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  • [Question] Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

    Disney Cruise line as it stands now has a very small fleet of 4 sheeps 2 ships Magic and wonder have a capacity of 2400 while 2 ships Fantasy and dream have a capacity 4,000 each. It also took 11 years before the public saw the larger ships such as Dream debut. Will we have to wait another 10 plus years or based off the success and demand of Fantasy and Dream could we see an expansion sooner?


  • #2
    Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

    10 Years, maybe, but I would guess more likely only 5.

    With the addition of ships Disney is spreading out, testing the water so to speak. Alaska is popular, but they canceled Mexico, so they don't really have a ship's worth of demand on the West Coast, but probably could use 2 ships going to AK. A full time Europe Ship may require north and south and south ships or 1.5 if you don't do the north in the winter. The Gulf/Carribean/Bahammas ships do well, and can probably handle 3-4 year round. The problem is these are all northern hemisphere cruises, and the demand drops during the winter.

    With the Dream supply grew but demand hasn't quite kept up. So it will be a while before they see a new ship or two as being a solid gold idea. Maybe in a couple years demand will increase, they will have routes they can confidently sell, and look at adding more floating hotel rooms.
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    • #3
      Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

      Turns out Disney has an option to build two additional ships with the shipyard in germany who knows when they will use that option. Right now Disney is not a big player in the cruise market 4 ships makes its a speciality cruise line but if they were to hit 6-8 that definitely could change things. Its also a good sign that the ports in florida have improved to allow for larger ships.

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      • #4
        Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

        I doubt there will be any expansion soon.

        Due to reasons we can probably all guess at, DCL has decided to recall all their ships to FL for the 2014 season. There are no planned west coast, Texas or NY itineraries. There will be a 2014 season in Europe, but other than that all other cruises will be out of Port Canaveral or Miami.

        My speculation is that DCL's popularity hasn't been what they expected for their non-FL itineraries. With four ships in FL I think it might be a challenge to keep them full.

        With that sort of situation on hand, I personally don't see them expanding in the near future.

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        • #5
          Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

          Originally posted by Roger55 View Post
          My speculation is that DCL's popularity hasn't been what they expected for their non-FL itineraries. With four ships in FL I think it might be a challenge to keep them full.
          I think their problem is that the FL cruises have the biggest selling point of all thier cruises. Castaway Cay. Castaway Cay is nearly perfect. Fully owned, not shared with other owners. Governed by people who will let you mold it as you see fit, not burdened by tons of enviromental laws. Inside a barrier island chain which reduces rough water but has deep water on the other side to sail the ships through. In a mostly favorable climate setting, not too cold and rarely too hot.

          While it would not help Alaska since the weather is generally cold and a little wet to boot, in the NW and while not as bad but less reliable to be warm in northern Europe they can't build a great private island port of call. For Soutern Europe they probably could and if they rebuilt a cruise going to the south from LA(San Pedro, CA) they could probably find a private island or cove. Granted there isn't a good and cheap island near LA like Castaway Cay is from Cape Canaveral, less than a days sail away. The other problem is near Europe there aren't uninhabited islands to simply buy and develop so they would have to do something like a private beach on a less developed side of an island.

          Holland America has an island like this, which I thought was awesome. It doesn't have a dock and uses tenders. CC has a dock and you just go on and off the ship as you please. If found CC far more favorable because of that.

          I've also been to Royal Carribean's Labadee. It was only ok. It's on part of Haiti and just a beach. The locals are employed and also sell you stuff on the beach which was a major low. It's one thing to give them jobs, but have them hock thier goods was not completely pleasant. It does have some hilly mountains going back into the land which gave for nicer vistas than the flat Bahamaian island of Disney and HCL. This was also a while back and I've heard that a lot was added to this port.
          Castaway Cay is really nice, and I really enjoy going there with family.
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          • #6
            Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

            Originally posted by swampymarsh View Post
            I think their problem is that the FL cruises have the biggest selling point of all thier cruises. Castaway Cay. Castaway Cay is nearly perfect. Fully owned, not shared with other owners. Governed by people who will let you mold it as you see fit, not burdened by tons of enviromental laws. Inside a barrier island chain which reduces rough water but has deep water on the other side to sail the ships through. In a mostly favorable climate setting, not too cold and rarely too hot.

