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Old 02-21-2014, 09:44 PM   #1
alayne
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1st Time Cruiser - A few Questions with more to come...

Hi Fellow Disney Cruisers,

My family is going on our first Disney Cruise and I have a few questions that I can't seem to find answers too. I am hoping you guys can help me out.

It will be myself, DH and our two kids - DS9 and DD1.

1. I just read that my daughter will not be able to go in the pool because she is not potty trained. However, did I read it correctly that there is a splash area that she can get in? I'm so scared that she will throw a fit because she can't get in the pool and I will look like one of those crazy parents.
1A. If she does throw a fit and I have to drag her kicking and screaming is there some place she and I can go while my DH and DS swim and ride the Aqua Duck. I don't want to be in the room all the time.

2. We booked the Atlantis Aquaventure at Atlantis in Nassau because I thought my DS would love the Aquarium and the water park. Do they allow Swim Diapers in their pools?
2A. It says 9:45 to 3:39 - If my kids get tired and want to go back can we head back at any time? Is there a place out of the sun to let my daughter take a nap if my DS doesn't want to go back but she is tired?

3. Is there a Formal Night on a 3 Day Cruise or is it just two casual nights plus Pirate Night? Do people wear the Pirate costume to dinner or just to the party?

4. Packing - I keep finding the basic packing list but I haven't seen one that shows the "extras" yet. So here the "extras" that I have put aside for the trip but I just want to make sure I'm not forgetting anything.
Fish Extender
Fish Extender Gifts
Night Light (Disney Princess of course)
Pop Up Hamper (Mickey Mouse of course)
Magnets for the Door
2 Pillowcases and 1 Photo Mat to take to Guest Services for Character Autographs (with a Thank You gift too)
Autograph Books for the Kids to take around the ship
Spotter for Castaway Cay
Diaper Bundle shipped to the Cruise via Baby Travel Lite

NOT TO PACK ANYMORE - over the door shoe holder and power strip.

5. Castaway Cay - This is our first cruise so we didn't get a Cabana (maybe next time). So are there chairs that we can use the Spotter on or is that like saving them? I'm thinking my kids will just want to play in the sand and get in the ocean some. So I just want some place to sit and watch them play in the sand but leave our stuff so we don't have to take it with us if we want to go get lunch or play in the ocean. Is it a long walk from the beach to the bathrooms, place to eat, etc?

6. I love the Creative Board on here. But I found at Disney World the waiters, etc. had no idea what a Tip Envelope was that I had made using the designs from the board. Will the waiters, stateroom host, etc. know what these envelopes are? I love to make things like this but I don't want to waste my time if they look at me like I'm crazy.

7. We are doing a split stay - we are spending the first 6 nights at Disney World before the cruise. On Thursday morning I booked a breakfast at Ohana's at 8:55. I figured we would get there about 8:15 and see if they could take us a little earlier but if not then it would be 8:44. I booked our check in time from 12:30 to 12:45. We have our own car. Can we do this and not fill rushed? I hate to be late to anything and I don't want to stress and cause a fight with the hubby or upset the kids. However, my DS really wants to eat at Ohana's and this was the only day I could work it in.

I'm sure I will have lots more questions before we seat sail... so I hope people love to share.

Thanks for your help!
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:02 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alayne View Post
Hi Fellow Disney Cruisers,

My family is going on our first Disney Cruise and I have a few questions that I can't seem to find answers too. I am hoping you guys can help me out.

It will be myself, DH and our two kids - DS9 and DD1.

1. I just read that my daughter will not be able to go in the pool because she is not potty trained. Correct, not potty-trained = not allowed in the pools.However, did I read it correctly that there is a splash area that she can get in? Correct, there is a splash zone for the diaper crowd.I'm so scared that she will throw a fit because she can't get in the pool and I will look like one of those crazy parents.
1A. If she does throw a fit and I have to drag her kicking and screaming is there some place she and I can go while my DH and DS swim and ride the Aqua Duck. I don't want to be in the room all the time.In reality, there will be people almost everywhere onboard, except your room. Only you can answer whether she tends to spend an extended amount of time "having a fit" which would warrant taking her out of public spaces.

2. We booked the Atlantis Aquaventure at Atlantis in Nassau because I thought my DS would love the Aquarium and the water park. Do they allow Swim Diapers in their pools?
2A. It says 9:45 to 3:39 - If my kids get tired and want to go back can we head back at any time? Is there a place out of the sun to let my daughter take a nap if my DS doesn't want to go back but she is tired?

3. Is there a Formal Night on a 3 Day Cruise or is it just two casual nights plus Pirate Night? Do people wear the Pirate costume to dinner or just to the party? Typically, there will be a Cruise Casual; a Pirate night; and a Cruise Casual/Dress Up Optional night. You may wear your Pirate gear all day, or just for dinner, or dinner & pirate party, whatever works for you.

