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Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Land or Sea First? Definitely Sea!

Disney Cruise Line posted a question on their Facebook page the other day about when you combine a trip to Walt Disney World with a Disney Cruise, which do you do first?  The land or the sea?  I thought I had written about this on the Williams Family Blog previously, but could not find the post.  I know I have written about it on message boards, as it is a question people ask quite frequently.

Having sailed five times with Disney and our sixth cruise nearly two months away, we have combined or will have combined three out of six cruises with a visit to Walt Disney World.  Each time, the sea portion has been first followed by the land.  Here’s why:

·         Time.  Getting to and on the ship can take a large portion of the day.  Getting off the ship and to a Disney Resort is quick and we have been off the ship and to a theme park by 10:00 am.  Therefore, we get most out of our time by having the land portion come after the sea.

·         Money.  The sea portion of a land/sea vacation is typically more expensive—think out of pocket expenses for photos, excursions, drinks, shopping, etc.  Our preference is to have the more expensive portion of our vacation take place first, so we aren’t worried about money while at Walt Disney World.

·         Energy.  I am translating this category into sore feet.  It takes a lot of energy to traverse theme parks and water parks.  Often, my “dogs” are barking at the end of our vacation.  I would much rather have sore feet at home than on a Disney Cruise.

·         Disappointment.  It is hard to leave that ship!  Knowing that we are on our way to Walt Disney World when we disembark helps to curb disappointment.

·         Flexibility.  Cruises have distinct travel dates, but when you combine a cruise with a Walt Disney World stay, you gain flexibility in terms of return travel home.  Often, we have adjusted our stay at Walt Disney World based on when we could get the best price on return flights.  This flexibility can save time and money!

There you have it--our reasons for preferring to sail with Disney prior to visiting Walt Disney World.  Opinions definitely vary on this topic.

What do you prefer?


  1. Both! Our first cruise is coming up in August and with fixed vacation dates, we're flying to MCO on a Thursday, spending two nights at WDW (7th visit), cruising on the Fantasy from Saturday to Saturday, going back to WDW for two nights and flying back on Monday. Not my preference, but it was the only way to maximize the visit while still making the cruise. Should be interesting.

    1. BOTH is an excellent answer! You will be able to see which takes longer--resort to port or port to resort--so let us know. Have a magical trip!