The good news is that cruise vacations are almost all inclusive! That means there is very little out of pocket expenses compared to a typical vacation. You don’t have to pay for meals or entertainment on the ship. Your cruise will include all your meals, shows, and activities on board. Disney Cruise Line also includes fountain drinks!
There are some expenses on the ship however. First are the required there are some expenses that are mandatory. Besides these mandatory expenses, you’ll have plenty of other options for spending your money!
Every cruise has suggested amounts for gratuities. You will need to tip your stateroom host, server, assistant server, and head server. Disney suggested the following amounts per person per night.
- Stateroom Host – $4
- Server – $4
- Assistant Server – $3
- Head Server – $1
For our next 7 night cruise, our tips total $252. Unless you make other arrangements, these will be added to your stateroom account.
If you drive to the port, you’ll need to park. Port Canaveral has very convenient parking for the Disney terminal. There are other options for parking including local hotels and remote parking lots. The parking lot at Port Canaveral charges $120 for 7 nights cruises, $90 for 5 nights, and $75 for 4 nights.
Like in the parks, Disney has photographers on the ships and at Castaway Cay that will take your family’s photo. You can purchase prints or a CD with the digital files. Purchasing the photos before the trip will save you some money. For a 7 night cruise plan on spending about $300 for all your digital files.
Your Disney cruise will visit great ports of call. While at port you have the opportunity to explore that location on your own or purchase an excursion through Disney. These excursions are organized tours catered towards cruisers. You can find tours for swimming with dolphins, snorkeling, cooking, para sailing, eco-tours, zip lines, and more. From our experience more of these range from $40-$99 per person.
You’re on a Disney ship, there is going to be tons of merchandise! You can find shirts, hats, glassware, pins, and all your typical souvenirs. Cruises also feature duty free shops where you can buy alcohol, tobacco, jewelry and more. Shopping on the ship is sales tax free! You can find good savings on items that have large local sales tax, like alcohol. Be sure to check the limits to find out how much you can bring home.
Depending on the ship, you can enjoy an incredible meal at Palo or Remy. These two restaurants offer fine dining choices for adults. There is an extra charge to eat here though. Palo is $25 per person. Remy is $75 per person.
Disney cruises include drink stations for soft drinks and water. You can also get free basic coffee and hot tea. Alcoholic beverages and specialties coffee drinks are extra.
On board Disney offers a few activities that have an extra fee to participate. These include Bingo and drink tastings. Bingo has several price points for your family to play together. The drink tastings are about $15 per person. You will enjoy samples of several different drinks while learning how to make them.
Your total budget for on board expenses will depend on your families activities. Cruises offer the ability to have very minimal on board expenses. On the other hand you definitely can run up quite a bill! Plan and budget these expenses ahead of time to avoid shock from that bill slipped under your door on the last night. You can also check your on board expenses at any time by visiting Guest Services.