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Lori’s DCL Alaskan Trip Report – PREP310

Lori’s DCL Alaskan Trip Report – PREP310

Lori, her husband, their two daughters, and his parents all traveled to Vancouver for an Alaska. Their itinerary took them to Dawes Glacier, Skagway, Juno, and Ketchikan.

Post-trip timestamp: 37:48

The Basics

Lori, her husband, and their two girls (one turned 10 on the trip and one is 5) traveled with Lori’s in-laws to Vancouver from Austin. Her in-laws flew in several days before from England to travel with them.

This trip was originally scheduled for November of 2020 but was rescheduled due to the pandemic. Lori’s family had two connecting cabins and her in-laws had their own cabin.

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They will travel together from Austin to Vancouver on May 21, spend a day in Vancouver on the 22, and the cruise is from May 23-30. They will depart Vancouver on May 31.

Lori booked several private excursions for their trip and had some really wonderful experiences. The girls utilized the kid’s club often. They also had onboard opportunities booked including Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, a spa appointment, and dinner at Palo.

Flying to Vancouver (May 21)

They left at 8:45 a.m. on Alaska Airlines to Seattle and connected to Vancouver. It was a very tight connection, but they made it! 

They rented a car and arrived to their hotel, the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre.

They got some food and made lots of use of the playgrounds in the area. It was a great travel day. 

The kids had some trouble with the time change and the fact that it didn’t get dark until very late, but they did okay.

Vancouver (May 22) 

Lori and her family spent some time at Grouse Mountain. She, her husband, their older daughter, and father in law did the ropes course. They got lunch at the top of the mountain. 

It was a GREAT day. They loved it. 

They also went to pick up some groceries – wine and bottled water. 

That evening Lori and her husband went on a date night to Top of Vancouver – a revolving restaurant with wonderful views. They really enjoyed the views but the food wasn’t memorable. 

Board Ship (May 23)

The kids woke up at 5:40 a.m. They dropped the rental car off and then Uber from the rental car location and the port. This was the best Uber driver that Lori has ever had! 

They dropped off their bags to get checked and walked over to where they needed to check in. They were sent to the covid testing line at 10:34 a.m. Lori and her family check-in was earlier than their in-laws, but they were all able to go together.

They took their covid tests at 11 a.m. and received their results at 11:30 a.m. After this they went to another check-in line to be sure that they had all of their documents. The check-in process was difficult because some of the information from online check-in had disappeared. 

From there, they went to security. After that they went to homeland security to have their passports checked. It took a little longer for Lori’s in-laws because they are from England. 

After that, Lori thought that they were almost done and were giving the documents to board the ship, but her in-laws were stopped because their Visa information wasn’t entered and needed to be re-entered.

From dropping off the luggage until walking on the ship was about 90 minutes. They were finally walking onto the ship at 12:23 p.m. Everyone was very hungry and happy to be walking on the ship! 

Lori’s family is in a deluxe ocean view on deck 2 – they have an adjoining room with their children. Her in-laws are about 6 cabins down from them, completely coincidentally! 

They were all so hungry that they went right to the buffet. Because they were early, the buffet at Cabanas on the 9th deck was relatively empty. The buffet was smaller than she expected, but there were great options, especially for the kids! 

The challenge was that they were the only people there so they got interrupted by a lot of cast members asking if they wanted to order a drink. 

After their meal, they went to drop their bags off at 1:28 p.m. and their rooms were available to enter at 1:30 p.m. Their bags began arriving within minutes. They had all of their bags by 2 p.m.

Their next stop was the pool. They were in the pool for about 20 minutes in order to watch the safety video for the muster process. They had to go to their muster station, get scanned, and watch the video. It was a very streamlined process.

After that it was time for the sail away party! It started at 4:30 p.m. and the kids had a blast dancing and seeing the characters. Lori’s kids loved seeing the characters. As soon as the show ended, the horn blew, and the ship began moving! 

They went over to the kid’s club for a few minutes to see everything before dinner at Tiana’s Place. They were placed right next to the stage and it was perfect.

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Dinner was very good. Lori has some delicious Thanksgiving food. They also were able to sit together with their in-laws. The Disney entertainment during dinner was really perfect. It made it an interesting experience for the children. 

After dinner they went to their room for bed. 

Day at Sea (May 24)

Lori’s daughter woke up at 6:40 a.m. for her birthday! She and her dad went to the gym to get some energy out. Thankfully, Lori’s younger daughter got some sleep. They were on deck 2 with an ocean view room

They went to the buffet for breakfast and it was good. They went to meet some characters and check out different parts of the ship. The Disney App would only show where a character would be but you didn’t know what character it was until you arrived. 