            While it would not help Alaska since the weather is generally cold and a little wet to boot, in the NW and while not as bad but less reliable to be warm in northern Europe they can't build a great private island port of call. For Soutern Europe they probably could and if they rebuilt a cruise going to the south from LA(San Pedro, CA) they could probably find a private island or cove. Granted there isn't a good and cheap island near LA like Castaway Cay is from Cape Canaveral, less than a days sail away. The other problem is near Europe there aren't uninhabited islands to simply buy and develop so they would have to do something like a private beach on a less developed side of an island.

            Holland America has an island like this, which I thought was awesome. It doesn't have a dock and uses tenders. CC has a dock and you just go on and off the ship as you please. If found CC far more favorable because of that.

            I've also been to Royal Carribean's Labadee. It was only ok. It's on part of Haiti and just a beach. The locals are employed and also sell you stuff on the beach which was a major low. It's one thing to give them jobs, but have them hock thier goods was not completely pleasant. It does have some hilly mountains going back into the land which gave for nicer vistas than the flat Bahamaian island of Disney and HCL. This was also a while back and I've heard that a lot was added to this port.
            Castaway Cay is really nice, and I really enjoy going there with family.
            Do you know by chance if Castaway Cay is fully developed? or does it have room for expansion?

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            • #7
              Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

              Swampymarsh If am correct Cruises don't port in San Pedro only Cargo Ships do. I think you may be thinking of Long Beach? I happen to go to San Pedro and have Family who work in the Docks as Merchant Marines and they say it is Military and Resources only
              Last edited by BugSam101; 12-21-2012, 03:54 PM.
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              • #8
                Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                Originally posted by lighttragic View Post
                Do you know by chance if Castaway Cay is fully developed? or does it have room for expansion?
                In theory there is a lot of unused space on the island although a lot of it is swampy and marsh, the more solid side of the island is what is developed. Just a guess the highpoint of the island is probably only 3-5 feet above sealevel.

                They did expand it to accomodate the larger ships by both expanding the dock and adding to the beach and facilities to allow for more people to spend time there at once. When I took the Dream there, overall it makes the island feel more crowded until people spread out into the new areas, than when only the smaller Wonder and Magic landed there. It would be a little hard to imagine what it would be like if two large ships can berth there.

                Originally posted by BugSam101 View Post
                Swampymarsh I am correct Cruises don't port in San Pedro only Cargo Ships do. I think you may be thinking of Long Beach? I happen to go to San Pedro and have Family who work in the Docks as Merchant Marines and they say it is Military and Resources only
                Sorry but I think your family is mistaken. There is a port in San Pedro, and Disney uses it, I've seen the ship there. I've also taken a ferry to Catalina from almost next to the side channel that the cruise ship terminal uses.

                Cruise Terminal
                Port of Los Angeles
                World Cruise Center
                100 Swinford Street
                Berths 91-93
                San Pedro, CA 90731
                LAX International Airport to the San Pedro Pier is 18 miles or approximately 35-50 minutes by car. Downtown Los Angeles to the San Pedro Pier is 25 miles or approximately 40-60 minutes by car.

                In Long Beach is another terminal but it's where Carnival docks and I'm not sure if Carnival reglarily shares it.
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                • #9
                  Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                  [QUOTE=swampymarsh;1056883590]In theory there is a lot of unused space on the island although a lot of it is swampy and marsh, the more solid side of the island is what is developed. Just a guess the highpoint of the island is probably only 3-5 feet above sealevel.

                  They did expand it to accomodate the larger ships by both expanding the dock and adding to the beach and facilities to allow for more people to spend time there at once. When I took the Dream there, overall it makes the island feel more crowded until people spread out into the new areas, than when only the smaller Wonder and Magic landed there. It would be a little hard to imagine what it would be like if two large ships can berth there.


