For a period of time during the Covid-19 Pandemic when most cruises were not happening, England had the opportunity to cruise to nowhere. Tom and his wife took a 3 night cruise out of the Port of Tilbury on the Disney Magic. This was their 7th cruise and they had a wonderful time. Tom’s wife has Celiac Disease and has always had delicious and safe gluten-free food on Disney cruises.
Arrival Day (September 14)
Port arrival time was 11:45 a.m. and Tom and his wife live about an hour and a half away. They left at 9:45 a.m. because they were experiencing a lot of rain and they were worried it would take a while to get there.
They arrived at 11:05 a.m. and they were turned away and told to return at 12:05 p.m. They waited a little while and then parked in the parking area. They waited in their car.
Then it was time to wait in lines. They had all of their paperwork on a clipboard so that they didn’t need to worry about pulling things up on their phones. This included Covid records in order to get on the ship.
Even through they were tested and showing immunization records, Tom was thrilled to be there and preparing for the cruise!
They were finally through all of that by 12:45 p.m. and into registration. They were entering the ship by 1:07 p.m. to fanfare and excitement on the ship!
They were on the ship by 1:15 p.m. and were told that their room wouldn’t be ready until 3 p.m. As they got on the ship, they were taught how to use the app because they wouldn’t use paper on the ship, everything would be run on the app.
After learning how to use the app, they were ushered to their muster station. They were required to scan their muster station in the app. The process was very quick and easy.
After going through the boarding process, Tom and his wife stopped for lunch around 1:30 p.m. at Cabanas. It was relatively quiet and they enjoyed a nice lunch. Cabanas is a buffet but instead of serving yourself, cast members serve your plate for you as you point out what you want.
While they were eating, a cast member recognized Tom and his wife from a previous cruise! They loved being recognized.
Tom and his wife took some time to explore the ship and look through the children’s and teens areas on the ship. They were impressed with the hand-washing stations and the automatic doors.
Around 3 p.m. they went to their room on deck 7 in the middle of the ship. They were thrilled to see their room and have their own veranda. Their suitcases arrived shortly after they were in their room.
They unpacked and took another walk around the ship. While they were out, Tom had his shirts pressed to be ready for dinner those few days. Tom felt this was a good use of his time to have someone else press the shirts for him.
While they were wandering around they noticed that everything was getting more busy. There were lines for the shops and Cabanas was very busy.
They decided to head to the adult-only area to avoid some of the crowds until the crowds found them there. After more wandering around and a safety drill, Tom and his wife went back to their room to finish unpacking.
Before long, it was time for their show! They had the second seating for dinner so the show was first before dinner.
Normally they love the shows and don’t want to miss them but they felt the crowds were just a little bit too much for them. This was their first time around crowds in a while. They tried the show but ended up walking around outside and watched the sunset.
They decided to have a drink before dinner so they went to the adult-only piano bar Keys. There were a few changes since the last time they did something like this – you sit with your party only and that was just fine for Tom and his wife.
After their drinks, it was time for dinner. Their first night dinner was a French, Beauty and the Beast inspired meal at Lumiere’s.
This was their first dinner out in about 18 months and it was just amazing. It was nice to share a meal in a fairly safe environment.
The dining experience was slightly different because you are seated just with your own party, but that was okay with Tom and his wife.
All the food they’ve ever had on a Disney cruise has been fantastic and this was no different. Because of Tom’s wife’s celiac disease, they typically cannot share food, but because Disney is so cautious with food allergies, it was safe for them to share.
They had a slow and leisurely dinner experience. Once they were done with dinner they noticed that the ship had set sail! They saw a game show happening before heading off to bed around midnight!
It was a long, but delightful day.
Marvel Day at Sea (September 15)
Tom and his wife woke up and searched the app to see what they wanted to do. Even though things were different than before the pandemic, there was still plenty to do! The biggest change was there was a lot less opportunity to mingle with others.
