Disney Fantasy Experiencing Mechanical Issues – Skipping Castaway Cay on February 5th


We are following a developing story this afternoon after learning of mechanical issues aboard the Disney Fantasy from Heather Keller of Storybook Destinations who is currently aboard the ship. Keller tweeted that the Disney Fantasy’s port engine is not operational at this time.

As a result, the Disney Fantasy is sailing at a reduced speed. According to data from MarineTraffic.com, the Disney Fantasy current speed is 17.2 knots. This is compared to 22 knots which is the typical cruising speed on this stretch of the 7-Night Eastern Caribbean sailings.

Disney Fantasy Midday Position February 4 2016

The Disney Fantasy embarked from Port Canaveral on Saturday, January 30th and is on day 6 of her 7-Night Eastern Caribbean voyage. Previous stops included St Thomas, and Tortola. Passengers were notified around the lunch hour that the scheduled stop at Castaway Cay on February 5th would be skipped to ensure an on-time arrival to Port Canaveral early Saturday morning.

Map Fantasy 7 Night Eastern Caribbean Itinerary D

As a result of this ongoing mechanical issue aboard the Disney Fantasy, Disney Cruise Line is offering guests  $200 onboard credit to use on the current sailing and 20% off a future cruise.

We reached out to Disney Cruise Line via email for comment, but have not heard back. We specifically asked if this would impact Saturday’s departure. We realize this is a developing story and will update this post as we learn more. If you see any info please share in the comments or tweet at @TheDCLBlog.

UPDATE 1 : As of this afternoon the next cruise is still scheduled as normal.

UPDATE 2: Disney Cruise Line “Statement”

We did not hear back from DCL, but we did receive a copy of the letter delivered to the staterooms.

Fantasy Mechanical Issue Guest Compensation Letter Feb 4 2016

The contents of the letter are transcribed below.

February 4, 2016

Dear Guests,

We truly appreciate you sailing with us this week.

Onboard the Disney Fantasy, we make ever effort to ensure that our shipboard operation runs smoothly and efficiently at all times. Although the ship is operation safely, it is necessary to reduce speed of Disney Fantasy due to a mechanical challenge. For this reason, we must modify our itinerary in order to reach Port Canaveral on time on Saturday.

As a result, we are unable to call at Castaway Cay during this week’s itinerary. Instead we will spend the next two days at sea with onboard events and activities.

As a goodwill gesture, each stateroom will receive a $200 onboard credit as well as a 20% discount on a future three, four or seven night cruise vacation with us when taken within the next 24 months.

In order to redeem the discount, please feel free to contact us (or have your travel agent contact us) after Monday, February 8, 2016 at 407-566-7000 or 1-866-7416. All you have to do is simply reference your current reservation number to receive the 20% discount off of the voyage fare of your next cruise taken within 24 months. We would also like to not that this offer is non-transferable, valid for only those guests who cruises on this voyage, excludes holiday sailings an is not combinable with any other discounts (including the Onboard Sales offer).

We appreciate your understanding and are dedicated to ensuring that you and your family have an enjoyable vacation onboard the Disney Fantasy.


Cast & Crew
Disney Cruise Line

UPDATE: Friday Feb 5, 2016 – Notable Passenger Tweets


UPDATE February 5, 2016 Clarification of Issue: “Broken Shaft”

We still have not heard back from Disney Cruise Line, nor do we expect to at this point. We have learned via two separate passengers (one I know personally) currently aboard the ship, that the Disney Fantasy’s issue is a broken shaft. Captain Thord reported the issue to passengers early today during the noon announcements.

Specific details on what “broken shaft” mean are not clear. I would imagine if the shaft actually sheared then we’d probably be hearing from passengers scheduled on the next cruise about a delay. In this case, I suspect it may be something that is repairable in port with appropriate parts after reading Ex Techie’s comment below mentioning an issue with bearings.

In fact, Seatrade-Cruise.com received the following response from DCL.

The [DCL] spokeswoman said repairs are scheduled to take place Saturday, and no impact to the next sailing is anticipated.

As you can see in the photo below, the Disney Fantasy propulsion has been reduced to a single prop.


UPDATE: February 6, 2016

Disney Fantasy returned to Port Canaveral later than usual today pushing the normal turnaround day back a few hours.

Work to resolve the issue was done while docked.

Just after 7PM, the lines were dropped and the Disney Fantasy began to leave Port Canaveral. She is due in Cozumel on Monday. Considering the Disney Fantasy returned to port late this morning leaving at 7:15 is not a bad turnaround all things considered.

128 Replies to “Disney Fantasy Experiencing Mechanical Issues – Skipping Castaway Cay on February 5th”

  1. Joel Weaver

    Could be worse. Could be skipping CC because of 18-ft seas, hurricane force winds and passengers getting sick all over the ship. That was so not fun. And definitely didn’t get a 20% discount and $200 credit.

    1. Tania

      we were on the Oct 1sailing of the Dream during the hurricane ! We did make it to CC, but missed Nassau (which was OK with me ) but the best part was that we had a sea day on a 3 night cruise, plus we were down by Key Largo and never experienced any hurricane weather.

