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We want to take a Disney Cruise BUT....

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My family and I would like to take a Disney cruise but we keep hearing about so many different problems on some cruise lines, such as fires where everyone needs to be evacuated, food poisoning, mysterious illnesses. Has anyone ever heard of a problem like this on a Disney ship? Also, if you have been on a Disney cruise, please tell us about it. My wife and I would like to take my 7 year old grand daughter, will my grand daughter have fun? Are there things she can do so my wife and I can be alone by the pool sometimes? Are there things the 3 of us can do together? Thanks.

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    Disney is the best of all cruise lines for kids of any age, so yes, your granddaughter will enjoy herself.

    Any cruise ship is at some risk for fire, norovirus outbreaks, and accidents. I'm not aware of a single food-poisoning incident, but I don't keep a tally. Illnesses aboard ships are not mysterious. They are introduced when ill people board a ship, and they are spread by bad hygiene. You have it in your power to do a great deal to prevent yourself from getting sick by using good hygiene (lots of hand-washing and lots of hand sanitizer, which is provided on almost all ships).

    Disney has a very good track record regarding safety, but I don't know if their ships have been completely safe from norovirus outbreaks; I suspect they have not.

    Just realize that you have the same risk at any resort, so it's not the ship that's the fault; it's the people who don't practice good hygiene (whether they are crew or passengers). If there's an outbreak of flu or upper respiratory virus, there's almost nothing the ship's crew or the cruise line can do about it. But again, it starts with the passengers in almost all instances.

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    The norovirus illness on the ship is the same as the stomach flu that people get on land. It is the 2nd most common illness right next to the common cold.

    You are more likely to get norovirus at school, at the work place, at church, or even at Disneyworld. All it takes is one infected person to go to that place and touch something that you will touch.

    The advice Doug gave you was excellent.

    Disney has adult areas and kid areas. If you check your kids into a kids program, you can be alone with your spouse. There are also tons of activities that the 3 of you can do together.

    Don't let the bad media about cruising deter you from cruising. I bet if you go, you will book another one shortly after you get back.

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    We took a 4-night Bahamas Disney Cruise in November 2006, and it couldn't have been better!

    My husband and I and our two kids (then 4 1/2 and 8) were accompanied by their grandparents and aunt, and everyone had a wonderful time. The Oceaneers Club (ages 4-7) and Oceaneers Lab (ages 8-12) for the children were fantastic.

    I highly recommend the cruise for you and your family--there's truly something for every age, together and separately.

    As to the health/safety issue, crew members dispensed hand sanitizer to every guest as they entered each restaurant, as well as to the kids at every Ocean Club/Lab visit. The ship seemed to be especially neat and tidy everywhere we went. There is also a well-run safety drill before each voyage.

    Enjoy!

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    Your grand daughter is seven years old and you are able to take her on a Disney Cruise. This is simple - accidents and illness can occur anywhere and Doug is right good hygiene is your best defense - Go on your Disney Cruise now. She is at a great age to experience the Magic of Disney. As she grows up there will be time for trips to national parks and other cruises.

    I was blessed to take my daughter on two Disney cruises. The first was a four day on the Wonder, when she was two months shy of seven, with three days at Disney World. The cruise was perfect and far more relaxing than the theme parks. Priceless is the only word to describe seeing her on that vacation. Their childrens programs are great with many activities involving the characters both on the ship and at their private island. They also provide a pager so you can go to the pool or other activity while the children are mesmerized by all things Disney. With so much to do, including fabulous stage shows, the four days flew past.

    Being so enjoyable, relaxing, and not long enough we did the seven day Western Caribbean route on the Magic. Again, Disney came through with a great vacation experience.

    I am sure you and your wife will have a once in a lifetime grand vacation with your grand daughter on Disney.

    If you choose Disney here are a couple things, of many I did, that someone else had suggested.

    I went online and printed photos of individual Disney Characters in their costumes. Cut and glued them at the top of white poster board cut into letter size pages allowing enough space for a great big autograph. Use a three hole punch so they can go in a notebook that you could pick up online or at a Disney Store. Get a zip lock pencil holder and fill it with Big Sharpies. The bigger the marker, the easier it is for the character to write and the big notebook to hold. I took a picture of my daughter and character when she would get their autograph. Later I put it into the notebook in a sleeve adjacent to the autograph.

    The other idea which was originally suggested as an idea for the theme parks. Go online to the Disney
    Store and check out the disneyoutletcom you could pick up some nice gifts that you can take with you on your trip for a fraction of full retail at the parks. Instead of buying things at the parks and having to carry them all day, there is a suprise to look forward to at the end of the day. You can pick things that will be handy the next day. I started the day before the trip by giving her a Princess suitcase. First night of the cruise - a personalized Princess robe. Disney gift bags make easy wrap. The savings could be used on that unique vacation only opportunity or gift.

    I reference one of my favorite quotes especially for a vacation:

    Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream.
    Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain)

    Have a great vacation where ever the winds may take you.

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    I took the land and sea cruise on Disney in December 06 and it was absolutely wonderful. My child had a great time, the kids' program is wonderful, they held a graduation for the kids on the last night and all the kids got mouse ears with a tassel and a T shirt. They did a slideshow with the kids in the pictures!

    On the Disney world part of the trip each country in Epcot had Christmas decorations and a little vignette performance detailing what that country's traditions were. The living Christmas tree was really nice, and it wasn't as crowded as I had feared (we went before Christmas though)

    The private island was like a huge family reunion; we all were acquainted with eachother by that time and the weather was wonderful.

    I asked afterwards what the favorite part of the trip was, and my child could not decide, it was all just amazing.

    Take the cruise. You will not regret it.

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    Oh, and let me second the disneyshopping.com idea, I got us Disney shirts to wear on each day of our trip, and we went to all the little shops in Disneyworld and tried on the hats for every country and took photographs of eachother wearing the hats from China, Morocco, etc.

    Just a fun idea.

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