So, you’re going on a Disney cruise! If you’re among the many first-timers taking a Disney cruise, welcome to the world of cruising! If you’re a cruise veteran, welcome back!
You’re likely to have one of two reactions. You may feel overwhelmed by the complexity that looms ahead. Or you may be lulled into a sense of complacency. We understand—before our early cruises, we wavered between these two reactions ourselves. It wasn’t until we learned more about the Disney cruises that we received a welcome splash of cold water. Armed with a boatload of knowledge from the experience of other cruisers, we were no longer drifting into uncharted waters.
We figure you don’t want a splash of cold water in your face, so instead we offer this chapter as a friendly introduction to the world of cruising with Disney. We filled the chapter with highlights and histories, as well as facts and figures. You can read the chapter straight through or jump to the sections that interest you. We’ve included articles on the Disney Cruise Line, cruising in general, and hints for first-time cruisers. We also provide comparisons with other cruise lines and Walt Disney World, fleet facts, the differences among the four ships, budgeting, money-saving ideas, and the best places to find more information. We wrap up the chapter with tips and memories.
Before you delve deeper, we want to share a secret. Yes, it’s true that you could plunk down your money and just show up. But you wouldn’t be getting your money’s worth—not by a long shot. Planning is the secret to any successful vacation. Not only do you learn the tips and tricks, but you get to start the fun early through anticipation. By the end of this guide, you’ll know more than the vast majority of your shipmates. You’ll know the way to get those coveted reservations. You’ll know the way to pack and what to bring. You’ll even know your way around the ship before you board it. In short, you’ll be cruising your way ... straight out of those uncharted waters and into the true “magic” and “wonder” of a “dream” cruise of “fantasy.”