Going on a Disney Cruise is a great way to meet A LOT of Disney Characters. There are several ways to snap that photo and get that autograph from your favorite Disney Character; some are impromptu, some you have to sign up for, and others you need to wait in line. You can take pictures with your camera and a cast member will be taking photos with their camera that will be available at Shutters for purchase. Plus the character’s attendant will take the photo for you with your camera so you can be in it too. Stick with me as I break down all the ways you get to meet Mickey and his friends!
Scheduled Character Appearances
Scheduled appearances will be listed in your daily Navigator. You can access the Navigator by using the free Disney Cruise Line App while you sail, or you can pick up a paper Navigator each day from guest services. The paper ones used to be delivered to your room each night, but in an effort to save paper Disney is encouraging passengers to use the online app. You can also see scheduled appearances on the digital character board in the Lobby Atrium.
The Navigator will list the time and a location that characters will be. The line will close 15 minutes after the posted time. For some characters, we planned ahead to make sure we were in line. For others, we happened to be walking by, the line was not long, so we waited.
The scheduled characters (and locations) change each day as well as the costume they are dressed in. One day you may see Captain Mickey and another day you may see Cruise Casual Mickey. Many of the characters will be out multiple times during the day.
Here is a list of the scheduled characters on the 7 night Western Carribean Cruise that took place in March of 2019;
Day 1: Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Belle, Princess Tiana, Cinderella, Ariel.
Day 2: Jessie, Peter Pan, Buzz Lightyear, Belle, Tinker Bell, Minnie Mouse, Princess Sofia, Olaf, Goofy, Daisy Duck, Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, Chip & Dale.
Day 3: Goofy & Max, Mickey Mouse, Cinderella, Daisy Duck, Chip & Dale, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Pluto.
Day 4: Peter Pan, Tinker Bell, Captain Hook, Stitch, Captain Hook & Mr. Smee, Daisy Duck, Ariel, Mickey Mouse, Belle, Donald Duck, Minnie Mouse, Cinderella, Chip & Dale, Princess Tiana, Goofy, Pluto.
Day 5: Captain Jack Sparrow, Daisy Duck, Stitch, Peter Pan, Mickey Mouse, Tinker Bell, Minnie Mouse, Captain Hook & Mr. Smee, Chip & Dale, Donald Duck, Mickey’s Pirates in the Caribbean, Goofy.
Day 6: Tinker Bell, Stitch, Mickey Mouse, Daisy Duck, Pluto, Olaf, Jessie, Donald Duck, Doc McStuffins, Buzz Lightyear, Goofy, Princess Sofia, Woody, Ariel, Peter Pan, Minnie Mouse, Princess Tiana, Character Dance Party, Belle, Chip & Dale.
Day 7: Chip & Dale, Daisy Duck, Captin Jack Sparrow, Donald Duck, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Captain Hook, Mickey Mouse, Pluto, Character Dance Party, Captain Hook & Mr. Smee, Stitch, Mickey & Friends, Sea Ya Real Soon.
On select cruise itineraries, there are special character events: Marvel Day at Sea and Star Wars Day at Sea. These special cruises can include a deck party with fireworks, encounters with the most formidable and heroic characters, themed family and youth activities, specialty food, and merchandise.
Character Experience Reservations (free)
For these gatherings, you can reserve your space before you get on the cruise. These are free events, but you need to reserve your date and time to get into the event. You can do this through the Disney Cruise Line website when you complete your check-in process and book your onboard activities. Or you can check with guest services when you get on board the ship to see if there is any availability. You can only reserve one event time for each event (for example, you can only go to one Princesses Gatherings in the same sailing).
On our last cruise, we did not get paper tickets to bring with us. The gathering reservation did show up on our Disney Cruise Line App and when we arrived at the event the cast member had a list and our name was on it. If you are traveling with multiple staterooms, everyone who wants to go to the event needs to sign up (for example, grandma and grandpa).
This gathering takes place on most cruise itineraries, sometimes there are 2 scheduled on the sailing. The event is in high demand and tickets are limited. I suggest booking this ahead of time if you want to meet the Princesses. At this gathering, you will get to meet and greet between 4 – 6 princesses. We have been able to meet Tiana, Cinderella, Belle, and Ariel. This event is usually in the Atrium in front of the grand staircase.
On most cruise itineraries you can meet the friends of Arendelle. We have done this event twice and the first time we got to meet Kristoff and Olaf. On our first cruise, my kids were kind of disappointed that Anna and Elsa were feeding Sven; but on our second cruise we got to meet Anna and Elsa.
Character breakfasts are only offered on 7 nights or longer cruises that have 2 or more days at sea. This is also a free event, but you need to make reservations ahead of time. If you are not able to get a reservation before your sail date, I recommend checking in with Guest Services while on the cruise because spots do open up when families need to cancel.
- The Disney Junior Character Breakfast is on 7-plus night cruises departing from U.S. domestic ports with a minimum of 2 days at sea. Jake, Sophia, and Doc McStuffins are typically in attendance, but characters can vary.
- VIP Character Breakfast is on 7-plus night cruises departing from non-domestic ports (including our Alaskan itineraries) with a minimum of 2 days at sea. Most sailings will include Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, and Goofy, but characters can vary.
- Character Breakfasts with Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and Pluto are featured on 14-night transatlantic and Panama Canal cruises.
Character Experience Reservations (additional fee)
Royal Court Royal Tea
This event is for Princesses or Princes aged 3 – 12. Adults can attend with their child. Cost for each child is $220 and each adult is $69 [prices as of April 2019].
Lady Chamomile and Chef Brule put on quite a show for guests where they have invited several Princesses to attend.
At this Royal Tea, there will be singing, dancing, stories, light meal, and a character meet and greet. Plus, every child receives an abundance of gifts as a keepsake of their teatime experience.
- Gifts for Princesses
Jewelry box, link bracelet, necklace with charms, a Cinderella doll, autograph book with pen and tiara
- Gifts for Princes
Royal Court cinch bag, sword and shield, pins, autograph book, and Duffy the Disney Bear plush toy
Impromptu Meet and Greets
Starting at the port, Disney Cruise Line guests can meet Mickey or one of his friends before you even board the ship! There will be a line. It moves pretty quickly and you will have plenty of time after you check in and before your boarding number is called. And yes, I asked to get a picture by myself with Pluto!
Another way we got to interact with several Disney Characters was just walking around the ship. All of a sudden we would turn the corner and there would be Belle or Goofy. We were walking by its a small world nursery during their open house time and we walked in and guess who surprised us? Mickey!
On the last night of our cruise, most of the characters were out and about snapping pics with guests. In a matter of about 30 minutes, we got our pictures taken with Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald, and Belle. And we didn’t have to wait in line for any of them!
On any Disney Cruise Line sailing, there will be multiple opportunities for you to meet and greet your favorite characters. Who are you most excited to meet?
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