                  Thanks for the answer and the first hand accounts. From what I also read only 55 of the 1000 acres are developed. Now I don't know how much is swampy vs not but perhaps enough could be reconstituted if they build a duplicate of everything on the other side of the island to accommodate having two ships visit at once that would increase the possibility of a cruise line expansion. Currently as it stands now Cruises visits Castaway Cay once during the itenerary , As a side not I also read it cost 25 million to buy the island what a steal for the disney company

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                  • #10
                    Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                    They don't use a lot of the island for sure. Basically just the edge where the family and adult beaches are, and the facilities are along them. There is a trail the goes into the forest in the middle or the island, that you can walk, I jogged it one morning. From a fishing boat I could see the area that looks wet, mostly grass coming out of the water. I don't know what the island looked like before hand but they did build the family beach by creating a breaker to protect the little bay then pumped sand into the bay and onto the fake beach. The adult beach may be real.

                    For the expansion they added Pelican Plunge which is a little swim to plaform with waterslides and certainly they could build more things like that. This diversified the activities quite a bit. Before you pretty much swim, lounge, play in the sand and eat, or pay for an excursion.

                    The island is only getting used about half of the week so another ship in theory could use it on the off days, coming on a 3 and 4 day cruise.

                    Of course since they started cruise down the coast of the Americas, there are islands over there that could probably be bought if Castaway Cay is too busy. I think Royal Carribean has another island in addition to the beach at Labadee, of course they have a lot more ships than Disney.

                    If you want to get a look at Castaway Cay it's pretty easy to find on a satellite map. Mayba 50-70 miles due north of Nasua, Bahamas, it's officiall called Gorda Cay. It's roughly to the northwest of the west tip of the large island. It has a north/south running landing strip on it.
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                    • #11
                      Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                      I wouldn't be surprised to see Disney go out and build a 5th ship at some point down the line but I think for the market they serve (families) realistically I think there's only so many itineraries that make sense for the line. I don't see families rushing out to spend big money on Baltic Sea or Southeast Asia cruises. Maybe at some point they'll position a cruise ship in a foreign market for a substantive time and push it for that specific market. Royal Caribbean does that with some of their older ships in Brazil, Panama, and Australia. But then, RCCL also has a lot more than 4-5-6 ships.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                        Merry Christmas cruisers! The entire 2014 itinerary is not yet out. lets hope Disney Cruise Lines has some nice surprises for us. I would love to see a new ship being built.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                          Originally posted by swampymarsh View Post
                          Cruise Terminal
                          Port of Los Angeles
                          World Cruise Center
                          100 Swinford Street
                          Berths 91-93
                          San Pedro, CA 90731
                          LAX International Airport to the San Pedro Pier is 18 miles or approximately 35-50 minutes by car. Downtown Los Angeles to the San Pedro Pier is 25 miles or approximately 40-60 minutes by car.

                          In Long Beach is another terminal but it's where Carnival docks and I'm not sure if Carnival reglarily shares it.
                          0_0 I just realized that we are talking about different ports. I always thought that was Willmington but whatevs!

                          Anyways what are the reasons that Disney has no Long Term West Coast Itineraries?
                          Always read the fine print.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                            Originally posted by swampymarsh View Post
                            I've also been to Royal Carribean's Labadee. It was only ok. It's on part of Haiti and just a beach. The locals are employed and also sell you stuff on the beach which was a major low. It's one thing to give them jobs, but have them hock thier goods was not completely pleasant. It does have some hilly mountains going back into the land which gave for nicer vistas than the flat Bahamaian island of Disney and HCL. This was also a while back and I've heard that a lot was added to this port.
                            What, exactly, is so terribly unpleasant about local Haitian merchants selling their goods? I don't get it.

                            It looks fine to me, if a bit touristy.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                              Originally posted by Retrocool View Post
                              What, exactly, is so terribly unpleasant about local Haitian merchants selling their goods? I don't get it.
                              Basically in the other locations the experience is very controlled on Labadee it is not. In your video the beach has been vastly improoved since I went, but when the tram went by the market, notice all the people sitting around. You don't ever find a seen like that elsewhere. Also there is a bit of difficulty with langauge which bothered some people, basicall in Haiti they speak French in the Bahammas English, because of colonization. The sales is a little high pressure, not as bad as say Mexico, but worse than anywhere in the USA and the other private islands I've been too.

