10 Questions About Rebooking Onboard a Disney Cruise

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Saving money on a Disney cruise is always a good thing, right? Did you know you can save money on a future Disney cruise by booking your next Disney cruise while onboard? Well, you can! All you have to do is go to Future Cruise Sales Desk onboard, or talk to the concierge team if you are sailing concierge, and either fill out a form to drop off, or sit down to talk and make plans with the cast member at the desk. The deposit amount will be charged to your method of payment on file for your cruise. Does that answer all of your questions? Of course not. So let’s try more information below.

Update – Disney has recently changed their policy for onboard bookings.  The onboard credit is no longer included as a benefit for rebookings for anything besides concierge categories.  Disney Cruise Line Blog has the updated policy.

1. What are the Benefits to Rebooking Onboard? – There are three benefits to booking onboard. First, when you rebook onboard, you will receive 10% off of the current cruise fare. You’ll still pay the regular taxes and port fees on top of that. Second, you will only have to put down a 10% deposit, instead of the normal 20%, on cruises of 7 nights or longer. Third, you will receive an onboard credit on that future cruise of either $100 on sailings of 6 nights or less, or $200 on sailings of 7 nights or longer. If you are booking a concierge stateroom, you will only get the third benefit, the onboard credit.

2. If I Don’t Know What I Want to Book, Can I Rebook Onboard? – Absolutely! If you don’t have a date in mind, or if Disney hasn’t released your preferred sail date yet, you can book what’s called a Placeholder. A Placeholder is a flat $250 and basically reserves your discount. Once you decide what sail date you want to use it for, you’ll move the Placeholder to the correct date and pay the additional deposit, if any, that is due.

3. Do the Rebooking Onboard Benefits Expire? – They do. You must use your onboard booking within two years. Your new sailing must begin within 24 months of the exact day it is booked. No exceptions. If you do not use it, 24 months after your Placeholder is booked, your $250 will automatically be refunded to the original form of payment. If you have a specific date booked and you change it to a date outside of that 24 month window, it will not automatically cancel, but you will not receive any of the benefits.

4. What if I Change My Mind On Sail Dates or Even Sailing Again? – No harm no foul. You can move it as many times as you like, as long as you stick within that 24-month window. If you decide a cruise is not in your plans in the next two years after all, the onboard booking (with the exception of concierge) is fully refundable.

5. Can I Combine with Other Discounts? – You cannot. If you book a military rate, Florida resident, or a IGT, OGT, or VGT rate, you cannot use an onboard booking for it. There’s no loss though! If you find a good discounted rate, you can cancel the onboard booking and move the money over, or save the onboard booking for another date.

6. Do the Rebooking Onboard Benefits Work on All Itineraries? – They do not. There are some block-out dates where the 10% off and reduced deposit will not apply. You will still get the onboard credit and reduced deposit if applicable. Scott Sanders keeps a good list of which sailings are blocked out on his site. Rebooking onboard benefits also do not apply to two-night sailings.

7. Can I Book for Friends? – Kind of! Each household sailing can book two staterooms on a future sailing. Not each adult, but each household, meaning Dad and Mom in the same room can still only book two staterooms. Both staterooms must be on the same sailing, but you can put anyone you like in the second stateroom. They do not have to be onboard at the time of booking. One name from the time of booking must always stay in each of the staterooms, so if you are a family of two adults, I’d recommend booking one adult in each stateroom. Then if your friends change their mind, you can take someone else! Once you are onboard you can move everyone to the stateroom that everyone will actually be sleeping in.

8. Can I Still Use My Travel Agent With An Onboard Booking? – You can! If you are currently booked with a travel agent, you can request that the new booking remain with that travel agent. If you would like to change agents or didn’t use one the first time, you can transfer the onboard booking to a travel agent within 30 days of booking. Your travel agent will have a form for you to fill out. Disney is very, very strict on that 30 days, so don’t delay! FYI, when a guest rebooks onboard, Disney reduces the amount of commission that is paid to travel agencies who have reached a certain level of sales for Disney Cruise Line. You read that correctly, the agencies that sell the most cruises for Disney are the ones that are penalized when a guest rebooks onboard. Don’t even get me started… Why does this matter to you? If you use a travel agent who offers agency onboard credits, because of the reduced commission, they will usually reduce their onboard credit for onboard bookings. Also of note, if you want to book a concierge stateroom and are hoping to get an agency onboard credit, you may want to forgo the onboard booking. Often the extra agency onboard credit will make up for the loss of the onboard credit from Disney, the only benefit concierge gets when rebooking onboard.

9. I Forgot to Rebook Onboard, Can I do it When I Get Home? – No, you can’t! Disney is also very strict about this benefit being an onboard-benefit only. I also recommend doing it early in the cruise as the rebooking desk gets very, very busy towards the end. (But remember, you can just grab one of the rebooking cards from the rebooking desk, fill it out, and then drop it in the box at the rebooking desk—no need to talk to anyone unless you want to!)

10. If New Itineraries Come Out, Should I Wait and Rebook Onboard? – My answer is no to this one. When you know what you want, go ahead and book it. New itineraries in particular, can jump in price quickly. When you rebook onboard you are getting the 10% discount off the current fare. If the price has gone up more than 10% (plus the onboard credit), you have lost your savings. It’s also possible the category or stateroom you are interested in could be gone if you wait, costing you more in the long run if you have to book up a category. On the other hand, if you’ve booked already, and the price hasn’t gone up that amount, you can “reshop” (or rebook the exact same thing) onboard, and cancel the old booking when you get home. Disney or your travel agent will make sure the original deposit is credited towards the new cruise or refunded, and will even make sure you keep your original stateroom if you so desire.