The characters were so frequent and didn’t have to wait long at all to meet a character. They were available on the 3rd floor and 4th floor at staggered times, making it easy to walk between the two spots. 

The guest services line on the first day was very long and slow. There was only one person working and everyone had a question. A lot of times the information you are looking for is in the app. Lori learned that waiting until the afternoon on the first day was a must lower wait time. 

In honor of Lori’s daughter’s 10th birthday, both of her daughters had appointments at 10 a.m. and 10:15 a.m. at Bibbidi Boppidi Boutique. The girls wore their princess dresses. There are 4 chairs in the boutique and the girls had chairs next to each other. 

The Fair Godmothers in Training did an incredible job staying in training. They did the whole experience and had all of the same packages available in the parks. The girls got the $99 package because they had their own dresses. It was a great start to the birthday! 

They were done just before 11 a.m. and went to the atrium to meet more characters. Lori booked the photograph package and she’s very glad she did. They met Daisy in the atrium and it was a great experience. 

Lori looked on the app and saw that in the Kid’s Club there was a pajama party with Goofy! It was wonderful. While the girls were in the Kid’s Club Lori and her husband went to the cafe in the adult area. They got pastries and coffee, enjoying some time without the kids.

Then Lori took her older daughter to a presentation with a naturalist. They learned about whales and she enjoyed it. Unfortunately her younger daughter had a bit of a meltdown. She was very tired and took a nap. 

When her daughter woke up, they all went to the Royal Court Royal Tea. It was very expensive but they were able to use some Disney math with onboard credits from rebooking. It’s $220 per kid and less for the adults. The girls got a Cinderella doll that Lori found to be very scary. 

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Lori would not recommend booking the Royal Court Royal Tea because it was very expensive. In addition to the doll, they also for a picture, charm necklace and bracelet, some bags, a journal and pen. They also were seated with strangers, which was a bit of a surprise.

Their table had 7 people at it (Lori’s family of 4 and another family of 3) and the treats they brought they only had 3 of each treat. They were very confused about why they didn’t bring treats for everyone. 

The kids ate the treats and the adults each got a scone, which was a lot of money for not a lot of treats. The princesses did come out at the end, but by then the girls were ready to go. 

The girls wanted to leave so that they could go to bingo. The best part was that Lori’s older daughter won bingo on her birthday! It was very entertaining. 

After bingo they went back to their room and there was a very weird smell in their room. Lori could smell it but her daughter could smell it as well and her eyes started turning red. She called maintenance to come out and do something about it.

They went to sit in the hallway and while they were out there, some cast members walked by and got a fan to help air out their room. Finally someone came and was able to get a specialist to come check out the room.

They went to dinner and during dinner her husband went to check on things. The smell had gotten worse. He went to the guest services desk and told the person to go to the room and smell it. 

During their dessert they were moved to a different room on deck 7. They were in a similar room and everyone was very nice. It was a pain in the neck to repack and move all of their things. It took about 2 hours to pack up and move their room. 

The girls saw the golden Mickey with her in-laws while Lori and her husband moved rooms. It was a big bummer to miss everything. Once they got everything moved to the new rooms, they went right to bed. 

Dawes Glacier (May 25)

The excursion today was just with Lori, her husband, and their oldest daughter. It started at 12:30 p.m. and they met in the theater. They needed to bring their passports. They got on the small boat and couldn’t even see the glacier. 

They could see little pieces of ice chunks as they got closer to the glacier. They saw a sea otter, an eagle, and seals! They were able to get very close to the glacier. It was really amazing.

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They were on the boat with about 75 other people, so it was crowded, but it was really cool. They were delayed and were supposed to get back on the ship at 2:45 p.m. and didn’t get back on until 4 p.m. 

They don’t get off the boat, but they get very close to the glacier. They will be taking a small boat out to the glacier. It will just be Lori, her husband, and their oldest daughter. 

Lori had a spa appointment for 3 p.m. that she missed, but they were able to move it to another day. While they were on the excursion, there were characters on the deck with the glacier in the background. Their younger daughter and in-laws were able to wait in line and get some photos.

That night there was a 30 minute Frozen party on the deck. They are not able to do fireworks on this itinerary, but the girls loved the characters. It was a great production. 

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Their dinner that night was in Triton’s dining room. 

