Disney Cruise Report: Getting Ready to Go

Three Disney Cruises

The following is an excerpt from the eBook Three Disney Cruises:

So we decided to take a Disney cruise. But who are we? And why did we want to go on a cruise? Before we get into the main story, here is a bit of an introduction about the whole thing.

First off, here is who we are: The Burns family – Steve, Laura, and Jaylin The Riedel family – Brant, Karen, Zach, and Katie

The two of us Burnses, Steve and Laura, had been on two Disney cruises before, and we absolutely loved both of them. Because of all the fun that we had, we often talked about going back. And our 20 year wedding anniversary seemed the perfect time to do so. It just happens that our good friends the Riedels were also celebrating their 20 year anniversary the same year as us, so we decided to make it a group trip. We had talked about whether to make it an adults only trip, but in the end, it was decided that all of the kids would go along, too. It could still be a romantic anniversary cruise with the kids around, right? Well, yes and no. But that was the plan. So we had two cruise veterans and five first time cruisers, just in case you weren’t sure about all that.

The next step really wasn’t a step at all. I suppose some people looking for a cruise would decide which cruise line they were going to cruise with. But for us, there was only one option, and that was the Disney Cruise Line. I hear all the time that the other cruise lines are just fine, and they may be. But after our fantastic experiences on our previous Disney cruises, I really can’t imagine cruising with anyone else. And the Riedels are big Disney fans, too, so that wasn’t an issue with them, either.

Once we decided on the cruise line, we really didn’t have a choice as to which ship we would cruise on. We knew we wanted the 4-night Bahamas cruise, and at the time we could go the Disney Dream was the ship making that run. Previously, Laura and I had been on the Disney Wonder for both of our cruises, and it was just fine. So we would have been happy with any of the ships. But the Dream was to be our ship, and that was fine with us, too, because it was one of the two newer ships. That meant that it was bigger than the Wonder, and that meant that it would have that cool-looking Aquaduck “water coaster” going around the upper deck. Of course, we knew we would have to check that out. Even Jaylin was excited about that part. Mainly because they had made it look cool and fun on TV.

With our general date and itinerary selected, it was time to actually book the cruise. We decided to use a travel agent, mainly because the Riedels knew someone who books cruises. In the past, I had booked our cruises online at the Disney Cruise Line website myself, and it never was a problem. But since they knew someone, I was fine with that, too, because it doesn’t cost any extra to use a travel agent. And it turned out to be a really good thing, because the travel agent took care of all the details associated with our two families travelling together – adjoining rooms, dinner seating together, and so on. That turned out to be a really big plus, although I didn’t necessarily realize it at the time. So in the future, would I use a travel agent for our next cruise? (And yes, there will be another cruise, at least for two of us. Foreshadowing the fact that we once again had a great time.) Yes, I believe I would. Because we really didn’t have to do much work at all. Besides working at our regular jobs to make money to be able to pay for the cruise, that is. These things aren’t free, you know. But as far as all of the travel arrangements, for us it was a breeze.

Up next came the stateroom selection. On our first cruise, Laura and I had an inside stateroom, which means that we didn’t have any access to the outside world. No balcony, no window, nothing. Although we did apparently have a room close to the engines, because we had a nice soothing noise to help us go to sleep each night. Some people may have objected to that, but I found it rather relaxing.

For our second cruise, we decided to spend a little more and get a window. That window was great, because we could look outside and see if it was day or night. Who knew one window made so much of a difference? We spent a good bit of time looking out that window, just seeing what all was out there.

This time around, we decided to move up again and get a verandah. That was partly determined because of the number of people in the Riedels’ room, but with it being a special occasion (our anniversary, if you forgot from a few paragraphs ago), we thought it was worth it to splurge a little bit. Besides, on our past cruises our favorite place was the Deck 4 Promenade, where we could sit and watch the water. So a verandah would be even better because we could watch the water without the constant stream of people coming by. Not that the people were ever a problem on the Promenade. But at times I did feel a little self conscious about falling asleep in the deck chair while all those people were walking by. Just in case I was snoring or something. So we were really looking forward to our own private verandah.

The rest of the getting ready stuff was just all the normal stuff. Getting Jaylin a passport. Figuring out where to stay on our way there and on our way back. Figuring out what to do when we got off the ship, because coming straight home just wouldn’t be right, would it? Making a packing list. Checking it twice. Making our final cruise payment (ouch). Waiting. Anticipating. Planning some more. And trying not to wish it away, knowing that it would go by really quickly when it arrived.

But after all that waiting and planning (and paying), the time to depart did arrive…

Get the Three Disney Cruises eBook for more!

Three Disney Cruises

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Burnsland is Steve Burns, with generous help from his lovely wife Laura. Steve is a husband, father, photographer, webmaster, writer, podcaster, artist, Christian. Steve enjoys sharing his photography, art, and stories through Burnsland.com, from the Burnsland World Headquarters in Tennessee.