Do you have any other questions about an onboard booking? Is there anything I’ve left out that you think would be helpful for others to know? Share below!

Tammy Whiting is the owner of Storybook Destinations. Did you know Storybook Destinations offers a complimentary subscription to TouringPlans with qualified Disney and Universal bookings? Click here for a no-obligation quote on your next vacation.

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Tammy Whiting

Tammy has been a lover of all things Disney for most of her life. There’s nowhere on this Earth she’d rather be than on a Disney cruise with her family. She’s a Space Force wife and proud mom of two wonderful children and one beautiful daughter-in-law . She fulfilled a lifelong dream in 2008 and became a travel agent specializing in Disney vacations. She now owns her own travel agency - Storybook Destinations. You can reach Tammy at Tammy@StorybookDestinations.com.

27 thoughts on “10 Questions About Rebooking Onboard a Disney Cruise

  • March 27, 2018 at 8:55 pm
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    Thanks for the info! I have a question: We are a family a 5, booked into two adjoining staterooms with one adult booked in each room. Does that mean we can rebook two rooms, or four? The only other advice I would give is to remind people that the line at the Future Cruise Sales Desk gets really long on the last night of the cruise.

    Reply
    • March 27, 2018 at 9:31 pm
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      Technically because you are in the same household, you’ll only be able to book two staterooms, which is a little crazy to me. It doesn’t hurt to ask onboard though!

      Very true about the lines! Don’t wait until the end of the cruise!

      Reply
  • June 16, 2019 at 10:26 am
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    What if you’re n a cruise and decide you want to stay onboard and do a back to back? Can you book that?

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      • June 16, 2019 at 7:10 pm
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        Thanks for the response! The prevailing opinion on Facebook is that this is not allowed. Very helpful!

      • June 16, 2019 at 7:48 pm
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        It’s possible they would tell you that it’s too late to book with the onboard booking discount, but I’ve been offered space on the next sailing before. And the savings was more than an onboard booking discount would have been. 🙂

  • June 24, 2019 at 10:11 pm
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    I’m cruising this summer with my husband and kids. Can I book two rooms on a future cruise if my husband is not going? Other room would be for a friends family. You mentioned an adult from current cruise should be booked in each room which would not be possible in my case.

    Reply
    • June 24, 2019 at 10:23 pm
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      My answer is – possibly. I’ve had some onboard agents let me put someone else in a room if I knew who I was sailing with, no problem. I’ve had others insist that I have one adult in each room. So sit down with them and see what they say. Then let us know! I think you’ll be okay!

      Reply
  • July 14, 2019 at 5:53 pm
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    Does the $250 come off of the deposit or the overall total of the cruise? So if my regular deposit is 1200 would it be 950?

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  • September 2, 2019 at 2:30 pm
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    Tammy, this article was very helpful. Thanks! This might be some of the ‘facebook confusion’ about back-to-back cruises that Melenie was alluding to above, as my question might be slightly different from hers:

    I’m under the impression that if my wife and I are on a cruise in 1 room, that we cannot book a future back-to-back (say, both being 12 months in the future) and get the OBC and 10% discount on BOTH cruises.

    Reply
    • September 2, 2019 at 3:09 pm
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      I’m glad it helped, Bill!

      That is correct. You could book two rooms on the same cruise and get the benefits for both rooms, but you can not get benefits on two separate cruises!

      Reply
  • September 10, 2019 at 7:45 am
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    My question is about placeholders (future cruise date unknown) vs. onboard booking (for a specific known cruise date). My husband and I are sailing the end of the year, will we both have the option to put down a placeholder for a future cruise? So do we receive 2 separate placeholders? Can we each use our respective placeholder on separate cruise dates? Or must we use our 2 separate placeholders on the exact same cruise-together? The posters all say “Two place holders can be booked per household” but it doesn’t say whether they have to be on the same cruise. But my FB forum says that they MUST be used together on the same cruise. I’m so confused.

    Reply
    • September 10, 2019 at 11:03 am
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      Hi Lisa! You can both book a placeholder, but they must be used on the same future cruise. The rules are the same for placeholders, and onboard bookings of specific dates.

      Reply
  • September 23, 2019 at 8:09 am
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    Can I book a placeholder on board using a combination of DVC points and cash and still receive all the discounts and credits?

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    • September 27, 2019 at 10:10 am
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      Hi Dennis! You can book a placeholder onboard, or call member services within 7 days of getting off the ship to book a date.

      Reply
  • March 20, 2020 at 10:52 pm
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    Hi! I recently used a placeholder to book a cruise for my husband and I, but now am thinking I would like to switch to a different itinerary and bring our two children along. I had originally listed all four of us on the placeholder for one stateroom but then only booked with my husband and myself on the reservation. Can I still switch it to include all four of us? Thanks!

    Reply
  • May 1, 2021 at 6:16 am
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    Hi my travel Agent didn’t give me a handicap room but I need one cause I have a scooter isot to late to change the room I haven’t paid in full yet..

    Reply
    • May 1, 2021 at 11:05 am
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      Hi Heather! If there is availability, it’s never too late to change!

      Reply
  • May 5, 2021 at 12:04 pm
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    Hi! We have one we have to use by Jan. 2022. Do you know if Disney will be extending these dates because of COVID? Worst case scenario is that we get our refund back, but it would be nice to have the 10% off!

    Reply
    • May 5, 2021 at 2:59 pm
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      Hi Paige!
      They have extended them through the summer of 2022. You just need to apply it to a date before it expires! 🙂

      Reply
      • May 6, 2021 at 9:06 pm
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        This is great news! Time to start looking at spring/summer 2022 dates. Thank you!

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