    2. Katherine L.

      We were on the Fantasy for the Eastern Caribbean cruise from 9/26/15 – 10/3/15. Hurricane Joaquin blew up very quickly, didn’t turn north when predicted and our route was changed to avoid the worst of the storm. We were still in the outer bands with high winds and very rough seas – many on the ship were seasick. The captain was pushing it to get back to Port Canaveral on time and lost an engine. We also had to skip Castaway Cay to avoid the hurricane, but I was fine with that as there was so much to do on the ship. We were not offered anything in the way of compensation, I’m assuming because it was unavoidable. Like other commenters mentioned, it is hurricane season and you accept the risk of an altered itinerary. I was thankful none in our family group got seasick and we made it to the airport on time for our flight home. This was my first cruise and I’m planning on Disney’s Alaskan cruise in 2017.

  2. Beth

    It seems kind of unforgivable. Some people save a very, very long time to take a cruise like that. I could understand if it was due to the weather, but in my experience engines do not just go out unless they are not receiving proper maintenance.

    1. Keith

      Pretty sure all engines will eventually have problems – best maintenance schedule or not. Mechanical things wear out. Yes, it stinks that they are having a problem, but they have power, food and no one is in danger. At least they aren’t on another cruise line that always seems plagued with problems. I would venture to say that Disney takes much more care than some of those other lines.

    2. Bryce

      In your experience? Are there reports that state the cause of mechanical failures that are publicly released?

      Take it from a reliability standpoint. If an engine manufacturer says, “I can build you an engine that is expected to ‘fail’ only once every 15 years, or I can build you one that is expected to ‘fail’ only once every 25 years, but for triple the cost,” the cruise line must weigh the alternatives, and consider how the cost increase would be passed along to the customer. It’s called MTTF–Mean Time to Failure. So yes, there might be better engines out there that are almost GUARANTEED to never fail, but would you pay double or triple the cruise fare for it?

      It’s not an “experience” thing, but I’d go so far as to say that a cruise line that sees mechanical failures 20% more often than its competitors, THAT might be an “improper maintenance” issue.

    3. ex techie

      With respect, is your experience with motor vehicle engines or mega watt gen sets running 365 days a year?
      It is very unfortunate and disappointing for those aboard, but industrial engines and gen sets do still fail even with regular maintenance.

    4. Chris

      If its one thing that Disney does, its keeping up with maint on the ship. If your not sure, look around and see how many crew are washing the sides of the ship, varnishing the steps and rails, painting in general. Theres any number of reasons that the engine is down. Could be a faulty part. Could be a corrupted computer program. Take your pick.

      1. Beth

        If it is something outside of Disney’s control, why would they offer 20% off plus $200 on board credit? They don’t do that for the weather, which is out of their control.

        1. ex techie

          Because you cannot be responsible for something you cannot control such as the weather.
          DCL are responsible for their ship and engines, they are responsible for a malfunction of their equipment.
          It may not be their fault a part prematurely failed, but it is within their responsibility.
          And to be fair, they do not have to offer ANY compensation as per the cruise contract, so it is good that they are.

        2. Jeanie

          It’s called customer service. Just because a business offers something in return when something unexpected happens, it does not mean it was anyone’s fault, that they could “control” when or where that specific part or program broke or that they are taking blame for it. It means they are stepping up and trying to make the best of a bad situation.

        3. shelly f

          Its certainly outside of Disney control. Disney had not idea that the engine was going to break. Its not like the engine told them “hey on Feb 4 I am going to stop working” which would then make it a controlled issue.

        4. Scott

          Because they are Disney and since it was their ship, they are reaching out and doing the right thing. Engines can break down, no matter how well maintained, without notice. All it takes is one little stress fracture due to a small impurity.

        5. Chad

          For the same reasons an airline compensates you when they have issues with their plane that delay you, but not when the issue is weather.

        6. DJ

          Offering any compensations of sorts is not an omission of wrong doing. Disney in general is VERY accommodating and has the best customer service I have ever known. Anything can happen at any time for any reason. As for why they don’t offer anything due to inclement weather, well that is an all too common occurrence that is not within their control in any which way or form. They could not run a business if they had to refund and credit everyone for bad weather. Their contract address the issue concerning weather issue. It was fortunate it happened on the last day and the rest of the sailing was wonderful and on schedule. It could have been way worse. If it is so unforgiveable to you I suggest you not take Disney Cruise or any cruise vacation for that matter just incase.

  3. LynD

    If anyone looks back a couple of years, engine problems at sea are things you can’t ignore. Stuff happens and we have to trust the cruise line has the best interest for the safety and well being of all passengers and crew.

  4. Drew

    Agree with Joel. I’ve had to miss CC twice for weather. I recognize that mechanical problems are more under DCL’s control than the weather is, but still. 20% and $200 is a *lot* of money. It’s not like DCL is doing this on purpose–I’m sure they make a great deal more money from a CC port day than they do from a day at sea.

    ironically, I was booked for this cruise but we decided to postpone it to next year.

    I wonder how/if this will affect next week’s cruise….

