While the news of Disney Cruise Line adding lifeguards to the family pools went widespread last week, it has actually been percolating over the last couple of months. This past August, a new lifeguard position was listed on DCLJobs.com. Originally, I dismissed this lifeguard job opening figuring it was Castaway Cay. However, Heather on Twitter mentioned to me that there was more to the job description, and she was correct. The lifeguard position was indeed a shipboard position. Furthermore, passengers were beginning to notice the addition of life jackets around the various pools on the upper decks. Then reports of lifeguards on duty aboard the Disney Dream surfaced in early October. During a recent cruise on the Disney Dream, we noticed the addition of lifeguards as well as a modification to the rules for Donald’s Pool.
Lifeguards are now on duty at the family pool during the posted operating hours. The lifeguards are just like those you may be familiar with from the Walt Disney World resort pools. The lifeguard on duty is constantly moving around the pool and they are doing a very good job. At times, there are even multiple lifeguards on duty. My wife and I have both been lifeguards, and these lifeguards were checking their water constantly, and also enforcing the rules. They were not allowing jumping at all, and even the adults were told a thing or two – we noticed many trying to bring their drinks to the pool edge to enjoy, and were quickly scuttled away.
There are life jacket racks positioned around the upper decks like the one shown below next to Quacks. We noticed a large number of children using them.
The other pools onboard the Disney Dream stated that there were no lifeguards on duty. However, we did observe lifeguards patrolling around the Mickey Pool from time to time.
The lifeguards and life jackets were also on the Disney Magic beginning with her first Miami sailing on October 25, 2013.
We reached out to Disney Cruise Line for a comment last month after learning of the addition of lifeguards on the Disney Dream, but did not hear back. I can only surmise DCL is trying to downplay this new addition to guest safety in light of the near tragedy aboard the Disney Fantasy this past March. From our perspective, as parents of a little fish, the lifeguards are doing an excellent job at controlling the chaos that was the family pool. The biggest change we noticed is that the lifeguards have put an end to guests dangerously jumping into the pool on top of others. In fact, we saw them proactively enforcing the pool rules by talking to anyone who looked to be jumping into the pool. The addition of lifeguards on the Disney Cruise ships is a welcome addition and while it does not take away my parental responsibilities, knowing the pool rules are being enforced does allow me to enjoy my time poolside more enjoyable.