Royal compared to Disney?

richmo

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 26, 2007
We got off our third Anthem cruise a few weeks ago, our 4th is next January. We love We Will Rock You. We also like Spectra’s Cabaret. The Gift was ok but I don’t need to see it again. All the musical groups were great.
Denise
I'm hearing the same thing about The Gift. We've scheduled all three of the shows you mentioned and had to shuffle The Gift to 10 PM on embarkation night since a slot opened up for Ripcord/iFly. If we're too tired to go, I won't sweat it. Haven't had any luck getting a North Star slot prior to the cruise. Do you know if anyone has had any luck scheduling that onboard?
 

DizneyNutz

DIS Veteran
Joined
Sep 19, 2004
I'm hearing the same thing about The Gift. We've scheduled all three of the shows you mentioned and had to shuffle The Gift to 10 PM on embarkation night since a slot opened up for Ripcord/iFly. If we're too tired to go, I won't sweat it. Haven't had any luck getting a North Star slot prior to the cruise. Do you know if anyone has had any luck scheduling that onboard?
Not sure about booking once onboard, but we have actually had luck waiting at the bar where they load and getting on as walk ons. (more than once)
 

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  • 2-pointdoe

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 22, 2015
    We have been on 2 disney cruises - 7 day western caribbean and a 14 day panama canal. We just got done with our first RCL (ovation) to alasaka (8day).

    What was loved: the price of course, the food, the pools and the adult area and it did not fill crowded most of the time

    What was hated: the kids stuff
    the 9-11 club was pretty much and empty room and some kids would act up and everyone would have go just sit. There was really nothing for them to do and there were no decorations or anything basically a big empty room. nothing creative to do. The science events offered sounded promising but were a 10 to 15 minute procedure. It was also open sporadically. The bumper cars, roller skating, climbing wall and stuff were opened very short hours and there would be 100 people lined up 45 minute before it opened. Trapeze school (girls did get in) was open 1 time and accepted 15 people, there were over 1000 kids on the ship. We gave up waiting in line for the activities because it took way to long.
    The shows - well I don't really know as there were never any descriptions just something saying a time, persons name and which venue, no description of what the show might be about. We found out one was a juggling magician after the fact, my daughter would have loved that.
    The check in - this was a new ship for us and we had a hard time finding out where to get lunch and when to check in to the kids clubs etc.
    Excursion staff - both excursions we had scheduled, when we got of the ship and asked where we were supposed to meet, we were told the wrong place and different places depending on who you asked. (all RCL excursion staff)
    Library - it had books but was part of the 270 club so usually super noisy especially if they had something going on. My dad wanted a quiet place to read outside of the cabin

    I think we are a 1 and done for RCL and will try another cruise line. It just does not seem to be the right fit for us. My daughter does not need to be entertained constantly but does want a place to go, hang out, maybe do a craft or play a game (not video) and be around some other kids for part of the trip. She really wanted to do the bumper cars but after 1 hour in line and another 1 hour to go (which was going to be near the ending time) said forget it. Every time after that when we looked, the line always huge.
     

    John VN

    DIS Cast Member
    Joined
    Aug 2, 2003
    On our 2 Oasis cruises it never felt like 5,000+ people with 2,000+ crew were along for the cruise. Our Crown Loft was awesome and cost was 1/2 of a 1BR Concierge on Dream. Will be trying MSC Yacht Club later this year and next year where RCL can't touch the prices. Also have an Oceania this year for something entirely different with only 684 passengers and 400 crew.

    Sadly we're DWD on water but not WDW on land.

    Done With Disney .... but not Walt Disney World ....
     
    Last edited:

    suedon70

    Living the dream...
    Joined
    Feb 19, 2014
    Just wanted to add my two cents - I have sailed on two Royal cruises in the past but both were 14+ years ago on the now retired Sovereign of the Seas. Since 2014 we have sailed almost exclusively on Disney (7 cruises with 3 additional booked, including a 7-night leaving in 3 weeks). We love Disney but I'm getting a little burned-out on the menus, activities, etc., so I decided to book a quick 3-night cruise on the Mariner for this December for my daughter and I.

    These RCCL forums here on Disboards have been very helpful! I honestly can't wait to try it out and see if Royal is a good fit for us. I'm just excited about the slides, rock wall, variety of specialty restaurants plus Coco Cay.
     

    starvenger

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 8, 2015
    Bear in mind that 3 day trips on non-DCL ships can be more (possibly much more) of a "party" atmosphere than what you're used to.
     
  • suedon70

    Living the dream...
    Joined
    Feb 19, 2014
    Bear in mind that 3 day trips on non-DCL ships can be more (possibly much more) of a "party" atmosphere than what you're used to.
    That's understandable plus no big deal - No little kids - my daughter will be 17 at the time of the cruise and we will avoid those situations the best we can - we really aren't lay out by the pool types anyway (my fair skin prevents me from doing too much of that!). Question: does RCCL do anything special (decorations, daily events, etc.) around the holidays? We are embarking on December 20.
     

    starvenger

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 8, 2015
    My understanding is that they do but I've not been on a Royal cruise close to a holiday/event period so can't give a report on it.
     

    traveled

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jan 20, 2014
    I have sailed on Holland America, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Princess and our last cruise we decided to try Disney because people rave about DCL. I will never go on another DCL cruise, it was the worst cruise I have been on. There were lines everywhere. Adult areas were full of kids. It felt like it was way over crowded and the food was mediocre. The entertainment and the room were the only thing we enjoyed.
     

    pezgirlroy

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 29, 2016
    I have sailed on Holland America, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Princess and our last cruise we decided to try Disney because people rave about DCL. I will never go on another DCL cruise, it was the worst cruise I have been on. There were lines everywhere. Adult areas were full of kids. It felt like it was way over crowded and the food was mediocre. The entertainment and the room were the only thing we enjoyed.
    I am very curious. What ship were you on and time of year?
     