  5. Stew B

    I wonder how long it will take to repair once they dock.
    Can the get the boat out by 5pm Saturday.
    I am on the cruise a week from Saturday.

  6. Amy

    I received a call this morning from Shore-side Concierge, they didn’t mention any problems (were calling to tell me about Chef Lallement offering a special meal at Remy). I just called, but they are “experiencing a high call volume”. I’m feeling very nervous.

      1. David Oakland

        Referencing the special meat at Remy’s – I had not heard of this before, is this something new, or folks with existing reservations or…? Thanks

  7. Landon

    On Fantasy right in Stateroom 12510. Was at Remy when announcement was made, over heard some of the crew on the way back. Seems 1 of the 5 engines is not online. It seems they are only able to make about 16 to 17.5 kts based on bridge report channel because of one of the engines not working.

    Heading over to concierge lounge shortly to see about booking future cruise with discount.

    Cruise Director just on public address to talk about Bingo and didn’t say a work about missing castaway cay tomorrow or what their plans are for the day at sea. Very surprised by lack of information.

    1. Asia

      Imagine if you were set to sail on The Fantasy tomorrow and you arrived at the port and the was no ship there, because they stopped in Castaway Cay. That would be a heck of a lot more disappointing than being on the ship and and skipping Castaway Cay in order to arrive in Port Canaveral on schedule. And it would cost way more than a $200 credit and 20% discounts.

  8. Jane Coutts-Smith

    OK Peeps…..Mechanical issues can happen. It’s a shame that they can’t go to CC but they are getting a spiff for a future cruise. DCL did not have to do that. But we all know how good Disney is. So I hope they enjoy the rest of their cruise.

  9. James a

    I suspect the next cruise will turn into a Castaway Cay double dip if the engine can’t get fixed in time to leave Port Canaveral. This would give DCL time to get parts to Key West and do the repairs down there.
    1 (2/6) Port
    2 (2/7) At Sea
    3 (2/8) Castaway
    4 (2/9) Key West (repairs)
    5 (2/10) Key West (repairs)
    6 (2/11) At Sea
    7 (2/12)Castaway Cay

      1. James

        The channel coming in to KW is tight if something goes wrong and she could swing broad side, given the lenght of the channel it is not ideal for scheduled cruises.
        I believe the weather predictions for late on the 8th thru the 10 would not pose a problem, as along as she can get in before the winds are expected to pick up during the day on the 9th.
        CC is free on the 8th, so even a few hrs there would have make up for missing the 2 scheduled port.
        If KW is not an option, she could go Miami or just limp to Nassau and repair between the next sailings.

  10. hotdiggity

    On our trip on the Fantasy last week , they had trouble getting into Castaway Cay due to high winds. The captn. pushed the engine pretty hard with the side thrusters to navigate into the channel (it took over 45 minutes to dock). Maybe they pushed it a little too hard?

    1. Chris

      Different engines. The diesels run at constant speeds and the motors that turn the main props and her 5 thrusters are all independent of each other and all electric. There also designed with safeties that if an electric motor over heats or does something that it’s not supposed to, a computer will warn the engineers before shutting down that motor.

  11. Butch

    All port of calls weather permitting !!! This is a mechanical issue no need to credit in my opinion . There’s lots to do onboard .. 8 cruise under my belt on DCL the ship by far is worth the whole experience . It is a shame though to miss out on CC

  12. Darrin

    I dont believe the Fantasy can dock in Key West, its to big. I think thats why Key West is never on the itinerary for the Fantasy or the Dream.

      1. Chris

        I’m not sure on that Scott. I think it’s Carnival off the top of my head, that has a ship almost identical in size to the Dream class that goes into Key West it might be a DCL thing

        1. Scott Sanders Post author

          I am not sure if this is the correct way to look at it, but I’ll throw this out there to see if you concur. I using information from the US Army Corp study from when they were looking at widening the channel. See Appendex A Figures A-4 and A-5 the maximum length and tonnage of ships based on the current channel limits of Key West Harbor.

          Based on this the Dream class ships exceed the length and tonnage limits noted on those figures by the Key West line. The previous page state that the line represents the maximum in each category able to call at Key West.

          1. Chris

            Ok. I read the article. I’m still looking for the ship about the size of the Dream that goes in there. Might take me a bit to find. From what the paperwork is saying, is that the RCL Freedom Class, Disney Dream class etc, under certain conditions, could pose a problem with potential groundings, etc. Basically it says that under a given condition, that the ships might crab a little bit in the channel coming or going, in which case the ships beam would go from say 120 feet, to 236 feet in a 300 foot wide channel, and the pilots prefer more wiggle room so to speak for safety. It doesn’t explicitly say no they can not come in. In fact it says later in the paperwork that under certain conditions, (page 15 1st paragraph) a ship the size of the DCL Fantasy or RCCL FOS could call on Key West. but since cruise lines want consistency it wont be on their regular scheduled cruises. Now a 1 off stop such as what the Fantasy is experiencing, or say a missed port somewhere else could be made up in KW as long as they make a foreign port on the same trip.

            BTW check your email. I sent you a email and am not sure if you got it or not.


