An oceanview stateroom on Disney Cruise Line offers one large or two small in room portholes. Photo: WDWinfo.com

One of the initial choices to consider when planning a Disney Cruise Line vacation is what kind of stateroom you and your family would like to stay in. Disney Cruise line offers three basic types of room categories (with the added option of concierge): inside, oceanview, and verandah.

An inside stateroom is the smallest, and by extension the most affordable, of the room categories. Varying slightly in size across the ships, an inside stateroom has no exterior view, although on the Dream and the Fantasy they offer magical portholes with real-time views of the exterior of the ship, as well as occasional visits from beloved Disney characters. An oceanview stateroom is the Goldilocks of stateroom categories, sandwiched between no exterior view and a verandah, the oceanview room offers either one large or two small portholes. Finally, there are the verandah staterooms that offer guests a private outdoor verandah, and of the three room types, are the most expensive.

Inside staterooms offer no exterior views, but the Dream and the Fantasy have magical portholes. Photo: WDWinfo

Keeping in mind the basic room categories, choosing the best suited for your family can be daunting. On our first Disney cruise (which was our first cruise of any kind), we chose an oceanview stateroom mainly because we weren’t sure of our preferences and it seemed like a good “in between” choice. We were not disappointed. Here is why I think booking an oceanview stateroom is a great choice for your first Disney Cruise:

Not Too Small, Not too Big. The idea of an inside stateroom gave our family claustrophobia, but we weren’t sure that we would use the verandah if we splurged for it either. For us, the oceanview category gave us the open feeling we wanted with a porthole, while also providing lots of natural light for the little time we actually spent in our stateroom. Because it was our first Disney cruise, we were more focused on exploring the ship, participating in activities, and doing port adventures so we would not have used the verandah had we had one. It was the perfect compromise for us, giving us a view of the outside of the ship that we wanted without any extras we wouldn’t have used (and hence, money we would have wasted).

How much time do you plan on spending inside your room? Consider this before spending the extra money on a verandah stateroom. Photo: WDWinfo

The Price is Right. Think of the oceanview room category as being similar to a moderate Disney resort. It’s at the mid-range accommodation price point, which many times is not that much of an increase in price from an inside stateroom. Choosing the oceanview room kept us within budget and allowed for us to splurge on other portions of our vacation.

Inside staterooms on the Dream and Fantasy have magical portholes which give guests real time views of outside of the ship. Photo: WDWinfo

What Does Your Disney Cruise Vacation Look Like? Considering what you want from your Disney cruise experience plays a big factor in your room selection. How much time will you realistically spend in your stateroom? Does your sailing have a lot of sea days, and if so, do you envision yourself relaxing on your verandah or would you rather be doing things around the ship (or some combination of both)? Could you be content with going to the upper decks of the ship to lounge instead of using your personal verandah?

Choosing the right stateroom category is one of the most important parts of ensuring a memorable and satisfying Disney cruise, and knowing what you want from your room is key to making that decision.

Take a 3D tour of a Family Oceanview Stateroom aboard the Disney Dream below!