Family dining
  • On Jan 5, 2018
    Michelle from CA Asked

    Hi, we just booked our first two day cruise with our 2 and 3 year old. I am concerned about the dinner and show times. We requested the first dinner time, but now I'm worried they will be too tired for the show. What other options are there?

    Ahoy, Michelle!

    Guests have different reasons for choosing early or late seating on their Disney Cruise. Early seating is a popular choice for families with young children, so it's usually the first to get booked. Guests with early seating dine first, then head to the Walt Disney Theatre for the evening's show, while guests with late seating see the show first then head to dinner.

    When our girls were little, we chose early seating because we thought they'd get too hungry if we opted for the late dining option. As they've gotten older, we like attending the show first, then relaxing at dinner afterwards. To keep hunger at bay, we order snacks from Room Service to enjoy in our stateroom (I recommend the All Hands On Deck cheese platter!) as we get ready for the evening, or eat a later breakfast and lunch. We've also enjoyed taking advantage of the Dine and Play program. With the Dine and Play option, (available during second seating - simply ask your servers), young cruisers have their meals expedited and served first. As the children are finishing up, Youth Counselors make their way to the dining rooms to escort them to the Oceaneer Club, for ages 3-12. Adults in your party are able to dine at a more relaxed pace without the worry of a squirmy child eager to go and play! With a 2-year-old in your sailing party, this also might be a nice time to schedule a time slot at "it's a small world!" nursery.

    When my girls were little, they were on a routine schedule, with early bedtimes (yay!) and meals at about the same time each evening. In the week or two leading up to our Disney Cruise vacations, I tried to extend their bedtime by a little bit each night to prepare them for later evenings on the ship. While they were certainly tired after dinner, the shows were so entertaining and fun that they kept their attention easily, even with full tummies!

    I hope this helps with your question, and that you're counting down the days until your magical voyage! - Diane W.
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Meet the Panelist: Diane, Alabama

"Dream It! Plan It! Do It!" – that's my motto! If you've always dreamed of a magical visit to Walt Disney World Resort, or sailing away with Captain Mickey on a Disney Cruise, I'd love to help you plan and make the most of your vacation. My favorite getaway is a Land and Sea adventure - from Cinderella Castle to sand castles! Learn More About Diane

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