  13. Linda

    Wow at least you got offered something for not being able to go to CC. We were on the Disney Dream one year ago (2-9-2015) and were not able to port at CC we were offered nothing!

  14. phinzup

    Can’t take the Fantasy into Key West, James a. She’s too large. Doesn’t fit through the channel, and the people of Key West thankfully voted down widening the channel to allow the mega cruise ships in.

  15. Chris

    I pretty sure DCL already knows what the problem is and spare parts will be waiting on the ship. Keep in mind too, this is not an engine thats down, but a drive motor. 2 separate things. The engines are the diesel generator sets that make the power for the ship. The Dream class has 5 of those bad boys. There called gensets. The drive motors, and there are 2 of those, actually turn the props. They are electric motors, that take power from the gensets, thru a distribution panel. Its like a really big circuit breaker. At any given time, 1 main engine is dedicated for each propulsion motor, and the remaining 3 are set for the ships hotel services. Each genset, generates a given amount of power, and that power goes thru the distribution panel, and routed by computer switches. If the ship needs more power, the computer says , hey start another engine. At any given time, any 1 of the gensets can be shut down or off line, and youd never know it. Its when the drive motors start having issues, that you see reduced speeds and canceled stops. If the only thing being affected right now is the ships speed, Ill go with a port drive motor issue, or something wrong with the cables that power that motor from the power.

  16. Matt

    Wonder if the ship will dock much earlier back at Cape Canaveral tonight? So they have more time to repair in port? (I just hate seeing that parking lot at out there. Seems almost as cruel as missing CC.)

  17. Lee Beatens

    We had a bad experience with DCL and were offered the 20% off discount on a future cruise. Being as you can sometimes get other discounts, this isn’t a great offer. Should always refund against the current cruise that was affected.

    1. Beth

      I agree that they should give the discount on the current cruise. I think this is Disney’s fault. And I do not think the customer should feel the cost. It is one thing if you are a Florida resident and can hop on a last minute cruise at any time. There may be people who planned and saved for a very long time, flew long distances and may not be planning to go on another Disney Cruise. Obviously Disney does not have to do anything contractually, but 20% off a future cruise does not seem like extraordinary customer service. I can get 10% off just for rebooking on board. And they know most people will not even use it.

      1. ex techie

        What cost has the customer felt by missing CC?
        Their port taxes are refunded, and any pre-booked CC shore excursions are refunded.
        How has the customer lost out apart from not going to CC?

        Yes, your Feb cruise doesn’t qualify for peak season 20% off voucher so there are black out dates!
        Seriously thats tacky?

        Beth, I think it is best you not cruise in the future if you expect everything to go 100% as per your plans and react the way you are if they do not.
        Stuff happens and you just have to deal with it. And if you cannot adapt and accept a gesture of good will that is not required, then you really need to evaluate if your equipped to go on a cruise and deal with disappointment and accept the T’s & C’s. (or have extra special insurance to get a full refund for every eventuality)

        1. Beth

          Yes, Tacky. And it also excludes the usual on board booking credit on the next cruise, which makes the additional percentage off like 5%. It says not combinable with any other offer.

        2. Beth

          The 20% off a future cruise is not 20%. You already get 10% for on board booking. Plus you won’t get the additional on board credit normally given with an on board booking as the one time 20% is not combinable with any other offer. So the discount disney is giving is more like 5%.

          1. ex techie

            I disagree.
            Say you are booking a $5000 7 day future cruise.
            If you book aboard you get 10% off so $500.
            With DCL’s offer, you get 20% off, so $1000 discount.

            Booking onboard you would get $200 OBC BUT you have already received that on this cruise.

            Either way you look at it, you are $500 better off with DCL’s offer than booking aboard, and DCL did NOT have to give anything by way of compensation.

          2. Beth

            Exactly. In your instance, you would have gotten $700, now you are getting $1000. They are actually giving you $300, not $1000, because you would have gotten $700 anyway. Of course they don’t have to do anything, but they should. If I went on the cruise mostly for Castaway Cay, and I flew across the country and saved for two years to take my four kids, $300 does not exactly wow me, especially when I am not going to rebook within 24 months. It is different if you live some place like Florida, get to beaches all the time, or can hop on a last minute cruise.

          3. ex techie

            No Beth,
            You are getting $1000 discount and $200 OBC, it’s just that the $200 OBC is being applied to your current cruise and not your future cruise.
            So you are getting $700 by booking aboard and $1200 with DCL’s offer ($200 in advance) So still $500 up, not $300.
            Tips alone for a family of four equal $168, so use that $200 on this cruise to pay for the tips.
            Any unused OBC can be refunded back onto your credit card/gift card.

            As for not cruising within 24 months, then yes you lose out on the offer.
            I respect your opinion that it’s not enough to WOW you, but I think you expect too much in a situation where you could have been offered nothing as per the cruise contract.
            If you went on the cruise specifically for CC, then you NEED to accept for whatever reason the cruise may not make it there and not expect compensation. That is part of cruising.
            As I said above stuff happens and you just have to deal with it. And if you cannot adapt and accept a gesture of good will that is not required, then you really need to evaluate if your equipped to go on a cruise and deal with disappointment and accept the T’s & C’s. (or have extra special insurance to get a full refund for every eventuality)
            If you cannot accept that then you SHOULD NOT CRUISE. You are only setting yourself up for disappointment.

