Seven day cruise to Alaska with our 3 kids. The kids had a great time, but not much more than a stay at a Disney resort. I don't drink alcohol so besides eating there wasn't much else to keep me occupied. Being surrounded by a ship full of rambunctious kids my sanctuary was our verandah and sometimes one of the lounges to read. We took advantage of the excursions at each port which were a waste. We visited a glacier, which of which much better vantage points are actually during the cruise. And, whale watching only provided brief views of their tails. We also went on the salmon fishing trip and caught one fish over the course of 4 hours. The boats had the equipment to help locate the fish, but chose to disregard the technology.
The most interesting part of that excursion was the return to the ship. Our bus struggled to get out of first gear for the first 15 minutes of the trip. The driver claimed the bus was old and had to warm up. The other vehicles on the road were More
constantly honking and yelling at the driver as they passed.
Also, if you've never cruised before, be cautious of shopping in port. We were warned by many locals of cruise owned shops that scam that take advantage of travelers by promoting deals which are from from the truth. They have someone on ship that guides you to their stores and receives a commission for their work.
The trip was very expensive as well. For the cost of the trip my family could have stayed in a deluxe Disney resort for a month, purchased annual passes to all of the theme parks and had $150 left over to spend each day.
We had the late seating which was 8:15. This posed an unforeseen problem when combined with the excursions that kept us away from the ship for 5 or 6 hours. We were starving once we returned so we obviously ate at the buffet and other food stations. As a result, members of our family were often too full to sit down for dinner. Yet we were charged a fortuned in gratuities for services not provided. And the room attendant, although very friendly, proved to be more of a nuisance than expected. They clean the rooms twice a day meaning you have to be out of the room for this to occur. Forget about relaxing in your room or trying to take a nap. We actually made a schedule for the kids when it was okay to hang out in the room.
Of all of the expenses incurred during our trip - one stood out as particularly interesting. We saw a couple movies during the cruise and popcorn was available at the door. We were surprised to find that they charged for popcorn considering the never ending food provided throughout the ship. Not only that, but we received a hand written receipt with 15% gratuity written in. I though you've got to be kidding me. How cheap can Disney be?
One more unforeseen expense was the wifi service. Your mobile phone service is always roaming so the next best option for staying in touch is wifi. We bought the most expensive option which was around $100. This lasted about 3 days only checking emails and a few websites. We should have anticipating since out of all of the resorts we frequent Disney is one of the few that still charges for wifi. Considering that you don't spend much time in the room while staying at their resorts, you wouldn't think complimentary wifi would put an excessive amount of strain on the bandwidth or bottomline. You want service - you'll pay for it at Disney. Less