Tom got up and got a coffee from the coffee bar. Their first stop was meeting Donald Duck, Tom’s wife’s favorite. Donald was dressed as the Hulk and Daisy was dressed as Black Widow. The characters were on the stage and the photo opportunities were distanced.
From there, they went to breakfast – they’d pre-ordered the night before. There was a bit of a wait to get seated and then another wait for the food to be brought to their table. That was unusual but it was fine.
After breakfast they wandered the ship, saw additional Marvel characters, and enjoyed the ship. At the back of the ship, there was a photographer doing magic shots and the weather was gorgeous. That area was empty so they got a long experience and many wonderful photos.
They ended up in the adult area to rest. Tom’s wife brought a book and they relaxed. It was relatively chilly so the inside areas were more crowded and less people wanted to be outside.
They had lunch at Cabana’s and really enjoyed the experience. The chef always comes out to talk with Tom’s wife because of her celiac disease.
They enjoyed the ship, got a beer in the early afternoon, and saw some characters. There are characters just wandering around the ship providing great entertainment.
At 4 p.m. it was time for Tom’s martini tasting class. He learned some new recipes and got to try 4 different martinis. The class had about 20 people in it and nearly half of them were first time cruisers. Everything was very spaced out.
While Tom was learning about martinis, his wife was doing laps around the ship. He joined her and they walked together for a bit.
They opted to stay in the room and drink the champagne they’d carried on board and ordered a cheese board to go with it. Before enjoying that, they went up to the Frozen deck party and show.
It was a short 20-25 minute celebration with singing, dancing, and characters. Tom and his wife enjoyed watching the children enjoy the show. At the end it was snowing on the boat, which was really enjoyable.
For dinner, Tom and his wife enjoyed Animator’s Palate, which is a very magical dining experience. Tom and his wife really enjoyed their food, especially the dessert.
After dinner, they walked around outside for a bit before going back to their room. They’d been around a lot of people that day and they were tired and ready to be back in the room.
Last day at Sea (September 16)
They woke up and Tom enjoyed the ship while his wife got her haircut at 9 a.m. before their Palo brunch reservation.
She had a really great experience at the onboard salon. She booked her haircut on their first day on the ship.
At 11 a.m. they went to Palo for their brunch. They’d been before when it was a full buffet and it is not a buffet anymore. It was a more traditional sit-down meal.
There was an additional charge for this meal, but they loved the meal so they find it worth it.
They finished lunch at 1:30 p.m. and loved the brunch but were sad that they missed time in the sunshine.
After lunch, they took naps in the sun on lounge chairs on the deck before Tom’s mixology class at 4 p.m. He enjoyed the class very much, learning new things and trying new drinks.
Tom met his wife in their room after his class and she took a swim. After some rest, they took another walk around the deck. They enjoyed the sunshine, knowing that their days of sunshine in England were probably close to ending.
From there, they went to the show. They sat in the very back and really enjoyed the show, but the mask compliance wasn’t that great. They opted to leave just because they were just a little bit uncomfortable.
While they waited for dinner, they wandered around outside. They were really enjoying just being outside in decent weather. They headed to Keys for a drink.
They had Rapunzel’s Royal Table for dinner. It was Tom’s favorite experience of the trip. They’d done it before and while it was different, it was still very good.
The food was delicious and the experience was incredible. They enjoyed the food nearly as much as Palo!
After dinner, they watched a game show called “Match Your Mate.” They really enjoy this show and find it very funny. It wasn’t quite as funny as it usually is because of the lower crowds, but it was fun.
Once the game was over, all entertainment was over. They are used to more of a deck show and a last-night finale. Everything was a bit lower-key on this cruise but they were thrilled to be there.
Disembark Day (September 17)
Tom and his wife got up, packed up, and got breakfast. They were done with breakfast around 9:40 a.m. They were off the ship, back to their car, and driving home within 10 minutes of breakfast!
They drove home and were home by 11:30 a.m. They got home and they were very tired! There wasn’t much space to decompress because they were off the ship and back home within 2 hours.
- Tom had his shirts pressed and it is very inexpensive (around $2) to have your shirts pressed by your room attendant.
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