            Out of interest, what would have been satisfactory non requisite compensation in your opinion?

            1. Stewb

              We all breath a sigh of relief when we hear about problems on other cruise lines
              Most of say you get what you paid for
              DCL charges top dollar for service and features that other cruise line can’t and don’t offer
              CC is a major feature that people want and desire from DCL
              I will be going on my 12 cruise a week from tomorrow
              If I miss CC I will be disappionted but there cruse 13 later this year or next year
              But Beth situation is far different
              She save for two years to take her family on this cruise
              If it is act of god DCL can’t held accountable
              But this is on DCL just like we hold the other cruise lines to a standard DCL should be held to higher standard
              I don’t the offer is fair maybe if you could combine with regular on board discount it would be fair
              But they are really give them very little

          4. Beth

            I do get your point. I do think it is nice of disney to offer something for missing a castaway cay day. But it would not personally make me happy. Here is why. Since it is a mechanical issue, it is Disney’s fault. People on the disboards are reporting that the fantasy was damaged during hurricane sandy and since then people have commented on more vibration in aft cabins on the fantasy more than the dream. Regardless, Disney is responsible for mechanics. I am responsible for payment. No one is responsible for the weather, and I would expect no compensation for weather related issues. When we travel on dcl, we fly across the country. We have four kids. When we take a disney cruise it costs us in the range of $10000-$15000 with flights for inside cabins. We only takes itineraries that include castaway cay because for us that is the highlight of the trip. We do not get to the beach ever unless we travel long distances. Okay, we do not have to save for two years but it is not cheap for us, and a more average family would have to save quite a while to take a vacation that costs that amount. It is a lot of money. We pay a premium to cruise on dcl because we expect a better product. (We have started to reevaluate that, but that’s another story). I am aware that dcl owes it’s customers nothing for skipping castaway cay. They write very good contracts, good for themselves. But I am saying, that personally, for me, for a mechanical failure like that, to be able to say that I felt that disney “magic,” 20% off of a future cruise when I already have 10% off and I have to use it within 24 months and there are block out dates– to me that is token. It would not make me feel warm and fuzzy about Disney. Maybe 20% off the current cruise as one of the first posters said, or reimbursement for the day. We are not litigious and would never try to sue any company for any thing like this (never sued anyone period), so this is not a legal argument, and obviously in the grand scheme of life missing a day at castaway cay is not a big deal. But for me to walk away from that cruise feeling really great about disney as a company, feeling like they were not like other companies, worth the premium, I would want something more immediate and not a hypothetical future benefit that “can not be combined with other offers.”

  18. Kelsey

    We missed Castaway Cat AND almost died in hurricane sandy on the Fantasy and we only got 25% off! 20% really adds up— its not a bad concession.

        1. Kelly

          What? You mean you didn’t join the “survivor’s page” on FB??? LOL! I always found that quite humorous myself. I had a friend on that same sailing. She didn’t think the storm action was that big of a deal either but was happy to get the nice discount on a future sailing anyway.

  19. Dennis C

    It’s a missed port due to mechanical failure, not the loss of a cruise day. A $200 onboard credit as well as 20% off a future Disney Cruise is very generous. Cruise contracts do not require the cruise line to refund money or make concessions for missed ports regardless of the circumstances. I love Castaway Cay and would be disappointed but there are far worse things to experience than an additional sea day on a Disney ship.

  20. stew b

    I have been on 11 cruises and never missed CC infact got unplanned DD cause of hurricane but we did miss ports I wanted to go to.
    But I agree with Beth, Disney is reponsible for equipment failures not for weatheer.
    I don’t think 20% and $200 is enough. I think they should give at least $200 per person not per cabin.
    I don’t expect everything to go perfect. I have been on rough seas so bad alot of crew got sick. But I do expect them to deliver the product purchased when god isn’t involved.

  21. RLOPEZ

    I once complained to DCL about my luggage missing when they received at the port. I ended up getting 25% voucher for a future cruise. That’s BS that DCL can’t give more of a discount. Skipping Castaway Cay is worth more than 20% off! DCL, try 50% off a future cruise or allow guests to take a 25% off their current cruise!!! BOOOOO to Mickey!!!!

    1. Melissa

      CC is one day out of 7 days on the ship. I’m pretty sure all of the passengers took advantage of all the offerings included in their cruise fare (food, entertainment, etc.) every day so I think the 20% + $200 credit is more than fair. Even if you count the CC day as a complete loss (which, in my opinion is not a complete loss because you still have all the amazing food, service, entertainment) that would only equate to a loss of 1/7 of the cruise or under 15%.

      1. RLOPEZ


        Many people go on DCL to experience CC. I’ve been on two DCL and we always looked forward for CC. We can care less of the other port visits. If I didn’t care about CC, I would take on DCL on the west coast and save on airline tickets.