4. Packing - I keep finding the basic packing list but I haven't seen one that shows the "extras" yet. So here the "extras" that I have put aside for the trip but I just want to make sure I'm not forgetting anything.
Fish ExtenderHave you signed up for the FE exchange on your Cruise Meet Thread?
Fish Extender Gifts
Night Light (Disney Princess of course)
Pop Up Hamper (Mickey Mouse of course)
Magnets for the Door
2 Pillowcases and 1 Photo Mat to take to Guest Services for Character Autographs (with a Thank You gift too)There is a limit of 2 items per room for signing (unless you have 3 kids in one room).
Autograph Books for the Kids to take around the ship
Spotter for Castaway Cay Not sure what this is?
Diaper Bundle shipped to the Cruise via Baby Travel Lite

NOT TO PACK ANYMORE - over the door shoe holder and power strip.

5. Castaway Cay - This is our first cruise so we didn't get a Cabana (maybe next time). So are there chairs that we can use the Spotter (????)on or is that like saving them? I'm thinking my kids will just want to play in the sand and get in the ocean some. So I just want some place to sit and watch them play in the sand but leave our stuff so we don't have to take it with us if we want to go get lunch or play in the ocean. Is it a long walk from the beach to the bathrooms, place to eat, etc? If a "Spotter" is something saying "this chair is taken" then, no, you cannot save chairs/loungers/umbrellas on Castaway Cay. There are lots of chairs/loungers/umbrellas on the beach. It's not difficult to find new "digs" when you change locations.

6. I love the Creative Board on here. But I found at Disney World the waiters, etc. had no idea what a Tip Envelope was that I had made using the designs from the board. Will the waiters, stateroom host, etc. know what these envelopes are? I love to make things like this but I don't want to waste my time if they look at me like I'm crazy. Most likely. DCL provides tip envelopes for tipping at the end of the cruise, so many CMs are aware of what they are.

7. We are doing a split stay - we are spending the first 6 nights at Disney World before the cruise. On Thursday morning I booked a breakfast at Ohana's at 8:55. I figured we would get there about 8:15 and see if they could take us a little earlier but if not then it would be 8:44. I booked our check in time from 12:30 to 12:45. We have our own car. Can we do this and not fill rushed? I hate to be late to anything and I don't want to stress and cause a fight with the hubby or upset the kids. However, my DS really wants to eat at Ohana's and this was the only day I could work it in. As long as you are at the port to check in by the all aboard time, you may arrive then. Your PAT is more a "no earlier than" time than a set window you "have " to arrive during.

I'm sure I will have lots more questions before we seat sail... so I hope people love to share.

Thanks for your help!
My responses in red.
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Old 02-21-2014, 11:06 PM   #3
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You don't mention the ages of your children but have you considered booking your younger child into the nursery? It's fairly inexpensive and my 10 month old grandson loved it. We booked him in for dinners and especially when we went to Palo for brunch. That being said the splash area is fun and your other child might want to be there too.

Castaway Cay also has a splash area for younger children to play in. And you are allowed to but your stuff on the chairs and save an area for your use there. As the pp said there are lots of chairs and umbrellas.

Have fun!
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Old 02-21-2014, 11:17 PM   #4
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1. Splash zone for the diaper crowd is called "Nemo's Reef". It looks really neat and full of fun things to do. I sneaked in one day just to get my feet wet. I was there less than 2 minutes. All of the little ones were having a blast. There is a "privacy wall" around the area. There is a small slide, spring "fish" to ride, water squirting from the floor, etc. Definitely "Google" it to look at pics.

6. Tip envelopes:

I make these also. People very quickly figure out what they are. I've never had any reaction other than "thanks" for them. I make them for everyone that gets a tip, including porters, room service, room host, dining staff, etc.

So, make them if it makes you happy. They will figure them out.
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Old 02-21-2014, 11:19 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alayne View Post
...
1. I just read that my daughter will not be able to go in the pool because she is not potty trained. However, did I read it correctly that there is a splash area that she can get in? ......
Per DCL website:

"Children who are not toilet trained are welcome to enjoy Nemo's Reef and Mickey's Splash Zone, where they must wear swim diapers. Please note, swim diapers are not permitted in the pools, hot tubs or spas, the AquaDuck and the AquaLab."

This is for the Dream

Quote:
Originally Posted by alayne View Post
...

2. We booked the Atlantis Aquaventure at Atlantis in Nassau because I thought my DS would love the Aquarium and the water park. Do they allow Swim Diapers in their pools?
2A. It says 9:45 to 3:39 - If my kids get tired and want to go back can we head back at any time? Is there a place out of the sun to let my daughter take a nap if my DS doesn't want to go back but she is tired?
...
Found this for Atlantis Aquaventure:

"Diaper-aged children must wear swim diapers, which can be purchased at the outdoor retail huts."

I don't know how tall average 9 yos are, but take this into consideration:

"You must be at least 48” tall to ride most water slides."

