If you are dreaming of setting sail on the Disney Wish, I have everything you need to know to make the most of your cruise on the new Disney cruise ship. Whether you want honest wish reviews or are looking for tips and tricks to prepare for your voyage so things go seamlessly, come learn about the Disney Wish cruise ship.
With most of the restrictions lifted, it is time to set sail again! Our family loves sailing Disney cruise lines so we were eager to try out the new disney cruise ship – the Wish! After spending 3 glorious days exploring the vessel from head to stern, port to starboard we are ready to share our thoughts with you. So here is a Disney wish review from a Disney-loving family who has been on all the Disney cruise ships from Alaska to the Bahamas, Transatlantic cruise, and more!
Disney Wish Review
The Disney Wish is the fifth cruise ship owned and operated by Disney Cruise Line. The Wish is the newest and largest ship in the Disney fleet as of her June 29, 2022 christening. Her sister ship, the Disney Treasure will maker her debut in 2024. The other four other vessels in the Disney fleet: Disney Magic, Disney Wonder, Disney Dream, and Disney Fantasy.
As the newest ship there are many changes, innovations, and excitement to sail! There is also a marked increase in price for the priveledge of sailing on the newest ship. It is also worth noting that this ship only does 3 or 4 day itinerary options at this time. It is a good chance for a quick get-a-way to explore all the new spaces and offerings onboard.
New Disney Cruise Ship
Let me start by saying if you are familiar with the other Disney cruiseships you will notice some marked differences. You will hear other guests complain about the missing elevators and no hot tubs for kids / families among other things. Those are true, but there are also some fun innovations like the scavenger hunt using your mobile device, new performances, innovative dining, and AquaMouse too.
You really need to view this as not a carbon copy of the other ship. It is a new class, the Tritan class. Just like Disneyland and Disney World are similar in the rides they offer, but different in layout and each ride has variations from it’s counterpart on the other coast. So these Disney cruiseships are similar, but also very different. That is part of the fun – same type of atmosphere and reknown Disney service with exciting new things to explore.
Disney Wish Cruise Ship
Let’s start with preparing for your cruise. Make sure if you want to get on the ship soon, you begin filling out your embarkation information the very day you can to pick one of those coveted early boarding times. They are much more stringent on getting to the cruise terminal only at your assigned time. Mickey is no longer in the terminal so there is really no need to get here before your time, you really wont be allowed on early! Sorry. We did see Donald walking around the boat decks waving to us in the terminal which was fun.
If you are going on the Wish you wont need fancy dining clothes as it is a short itinerary. Many people go in shorts and a t-shirt, although maybe 1/4 or so do wear a dress and casual khakis. Guests tend not to go as “all out” for Pirate night as they do on the longer cruises, but some will so feel free to bring children and adult costumes. Make sure you have a day bag with any medicine, passports, and ticketing information along with your swimsuit and sunscreen so you can start enjoying your trip right away!
HINT: If you want to see the princesses, book a spa service, get a makeover at the Bibbity Bobbedi Boutique, dine at Palo, book a shore excursion, or get the guest favorite early dining time, etc. you will want to make reservations ASAP as they do not only book up, but sell out!
Disney Cruise Wish
You will board by boarding group number. You can skip the picture by heading around that que, we always do. They will announce your family name as you board which is such a fun magical touch. Your child will be given a star wand which they talk about at several shows (atrium and deck party) for kids to wish with. It’s cute until you realize they no longer give out complementary Mickey Pirate Bandanas on the Wish because, as guest services explained it, the wand given to kids takes the budget $ they use to give out bandanas.
Mickey was in the atrium greeting guests and there was a princess and her prince in the new balcony waving to guests as they board. If you come back later they swap out the princesses so you can see a variety of your favorites including Belle, Rapunzel and Flynn, Tiana, Moana, Cinderella and Prince Charming, etc.
Wish Disney Cruise
Your rooms will not be ready until 2pm so head to find some lunch, I know you are hungry! You can go to 1923 dining for a sit-down lunch, go to the Buffet (super cute, but crowded), or hit Mickey’s Festival of Food – my pick for embarkation day. On deck 11 you will find Donald’s Cantina with tacos or bowls, Daisy’s pizzas, MIckeys BBQ with lots of yummy choices inc luding jalapeno cornbread, Goofy’s grill with hamburgers, and of course Minnie’s soft serve ice cream (flavors change daily – the mango or pineapple flavors are our favorite!).