  • suedon70

    Living the dream...
    Joined
    Feb 19, 2014
    I think the size of the ship makes a bit of a difference. We were on the Fantasy two years ago and the Magic last year. We experience way more lines on the Magic than on the Fantasy.
    I concur with this. I have not sailed the Wonder or Magic yet but have sailed 7 times on Dream and Magic over the years and aside from the general pool area and Cabanas on embarkation day have never encountered unbearably huge crowds on either ship. Plus have spent much time in adult areas and kids were never an issue.
     

    mevelandry

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 22, 2013
    Disney Wonder October 2018
    Ahhh. Yeah. I've been on the Wonder (after sailing twice on the Dream). It did feel cramped and overcrowded pretty much everywhere except at the adult pool. And on Frozen night, people were running and almost pushing to get seats in the front. Not pleasant.
     

    braycon

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Nov 21, 2007
    Our cruises have pretty much been a 50/50 split between RC and Disney (about 7 on each line). When our boys were teenagers, they greatly preferred RC - we were on the larger ships and the activities and additional teenagers (girls) were a big plus to them. We really enjoy RC - will make another voyage on Freedom to the Southern Caribbean beginning Sunday - but if the price were the same, my wife and I would choose Disney Cruise Line. Our experience has not been that the DCL ships are more crowded than the RC ships. We enjoy the rotational dining, and have generally preferred Disney’s dining (including the food, not just the experience), characters, ship aesthetics, spa, service level (although both are generally very good) and, despite some other enthusiastic perspectives in this thread, we enjoy the Disney shows more. We also find Castaway Cay superior to RC’s Labadee or Coco Cay (perhaps this changes with the new version of Coco). So, although everyone is entitled to their opinion, I adamantly disagree that RC is flat-out better and certainly not - IMHO - significantly so.

    Having said all that, they definitely are not priced the same, as has been pointed out repeatedly. It’s not even close, and this really can make Disney a tough choice. Disney is welcome to charge whatever they want - and God knows they do - but the expense means we look at other options. The value equation, therefore, is more complex. RC is much more accessible: more ships, more itineraries, and also offers a great vacation. Our 7-night Southern Caribbean cruise was about the same price as a 4-nighter on the Dream. We’ve done Nassau, but never the ABC islands and never San Juan. So, three more nights, balcony stateroom, on a totally new itinerary and a very good ship? Well, we’re excited to be back on RC for this. Now, we also have a reservation for Disney’s Fantasy in 2020, but it’s a 5-night cruise that’s a bit more affordable than that ship’s typical 7-night EC or WC. We are looking forward to that, too, but boy it would be nice to be on a 7-nights. We keep hoping the new ships will drive Disney’s prices down a bit, but nothing really seems to do that.

    We are also planning to do Alaska in the future but, because we are not independently wealthy and unlikely to be future lottery winners, we will probably be sailing Princess or RC. I look at Disney’s Alaska prices, and I just laugh. I love the Wonder, but I’m pretty sure I don’t love it that much.

    In short, you can’t go wrong with either cruise line in our opinion. Really great, albeit quite different, experiences. It’s what works for you and your family. I don’t begrudge anyone their opinion on either cruise line, but the short for us is, although we prefer Disney, the Disney ticket price means we’re going to continue to cruise on RC, Princess, and other cruise lines, as well.
     

    richmo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 26, 2007
    ...
    In short, you can’t go wrong with either cruise line in our opinion. Really great, albeit quite different, experiences. It’s what works for you and your family. I don’t begrudge anyone their opinion on either cruise line, but the short for us is, although we prefer Disney, the Disney ticket price means we’re going to continue to cruise on RC, Princess, and other cruise lines, as well.
    I have to agree just about completely with your post. I've been very happy with Disney and with Royal Caribbean. The ships are great, the staff on both are really good, etc. I also agree that if the costs were the same, or even close, I'd go with Disney. But they're not. My experience has been that we can go on two Royal cruises on a balcony for about the price of one Disney cruise, interior. I will give the edge to Disney, but not for double the $, or close to it.
     

    Fuzzywuzzy

    and the wife..Cozumel/Magic/2009
    Joined
    Jun 23, 2015
    We loved DCL but decided to try Royal, just to see how it was. It was far better than expected and exceeded DCL in many areas. I doubt we will sail on Disney again unless it's a planned extended family thing. We love cruising and with Royal we can cruise every year instead of every 3 or 4. Or 5. We now have 2 Royal cruises behind us and next year's is already booked. At great vacation dollar value. Bottom line: If you are going to charge over twice as much for something you should at least be twice as good. That they are not.
     

    John VN

    DIS Cast Member
    Joined
    Aug 2, 2003

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