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Fantasy: second opinion needed - too big? Too crowded?


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Our biggest disappointment was Castaway Cay (talk about overcrowded).

 

That's funny. We didn't find Castaway Cay overcrowded at all:confused:. And we went in the middle of the summer. It was my favorite part of the cruise.

 

But then again, we sailed Magic not Fantasy.

Edited by awaywego0000
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I've noticed the shortage on the RCI board too. I hate to be pessimistic, but is it possible it is a 'convenient' way for RCI to cut down on costs... 'we just can't get them' so that they don't have to offer them to the many that would order it...there by lowering their own costs...

 

This was meant to go on escargot thread...

 

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Our biggest disappointment was Castaway Cay (talk about overcrowded).

 

That's funny. We didn't find Castaway Cay overcrowded at all:confused:. And we went in the middle of the summer. It was my favorite part of the cruise.

 

But then again, we sailed Magic not Fantasy.

 

I suppose it is all relative. We are used to Half Moon Cay so for us Castaway seemed like a madhouse. Won't stop us from going again, just will know what to expect next time.

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  • 5 months later...
My wife wants to do a Disney cruise, largely on the recommendation of her sister, who is a Disney fanatic. I am trying to keep an open mind, but am having the expected reservations: too many kids, too many mice, etc. We are a 60 yo couple.

 

The Caribbean itineraries are less than inspiring, but the ones we're looking at are for the Fantasy. I can sort of live with the kids and mice, but my main fear is the 4000 pax. Most of our cruising has been on HAL, a few on Princess, one on Celebrity. The size of ship we're most comfortable with is in the 1200 - 1900 range. We tried the Emerald Princess and at 3600 found it very overcrowded, with insufficient deck space and facilities for the load. Just got off the Noordam, which at 1900 pax was pretty much maxed out for the size of hull and number of decks.

 

Disney is known for handling (and hiding) crowds well on land, IME, but is it the same on these mega-ships? Is it too crowded and congested compared to the average HAL or Princess ship? Can we get away from the bustle without hiding out on the verandah all day?

 

Comments appreciated. Thanks.

 

So we have done our cruise on the Fantasy. Here's my impression, for what it's worth.

 

Firstly, as with everything in life, it's all about expectations and relativity. To enjoy a Disney cruise one must definitely reset one's expectations. If you're after the full-on, high energy, intense, loud, musical, entertaining, crowded, child-infested Disney experience, you won't be disappointed. As with most things they do, Disney did an outstanding job of delivering their product.

 

Having said that, a Disney cruise is nothing like any other cruise (by design). The ship is magnificent, but is clearly a clever ruse to keep you contained and under control while their marketing machine throws everything they have at you for seven days non-stop. It is nothing like a traditional cruise.

 

The ship is the most crowded we have been on by far, with the possible exception of the Emerald Princess. On the pool decks it was never possible to walk four steps in a straight line. It is possible to get away from the crowds and intensity in the adult areas, but that doesn't save you from the intensity everywhere else on the ship, especially in the dining rooms. At most meals it was difficult to carry a conversation because of the noise. Despite going while school was in session, there were many, many school age kids aboard. By the fifth or sixth day it was clear that both the kids and the parents were exhausted and tapped out.

 

It is not something I would do again, except possibly with the grand kids and their parents along. The deal would have to include a separate cabin for the grandparents, and it would be for four days, max.

 

If you want a water-borne Disney experience, it is the right place to be. But don't delude yourself into thinking it's a cruise.

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Wow guess you don't like Disney huh? I totally disagree my wife and I have taken Disney "cruises" and have always felt relaxed! Guess it depends on your personality, if you expect complete silence and solitude, nope not going to get that wondering through the kids areas, but the adult areas are as quiet as I would want.

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Wow guess you don't like Disney huh? I totally disagree my wife and I have taken Disney "cruises" and have always felt relaxed! Guess it depends on your personality, if you expect complete silence and solitude, nope not going to get that wondering through the kids areas, but the adult areas are as quiet as I would want.

 

I agree with you 100%! We had as much excitement as we wanted and as much quiet and relaxation as we wanted. Can't wait to go again!

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Yes it is too big and too crowded. Stick with Seabourn. Small ships, no crowds, lots of great service and amenities.

 

 

I see you have been on the Fantasy twice and the Dream 3 times. Couldn't have been that crowded or too big to have sailed this class ship 5 times. :)

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I see you have been on the Fantasy twice and the Dream 3 times. Couldn't have been that crowded or too big to have sailed this class ship 5 times. :)

 

Yes they were big and crowded but I have a 7 year old that loves Disney so I have no choice! :)

 

But if you don't get to the pools very early it is impossible. They are so over crowded with kids that there is no amount of chlorine that can sanitize it!