NOTE: The ice cream doesn’t open until 10:30-11am daily. It seemed so late to us, but that is just the way it is so plan accourdingly. Also note that on the Wish the ice cream will be served by a cast member, no more making the perfect cone.
Now it’s time to get in line for the AquaMouse. It opens at 1pm on embarkation day and the line will start forming around 12:30. Get in it! It is a cute novelty and the line wraps around in the shade. I appreciate not being on the stars like the Fantasy and Dream AquaDuck version. The Aqua Mouse loads quickly and easily on a moving belt where you can ride solo or with a friend. There is no weight limits or restrictions. You must be 42″ tall to ride by yourself or 48″ to ride by yourself. No exceptions. First in the tunnel you will see Mickey short cartoons (new version) on various screens while you get sprayed and keep going farther in the tunnel. There are two stories you can experience. THen you will woosh through the tunnels going up and down, then in a clear tube that goes out over the side of the ship and back. It is a quick, but fun ride. Personally, we preferred the AquaDuck as it gave a better thrilling ride, albeit no cartoons. The AquaMouse does not go thorugh a clear tube on the Lido deck like the other ships did — we missed waving at family at that spot. Instead you pass through the adults only area – odd to me.
Disney Cruise Review
I suggest you enjoy some pool time since you are already wet from the waterslide. The pools on the Disney Wish have been reimagined. There are more to choose from – 6 on the main deck area plus a quiet pool by the Rexasaurus slide (anyone 38″ and up, including adults ,can ride this slow, but seamless slide) and Toy Story kiddie area, the adult only area pool and hot tub, plus a Chip and Dale pool on Deck 14 in the back of the pool (a quiet, less busy, hidden gem!). The pools seemed to open late to me, 9am and the movies start around 8am. I guess our family wakes up earlier than others!
The Toy Story Splash Zone is adorable. It features all your favorite Toy Story characters, but in a cute style that resembles Fisher Price’s Little People toys. There are multiple water nozzles and sprayers, plus two short slides. It is completely shaded and there is only one entrance – making it easy for parents to keep an eye on their little cruisers.
The main pools where you can watch the Funnel Vision movies include Mickey and Minnie pools that have a retractable cover that turns them into a stage. Our experience was that the Mickey pool was covered at least 50% of the time. Above the much smaller that previous ships main pools are 4 other pools to choose from, terraced up the back. The 2nd level are shallow splash kind of pools – Daisey and Pluto Pools – that are only 2 feet deep with a simple, pretty waterafall in the back. Up another tier are the top level, 4 feet deep, circular Donald and Goofy pools. I actually really like the new pools. Not only does it spread out swimmer while offering more by the pool seating, but for deck parties there are more railings and places to gather while still getting a great view because of the terracing! BRILLIANT!
HINT: Disney Wish, like all the Disney cruise ships offers complimentary life jackets for use by guests. There are also lifeguards on duty anytime the pool is in use.
Disney Cruise Line Staterooms
It is getitng close to 2pm when your stateroom opens. I suggets going down a little AFTER 2pm as the crowds of people wanting to be ther exactly at 2pm is a little ridiculous LOL! Your key cards will be on your door when you get there, open the envelope and you will see your names. These are your room keys throughout your stay on the Wish.
HINT: The Wish is using tech to get guests to turn off their lights when they are on in their stateroom. You will need to put your keycard in here to get your stateroom lights to work. This is common when traveling in Asia. I get it, but having to get the card out of your lanyard and back in each time is a little annoying and makes it more likely you’ll forget your room key. I suggest bringing a hole punch so it stays on the lanyard even when powering the room.
Once you get settled in your room you may want to change and go exploring – my favorite part! It is also a perfect time to go find your muster station. The new procedure is WONDERFUL! Find the station letter on your room key and walk around to find the coordinating place on the ship. You will use your phone to scan in so they know you found it. Then later the jumbotron, room tv, etc. will play the video explaining what to do in an emergency. No more squishing in like sardines on deck in the heat for a drill no one is listening to anyway! Hooray!
