Disney cruises aren’t cheap, especially compared to other standard cruise lines. But when it comes to Disney cruise cost vs. value, fans and experts agree that Disney cruise prices are well worth the experience you get. Keep reading to learn more.
How Much Is a Disney Cruise: Average Prices
Experts found it difficult to pinpoint average Disney cruise prices. “The cost greatly varies based on the stateroom type, length of the cruise, itinerary offered and time of year,” said Kristina Gulbin of The Enchanted Traveler, an authorized Disney vacation planner. “That being said, Disney Cruise Line does tend to price higher than some other cruise lines.”
The Costco Travel website tends to have the lowest prices on flights and cruises. Here are the price breakdowns for a Disney cruise:
- A May 2024 five-night cruise to the Bahamas on Disney Magic, with a stop at Disney’s exclusive Castaway Cay, is priced at $960 per person. This price is for the Inside Stateroom. This package also comes with a $140 to $165 Digital Costco Shop Card.
- The price can vary depending on your stateroom — the same trip in a Suite Stateroom would cost $2,875 per person, while a Balcony Stateroom runs $1,285 at Costco Travel.
On the Disney website, prices are a bit higher. Here is the cost breakdown for a family of four — two adults and two children:
- A similar cruise to Castaway Cay for four guests, leaving out of Fort Lauderdale, starts at $4,463.
- Disney offers close to 500 cruises on the website, with the cheapest price for four guests starting at $1,598 — roughly $400 per person — for a one-way, two-night cruise from Sydney to Brisbane, Australia.
Disney and Other Cruise Lines Comparison
By comparison, a five-night cruise on Royal Caribbean around the same time of year, with stops at Coco Cay and Nassau, started at just $360 per person with a $25 Costco Shop Card.
Just as tickets to other theme parks are less expensive than Disney World Resort or Disneyland, Disney cruises cost more than competitors.
Disney Cruise Cost: What To Expect
Many families save for years to afford a Disney cruise, knowing they will have a premiere experience worth every penny. With that in mind, it’s important to know what costs are included and how much spending money you’ll need to bring on the ship.
Josh Harry of Magical Mouse Travel, noted that all dining, buffet and quick-service food are included on the ship, as are non-alcoholic beverages. Entertainment and most activities, including character meet-and-greets and Kids Club activities, are also included.
Excursions, gratuities, alcoholic drinks and Wi-Fi are not included so be sure to budget for those. Costco Travel also lists an added cost of $100 up to several hundred dollars per person for “government taxes, fees and port expenses.”
If you book directly through Disney or a travel agent, you can pay for your trip over time with a deposit of just 20% down to confirm your reservation. Disney will refund your trip up to 120 days before you sail in most circumstances.
Booking through a travel agent also gives you price protection, Harry said. “If the price goes down, your agent can modify the booking so you get the savings! However, this doesn’t apply to Guaranteed Categories or after you are paid in full.”
3 Disney Cruise Stand-Out Features
Disney cruise prices may be higher, but the experience is worth it, according to experts. Our travel agents shared some of the things that make a Disney cruise worth the added expense. “Disney offers more than just a cruise experience onboard. It’s all about the memories made with magical moments throughout,” Gulbin said.
Our experts mentioned that the entertainment and service stand out on a Disney cruise. “We all know the Disney branding, and their characters like Mickey, Minnie and Goofy in their sail away outfits. But — the true stand-out between DCL and others is two things: entertainment and service,” Harry said.
Disney is the only cruise line to showcase fireworks on the boat. The onboard entertainment is Broadway-quality, with familiar favorites like The Lion King and Frozen. You can also choose to sail during a themed event, enjoying a day at sea with the Avengers or your favorite Pixar characters.
2. Rotational Dining
Gulbin and Harry both mentioned the themed rotational dining, something you won’t find on other cruise lines. “Most cruise lines only offer one main dining room,” Gulbin explained. “On Disney Cruise Line ships, you have the opportunity to visit the three dining rooms at least once, depending on the length of your cruise.”
“Your waiter will be with you the entire length of the cruise — no matter what restaurant you are in,” Harry added. “They always remember your drink order, what you are allergic to, and any special requests you have.”
3. Fun for the Whole Family
As you might expect, Disney offers Kids Club activities. The new Disney Wish also has dedicated areas for teens. But adults are not forgotten. Knowing your kids are safe with the well-trained staff, you can escape for a romantic evening with your partner. “There are a few bars and restaurants, and certain shows, that are adult only that truly make it feel like you’re NOT on a Disney cruise,” Harry said.
If you’re looking to plan a getaway the whole family can enjoy, without the stress of a theme park vacation, a Disney cruise may be worth the cost for you. “I often find myself recommending Disney Cruise Line to families who want the Disney experience without the crowds, who may not be interested in rides, or just to enjoy a slower pace,” Gulbin concluded.
FAQHere are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions regarding Disney cruises.
- How much is a Disney cruise for a family of four?
- Depending on where and when you book, the duration of the cruise and the room you choose, a Disney cruise for a family of four starts at $1,500 if you book through the Disney Cruise website or $960 per person at Costco Travel.
- How much is the Disney Wish cruise per person?
- Disney Wish is the newest ship available at Disney Cruise Lines, offering unique amenities and experiences, including new shows, themed state rooms and a water slide.
- A three-night cruise from Port Canaveral on Disney Wish for two adults and two children booked directly through Disney runs $3,331.48, which includes the taxes, fees and port expenses.
- What is the average price for a seven-day cruise?
- Prices vary dramatically for cruises based on many factors. Using data compiled from Carnival Corp and Royal Caribbean Group, the average cruise costs $237 per person, per day, or $1,300 to $2,000 for the average seven-day cruise.
- Is it cheaper to go on a Disney cruise?
- Cruise lines like Royal Caribbean and Carnival are cheaper than Disney cruises for similar trips. However, the experience you receive on Disney Cruise Lines often justifies the added cost.
Data is accurate as of Sept. 22, 2023, and is subject to change.
Editorial Note: This content is not provided by any entity covered in this article. Any opinions, analyses, reviews, ratings or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any entity named in this article.
Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create content that’s accurate, impartial, and up to date. We fact-check every single statistic, quote and fact using trusted primary resources to make sure the information we provide is correct. You can learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.
- Cruise Fever. 2023. "How Much Does a Cruise Cost? (Total Cost)"