More Disney Cruise Line Stories

Moms Panel Monday: A Beginner’s Guide to a Disney Cruise

Lisa Mendillo

by , Sr. Manager, Digital Integration

When you set sail for your first Disney cruise, there are so many exciting surprises in store, but to ensure these surprises are the magical kind, our Disney Parks Moms Panel Disney Cruise Line Specialists share some advice with you.

First things first, do I need a passport to set sail? Marcy G. shares, Disney Cruise Line does not require U.S. citizens to have a passport for their Bahamian sailings that depart and return to Port Canaveral, but you must have your state-issued Birth Certificate and guests over the age of 16 need to bring a government issued photo I.D. (like your driver’s license).

Now, what to pack? Nancy W. always recommends comfortable clothing for daytime activities and a swimsuit for Disney Castaway Cay. She also recommends something a little dressier for dinner time, as it is the perfect chance for a family photo while you’re all dressed up in a beautiful setting. Plus, don’t forget your pirate garb so you can join in the fun for a swashbuckling good time on Pirate Night!

What is Rotational Dining? This innovative dining experience, is Marisol L.’s favorite part of a Disney cruise. With Rotational Dining, you’ll be assigned to a different restaurant each night. But, the fun thing is that your dining service team will come with you each night, so you’ll have different restaurant, but the same servers who will get to know your preferences, and will have lots of magic in store for you!

What’s your best advice for first time cruisers? Plan early! Once your magical sailing is booked, be sure to check out all of the fun extras that are available on your sailing: everything from Port Adventures to adult exclusive dining and character experiences! First-time cruisers can begin online check-in and booking their favorite extras at 75 days prior to sailing, while you may not get all of the activities you want, but don’t be disappointed! “So much is already included in the cost of your cruise that these extras are really just that, extra fun on top of everything Disney already provides in the way of activities and entertainment,” says Marcy G.

What else should I do to prepare for my Disney cruise? Make sure you download the Disney Cruise Line Navigator App before you arrive at the port. This app will allow you to access the schedule of events, dining menus, and deck plans as well as chat with your fellow cruisers.

For more Disney Cruise Line advice, tips or to ask questions about planning your upcoming Disney vacation, be sure to visit for a personalized response from our knowledgeable panel.


  • Hi! We are going on a cruise on the Fantasy in a couple of weeks. When I went online to book some other activities, I saw that the Elsa and Anna meet and greet is a ticketed event and of course was all sold out. It appears that’s the only way to meet them on the ship. Do you know if there is any chance of getting a ticket for my daughter when we arrive on board? Do they ever open up any more tickets? I had no idea I had to book to meet a character on the ship. I would like to avoid as much disappointment as possible. Thanks in advance!

Comments are closed.