Disney Fantasy ‘Engine Technical Challenge’ on September 7th Results in Altered Itinerary – Skipping Castaway Cay to Sail Back to Port Canaveral

Late last night, guests onboard the Disney Fantasy learned via a notification in the Disney Cruise Navigator app from Captain Michele, today’s scheduled stop at Castaway Cay would be skipped to allow more time for the ship to return to Port Canaveral. According to reports from guests onboard, the ship experienced some sort of technical issue on Thursday which is resulting in a lower sailing speed.

Guest received the following communication via the Disney Cruise Navigator app.

Good Evening

This is Captain Michele.

I apologize for such a late message; however, I have some important information to share with you. Earlier this evening we experienced an engine technical challenge. This has resulted in a loss of speed. There is no cause for any concern and our safety is in no way compromised. Due to our loss of speed, we will not be able to make our call at Castaway Cay and we will proceed directly to Port Canaveral to arrive as per our original schedule. A letter detailing more information will be delivered to your stateroom overnight.

Please continue to enjoy your evening.

Thank you for your understanding.

DCL App Notification Fantasy Technical Challenge 20230908
Guest Service message DCL Navigator App – 9/7/2023

As of this morning, the Disney Fantasy was just east of Eleuthera sailing around 15 knots will under her typical cruising speed of 22kn.

Disney Fantasy MarineTraffic Position 20230908 745AM

Guests received the following letter this morning with $250 onboard credit to each stateroom and a 25% discount on a future sailing.

Dear Valued Guests,

As we shared earlier, due to a technical issue with the ship’s propulsion system, the Disney Fantasy is sailing at a reduced rate of speed. Regrettably, it is necessary to adjust our itinerary and we will no longer be able to visit Castaway Cay on Friday.

We know that this is disappointing news and apologize for the modification to our itinerary. To show our appreciation for your understanding, we will be providing an onboard credit of $250 for each stateroom to use during this sailing. This credit will automatically appear on the stateroom account and can be used onboard towards the purchase of shipboard services, merchandise, food and beverages, or Port Adventures.

Additionally, each reservation will receive a 25% discount* on a future cruise taken prior to September 2, 2025.

Port fees for Castaway Cay will be refunded to your original form of payment, as well as any pre-reserved Port Adventures at Castaway Cay.

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


Cast & Crew

Disney Cruise Line

* To redeem the 25% future cruise discount, please contact us at 407-566-3457 or 800-951-3532 or your travel agent after September 21, 2023, and reference your current reservation number to receive the discount on a future cruise; the future cruise must commence within 24 months of September 2, 2023. This offer is non-transferable, has no cash value, and is valid for only those Guests who are on this September 2, 2023, voyage. Future cruise discount is subiect to blackout dates and is not valid for and excludes holiday and maiden voyage sailings. Contact us or our travel agent for blackout dates and other restrictions. All reservations are subject to Disney Cruise Line terms and conditions.

DCL Letter Notification Fantasy Technical Challenge 20230908
DCL Letter – 9/8/2023

Today is the final day of the Disney Fantasy’s September 2, 2023 7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise from Port Canaveral which featured stops in St. Thomas and Tortola earlier in the week.

Guests booked on the September 9th sailing which was changed from a Bermuda and Bahamas sailing to a Western Caribbean due to Hurricane Lee receded the following email on Friday afternoon.


Reservation #: 

Dear ,

​We are writing to provide additional information regarding your September 9, 2023, sailing aboard the Disney Fantasy.

Earlier this week, we communicated a necessary modification to your original itinerary as a result of potential impacts from Hurricane Lee. Yesterday evening, the Disney Fantasy experienced a technical issue with the propulsion system that is causing the ship to sail at a reduced rate of speed. There is no impact on the maneuverability of the ship, or on the safety of our Guests and Crew.

Until the ship arrives to Port Canaveral and repairs can be completed, we are uncertain if there will be additional impacts to your itinerary. We will provide you an update as soon as we can, but that may not be until after you board the ship tomorrow.

Should you have questions or wish to cancel your sailing before boarding for a full refund, please contact us at 1-800-951-3532 or 407-566-3457. 

The Cast and Crew onboard the Disney Fantasy look forward to welcoming you onboard and are dedicated to ensuring that you and your family have an enjoyable vacation.


Cast & Crew
Disney Cruise Line

Important Information About Your Cruise Email from Disney Cruise Line – 9/8/2023
DCL Email Fantasy Update 20230909

9 Replies to “Disney Fantasy ‘Engine Technical Challenge’ on September 7th Results in Altered Itinerary – Skipping Castaway Cay to Sail Back to Port Canaveral”

  1. mike

    Quite the guest recovery – 25% for a missed port of call. I understand it was mechanical and not weather related, but wow!

  2. Jo

    I agree with you Mike, I think it is because DCL understands how big a disappointment this is to some families. The way they treat their customers is one of the reasons that we have cruised with DCL since their inaugural year. When I first read about this, I thought “that’s great”. Then I realized that for some this would be a huge disappointment. Treating this situation this way will only cause these passengers to want to cruise with DCL again (and again, and again); DCL is being farsighted.

    1. Beth

      This is us. We just got home from the sept2-11fantasy cruise. Huge disappointment for us to miss castaway. We have not been on a Disney cruise since 2016 and I doubt we will be able to use the 25% credit because we already have vacation plans for the next couple of years. We also have a framed photograph of our kids in front of a sign at castaway (adorable picture) from 2016 when they were 5 and 6 and we were planning on replicating it now that they are old and not so cute (haha). So yes it was a real bummer when we heard the last minute announcement.

  3. Dee

    That’s what I got on my first cruise during hurricane Sandy. The whole family was sick in the room for 3 days everything was closed and we got only 25% on future cruise not even on board credit. (We missed the 2 ports of course) Disney learned over the years I guess

  4. Jo

    Dee, I am so sorry to hear that happened to you and your family. I know in some ways it does not seem fair, but there is a big difference between a weather issue and a mechanical issue. Cruise lines are responsible for their ships not the weather. Hope all your other cruises were lovely!

    1. Dee

      I agree, definitely not Disney’s fault but they knew it’s in the ocean and they knew it’s coming to the Bahamas. A lot of the passengers told them they should cancel (so we can reschedule or get refunds). The captain said he will go around it but basically knew this all cruise will be a chaos. Not Disney’s fault but they should have canceled instead of letting everyone throwing up everywhere and get sick.

  5. Joni Fitch

    We are scheduled on the Fantasy 9/9-9/17. They had to change itinerary from a Bermuda cruise to a Western Cruise due to Hurricane Lee. Disney is giving guests $200.00 OBC, 20% discount on future cruise and a double dip at castaway cay. Disney didn’t have to compensate due to weather. Now we have to get through the Fantasy being repaired by tomorrow.

  6. Andrew

    I actually just got off the cruise, it was a bummer missing castaway but this is the first time it happened for me and 25% added onto the 10% for booking a placeholder is a nice plus

    1. JennD

      Hi Andrew, have you booked your next cruise with these discounts yet? I was on that cruise as well, curious how this works…is it 10% off and then the additional 25%?? thanks!


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