                              Terribly unpleasant and not completey pleasant are very different. It was the worst I've been too, but the views were unmatched.
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                              • #16
                                Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                                Originally posted by swampymarsh View Post
                                10 Years, maybe, but I would guess more likely only 5.

                                With the addition of ships Disney is spreading out, testing the water so to speak. Alaska is popular, but they canceled Mexico, so they don't really have a ship's worth of demand on the West Coast, but probably could use 2 ships going to AK. A full time Europe Ship may require north and south and south ships or 1.5 if you don't do the north in the winter. The Gulf/Carribean/Bahammas ships do well, and can probably handle 3-4 year round. The problem is these are all northern hemisphere cruises, and the demand drops during the winter.

                                With the Dream supply grew but demand hasn't quite kept up. So it will be a while before they see a new ship or two as being a solid gold idea. Maybe in a couple years demand will increase, they will have routes they can confidently sell, and look at adding more floating hotel rooms.
                                I think that will might trying some new routes with Aisa and maybe around the world cruises? All cruise lines are having had times with Hawaii because of the added cost to fly for 5-10 hours to get to the ship. They could alway do around the tip of SA cruises? Yea the new ship will be out in about 5-10 years we will start to hear rumorrs if they are any sooner around the Expo.
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                                • #17
                                  Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                                  Disney needs to find some new itinaries and locales that will work for the DCL demographic before they add more ships... ships need to be working all the time.. and right now DCL is in a dirth of where to put them.
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                                  • #18
                                    Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                                    Originally posted by brianpinsky View Post
                                    I think that will might trying some new routes with Aisa and maybe around the world cruises? All cruise lines are having had times with Hawaii because of the added cost to fly for 5-10 hours to get to the ship. They could alway do around the tip of SA cruises? Yea the new ship will be out in about 5-10 years we will start to hear rumorrs if they are any sooner around the Expo.
                                    I wonder about Asia myself. For the most part as mentioned above, when ships serving Americans and Europeans get used they get "retired" and are sent like secondhand ships for use in the South Pacific for Australia and Asia.

                                    I wonder if a ship went from Tokyo south to the equator region if it was a japanese rather than everything in english, if Japan's fascination with Disney could fill the Magic or Wonder?

                                    Australia being the second largest first world country does have a large vacation market. However it's a big country landwise but small populous wise. They do cruise but not enough to support a cruise ship on its own.

                                    Maybe a 8 month Tokyo and 4 month Sydney cruise would work out.

                                    Like mentioned Hawaii a famous destination many yearn to visit, is not practical for cruises, because of the amount of time to get out to the islands and it's extra distance from the main populous of the US. Cruise lines have tried to make it work, but failed. Generally now Hawaii cruises are very limited, used to fill out a year's schedule and rely on limited supply to drive the demand, but most have operated at a loss when you get the company to admit the route profitability.

                                    Around the world is very unlikely for Disney, but possible for big cruise companies. The reason is the cruise is barely around the world. To go full circle a ship sells 10-15% of the rooms for $20-25K. Simply put, not many people have the money or time for these cruises. The rest of the rooms are normal cruises of 5-14 days. Like a flight going from Seattle to LAX to Atlanta to New York, a few people go Seattle to New York but most just a segment or two. An around the world cruise is really a 120 days cruise made up of 15 segments. Being that they last 120 days, unless it was a Semester at Sea cruise, how many families, Disney's audience, have that much free time.

                                    The other reason the Around the World cruises doesn't work out great is because you have the people going for $20-25K which is sometimes a discount to the 15 segment cost, but still usually profitable cruisers. Then you get 7.5 good segments, like Europe, Trans Atlantic, Caribbean.... Then 7.5 cruises that are not common that don't make a profit because they are to/from Asia and not enough Americans and Europeans fly half way around the world for a cruise to fill a ship when the cost of sailing can be huge(ships ideally refuel in Signapore, a country modernly rich because of refining) because of getting there on high price fuel.