HINT: If you need to get any additional reservations or change your dining time, this is the time to do it.
Disney Cruise Parties
One of our favorite parts about sailing on Disneycruiseline is the family friendly entertainment. No casinos on board and no traditional parties. So don’t miss the sail away party at 4:30pm where there is music, dancing, lots of characters (including princesses), streamers in the air, etc.
The main deck gets crowded and is popular with families but you have an equally good view with less crowds on one of the back terraces or deck 11 on the sides!
HINT: The same is true for the Mickey Pirate Part and Halloween on the High Seas parties too!
Disney Cruise Dining
Another favorite thing is the food! Not only does Disney serve yummy food presented beautifully, but they present them in creative rotating dinning! Look on your phone to find out which of the three dinning rooms you will eat at that evening, your dining time (you do need to abide by that), and your table number. You will use a wipe to clean your hands upon entering and then will be guided to your table where your servers and assistant will take care of you throughout the entire voyage, moving dining rooms with you throughout your stay.
The dinning venues are completely different on this cruise, although I have my favorites, it is so fun to try new things! You will eat at:
1923 – the year Walt and Roy Disney estabished the Walt Disney Company with food instpired by that era in Hollywood. You will be surrounded by sketches and molds from Disney characters that have been brought to life. You will enjoy Filet Mignon and other delicious treats. This is the dining room you can choose to eat at breakfast or lunch if you prefer a more relaxed meal. I highly recommend it as the food is just better, with more options! HINT: You will be told to go to the Roy Disney dining on the left or Walt Disney dining on the right.
Arendelle: A Frozen Dining Experience – Join the kingdom of Arendale as they celebrate Anna and Kristoff’s engagment! The hall lining up for dinner will make you think you’ve been whisked away in the story. The food is inspired by Scandanevia – the meatballs and noodles were fabulous! During dinner you will get a chance to hear songs performed live by Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf. You will also be delighted by a group singing popular songs with a violin and guitar! Characters including the hilarious Oaken, Oolaf, Anna, Elsa, and Kristoff will come by your table and greet you. The kids will also get a chance to join in a celebration at the end.
Worlds of Marvel – You will enter the Avengers area for a unique Marvel inspired menu with a “show” on the screens featuring Ant-Man and the Wasp. The part prepared for the dining is funny and cute as a towel animal swan is enlarged by “accident” and you use your canister on your table to engage with the show. However, most of the meal is a constant runing of clips from the Marvel movies.
If you have older kids or you love the movies – you will probably love this. For me and my young cruisers, the scenes were way too intense, violent, and upsetting. We left half way through our meal. If you have young cruisers who you feel might be upset by clips of robots, explosions, shooting, etc you may want to go to guest services and ask for an accomidation. This is the ONE thing that will keep my family from returning to the Wish. Until they come up with an improved show or option for families it just isn’t family friendly for those with young kids in my opinion.
As far as onboard entertainment you will be hard pressed to find a more entertaining ship. During the day soak in the sun poolside as you watch a Disney movie on the funnel vision, grab a bite (or two) when you are hungry, greet a favorite Disney character (appearances conveniently listed in the navigator ap), catch a movie in one of the two theatres.
The Hero Zone is a true upgrade to the ship in my opinion. It is the sports deck but indoors – think air conditioned, no sunburn, and no wind to deal with! In this giant gym you can shoot hoops, play ping pong, or head upstairs to play one of the seveal tables of air hockey, foosball, table shuffle board, and more.
The Incredi-Games is a popular afternoon activity on select days. They inflate a massive obsticle course for you to race an opponent thorugh the Incredible Obstacle Course. THe line does move a little slow and does give the younger cruisers a definet advantage, but it was fun to do once.
In the evening you will enjoy mouthwatering course after course in one of the fabulous dining rooms. If you prefer, you can eat at Mickey’s Festival of Foods of the buffet – Marcelline Market. Marcelline Market is inspired by Walt’s hometown and has a charming atmosphere. The food is in little pods where you tell them what you want and they will plate it for you. The food was good, but I found there to be far fewer choices than on Disney’s other ships. The style that gives it a unique and beautiful feel also makes it more cramped providing less room to walk around in the cafeteria type area an fewer tables too.
