If you’re on a Disney cruise and your sailing is extended unexpectedly or canceled due to weather or another reason, you may wonder if your serving team, head server, and stateroom host or hostess will require additional funds to take care of their gratuities for the additional nights. On my most recent sailing aboard the Disney Wish, Disney Cruise Line extended the cruise by two nights due to Hurricane Ian. Many folks who were seated around us in the dining room wondered if that meant that you needed to pay more gratuity or what would happen as our server said DCL does not bill you any additional amount. We were also told that DCL does not bill you for any extra cruise fare either.
As with anything else that can happen unexpectedly during a Disney vacation, I prefer to get my information directly from Guest Services as to what would actually happen. Some folks said that guests would need to add two nights’ worth of gratuity which, at the time of our cruise, was $14.50 per person per night. I couldn’t imagine that Disney would expect passengers to automatically know this information and there was no message sent out via the DCL-Navigator app or otherwise, so off to Guest Services we went.
As a side note, the Guest Services area aboard the Disney Wish is set up completely differently from how it is on other ships. There are individual desks rather than one long counter. There are no ropes or any other guidance or signage advising people how and where to form the line, so it can be interesting if there are only a small handful of guests waiting, which was the case during our visit. If there are a lot of people waiting, the line can wrap around to the Wishing Star Cafe or even down as far as the Untangled Salon during busier times.
Obviously, this was not the first time a cruise has been extended unexpectedly and I was thrilled to find out that Disney Cruise Line takes care of the additional gratuities for guests. I think it’s really cool that DCL does not pass that cost onto their passengers and they easily could.
Disney very rarely cancels cruises, even during hurricane season. This situation with Hurricane Ian was unusual as the path of the hurricane kept changing and no one was really sure where it was heading. The cruise that left the week before ours on the Disney Fantasy was supposed to go on a western Caribbean sailing but ended up doing an eastern Caribbean itinerary instead so they could stay completely out of the hurricane’s path.
Setting sail during hurricane season in Florida can be risky, but it can also provide lower rates than you’ll find other times of the year. Of course, booking and being aboard these sailings comes with other risks such as missing your stop at Disney’s Castaway Cay altogether or visiting a different port of call that you hadn’t planned on. Regardless of what changes are made to your itinerary, it’s important to note that DCL will take good care of you while you’re onboard their ship, and they’ll take good care of their crew members as well.