This was our first cruise ever, so we were new to everything. I did have pretty high expectations for the Disney cruise line, since I know several people who had gone on them and loved them.
Our first issue occurred the first day while at the pool/splash area. If you have a child not fully potty trained, please read. My 4 year old and 2 year wanted to swim as soon as they saw the swimming/splash (Aqua Duck) area. Things were going great, until we were told that our 2 year old was not allowed in the splash zone with a swimmy diaper. We weren't told this for about an hour and a half after he had been playing there. I knew beforehand that he would not be allowed in the swimming pools on the ship since he wasn't fully potty trained, but I read that he could still play in the splash area. Well, what I didn't read is that the only splash area he was allowed in was a very small closed off space with 3 ducks (Huey, Louie, and Dewey) that squirted water out of their mouths. Well, after taking him and my daughter (4) to the "swimmy diaper section", we were told that she was too old for this section. So basically there was no public swim area on the ship that they could play together for me to watch them. After complaining about this, the manager came over and told us he would make an exception for us and let our 4 year old play in the baby section. I understand that swim diapers are not allowed in pools due to sanitary reasons, but I don't understand why he wasn't allowed in the splash zone. Disney states that children with swim diapers are allowed in the splash zones, but what they don't tell you is that the splash zone they're allowed in is very small and separate from the large splash section. That kind of dampened our moods right away, but we distracted the kids with the ice cream cones, and they quickly forgot about it.
Next issue was with our stateroom. We checked in to our room at around 2:00PM, and immediately noticed a strong sewerage/septic smell. The one good thing was that the room the toilet is in is separte from the shower, so we basically just left the door shut. I did report the issue right away, and they sent a plumber to fix the issue. We were told that night that the plumber discovered a leaky pipe and fixed it and that the smell should be gone. Well, the smell never went away, so I complained again the next night. They apologized again and said they'd work on it, but nothing else was ever done. Looking back, I wish I would've demanded another room because we had to avoid opening the door of the bathroom for the entire cruise, and tried to use the public bathrooms on the boats as much as possible. On our last night, we had a bottle of sparkling grape juice and a small stuffed animal for each of our kids on our bed with a letter to tell us thank you for reporting our issue. I only wish they would've done more to fix it.
Of course there were many positives of the cruise too. The entertainment was great, the food was good, and Castaway Cay was wonderful. Our servers did seem to be very rushed each night, to the point where I felt like I was being a nuisance if I asked one of them to take our family picture at our table. But our main server was very instistent on us giving him an "excellent" rating at hte end of our cruise. He brought this up at the end of our meal each night, and waited for my husband and I to both say the word "excellent". I kind of chuckled when one of the feedback questions on the cruise survey at the end of our trip was "Did anyone make you feel pressured in to giving an excellent review?". I talked to others on the ship who had an opposite experirence with their servers, so I think it just depends on who you get.
I realize we are probably in the minority with a negative rating here, but for our first Disney cruise experience (and first cruise experience altogether), it wasn't what we had hoped. We were actually prepared beforehand to book our next cruise on the boat, but after the experience we had, we are second guessing whether or not we will do a Disney cruise again. Unfortunately, I think we just had bad luck. I kind of want to do another one just because I feel like we missed out on the "magical" experience that everyone raves about.....but if we do, it will be after my son is potty training :-)