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Yes they were big and crowded but I have a 7 year old that loves Disney so I have no choice! :)

 

But if you don't get to the pools very early it is impossible. They are so over crowded with kids that there is no amount of chlorine that can sanitize it!

 

True the familly pool does get pretty crowded, even in the off season. My daughters are 18 and 22, so we always used the adult area which was great and never crowded. I'm so happy that Disney thinks of the adults as well as the children. We never had a problem in the dinning rooms and even with all the young children, we found them to be well behaved. I applaud you to putting up with the crowds for the happiness of your little Disney fan.:D

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My wife wants to do a Disney cruise, largely on the recommendation of her sister, who is a Disney fanatic. I am trying to keep an open mind, but am having the expected reservations: too many kids, too many mice, etc. We are a 60 yo couple.

 

The Caribbean itineraries are less than inspiring, but the ones we're looking at are for the Fantasy. I can sort of live with the kids and mice, but my main fear is the 4000 pax. Most of our cruising has been on HAL, a few on Princess, one on Celebrity. The size of ship we're most comfortable with is in the 1200 - 1900 range. We tried the Emerald Princess and at 3600 found it very overcrowded, with insufficient deck space and facilities for the load. Just got off the Noordam, which at 1900 pax was pretty much maxed out for the size of hull and number of decks.

 

Disney is known for handling (and hiding) crowds well on land, IME, but is it the same on these mega-ships? Is it too crowded and congested compared to the average HAL or Princess ship? Can we get away from the bustle without hiding out on the verandah all day?

 

Comments appreciated. Thanks.

 

Reality is that going from a 1500-1900 psx ship to a 4000 pax ship is going to feel crazy no matter whether there are mice or not. Honestly, we far prefer the Magic in terms of size (normally cruises with about 2500).

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My last cruise was the Veendam, before that the Fantasy. I really liked how small the Veendam is and loved the library and computer classes on the Veendam. But Fantasy is SOOOObeautiful and high tech. There were times it felt crowded - primarily at the kids pools. If I had been traveling without my kids I would have spent all my time at the adult pool and satellite falls. They looked so relaxing! O think you would like the Fantasy and it might be a nice change, but you might want to go or the Magic - closer to the size you are used to.

 

BTW, I found the service in HAL to be, overall, noy NEARLY as good as DCL.

 

I APOLOGIZE FOR ANY TYPOS. TYPED ON MY I-pad, at a hotel bar and without my glasses supo I can't read/check my spelling.

 

Interesting! I am about to sail on Fantasy WITHOUT my DH or teenage DDs, but I will be with extended family that includes a couple of young kids. Then in July I will be on the Veendam with DH and DDs. Up until now We've only been on a couple of carnival cruises about 5 years ago. Should be interesting to compare. We will either fall in love with one of thses lines or give up in cruising altogether.

 

 

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BlueMoon,

I can't comment on the Fantasy for another 2 months, but if neither of your upcoming cruises wow you, definitely give Princess a try before you give up. We've found it to be our favorite line thus far (over Carnival and HAL, although both of those had their pros and cons).

 

Happy Sailing!

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We're seniors and going on our 3rd DCL. First Magic, then Fantasy, and going back on Fantasy in September. Fantasy never seemed crowded, and we hardly ever interacted with any kids unless we wanted to. Adult areas are great. Lots to do.

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Just off the 2/1/14 Fantasy 7N West. this morning.

Chose this "school week" figuring a good choice for 2adults.

Didn't count on the pre-school bunch.

They, their parents and strollers overwhelmed the family pool area during the day and playing in the atrium in the evening while awaiting characters & dinner, ect..

 

Cabana's , the lido buffet restaurant seemed always @ capacity.

Late dining rotation was a good choice for a quieter meal.

 

On the other hand, the Adult Areas forward and aft were great , never ever felt crowded . At times I felt bad for the entertainers in Europa areas (evening) as there seemed to be few guests attending.

The shows and movie theater also were well attended but never felt crowded.

 

Don't miss the Aqua-duck .

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IMO if you don't have kids than I would avoid the larger ships in the DCL fleet. They are set up for young families and extended families. Since you stated HAL is what you have sailed in the past I think the Fantasy would overwhelm your wife. Try the Magic for she is much better sized in my opinion and we prefer after sailing the bigger DCL ships. We even find RCL Freedom of the Seas too big for our taste BUT the kids love the extra they provide for the kids. Hope it works out.:)

 

Oddly even enough we found the opposite to be true. We've sailed both the Magic and the Fantasy and the Magic felt so much more crowded especially the kids pool area, the buffet, and the atrium parties/events. We never felt crowded on the Fantasy. There are A LOT of couples who sail DCL without children and keep coming back. DCL works hard to please those couples and although I haven't used the adults only areas (always have my daughter with me!) I hear they're really nice.

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