What to Expect at Port Canaveral when Boarding a Disney Cruise

When heading on a Disney Cruise, it is important to know some of what is expected so you can plan for your day.  Here is what you can expect at Port Canaveral when boarding a Disney Cruise.


Depending on your circumstances, you can arrive as early to the Port as 11 to board your ship.  When you register online for the cruise, you can choose your time of arrival which must be from 11 AM – 5 PM.  Wanting to get the most of that day onboard, my family chose to register at 11:00 AM.  The address to the port is as follows:

Cruise Terminal
Port Canaveral Terminal #A
9155 Charles M. Rowland Dr.
Port Canaveral, FL 32920

We had the GPS accidentally set to take us on only non-toll roads so it took us about an hour and a half to get from the Disney World area to Port Canaveral that morning.  If we had gone through the tolls, it should have taken us about an hour to get to the Port.  Should you take the toll road, expect to pay about $5 each way.  Once we arrived in Port Canaveral, we pulled up to a curb where a Cast Member helped us with out luggage.

Once unloaded we parked the vehicle. The cost to park in the garage is as follows:

Length of Cruise  Parking Rates
3 Nights / 4 Day $60.00
4 Nights / 5 Day $75.00
5 Nights / 6 Day $90.00
6 Nights / 7 Day $105.00
7 Nights / 8 Day $120.00
8 Nights / 9 Day $135.00

Should you instead choose to take a bus from a Disney resort to Port Canaveral, the costs are $70 per person for a round trip airport to Port Canaveral transfer or a round trip airport to resort, resort to Port Canaveral, then Port Canaveral to the airport.  A one-way transfer from the airport or a resort is $35 per person.

Inside Port Canaveral

Check In

Once we had the vehicle parked, we unpacked our carry on bags we had brought along.  For a packing list for your carry on bag, click here.  We headed in through security where they did a check on our carry on bags.  The process was similar to that of boarding an airplane.  Once inside, you must head upstairs to check in.  This process was very quick.  The Cast Member will give you your room card and check your paperwork to make sure you have brought all of the items mentioned in the checklist booklet you received from Disney Cruise Line such as appropriate identification such as a passport and the appropriate signed paperwork.

Register at the Disney’s Youth Clubs

If you have children in your party, you will need to register them with their appropriate aged Youth Club once you arrive.  Even if you have registered the child online at a club, you will need to visit this registration to get a band that looks like a MagicBand during a typical Disney World vacation stay at a resort.  The bands will allow the Cast Members to find the child quickly when coming to pick them up.

Visit the Characters

Once you have registered, it is time to relax!  Be sure to visit the character spot where you will find Minnie and Mickey Mouse.  They change out every half hour or so.  If you want to visit both of them, you might need to wait a bit to see them both.

Port Canaveral Character Photo with Minnie Mouse

Port Canaveral Character Photo with Minnie Mouse

You can also walk around and check out the surroundings such as the replica of the Disney Magic Cruise Ship!

Port Canaveral Cruise Ship Replica

Port Canaveral Cruise Ship Replica

Boarding the Ship

Once you have decided you have seen all the sites and registered in all of the right places, walk through the Mickey Shaped door to board the cruise ship.  Once you head through the door, you will meet authorities which will check your paperwork you received when you registered and your identification.  Then you will head on board and begin your Disney Cruise vacation!

Port Canaveral Cruise Ship Entry

Port Canaveral Cruise Ship Entry

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