  22. Matthew

    $200 times the number of active cabins being used plus 20% off future cruise. That is a lot for a cruise to give out for a faulty equipment. Considering the money DCL makes at CC this is fair game. So yes DCL looses out each way. Kudos to DCL for the offer. At least they offered it.
    I have taken 6 cruises with DCL. Let’s hope the boat gets fixed for the next outing without delays.

  23. Annie

    I have missed cc twice for weather. It was terribly disappointing but Disney did a great job of keeping us entertained on the ship. I didn’t receive any compensation and have gladly rebooked several times! Disney’s customer service is exceptional.

    PS If I had to come close to death, I would be happy it was on a disney cruise.

  24. David Oakland

    Folks, this is NOT another cruise line that was dead in the water, toilets overflowing and passengers sleeping in the hallways and on the top deck. This is Disney – a mechanical failure, that for the safety of the passengers will always ALWAYS lean towards conservative caution/safety – a non-negotiable. You are receiving a credit and 20% off, plus you will save money by not spending addt’l monies on CC for excursions, port taxes, etc. So, if you break it down, you’re getting a lot more then $200 credit. Read the contract, Disney is NOT obligated to give you anything so stop acting like you “Deserve” more. Really? You’re on the Fantasy and there is plenty to do on the ship and the CREW WILL make the day at sea amazing. Disney is OFFERING credits and future discounts as part of their amazing customer service but NOT contractually obligated for any of it – so instead of DISNEY SHOULD DO MORE, – Perhaps your response should be a “Thankful” one for putting the safety of the passengers first, making the most of a disappointing (and that’s all it is, missing Castaway Cay will be disappointing)situation, Disney will not risk/jeopardize safety of passengers. Again, you are on the FANTASY, not another cruise line dead in the water.

    1. Mike Nowak

      We were on a 7 day DCL cruise that was cut by a day. The ship was stuck in the mud/rocks at CC and got back to Florida. So our cruise started a day late. I don’t recall the offering that DCL made, but it was some ship credit, and money off on a future cruise also. They also scrambled and sent everyone to Epcot, opened a privet area and then set everyone up with a hotel room and then transportation to the ship the following day. We had to board at a different terminal, as the Wonder was at the Disney terminal. My point here is stuff happens and Disney does their best to lessen the blow.
      To all those implying that DCL wrecked their vacation, I will tell you what my wife told me at the time. “Don’t waste your time and thoughts on what happened, you can’t change it. Concentrate on what you come here for, us, the kids and fun. The rest we will figure out latter” In short, DCL is not wrecking your vacation, you are. If you have good weather on the ship, go out and have fun, because tomorrow you are back on land.
      I sincerely hope you all enjoy the rest of your vacation. Safe travels.

      1. RH

        Hi I have been on 8 Disney cruises and missed CC once bcs of weather, no 200, no future cruise dollars and no complaints here. Dream staff made our day at sea great. Life is full of real disappointments and challenges. These complainers are showing me that current generations can not handle life. Be grateful and stop whining.

  25. Steven

    I wish I was on board right now! We have been on several Disney cruises (# 10 in July) and find the service exceptional. We don’t even get off the boat at CC so an extra day at sea would have been perfect. The bonus of the credit and discount on a future cruise is more then worth it to us. Hearing the troubles of other cruise lines, this sounds like a minor inconvenience. Things happen, weather or mechanical, and DCL does EVERYTHING to make it a magical time no matter what problems may arise.

  26. Malcolm

    Funny, I was on a DCL last year that missed CC due to a hurricane, then arrived HOURS late to Canaveral due to engine issues (and the next cruise didn’t leave until after midnight). We were offered nothing, not even an apology. I did not get off the ship until nearly 1pm, yet they had nothing to eat past 8:30am.

    So good on them for taking care of customers this time.

  27. Ewan

    I was an Engineer aboard the DCL ships for 4 years, if they are missing CC due to a mechanical issue, you can guarantee that every effort was made to repair the defect before this cancellation, and it takes more than one of the ship’s main generators out of action to stop the call at CC, we had severe fuel contamination on one cruise, the engine crew worked shifts for the entire week just cleaning fuel filters and purifiers to keep the Magic moving, so you can bet it’s a major failure down below in the engine room.

      1. Chris

        It really depends on what the problem is and if the part is onboard or not. If it’s something as small as say a sensor, it could be as little as 2 or 3 hours. If it’s something bigger say the primary wire between the distribution box and the motor itself, it could be several hours, if they have to kill electrical power in that area in order to make replace and test. Also depends on if the bad part is already off and waiting on a new or if they have to pull it off when they get to the dock.

    1. Chris

      I don’t doubt for a second that DCL did everything they could to avoid skipping CC. My hats off to the crews that most passengers never see, like the bridge crews or the engineers and maint techs. With out you folks, the ships would be lifeless.

      1. Chris

        Unless the bearing cooling system failed which is possible I don’t see it being bearings. In which case the bearings are done anyway and would usually need a yard to replace as they are under water and thru hull. Typically and I’ll use the Magic as an example they’ll still use that side just under slower rpm to avoid undo vibrations.

