Disney Cruise Ship Develops Engine Trouble, Skips Port of Call

Disney Fantasy has developed technical issues with the propulsion system and will be skipping Castaway Cay. How will this the next cruise?

Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Fantasy has developed “technical issue” with the propulsion system, which has resulted in the ship skipping its planned visit to Castaway Cay and instead returning directly to Port Canaveral in order to debark on schedule.

Guests are being provided compensation, but there is no word yet whether this may impact the ship’s next cruise.

Disney Fantasy Develops Engine Difficulties

Disney Fantasy‘s Captain Michele Intartaglia reached out to guests onboard via the cruise line’s Navigator app late on the evening of Thursday, September 7, 2023 to notify them of an “engine technical challenge” that has resulted in a loss of speed that will impact the ship’s itinerary.

“Due to our loss of speed, we will not be able to make our call at Castaway Cay and we will proceed directly to Port Canaveral to arrive as per our original schedule,” the message stated, noting that more information would be provided in the morning.

The visit to Disney Cruise Line’s private island, Castaway Cay, was originally planned for 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. on Friday, September 8. Instead, the ship is sailing for Port Canaveral at a speed of 16 knots (18 miles per hour / 30 kilometers per hour). This is well below the ship’s typical sailing speed of 22 knots (25 mph / 41 kph), or its top speed of 24.7 knots (28 mph / 46 kph).

Disney Fantasy Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Joni Hanebutt / Shutterstock

Disney Fantasy is currently sailing a 7-night Eastern Caribbean cruise that departed on Saturday, September 2. The ship has already successfully called on Tortola and St. Thomas in the British Virgin Islands and the US Virgin Islands, respectively. Castaway Cay was to have been the final port of call for the sailing.

“We know that this is disappointing news and apologize for the modification to our itinerary,” a letter delivered to guests on Friday morning read. “We appreciate your understanding and are dedicated to ensuring that you and your family have an enjoyable rest of your vacation onboard the Disney Fantasy.”

It must be noted that the ship’s safety systems are not compromised in any way, and all onboard operations are proceeding normally.

Disney Fantasy is a 129,750-gross ton, Dream class vessel, capable of welcoming 2,500 guests at double occupancy or up to 4,000 passengers when fully booked with all berths filled.

Homeported from Port Canaveral, Florida, the ship offers Eastern Caribbean, Western Caribbean, and Bermuda and Bahama sailings ranging from 6-8 nights, depending on sailing date.

Compensation Offered

Because Disney Fantasy will no longer be visiting Castaway Cay, port fees for the destination, as well as any pre-booked Port Adventures, are being refunded to guests’ original form of payment.

Furthermore, Disney Cruise Line is giving each stateroom an onboard credit of $250 (USD) for the current sailing. This credit is being automatically applied to guests’ accounts, and can be used for souvenirs, photos, specialty dining, drinks, and other onboard purchases.

Disney Fantasy Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Leigh Trail / Shutterstock

Guests will also receive a 25%, one-time discount on a future Disney Cruise Line sailing taken prior to September 2, 2025. The future discount will be available for use after September 21, 2023.

Read Also: Royal Caribbean Cancels Another Cruise Due to Engine Issues

Terms and conditions apply to the discount, which has blackout dates and is not valid for special holiday cruises or maiden voyages. The discount is also non-transferrable and only available to guests who are on the current sailing.

Will More Cruises Be Impacted?

The nature of the “engine technical challenge” has not been disclosed, and it is not known at this time whether or not additional sailings may be adjusted, delayed, or even cancelled as repairs are made.

Disney Fantasy‘s next cruise has already been changed from a Bermuda and Bahama itinerary to a Western Caribbean cruise due to Hurricane Lee.

If the ship cannot maintain higher sailing speeds, however, additional adjustments may be necessary. Booked guests should stay tuned for possible updates.

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