Atlantis Guide
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Last edited by auntlynne; 02-21-2014 at 11:34 PM.
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Old 02-21-2014, 11:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alayne View Post
...On Thursday morning I booked a breakfast at Ohana's at 8:55. I figured we would get there about 8:15 and see if they could take us a little earlier but if not then it would be 8:44. I booked our check in time from 12:30 to 12:45. We have our own car. Can we do this and not fill rushed? I hate to be late to anything and I don't want to stress and cause a fight with the hubby or upset the kids. However, my DS really wants to eat at Ohana's and this was the only day I could work it in. ...
Ohana sounds like fun - and probably is filling. I say don't worry about making it to the ship in time for lunch - just get there by the 2:30 check-in requirement (shouldn't be too hard, since you're less than 1.5 hrs? from WDW to port). Arriving later at the Terminal often means shorter lines (sometimes nearly empty! unless you get there right when the WDW Resort buses arrive). And parking at Port Canaveral is right across from the Terminal.

Last edited by auntlynne; 02-21-2014 at 11:35 PM.
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Old 02-22-2014, 01:27 AM   #7
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On your excursion, whether you can go back early or not will totally depend on how it is run. One excursion we did they put us in taxis and we could head back when we were ready in another taxi that was flagged (and the cost was covered). On the other two we were on buses that came back at a specific time. You may want to call DCL and ask specifically.
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Old 02-22-2014, 07:22 AM   #8
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Thank you for all the information. I knew I was going to find the answers I needed.

I have joined my FE group on the boards. There are 12 rooms in our group but they aren't very chatty.

My kids are 9Boy and 1Girl. I think she will be very happy in the Nemo area and I'm glad it is kind of separated from the other areas. That way maybe she want be so worried about being with her brother.

We did book time at the nursery and most of it is around dinner time. She doesn't sit for very long at dinner. I plan to pack little "play" bags with different things in them to see if it will help keep her busy until dinner comes or we are finished.

She has been going to a Mothers Morning Out program two days a week since August. She cries when I leave her every time but the teacher says it only last a min after I leave. I'm hoping that is the same on the cruise.

I found some additional information about our Atlantis excursion. Looks like they have buses that run every 30 min to take you back during the day. This will be great. If the kids get tired we can just catch the bus back and let them rest before dinner.

I found the Spotter on Etsy and EBay. It is a Mickey embroidered sign that says Ahoy There with our name. I use a Stroller Spotter when we are in Disney and my 9 year old finds it helpful. I thought if I did one of these on our chair/umbrella then if he went down a little to play with other kids he would see to come straight back to us when he was done.
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Old 02-23-2014, 11:05 AM   #9
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Another question: how much time is my child (the one year old) really going to spend in the room playing? I saw someone post that they brought toys for their kid and had the stateroom host remove some of the furniture so they could have a play area. My daughter is an outside kid. She loves to run and play and roll down the hill. She doesn't like to sit and play with toys or watch TV. I planned to bring a coloring book and stickers to entertain her while we were getting ready but do I need toys?!?! I hate packing things and not using them.
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Old 02-23-2014, 09:29 PM   #10
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If she's going to be happy running around and just "playing" around the ship I'd just bring a few things to keep her busy while you are in the room getting ready for things, etc. I might not let her use crayons and stickers while getting ready when you might be distracted because in my experience, one year olds don't tend to keep them on the paper! And you don't want to deal with crayon and stickrs on the desk drawers. I'd do the crayola magic ink stuff. Or just bring a couple of her favorite small toys that packs small. Stacking cups are one that comes to mind.
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Old 02-24-2014, 12:01 AM   #11
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There is a really fun putt-putt course up on the sport deck. Not sure if your little one would like it or not, but worth a try if it is not busy.
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Old 02-24-2014, 06:57 AM   #12
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Can you pre-purchase your photos like you do at Disney World with the Magic Maker (old photo pass Plus)?
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Old 02-24-2014, 11:44 AM   #13
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Can you pre-purchase your photos like you do at Disney World with the Magic Maker (old photo pass Plus)?
Yes. But I do not believe there is a discount for pre-purchasing, so you may want to just wait and see if you want the full package or not.
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Old 02-24-2014, 12:58 PM   #14
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Can you pre-purchase your photos like you do at Disney World with the Magic Maker (old photo pass Plus)?
Photos onboard are handled by Shutters (a private concessionaire), not PhotoPass. You can pre-purchase packages at http://www.mycruisephotos.com/DCL/. Prices are the same as onboard.
However, onboard you can purchase individual photos only, if you wish.

PHOTOS
Individual prices are:
8X10 - $19.95
6X8 - $12.95

The packages are 10 ($149.95) and 20 ($249.95) photos. On select cruises there is a 15 photo package instead of the 20 photo one, but I don’t have the price for that.

The length of cruise CD cost varies with length of cruise. The prices I've seen are:
7 night $349.95; 4 and 3 night $229.95. For an additional $50.00 you can get all the photos on the CD printed. Special CD prices – 14 night $399.95/$75.00 for prints, plus 100 CDs max for cruise.

The 10 & 20 photo package can be either prints or the CD with 10 or 20 photos unlocked for your access once home.
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Old 02-24-2014, 02:00 PM   #15
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I just thought of something that might help me to stay more organized.

I thought I might pack small ziplock bags for changing time and meal time.

That way I don't have to take the big back pack in to the restroom or dinner.

So does anyone know if I place wipes into ziplock bags will they dry out too fast to make this work?
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