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Disney Cruise Upgrade at Port – What You Need to Know

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Do you want to know how to get a Disney Cruise Upgrade at Port? Sometimes not all of the Disney Cruise staterooms are sold out on your sailing. Therefore there may be a chance to upgrade staterooms.

Learn how to maximize your chances of upgrading at the port.

Disney Cruise Stateroom Upgrades

Disney Fantasy Deluxe Family Oceanview Stateroom Review

The first thing to note is that Disney Cruise Lines does things a little differently.

Many other cruise lines discount their higher category staterooms when it gets closer to the sailing time.

When sailing with other lines (yes I do that sometimes) I have had the cruise line reach out to me on the phone asking if I want an upgrade for a certain rate. Sometimes these deals have been much too tempting to refuse and I have taken the upgrade.

Disney usually doesn’t do this. Because most Disney Cruise sailings sell out, they usually do not offer last-minute discounts on their website.

True, it does sometimes happen that a couple of months before, they will start offering “Guaranteed Staterooms”. This means that you pick a stateroom type and you will be allocated one of at least that category.

The advantage of booking a Guaranteed Stateroom on a Disney Cruise is pricing.

Usually, it is considerably lower than the rate for a stateroom in that category when you are picking the exact location and stateroom number.

Do not ever book a Guaranteed Stateroom thinking that you will get an upgrade. It is highly unlikely that you will book an Inside Stateroom and be allocated an Outside one.

You really have no control over which stateroom you are assigned.


Sometimes you can be lucky and get a great stateroom location within that category. But always book at Guaranteed Stateroom Category knowing that you could be assigned anything within that Category.

You can of course change your mind about the category of stateroom that you have booked. Say you have booked an Inside Stateroom but decide you want to upgrade to a Verandah Stateroom.

You can do this online, or by calling your Travel Agent, up to 3 days before the cruise sails.

This is of course, subject to your preferred stateroom category and location still being available.

You will also be paying full price for the upgrade.

Want to take a chance at getting a Disney Cruise Upgrade at the port?

Then you need to do a little bit of advanced planning, and also really hope for some good old-fashioned luck.

Do I Really Want to Upgrade My Disney Cruise Stateroom?


Obviously, only you can decide whether you want to try and upgrade. The best advice is that you originally book exactly the category of stateroom that you want, so you really don’t have to think about upgrading.

How do you know which type of Disney Cruise Stateroom to book? These guides will help you decide. They all have pictures, videos and reviews of the different Disney Cruise Staterooms:

Which Disney Cruise Staterooms to Avoid?

Disney Wonder Cruise Inside Stateroom

Disney Dream and Fantasy Secret Staterooms

Checking in at Disney’s Cruise Port


Whichever port you sail from you will be given a port arrival time. Many people get very confused about what this means.

For most ports, including Port Canaveral, you will not be let into the port until your port arrival time.

For example, if Port Canaveral opens at 11 am, but your port arrival time is 1.30 pm you will not be let into the port until 1.30 pm.

Why is this important to know? If you are wanting to upgrade your Disney Cruise stateroom at the port, you have to check in as early as possible. Why? Upgrades are limited and other people want them! It is first come first served.

So check in online as soon as possible so that you have the maximum chance of an earlier port arrival time.

Will There Be Upgrades Available on My Disney Cruise?


The honest answer to this is that it is more likely that there won’t be any upgrades. Disney Cruises sell out and usually sail at capacity.

If you arrive at the port there will often be a sign saying that the Disney Ship is sailing at full capacity and that there are no upgrades available.

You can of course look online in the week before you cruise to assess your chances. If there still seem to be some staterooms available your chances could be good.

Getting a Disney Cruise Upgrade at Port


When you check in on Embarkation Day all you have to do is ask the check in staff if there are any upgrades available.

They will tell you if any are available and if there are, you will usually be shown to the Supervisors Desk which is often next to the Concierge Check-in Desk.

Here you will be told what upgrades are available and how much it will cost.

Upgrading at the port is going to cost you less than upgrading before check in. However, the cost could still be significant.

The way the actual Disney stateroom cost is calculated is by taking the amount you have already paid and applying that to the total upgrade price. So if you are upgrading from an Inside Stateroom to a Suite in Concierge you are probably going to have to find you are pushing that credit limit on your card!

What if You Do Get an Upgrade on a Disney Cruise?


Firstly congratulations!

If you have upgraded to concierge I would suggest going to the Concierge Lounge as soon as you board the ship. Not just because you will want to make the most out of every minute you are sailing concierge. You will also want to introduce yourselves to the Concierge Team and talk with them about any preferences you have.

If you book Concierge before embarkation day you get the chance to request certain things, such as a preference for drinks in your room, types of pillow, and of course, if you are sailing to Disney’s Private Island, that all-important Castaway Cay Cabana request.

However, if you have upgraded to Disney Concierge at the port you will not have had the chance to make these requests. Just go and talk to the Concierge Team and they will help you with anything they can.

One other thing to remember is that your luggage may very well have been sent to the wrong stateroom. You will have given your luggage to the porter when you arrived at the port. Your luggage tags will have your original stateroom on them – so they are probably outside that stateroom.

Just let your Cabin Steward know that you changed your stateroom and upgraded. They will be able to track down your luggage quickly for you.

Have you ever got lucky with a Disney Cruise Upgrade at Port?

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Bill Winch

Friday 19th of April 2024

You are using old pictures of staterooms because Disney did away with those red pillows several years ago. Just another one of those nice perks Disney did away with.