Disney Wish Activities
Between a different live stage show each evening, a myriad of lounges to listen to music or grab a cocktail, scavenger hunt, and of course lots of game shows to laugh the night away.
Disney Wish Shows
My favorite things is the musicals! And the Wish’s lovely Walt Disney Theatre was a great venue for the stage shows! The space has been redesigned a little with more levels. If you like to get bubbles and confettin on you you need to sit in one of the 15 rows on the main floor or 4 terraced. AFter that, the majority of the theatre is under an “awning”. People flock to the theatre as soon as doors open (30 minutes before showtime) and they will fill up quickly. And despite the don’t save seats announcement – everyone does so it is a little tricky to navigate, especially with a large family or group.
HINT: Word to the wise, if you don’t get here early, you wont get a seat even if it is your assigned time.
- First Night – An Embarkation Celebration — ‘Disney Seas the Adventure’. This delightful show features Goofy who gets a chance to be the captain of ship. He gains confidence along the way with the help of encouragement from characters from Disney movies. The song with Elsa, Moana, and Merida is especially powerful as well as Crush the Turtles number and the stellar performance by Tiana, but it is truly all fantastic!
- A Treasure Retold — ‘Disney The Little Mermaid’ – Truth be told I was not excited about another retelling of the Little Mermaid, but boy was I wrong. The superbly talented casting of Ariel, Ursula, and Sebastian kept you mesmorized and wanting more! I love the twist of the first number and would happily watch this show over and over!
- A Reimagined Favorite: ‘Disney’s Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular’ – The set and costumes in this show were truly extraordinary and I wanted to love it, but the main characters just weren’t captivating. Many families started to duck out after a couple numbers and it got distracting. It was good, but not great.
Disney Wish Activities
We enjoyed much of our evenings in the Luna or Triton lounge particpating in game shows such as and Disney Uncharted Adventure (the finale for the mobile scavenger hunt).
Pirates in the Carribean Party
One of our favorite days is the Pirates in the Caribean Party day! Around 5pm they will change the soundtrack to play some more pirate songs, but not as pronounced as on their other ships. Sadly, the characters did not come out in pirate costumes to greet and take pictures with guests in the atrium. However, you could see the Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Pluto, Donald, Daisy, Chip & Dale, Jack Sparrow, Mr. Smee, and Captain Hook in the Pirates in the Carribean deck party followed a couple hours later by the energetic Pirate’s Rockin’ Parlay Party.
The Pirate’s Rockin’ Parlay Party event featured lots of known songs with a fun upbeat show that felt like a rock concert for families. The party itself was definetly an upgrade in my opinion. After the party, fireworks shot off on the starbord (right) side of the ship set to fun pirate music. It is such a special end to the evening!
HINT: If you want to get a great view you need to be on deck 11 on the starboard side, if not you will get the Aqua Mouse in the middle of the action. OR you can watch it from your starboard side balcony!
While guests on this ship don’t tend to go as “all out” with the costumes, there are definety still 1 out of 4 that do. So feel free to bring and dress-up as pirates for the Pirates in the Carribean party
Disney Cruise Kids Club
The kids areas on the Disney Wish are nothing short of spectacular! Start by the two ways to enter the secure area:
- Zoom down the slide right into the secure area the level below!
- Take the stars or elevators to the kids floor on deck 4
The kids club has fun events, parties, characters, activities, movies, and so much more. All the trained councelors have a childhood degree of some sort and are fabulous with kids!
The bathrooms are completely adorable! Who else wants this Pixar bathroom in their house or school!
There is a Beauty and the Beast room, Arendale room, Rapunzel art studio, and more. Each features the perfect details to make kids feel they have been transported to the imaginary world of their favorite Disney friends.
With kids band that allows them to securely check in and out they can design their own roller coaster and then step aboard to experience what they created. How cool is that!!
During open house time anyone can come in and take a peak. What preschooler wouldn’t want to play in this charming nautical themed room with their favorite pals Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Goofy, and more!
There is a fun Star Wars area that has lots of moving creatures in containers being transported throughout the galaxy. Kids can pick up a tablet and join in on the fun! I love that this space is still Star Wars, but completely different than the Dreams space.