                                    When you have 30+ ships you send one going around the world, and what it really does is offer the exotic cruises along its route. The ones that go to Easter Island or Antartica look great as advertising but are not common itineraries to designate a major portion of a ship's year to.

                                    I've known two sets of people who went around the world. One was a wealthy couple who wanted to do it. The other a couple who cruised a lot, never for anything luxorious just searched out bargains and did a few a year, but accumlated points doing that, and got to do special things on cruises like dine with the captain. They got to this small dinner of uber cruisers and there was a drawing for prizes, it was something like 5 prizes awarded to the 50 people eating. They happened to win the grand prize to sail around the world. The wife thought it was funny because she had previously won sweatshirts and spa treatments nothing too great and the husbands top prize was $250 of on board credit. The good/bad news was they lost thier business and had time to make use of thier prize.

                                    Both of these couples had simliar comments. You are on the ship so long you are dying to get off. So you may do a lot of land excurions. Not like a tour of a museum, or scuba diving, but 5 days across Brazil and or 7 days across China where you get off in one port and meet the ship in another. These are extra costs and very expensive on top of a cruise cost sometimes many thousands of dollars. They both said the same things about the land tours, you end up dying to get back on the ship.


                                    It's like how Disney keeps adding but only has a handful of long standing Adventures by Disney. Also how they are testing with mild success a new non park DVC resort at Aulani that is marketed half to the USA and half to Japan.
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                                    • #19
                                      Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                                      I wonder if a ship went from Tokyo south to the equator region if it was a japanese rather than everything in english, if Japan's fascination with Disney could fill the Magic or Wonder?

                                      No one really runs cruise ships out of Tokyo or Osaka, for that matter. There's nothing to sail to other than cities in Asia. "South to the equator region" is a huge distance and something that isn't possible in a 5-7 night cruise. Even if you could go, where would you go? The Philippines?

                                      Australia being the second largest first world country does have a large vacation market. However it's a big country landwise but small populous wise. They do cruise but not enough to support a cruise ship on its own.
                                      Australia has several cruise ships. In fact, they have a cruise company essentially devoted to the market (P&O Australia). It is a highly competitive market with year round cruising being a real possibility. Problem is, where would Disney go? With as much of the market for Disney Cruise Line coming from the US, can they really expect people to come across the date line to Brisbane? That's a tough sell IMO.

                                      Around the World Cruises are marketed to retirees and the wealthy because they require an enormous amount of free time. Disney is not going to start competing with Holland America or Cunard for those cruisers with the boats they've got, and for them to build a ship solely for the purpose of chasing that market would be foolhardy. Just. Not. Happening.

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                                      • #20
                                        Re: Will we see Disney Cruise Line Expand again?

                                        Originally posted by godsonsafari View Post

                                        No one really runs cruise ships out of Tokyo or Osaka, for that matter. There's nothing to sail to other than cities in Asia. "South to the equator region" is a huge distance and something that isn't possible in a 5-7 night cruise. Even if you could go, where would you go? The Philippines?
                                        It would take at least 5 days with an at sea day on each end. It would probably head to the Phillipines, but also Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taiwan, Vietnam and Thailand would be possible ports. A private island in the Philipines may work. A ship from Autralia could go north to the same island if they did really long cruise but a second private island further south is more likely if Disney needed one.



                                        Australia has several cruise ships. In fact, they have a cruise company essentially devoted to the market (P&O Australia). It is a highly competitive market with year round cruising being a real possibility. Problem is, where would Disney go? With as much of the market for Disney Cruise Line coming from the US, can they really expect people to come across the date line to Brisbane? That's a tough sell IMO.
                                        I didn't say Australia doesn't have cruise ships but that it's unlikely they could support a Disney ship. The reason is Disney carves out its nitch from over a hundred of ships in the US and Europe. Its nitch may not be enough to carve out a market from the several ships that service Australia. That is why I suggest Disney could only get away with one for part of the year out of Australia.
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