on a regular basis. The chore of finding military discounts on a Disney Cruise has become so much simpler!!
Let’s take a look at what a Disney Cruise Discount offers.
Who is Eligible for a Disney Cruise Line Military Discount?
These special offers are available to all Active and Retired members of the U.S. Army, Air Force, Marines, Navy, Coast Guard, National Guard, Army Reserve and DoD. Spouses of these members are also eligible to use this discount.
What Identification is necessary to prove eligibility?
Active and retired members of the military must show current I.D. upon Port Arrival. Activated members of the United States National Guard and Reserves must also show active duty orders. (Must have been activated by January 1st of the previous year.) Spouses must show Active Dependent I.D. (and orders if active National Guard or Reserve).
How many staterooms can be booked at this rate?
One!! Exactly one! Regardless of who books the stateroom, active member or spouse, this offer is limited to ONE (1) stateroom per active or retired military family.
How much of a discount can I receive?
Well, this is a trickier question that takes a bit more research. You can quote a sailing at full rate and then re-quote the exact same sailing to compare prices. Remember that cruise fares are lower the further out you book and military rates seem to be announced approximately two months in advance. So the comparison would only be based on today’s rates. It is not a true comparison based on early booking or compared to any other special promotions. But the rate still offers a significant discount and a great excuse for more of a last-minute escape!
So what is the catch? Well to begin, those wanting to use the Military Special must be flexible. Dates offered are typically within the next two month period. (That being said, guests might want to be sure they have a valid Passport on hand when they begin looking for their cruise.) Secondly, while members of the Military are not limited to inside staterooms, not all types of staterooms are guaranteed to be available for a particular sailing. Again flexibility in choosing a discount over a specific stateroom is key. (Honestly, I would prefer to have the $800 for port excursions or a future cruise over an updated stateroom anyway!)
So now that you know how quickly you can locate your next Military Discounted Disney Cruise, let’s get booking. Update that passport, pack your bags and get sailing on the vacation of your Dreams!