HINT: Adults can have an out-of-this-world experience in the Hyperspace Lounge!
Disney Private Island
No trip would be complete without a visit to Disney’s private island Castaway Cays in the Bahamas. Every detail has been taken care of from a shuttle to the beach of your choice, several locations to enjoy bbq and ice cream by the beach, games in the shade, character greetings, kids club, water slides, beach chairs & umbrellas, lifeguards, clean bathrooms, and more! Plus it’s all FREE!
Should i go on a disney cruise
Did you know Disney is actually developing their 2nd private island?! I can’t wait to see what changes and improvements they’ve made!
The Disney wish is filled with its own charm and magical touches. It is most definetly not a carbon copy of the previous ships, nor should it. I love that there are new lounges to explore, different shows to enjoy, and even different sail away parties to experience!
The food is good and I like that the menu is almost completly different from the other ships! I love mixing it up! You will find innovative dishes, cute charcuterie boards, delicious main dishes, dips for your breads at dinner, and a variety of yummy desserts in the buffet area.
I love how guests decorate their doors with magnets, white boards, or hanging pouches to communicate with family and make new friends.
NOTE: The doors no longer have the circular part so plan your magnetic decorations accordingly!
Disney cruise tips
WIth that being said, there are definetly some quirks that will bother you. Throughout the day, every day you would hear guests griping about some of the unpopular changes. Whether they are deal breakers for you, that’s up to you. Here are some I heard a lot:
- There are no midship elevators – so instead of 3 sections of elevators there were only 2. They did this to make room for the stage in the lobby which to be honest, they only used the first day and didn’t really need. Perhaps they are going to use it more in the future? For me this was not a big deal.
- The elevators are TINY! THis was a big deal to me. The elevators are long and skiny so that there were 4 pairs of elevators instead of 3. It is hard to get around people to get out at different floors. I know what they were trying to do, but everyone had to empty out to let people out on each floor.
- Elevators have no character. The other ships have glass elevators mid ship to see the atrium or characters as they go up making them a fun journey. These were wallpapered. Not great, but not a deal breaker to me.
- Elevator buttons – They were “suppose” to be touchless, but they don’t work. So you have to press and half of the time they don’t respond. So you may think you’ve hit it and still not get to your floor. You press and press and since they hardly light up, it’s hard to tell. This is something they have to fix!
- Deck 12, 13, 14 – Unlike the other ships where the buttons called certain elevators to allow guests to get to the higher decks, these buttons call all elevators. But most of the elevators only go to deck 11. So if you want to go higher you keep calling and calling. It once took us 4 elevators called, wait and repush to get to where we were going.
Cruise ship tips
So is it just the elevators that are annoying? No, but that did seem like a lot about elevators LOL!
- The pool deck chairs on deck 11 are all short chairs, no recliners.
- There is no hot tub that kids can go in. The only hot tub is in the adult only area.
- Half of the chairs on the main deck are facing the jumbo tron to watch the movie, but half are facing the aqua mouse and minnie pool. Not sure why. So half the people are facing nothing all day.
- If you like walking around the ship – one of my favorite things – there are NO DECKS that wrap around. So if you wanted to go to deck 4 (by the shuffle board) and walk a lap around. Sorry you can’t. You can go up and down the side, but that’s it. This was pretty close to a deal breaker for me.
- Like I mentioned before you don’t get a bandana for the Mickey Pirate Party.
- I didn’t see ANY dining room staff doing magic tricks or puzzles like they use to. Perhaps that is a change since the recent world events, but we miss the interaction and surprise of those special moments
- The walkways around the different food venues are super crowded – even for a cruise ship!
- And once again, the Marvel meal that was not little kid friendly.
- Their are no longer wave phones which were handy for communicating with family. THe daily navigator and even dining room table are in the ap. The scavenger hunt is too. Not only do you HAVE to have the ap, but it will drain your phone. Plan on bringing a pencil charger or taking an afternoon nap to recharge your phone =)
Disney cruise reviews
So, would I recommend a Disney Wish cruise?
- Yes if you are a big Disney fan, love trying out new ships, are flexible to the things that I mentioned before.
