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Your First Day on Disney Cruise Line

Your first day on Disney Cruise Line is such an exciting experience!  As soon as you enter the terminal and see those yellow Mickey ears, you know you are in for a treat.  The Disney Cruise Line terminal in Port Canaveral is easy to navigate, and the magic begins as soon as you arrive!  Today I am going to share what to expect Your First Day on Disney Cruise Line.

When we took our first Disney Cruise, one thing I was so unsure about was the embarkation process and how the first day onboard would work.  After going through this several times on subsequent Disney cruises, I wanted to share some of the most helpful tips that I have learned over our cruise experiences.  Boarding in Port Canaveral is SO seamless, and the Disney Cruise Line terminal is magical from the minute you enter!

Pack a day bag.

Pack a day bag with your important documents and essential items you will need until mid afternoon.  Your checked baggage will arrive in your stateroom sometime after 1PM, possibly not until closer to dinner.  So swimsuits, sunscreen, IDs, etc should all be on your person when you board the ship.

Your Disney Cruise Line stateroom will be ready at 1PM or after. Until the rooms are ready, the corridors to the rooms are closed and guests cannot access them.  While you are waiting for your room, it’s a good time to go to Cabanas and have lunch, register your children for the kids’ clubs, and take a look around the ship, find where you will be having dinner that evening, and even take a swim!

Arrival at the terminal is easy.

When you enter the terminal, you are required to go through security, very similar to what you would experience at an airport.  You will need to put your carry on bags through the scanner and walk through a metal detector. You do NOT have to remove your shoes.  

Know Your Muster Drill Station.

Before the ship sets sail, everyone is required to participate in a muster drill.  The location for this will be found on your Key to the World Card, as well as on the information on the back of your door. Everyone in your family must be present, and you ALL must have your Key to the World Card.  They will go over safety procedures, lifeboat information, etc.  It is very short, and then you are on your way!

Explore the Kids’ Clubs with Your Children.

Visit the kids’ clubs and explore them with your family.  When you board the ship, you can visit the kids’ clubs and sign your kids up for them.  They will give them a wristband for access to the club during your sailing.  Also, and what we love, it is fun to explore the area with your child.  The Oceaneer’s Club/Lab, The Edge, and The Vibe are all AMAZING places.  Actually, we get a tad jealous seeing how much fun the kids are going to have in these spaces!  

Use time before dinner to unpack. 

No one likes to live out of a suitcase, especially on a cruise.  You’ll be amazed at the storage in your Disney Cruise Line stateroom! The closet has a lot of space, and there is plenty of bathroom storage as well.  After you have unpacked, you can store your suitcases under the bed. As you sail, place your dirty clothes in your suitcases each evening, and you won’t have to spend so much time packing to go home on your last night.

Don’t miss the Sail Away Party.  

Disney Cruise Line is brilliant in this regard….everyone gathers on Decks 10 and 11 for a magical Sail Away Party.  Crew members and characters begin singing, dancing, and you don’t even know the ship is moving!  It gets all the guests excited and ready for the next few magical days ahead!  We like to watch this from Deck 11, so we can have an upper view of the party.  Grab a soft serve ice cream cone, get a spot for the party, and before you know it, you are out to sea!

Have your camera ready.

The memories and magic start on arrival.  Sometimes, Mickey Mouse is greeting guests in the terminal.  You also have an option for a photo next to the Disney Cruise ship model right in the middle of the terminal!  When are boarding, they will announce your family as you board. This is a great memory! Get in front of your family and be ready to capture their faces as the Disney Cruise Line Crew is welcoming them personally aboard!  Sometimes, you may even run into a character or two while guests are boarding.  You just never know!

Your luggage will magically arrive in your stateroom later that day.  

If you are taking the Disney Cruise Line motorcoach from a Walt Disney World Resort, porters will come to your room early in the morning to retrieve your luggage and deliver it to the cruise port.  If you are driving yourself, or taking another form of transportation, luggage porters will meet you at the terminal to take your checked baggage from you.  Either way, the Disney Cruise Line crew will handle your luggage upon arrival and deliver it to your room later that day.

Sailing Disney Cruise Line will surely give your family some amazing memories!  As your family plans their next, or first, Disney Cruise Line voyage, be sure to check out more tips for Disney Cruise Line!

When you are ready to book your cruise, I’d love to work with you on that as well!  Feel free to email me at carrie@destinationsinflorida.com to plan your next trip on the high seas with Disney Cruise Line!

Carrie Hurst

Not only do I love sharing all my vacation tips and ideas here on A Princess and Her Pirates, but I also work alongside families to create magical vacation memories year after year! Email me at carrie@destinationsinflorida.com to begin the planning process, and join hundreds of families on my current guest list.

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