Have you ever taken a Disney Cruise? Do you want to go someday but not quite sure about the real cost? I am going to share how to save on a Disney Cruise. These tips will help you determine ALL of the costs associated with this type of trip.
Do Disney Cruise Prices Go Down?
I can’t say what the future of travel will be like, but based on my past experiences, when it comes to booking Disney Cruises for our family, the least expensive times to go are mid-to-late January through February.
After the new year is when you usually see the price go down.
The most expensive times to take a Disney Cruise is around and during the holidays, and also summertime because that is when many schools have their summer break.
We got lucky one year and found an incredible rate for a weeklong cruise on the Disney Magic in February only 6 weeks before sailing.
Disney Cruise Line: High Price But Worth the Cost
Let me start by honestly telling you that Disney Cruises are very much on the expensive side. Most of that can be explained in the high level of service and overall experience Disney delivers, which is why this type of trip should be included on your travel bucket list.
When you book a Disney Cruise you know what the up-front costs are. Unfortunately, there may be unexpected charges on your bill that could potentially break your Disney Vacation budget (unless you use some budget-friendly Disney World tips).
We all know ending a Disney vacation is hard enough as it is, but who hasn’t looked at their bill on the last night of a trip to find surprises they hadn’t planned on?
Not to worry though. As long as you take these five things into consideration before buying your Disney Cruise Line package, you can come in under budget and ease your transition back into reality.
How to Save on A Disney Cruise
These are the 5 things that will impact your budget the most. Follow my tips for each one and you’ll maximize your budget.
1. Budget For The Cost of Travel
This may seem self-explanatory, however, it’s sometimes not so simple. You might count your airfare without giving it a second thought, but don’t forget about the other charges associated with it.
Everything you pay for before and during the flight should be counted in your Disney Cruise budget. This includes the Starbucks run before a flight, meals between gates on a layover, in-flight entertainment and more.
Bottles of water, snacks, books, and magazines all add up, so plan on it.
Also, don’t forget the cost of Uber, gas, or long term parking either.
You can search for flights, Uber, keep track of travel expenses and more thanks to some amazing free travel apps.
2. Plan for Tips in your Disney Cruise Budget
This is something that can surprise a lot of people, especially if they haven’t been on a cruise before. First, make sure you have cash on hand and a budget for tipping those who handle your luggage (Disney themed suitcases of course).
Be prepared to shell out at least a couple of dollars per bag for anyone who takes them off your hands.
Aside from that, there is a whole team that is assigned to you during the cruise.
Disney automatically attaches the gratuity to your final bill, so be prepared to add it to your budget. You are free to pay more in the form of cash in envelopes supplied to you, or see customer service before your final day to alter the amount.
The recommended gratuity as of January 2020 is $13.50 per person, per day.
3. Prepare for Alcohol/Fine Dining Costs
The food (even 24-hour room service) is all inclusive on Disney Cruise Lines. However, alcohol is not included and costs more. Be sure to budget how much you intend to drink on the trip.
Depending on what you order drinks could cost around $10-$15, or they offer wine and beer packages for an additional cost. The top shelf stuff will be considerably higher of course.
There is also an added charge for dining at Palo, which is absolutely worth it, considering the level of the food and customer service experience there.
Palo is included in my top 4 things to do on a Disney Cruise, along with a few other things you will want to know about.
4. Save On Disney Cruise Line Souvenirs
You want to know what type of souvenirs you want, how much room to leave in your luggage and how much you expect to pay on Disney themed gifts.
Of course, prices vary, depending on what you intend to purchase. For an idea of product pricing, you can shop comparable items at ShopDisney.com
5. Add Port Expenses to Your Disney Cruise Line Budget
Finally, make sure you leave some room in your budget for things you plan to do while at port.
Whatever you expect to buy would be included in your overall budget and factored into the amount you are prepared to spend on your room.
It’s a really good idea to thoroughly study the ports your cruise will take you to, so you know what you want to do and how much additional money you will need.
Click here to see an overview of Disney Cruise Line Ports and things to do at each location.
Check the prices and book port adventures after you have reserved your Disney Cruise vacation.
What To Buy For Your Next Disney Cruise
Now that you have an idea on how to save on Disney Cruise Line vacations and have these budgeting tips, it’s time to start to planning.
Here are a few items you might want to purchase for your first (or next) Disney Cruise vacation:
- Hidden Mickey’s Go To Sea
- Mickey and Friends Lanyard with Detachable Coin Purse
- Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line 2020
- Custom Personalized Door Magnets
- Collapsible Water Bottles