    2. Butch

      Nice to hear an inside comment Ewan… My wife and I sailed the Western cruise just before Christmas 2015 aboard the Fantasy and I had pointed out to my wife ( not to say this is the problem ) I noticed a very distinct vibration in one of the shafts or a propeller while under sail? We’ve sailed all 4 ships and the Fantasy vibration was very well felt… Hope they can solve this on going issue … Kudos to DCL keeping all save and I’m sure there was lots of entertainment today to help mend the disappointment on not making CC this morning …

  28. Hannah

    I’m surprised how upset people are for just missing CC. An extra day at sea would be a bonus, to me. Last cruise we didn’t even get off at CC enjoyed a relaxing, quiet day on the ship. We had plans for a cruise in 2014 and got a call saying the ship had been bought out by someone and we had to change our cruise plans. That is what doesn’t seem fair. Different ship, different itinerary, we still had a great time. Didn’t get to go the places we wanted but it was still a Disney Cruise. Just hope everything goes well for the people hoping to set sail Saturday.

  29. Dave F.

    20% is only good if you can make another Cruise…Personally I think they should apply it to all Disney Properties, not just the DCL. We like to rotate between the parks and ships. And I will say, Castaway Cay is our favorite stop. I’d much rather have skipped Nassau or another port than CC.

    But I guess it’s all about timing.

    BTW, if they are skipping Castaway Cay, what are they doing during the day at sea? Is the ship prepared with alternative activities should this happen?

    1. Chris

      They really cant because its 2 different business units. The company as a whole is broken up for liability reasons so that a major issue with one wont harm the rest. The cruise line, parks, vacation club, movies are some of the units that I know of off hand. That would have to be something worked out in advance, and the number of times that it happens is relatively small number. You could also look at it the other way around where if say the All Star Resort had an issue that affected 1 entire building, would they be entitled to a comp on a cruise that is probably 2 or 3 times more then what they are spending?

      1. Magiccruiser

        We had issues with our first DCL cruise. We were offered 25% off a future cruise OR off of a WDW tickets. So they can do that but yes we had to let them know so maybe that would be a big hassle for a large group of people. And just to chime in, while its unfortunate what has happened I think what they offered is more than fair. I would walk off the ship a satisfied guest.

        1. Stew B

          I think 10 then 20 plus 400 is fair
          Every one can get 10 plus 200 so they are only giving extra 10%
          But despite what you think there a lot of people who save for years to go on a trip like this
          When these things happen they are heart breaking for them
          For you and me we know there will be another cruise for some there isn’t

  30. James A

    In nautical terms “shaft” can refer to propulsion system.
    So a”broken shaft ” could mean one of the propulsion systems is not working.
    I have said We lost a Shaft in the Cost Guard when we have lost an outboards on small boat. And heard when a liquid natural gas taker had a propeller that was not working when we were doing escorts.

    Is there any non military dry docks on the east coast that could fit the Fantasy?

        1. James A

          There are a few other dry docks not listed on their website but I think the ones large enough to fit the Fantasy already have a ship on them. The Enterprise is getting defueled and I think another it getting refueled. But those are military drydocks and can’t be used by civilians.

          I can’t think of a single drydock big enough for the Fantasy/ Dream. So if it does require a drydock, she would be stuck making the trip across the ocean.

          Wait the NCL Pride of America was partially built by Litton-Ingalls in Mississippi, that might be the only drydock big enough.

          1. Chris

            I was looking last night and 2 things come to mind. 1 is its a misprint on the actual ability of that drydock. DCL has been up there before. The other is what they consider lift. 52000 tons might be enough lift a 100000 ton ship. We’re not talking weight were talking buoyancy. Not sure on the hydraulics math. I’ll try and look later when I get home from work. Working some ot roday. The other thing also is BAE is separate from Norfolk Naval. 2 different yards. NNS does have a civilian side to it but I’m not sure on what there availability is. 1 yard I know for sure that can take the Fantasy is Freeport. But I think there dock has a ship.

        2. Chris

          The 52 000 ton is long tons. It’s a different way of measuring. I found a picture of the EOS from RCCL in the Titan.

  31. ex techie

    Beth’s situation is hypothetical, and not real.
    I hope your 12th cruise goes without incident, but by now, you must realize that stuff happens and what your rights are as a passenger on a cruise?
    In your post above you mention combining discounts. Do you mean 30% and double OBC?
    Or 10% off, then 20% off the remaining plus the double OBC?

      1. ex techie

        As of right now, she is still dockside, around 2 hours late of departing.
        Now that may not just be due to repairs. She was late docking this morning, and the ship needs to restock, refuel, and everything else.

  32. RLOPEZ

    Ex techie,

    DCL needs to give at least $100 on-board credit if they are late. This is ridiculous! Wait, they’ll give you a Mickey doll instead. lol

  33. Steffany

    We were just on the Fantasy and I can say Disney did everything to make us happy! We weren’t too crushed about CC because we had already been there and the forecast was for rain all day, so we most likely would have spent the day on the ship anyway.