- If you don’t need to get right on the newest ship…. wait a little bit for them to get some kinks worked out and for the price to come back down in line with the other Disney ships. It’s a great ship with some cool new things that are fun! It’s worth a voyage for sure!
- If any of the things I meanted before seem like dealbreakers to you – you worked hard for your money so take the vacation that fits your family best!
Disney World Planning
- How to Plan a trip to Disney World in 6 Simple Steps – let’s not over complicate it here is what you MUST do to make sure you are ready for your Disney vacation!
- How Much Does Disney World Cost – wondering how much does it cost to go to disney world? We will help you figure out what hotels and tickets are in your budget – there are lots of choices and we will help you break it down
- How Long to Stay at Disney World – should your family stay a week at Disney World or more? We will help you figure it out!
- The BEST age to take kids to Disney World – will your toddler, preschooler, kindergarten, elementary age, or high schooler like Disney World —> here is the answer you’ve been looking for
- BEST time to got to Disney World – should you visit Disney in the fall, winter, spring or summer? What are the low crowd times to visit the Magic Kingdom? We have some advice that may surpirse you
Disney World Hotels
- 8 Reasons to Stay at Disney World Hotels – wondering if it is worth it to stay in the middle of the magic? We will help you way the advantages like extra park time, getting to pick Fastpass first, and others agains the cost of staying on site.
- Disney Moderate Hotels: Which One is Best? – If you are looking to stay at a mid level Disney World Hotel with a pool with as slide and onsite restaurant we will help you pick the one with the best transportation, coolest waterslide, and most engaging decorations.
- Disney World Hotels for Families of 5+ – are you a larger family? Our family of 8 has figured out the best and most economic way to stay at Disney World without breaking the bank! Come se our top hotel picks for large families.
- Art of Animation Hotel Review – Do the theme suites live up to the hype, are they worth the extra money? We have lots of tips and pictures to help you decide!
Disney World Dining
Unlike a “regular” vacation, the more you plan in advance for a Disney vacation the more fun you will have! Why is that? Well if you don’t plan ahead you wont get to eat with Mickey and Minne, get a fastpass to Star Wars Galxy’s Edge, or know which park to visit on which day. So dive in to all our Disney travel planning so you can get to Orlando, Florida with a plan in hand and ready to not thing—- just have fun with your family! Here are some must read tips on disney dining.
- 28 Great Disney World Restaurants to Eat on the Disney Dining Plan
- Disney World Character Dining – one of our favorite ways to use dining credits is to eat with the disney characters. Not only is it a fun, memorable meal, but it is also a way to see characters without taking a lot of part time. You can see Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Donald, Daisey, Goofy, Winnie the Pooh, Eeyore, Tigger, Piglet, Rapunzel, Flynn Rider, Cinderella, Mulan, Ariel, Belle, Beast, Prince Charming, Snow White, Aurora (aka Sleeping Beauty), Prince Eric, Alice, The Mad Hatter, and more!
- Best Quick Service Restaurants – not all disney food is the same – some is delicious and a great value… and then there are places with few choices and apre packaged cookie for your desert choice. You will want to see what we’ve uncovered as the best meals and deserts (since you get free desert with your meal on the disney meal plan!)
- Best Table Service Restaurants – Disney has some truly fantastic sit down restaurants – from eating with the fish, in outer space, with a show, in a drive in movie theatre car, watching a belly dancer, or in a garden in “germany” Here are the restaurants you dont want to miss!
- Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show – delicious food with tons of flavor, flame throwing, and hoola dancers make this easy to get to dinner experience a must see
- Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue Dinner Show is loads of old time fun for the whole family
- Disney’s Be Our Guest Restaurant is a Don’t Miss!
- Best Snacks at the Magic Kingdom – sure there are mickey pretzels, mickey ice cream bars, churros, carmel apples, pineapple floats, and cinnmon rolls…. but there are so many other don’t miss snacks
I was on the wish from Oct 17 to .21
2 senior adults. Found the adult pool impossible to get into due to the ladders. to me the 2 adjacent waterfall pools were useless and the whirlpool too far away. Plus to get food had to go down 2 decks. After 7 disney cruises I enjoyed the 4 days so We could go to the parks after. Not anymore.