Skagway (May 26)

Today Lori had a private tour booked. The ship docked around 6:30 a.m. and they got off the boat early. Their tour guide was about 50 feet from where they got off, which was perfect. They got situated in the vehicle and were pulling away at 7:45 a.m.

Lori had booked this tour for the 6 of them from Fight Tours by Locals. She found a tour guide that is an Alaskan native to give the private tour. 

The tour was perfect. It was wonderful to have it tailored just for them. They saw a black bear and the tour guide pulled off to watch the bear playing. It looked like a postcard! 

Lori cannot recommend the private tour enough. It was so wonderful. After the tour, they went back on the ship and dropped the girls off in the kids club. Then Lori and her husband went back out to do some exploring in Skagway.

Lori expected it to be very touristy, but it was very unique. After shopping and exploring, they went back on the ship and their dinner this evening was at Animator’s Palate. Everything was great. 

The Disney service at dinner is so wonderful. They remember everything and you only need to tell them something once. Animator’s Palate was the girl’s favorite meal.

Juno (May 27)

The weather was absolutely beautiful today. They got up and got some coffee before their tour. 

Lori booked directly with Road Runners. It’s a private wildlife whale watching tour. They will be picked up in town and dropped off back in town. 

They saw a lot of eagles, which was just magical. They also saw whales and the boat was perfect. They’d booked a 4 hour tour but the motor was causing some problems. They ended up coming back in 2.5 hours and they were only charged for that.

The tour was plenty long enough and was wonderful. They got back to the ship and ordered some uncrustables and fruit from room service. The girls went to the kid’s club again and Lori and her husband went to Palo.

The food was incredible and they had the chance to talk to the chef, which was really wonderful. They got to see the Frozen stage show that night and it was so good! Elsa was wonderful and Olaf was played by a Broadway star! They got to see him speak the next day, which was really neat.

Ketchikan (May 28)

Lori and her husband had a spa appointment at 8 a.m. They did the Couple’s Choice package. It was lovely. They got to watch the ship dock in Ketchikan. The whole experience is about 2.5 hours. 

While they were at their spa appointment, Lori’s in-laws had the girls and they also went to a pajama party in the kid’s club.

They got off the ship around 11 a.m. and it was cold and rainy Alaska weather. Lori thought that their sea plane tour would be canceled because of the weather, but that’s how the weather is in Alaska! 

Everything was very misty and felt like a dream. This was Lori’s mother-in-law’s favorite part of the trip. It was a small plane and the plane only seats 6. 

The trip was really wonderful and felt very safe. There was only one part where Lori felt a little sick because they were going in circles to watch a black bear. They landed at one point near a lake and it was so wonderful. They were off for about 15 minutes and the whole tour was 2.5 hours.

They got back on the ship and it was very close to dinner. Their dinner that night was in Triton’s dining room. They got Tiana’s beignets as a treat and it was wonderful.

The girls went to bed and Lori and her husband had an adults-only night. They did some trivia, games, and had fun.

Day at Sea (May 29)

The girls slept in a bit. They did everything they wanted to do today. The girls went to the kid’s club for a pajama party and a story reading with a princess. They also played bingo! 

They booked another cruise at a discount while they were on the ship that day. They got coffee and relaxed, which was lovely. They also spent some time packing.

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Their dinner that night was at Animator’s Palate again. It was a wonderful dinner to end their cruise! 

After dinner they met some characters and then saw the evening show. They went back to the room and finished up packing. It was very efficient – every bag Lori put in the hallway was gone before she put the next one out! 

Disembark (May 30)

They woke up and went to the buffet until 8 a.m. They hung around until they were ready to get off the ship. They waited in the French Quarter Lounge and their bag tag was called around 9:20 a.m.

It was so easy to get off the ship. They just scanned them and they were off! The line for taxis was long so they decided to walk to get an Uber.

Lori wishes she had booked the $100 limo pick-up. Lori didn’t want to spend this much money but she wishes she’d done it. They had to walk a very long way with all of their bags. The first Uber refused to take all of them so they needed to get two. 

They went right to do their Covid tests. It took about 20 minutes for each person, so it took a while for everyone. They all got 6 negative covid tests. Lori feels very fortunate for this! 

Fly Home (May 31) 

Lori flew straight from Vancouver to the Bay Area for a work trip, but her kids, husband, and in laws flew back to Austin. 

Sadly, Lori’s daughter tested positive with covid 3 days after they got home. This is a risk that they can take. Thankfully her symptoms were mild. It was a wonderful trip and they plan to cruise with Disney again.

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