    We were in The Tube (Aft) at 1:30 AM and I felt the ground shake and a heavy thrust right after, pretty sure that’s when it went out. They didn’t make any announcements until 1PM so Disney made all attempts to resolve and ensure they had something to offer the passengers to keep them happy despite the mechanical issues. There was no way to repair it while we were moving, and they were prepared to begin work on it as soon as we arrived to PC.

    Our group was very pleased with how Disney handled it, we were thrilled to get the OBC and 20% for our next cruise! We are avid Disney cruisers and understand things can happen, they were quick to react and make changes to create additional sea day activities. The most important thing to remember is they made the decision based on passenger safety. This wasn’t an “Act of God” which means it’s on them, that’s why they were able to provide us with additional OBC/booking discounts.

    1. Hannah

      I love your attitude Steffany…..I would totally feel the same way. You didn’t lose a cruise day and were on a DISNEY CRUISE for goodness sake. Glad you had a wonderful time…which you could only have with a good attitude.

  34. Tim

    We just returned home from this particular cruise. While in Palo while announcement was made the phones were ringing off the hook for reservations as CC day was cancelled. DCL still made our day very enjoyable filled with lots of extra activities.
    Felt bad for the crew as that is their day to get a start on what they need to do for next cruise. Most certainly the crew down below felt the pressure loading and unloading after reaching port after 7am. Hopefully the new guests didn’t have the rain that Orlando to spoil their sail away party

  35. walt

    Me and my family was on that cruise. They told me that the 20% only applied to reserving a dated cruise on board, not for the $250 holding of a cruise to be selected at a time of your choosing. Then again you could not carry your $200.00 over to a future cruise. So since we found this out on end of our weekly cruise, we got the remaining of our money in gift cards for future cruise or Disney parks. I could not even used it as a deposit on a future cruise. Most people was drinking up their extra onboard credits so they didn’t lose it. Overall we enjoyed ourselves since we’ve been to Castaway Cay many times in the past. My only worry is a ship that size need both engines for full thrust, especially for the eastern cruise because of the longer distance. Also that is a lot of pressure on one engine alone. I hope she doesn’t blow.

  36. Beth

    Disney might want to check out what their competitors at Royal are offering for a non mechanical incident at sea. Full refund plus 50% off future cruise. That would have me getting off the ship feeling very good about Royal Caribbean as a company.

    1. Matt

      The difference in this situation is the negative publicity of seeing pictures of the RC ship in disarray. Unlikely there will ever be much press coverage of the Disney incident. RC has to protect public perception on a wide scale in this case and probably why they are offering this.

      1. James

        RCI made Good Morning America with the customers pics/ videos. If DCL had similar publicity, then the comp might change.

  37. Steph

    We were on the cruise. They added a many activities for the additional day at sea. Although I was really disappointed about not being able to go to Castaway Cay (it’s my favorite stop and I’ve often wished we stopped there at the beginning and the end of the cruise), they did the best that they could and I was happy with what was offered. I did feel very bad for those who had never stopped at CC as I know they were looking forward to it. There were some that just would NOT stop talking about how unfair it was that they could not go but we had no choice. The cruise director and assistant cruise director were wonderful and I know they were working very long hours to ensure that we had new, fun activities for all ages during the unexpected day at sea. Friday was not great weather and I wonder if we would have encountered that weather at CC. If so, I would have rather been on the ship. But, I do understand frustrations that others have.

  38. Jackie

    Good grief people. I was on this sailing. It was the propeller that wasn’t working…all five engines were fine. Disney did a great job providing plenty of extra entertainment. They did NOT have to offer anything and I’m quite satisfied by the gesture of $200 per stateroom and 20% off a future cruise. Per the contract, they have the right to change the schedule. Sure I feel for the people who have never been to Castaway but it’s also a great way to teach children life isn’t perfect and to make the bast of everything. I had a wonderful time as always!!

    1. gary

      I agree that Disney are not obligated to do anything the contract is very clear on it, myself and family are travelling for our first cruise/flight on that ship in April. we are coming from Australia so if that was to happen to me i would be upset, but you must make the best of it. As we are travelling so far with great expense we have bought travel insurance that we would be able to claim against financial cost due to itinerary changes beyond our control. so weather, breakdown, anything that changes our time frame that we did not personally cause can be claimed. so we would get compensated by them and get 20% and credit for next cruise. Even severe sea sickness if you cant do port trips or ship activities or even the percentage of your trip where you couldn’t actively participate can be claimed. cost was about 220AU for cover and for a trip costing 20grandAU well worth it

  39. Ken

    DLC offer up to 60% off for people who live in the area but only an additional 10% over what they were already offering for people who rebook on board. Doesn’t seem to add up. I was on the 7 floor and we could hear the problem on the first day. I’m convinced they left Florida knowing they would miss the port and didn’t tell anyone. They almost missed the port the week before arriving late. If I would have known I would have rescheduled. This trip cost me over $12,000.00 and I feel ripped off. The way DLC is dealing with the problem by offering us peanuts doesn’t help. No one I know books a cruise because they like staying on the boat. Bad weather I could forgive, sending me and my family to sea on a broken boat without telling anyone that I have trouble with!


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