Disney cruises offer some great incentives to booking onboard – a discount of 10% and on board credits of up to $200 per stateroom. But there is another big change to the policy of giving discounts to guests who book a future cruise on board a Disney cruise. Now the 10% discount will only apply to selected dates as there will be block out dates. The onboard credit will still be available but if you book a Disney cruise for any one of these dates when sailing onboard any of the Disney ships you will no longer get the discount.
If you have already booked a cruise with the onboard discount for one of these dates you will keep it. That is unless you choose to move you cruise date to one of these block out dates and then you will lose the 10% discount but keep the onboard credit.
As you look at these dates of course they go over Christmas, New Year and Spring Breaks, but there are some others in there too. Coming so soon after the change to the booking policy which only allows you to book 18 months ahead for a discount and on board credit, these block out dates come as a double blow to Castaway Cay members. The 10% discount and on board credit was a very nice perk for those loyal to Disney cruises and this recent change has many people saying that they will consider other cruise lines.
It seems highly likely that when the later dates come out for 2015 there will be more block out dates announced.
Perhaps Disney cruise lines needs a rethink to the Castaway Cay benefits for repeat cruisers. At the Sliver Level ( 1 to 5 cruises completed) the benefits are pretty minimal. The gift of a Disney cruise back pack with a couple of snacks in it, really doesn’t cut it any more. On our latest Disney cruise many guests were talking about how the perks were quickly getting less and less, and how the quality of the gifts for Platinum Members just wasn’t as special any more.
Disney cruises are in my opinion still the best out there. I have sailed with many other cruise lines but still keep sailing with Disney as for me they just offer so much more. But many others are now seriously looking at other cruise lines.
What do you think of the recent changes to Disney’s policies for repeat guests booking onboard?
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Alison Meacham is the founder of EverythingMouse Disney Blog. For over 15 years she has shared her love of Disney Parks, Disney Cruises and Universal Orlando. In over 30 years of Disney Travel she has spent countless months in Disney Parks and has sailed on over 45 cruises. A British native and now a United States resident she splits her time between California, Florida and the UK. And spends a serious amount of time sailing the seven seas. She helps over 200,000 people per month follow their Disney travel dreams.