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Disney Cruise Line Placeholder Explained!

You are half way through your Disney Cruise and as expected, you are having an amazing time and don't want to leave. You are already planning in your heard when you can return and how quickly you can get back. If you’ve enjoyed your time aboard one of Disney Cruise Line’s five ships and can foresee another cruise within the next 2 years, booking a placeholder (referred to by Disney as “onboard booking offers”) makes sense and gives you something to look forward to between vacations. There are so many fun things to do on Disney ships that, while they’re not a secret, it’s easy to miss booking a cruise placeholder if you don’t know the opportunity exists. This guide to placeholders and the perks (and limitations) of booking one will give you all the information to help you decide whether signing up for this discount is right for you. Spoiler alert: It is!

What is a Placeholder?

A Disney Cruise placeholder is an incentive to book future cruises only available to passengers while they’re on a Disney Cruise. A placeholder is a special onboard discount offered to anyone over the age of 18. You pay $250 to get a placeholder; the $250 goes towards the cost of the future cruise. The Disney Cruise Line Onboard Booking Offer allows Guests to make a Placeholder Reservation for a future Disney cruise and enjoy 10% savings off prevailing rates as quoted on, plus enjoy a reduced deposit on sailings 7 nights and longer. The offer is valid for up to 2 staterooms on one sail date per household on board, regardless of the number of adults in the household. This offer is valid for Categories 4 to 11 only.

Why should I book a Placeholder?

More like, why not!?! Booking a placeholder is about as zero risk as it gets. If you don’t book a cruise within the allotted time, your deposit will be returned to you. You’ve got 2 years to find a cruise, book it, and sail, but if that doesn’t happen, you’ll get your full deposit back. Other than having $250 tied up for 2 years, there’s no risk to booking a cruise placeholder, so if you think you’re going to want to be a repeated Disney cruiser within the allotted time, booking that placeholder is probably a smart decision.Here are our top three reasons.

1. It’s Super Easy

A couple of taps is all it takes, and the credit card associated with your stateroom, you can also add a different one, will be charged. More on how to book later.

2. It Saves You Money

This is a great opportunity to save. Disney Cruise Line rarely has any type of promos, and the cruise placeholder discount is one of the few that Disney Cruise Line consistently offers. 10% off your cruise might not seem like a ton, but it’s about as good of a discount as you’re going to get with Disney. The initial deposit also goes toward the cost of your future cruise. You may be required to pay an additional deposit when you actually go to book your cruise, but your cost will be reduced by $250, so the amount may not seem as daunting. PLUS, the deposit is fully refundable should plans change so there is nothing to loose.

3. It keeps the tears away on disembarkation less

We can't be the only ones who cry at the end of a Disney Cruise Vacation? A placeholder gives you something to look forward to and plan for. Let the countdown begin! Plus, booking earlier usually gives you the best price and also lets you have a better choice of staterooms available.

How do you book a Placeholder?

If you want to take advantage of the cruise placeholder, you can do it on the Disney Cruise Line Navigator app (available on Google Play and the App Store). A couple of taps is all it takes, and the credit card associated with your stateroom, you can also add a different one, will be charged. You’ll be able to see the charge in your folio, along with anything else you might have charged to your stateroom while on board If you want to talk to a live person before booking a cruise placeholder, or just need help, go to guest services.


and just like that, you are all booked and confirmed!

Can I transfer my Placeholder to Castle Coaches Travel?

Absolutely! You have 30 days from purchasing the placeholder on the ship to submit a transfer form. Then, you can work with the Castle Coach of your choice if you did not name one when you purchased it. If you are currently booked with a travel agent, you can request that the new booking remain with that travel agent.

Not only are we at Castle Coaches Travel Disney Cruise Line addicts with tons of first hand experience to share on every single ship, we will also save you tons of time. While you do book a Placeholder onboard, you will still actually need to call Disney to apply the placeholder to your chosen cruise. Sometimes this means waiting on hold for hours at a time. This especially holds true if you are booking on opening day for new itineraries/dates.

Limitations To Be Aware Of

Don’t wait too long! The link to the placeholder in the app goes away at midnight on the last full day of the cruise, although we have personally still be able to book on disembarkation day. You can always check with guest services if you miss the booking window in the app. Disney is strict with the dates. The placeholder is good for 24 months, not 24 months and 1 day so it is best to reserve your placeholder for the last day of your cruise. Set an alert so you don't forget!

A placeholder can not be combined with Florida Resident Rates, U.S. Military Rates or with any other special rates. Not valid on VGT, OGT, or IGT Categories with Restrictions or 2-night sailings.One can also not use a placeholder on blackout dates or for concierge-level bookings.

CURRENT Onboard booking blockout dates are listed in the chart below.

Disney Dream: 11/20/2023, 12/23/2023, 12/28/2023, 03/31/2024 Disney Fantasy: 11/18/2023, 12/23/2023, 12/30/2023, 03/23/2024, 03/30/2024, 06/08/2024 Disney Magic: 11/18/2023, 06/06/2024 Disney Wish: 04/03/2023, 04/07/2023, 11/20/2023, 12/22/2023, 12/26/2023, 12/29/2023, 03/25/2024, 03/29/2024, 04/01/2024, Disney Wonder: No Current Dates

What if I forget to book a placeholder?

It happens to the best of us, don't stress. Disney also has an offer for first-time cruisers. Once you disembark your first cruise, you can save up to $350 on your next one with the Castaway Club Welcome Offer. You can save up to $50 a night on the first 7 nights of your second cruise if you book it within 60 days of disembarking. Savings is dependent on the room category booked. Cruise must commence within 22 months from time of booking and cannot be combined with any other special offers or discounts. Excludes Suites and Concierge, Categories with Restrictions (VGT, OGT and IGT) and 2-night sailings. Block out dates apply. For dates and for more information, contact Castle Coaches Travel.

Ready to start planning your next sailing with Disney Cruise Line? Castle Coaches Travel would love to help you with every detail! When you book a cruise vacation with a Castle Coach all of our planning services are complimentary to you. Let's get started today!

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