Gabby and Lillian walking through the port holding hands

Magic or Tragic? Part One: Getting to our first Disney Cruise

Gabby and Lillian walking through the port holding hands

Since we’ve already been to the Happiest Place on Earth and Buffalo winters can make a person need to flee the cold, we planned ourselves a short 4-night Disney cruise that left out of the Port of Miami this past February. We also connected this trip with a visit to family in the West Palm Beach, FL area, which I will write about in another post.

This trip just so happened to follow one of my busiest weeks at work and came two days after Lillian’s 4th birthday (a post about which is also still in the works). I ended up having to pack for this trip during my lunch breaks the two days prior to the trip. It was hectic packing for me and the two girls in basically 40 minute segments for an 8-day extravaganza.

Our flight left out of Buffalo at 6 in the morning, so we had to get up bright and early at 3 am to make our flight on time. It seems like most of the time, even Buffalo is an international airport, we have to take multiple flights to get to any destination. We flew Delta this time around. We had a short layover in Detroit and then we got a fancy plane with free in-flight movies for the rest of the journey to Miami. I, however, forgot to bring wired headphones, so I just stared at the flight pattern screen for 2 hours and change.

Gabby watching a movie on the airplane.

Lillian fell asleep as we were landing on 3 out of the 4 flights. When we got to Miami, it was as we were taxiing to the gate. When I had to wake her up to get off the plane and find our luggage, she obviously was a cranky mess and I had to carry her most of the way. Finally, we found our luggage and the Disney Cruise Line ground transportation staff member who led us to where we would wait for the bus. They were super helpful and tried to cheer her up and eventually told us to find a seat and they would tell us when to get on the bus.


Once on the bus, we met our Driver, Mr. Atwell. He was a Miami native and told us all about the sports stadiums and people movers we passed as we headed to the port. The trip was only about 20 minutes from Miami International Airport to the Port of Miami. We de-boarded the bus, collected our day bags, and headed into the port. The porters collected our luggage and we hoped it would arrive to our room at a later time that day.

The line to get our Key to the World cards seemed crazy long, but we got through after about 15 minutes. The building was air conditioned, so it was not a big deal at all. They also had to take pictures of us to match up in the comuter with our cards. This was uncoordinated and people were stepping all over us and getting in each other’s pictures. Seems like something they could do at a later time where there is more space.

Once we passed through this area, we just followed signs through the port to the ship. There were a few photo stops, but the photographer refused to take a picture with my phone, so we said screw it and made for the ship.

Verdict so far: disneycruiseblogmeter1

Want more? Click over to Part 2: We’re on a Giant Boat on the Ocean!