Thursday, January 26, 2012

Updated 2013 Disney Cruise Itineraries

Updated 2013 Disney Cruise Itineraries

With all the addition of a fourth ship in 2012 Disney had some big decisions to make. Disney needed to figure out the best place to put each ship. Do they go to old ports where Disney has been before or go to new places? This week Disney released the much anticipated information.

Disney Cruise has changed the scheduled itinerary for both the Magic and the Wonder in 2013. First off the Wonder will be leaving the West Coast and heading back to the East Coast in December of 2012. The ship will be going to Florida and its home port will be Miami for the first part of 2013. This will be the first time any Disney ship will be sailing from the port of Miami. Once again the Magic will be headed to Europe. It will be sailing out of Spain for part of 2013. When the Magic is not in Europe she will be going out of New York and Galveston Texas. Wonder will be doing two, four, seven and eight night cruises while in Miami. Not all of the cruises out of there will stop at Castaway Cay. The Wonder is scheduled to return to the West Coast and continue its cruises to Mexico. It will also continue the cruises to Alaska and to do some Pacific Coast cruises along the California Coast.

The Dream will continue its three, four and five night cruises to the Bahamas and Caribbean as she has since she first came into service. The Fantasy will join the Dream at Port Canaveral and do seven night cruises to the Eastern and Western Caribbean.

Now I'll share my opinion of the changes in the DCL itinerary for 2013. I don't think the choices for the Magic and Wonder are the best and Disney could do better. Here are my ideas for where each ship should be.

Magic: The first of the Disney Cruise ships should do the New York and Texas cruises and/or move to Hawaii and do Hawaiian Island hopping. Another choice would be to bring the Magic to Los Angeles and do two week cruises to Hawaii. This would be a great tie in for the new Aulani Resort.

Wonder: The second of the Disney Cruise ships should stay on the West Coast. Decrease the Mexican Riviera Cruises it does or eliminate them all together. Add more Pacific Coast cruises. Go out of Los Angeles and head to Oregon, Washington and maybe Canada. Also add some of the massively popular two week cruises to Hawaii from Los Angeles. This year they scheduled one and it sold out in four days. They then scheduled a second Hawaiian cruise it also sold out just as fast. I'm not sure why they did not schedule these for 2013.

Dream: The third of the Disney Cruise ships. Leave it in Port Canaveral and continue the three, four and five night cruises to the Bahamas. Maybe add some seven night Eastern or Western Caribbean cruises.

Fantasy: The fourth of the Disney Cruise ships and not yet in service. Fantasy will come into service in March of this year. I think the current plans of seven night plus Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises are perfect for this beautiful lady.

Here are the reasons I don't think the decisions Disney has made are the best. When Disney had a ship in Europe a couple of years ago the market was soft and Disney's profit was not as high as expected. I don't think the economic situation in Europe and the rest of the world has changed enough to make a difference in the cruise market there.

I think Disney could make a better profit staying in American and/or Canadian waters. People are concerned about the geopolitical situation of the world and how volatile things are now a days. People don't want to travel to Mexico much right now because of the Drug Cartels and the violence they bring in the area. This is especially true of the Mexican Riviera. Europe has been on fire with protests. When even Prince Charles of England is at risk of being attacked while driving to a charity event, people will think twice about taking their children there. The only thing that could make the West Coast Disney cruises better would be if Disney could get an island or privet beach like Castaway Cay. I think it would also be nice if they did three and four days out of Los Angeles. Who cares where it goes as long as I get to be on them.

Disney has done a great job connecting Disney Cruises with stays at the Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland. Why not continue this success by connecting cruises with the Aulani.

Consider the safety of your children and your response to the conditions at each port of call. Will you limit what you and your child do because of reports of violence and crime? Will you have a hard time relaxing and enjoying because of fear/concern about safety? If the answer is yes to being worried about your safety think hard about if that is the destination you want to go to. You could stay on the ship while in port instead of going into a port that makes you uncomfortable. Will that upset you and cause you to feel like you missed something or will you enjoy time on the ship?

Wherever you cruise with Disney you will enjoy yourself. You will find the top level Disney service you expect and fantastic Ports of Call. Take the time to consider which Disney Cruise itinerary is best for you and your family. Make an informed decision. Check out the US State Department website for travel warnings. Talk to other people that have been there recently. Know the situation before you go.

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