Outside of a Disney Cruise Ship cabin is a decorative hook that looks like a fish, starfish, or seahorse. The Cruise Cast Members leave notes for your cabin on these hooks. Our cabin had a seahorse that looked like this:
A fish extender is an organizer that is hung from the hook. Some are handmade, like mine, some are purchased. Each member of my family picked out a Disney themed material that I used to make the pockets, then I attached a Mickey head with their name on it. It was a lot of fun and very easy to make.
Now, you may be wondering what the fish extender is used for! Little gifts are placed in the fish extender over the course of your cruise. They can be gifts the whole family would love, gifts for each member of the family, or gifts just for the kids. We decided to make a gift for the cabin and give a little something to each child. Our cabin gift was bottle cap magnets that my whole family helped make. The gifts for the children ranged from Disney themed rubber band bracelets, glow sticks to candy for the older kids. For cabins with no children we gave chocolate from a local company along with the bottle cap magnets.
“How do I get involved with Fish Extenders on my Disney Cruise?” is probably what you are asking yourself. Facebook has groups for most Disney Cruise sailings where one or two people take on the responsibility of organizing the fish extender gift exchange. A list is compiled of each cabin that is interested in participating. If the list grows to be very large, it will be divided into smaller groups. Our last fish extender group was about 20 cabins. The list is distributed via email shortly after the paid in full date for each cruise and includes the names of the family in each cabin, the ages of the children and if there are any allergies or special requests.
Now the fun part! We made and packaged the gifts for each cabin. My kids had a lot of fun helping with the bottle magnets and my daughter made all the rubber band bracelets for the girls. We decided that when we were on our cruise we would deliver the gifts to one deck per day. We enjoyed visiting different decks and tried to be pretty sneaky so no one would see us dropping the gifts off. Every time we came back to our cabin the kids couldn’t wait to see what treats were waiting for them. We received wonderful gifts from our fish extender group; personalized plastic cups, ice cream sundae fixings, handmade puzzles, ornaments, jewelry, and many other fun surprises.
I am a huge fan of being a part of the fish extender groups! We have a lot of fun thinking of the gifts, making them, and delivering them, but the very best part to me is making new friends. We got know our group well, one family very well. Our kids were inseparable during the cruise, have stayed in touch since the cruise and are planning a summer get together. The adults enjoyed each other’s company so much that we are all sailing together on a couple’s only cruise in the fall on the Disney Magic.
Joining a fish extender group is just one more way to enjoy a Disney Cruise by exploring the ship, meeting new people, and finding little surprises waiting for you outside your cabin every day. If you are looking for more information about fish extenders, click here for a great article
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