Disney's Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser

I Went To Outer Space on Disney’s Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser

Ever since Disney announced the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, there have been questions regarding exactly what it is and if it is worth the crazy price tag. I recently went on the Galactic Starcruiser known as the Halycon and want to answer the most common questions.

The Bridge of the Halcyon

What is the Galactic Starcruiser?

Well… It is not a hotel. The Galactic Starcruiser opened in Walt Disney World last year. It is described as a “Star Wars-themed 2-night live-action/role-playing choose your own adventure experience aboard a simulated cruise in outer space within the Star Wars galaxy.” 

Imagine yourself inside your favorite Star Wars movie. You have been working hard on your home planet of Tatooine and need a vacation. You book a cruise through the outer rim on the Halcyon cruiseliner. Aboard the cruise, you meet travelers from all over the galaxy—a Twi’lek from Ryloth, a smuggler from Tatooine, and a Togruta working on his music career. You are playing Sabacc when the first order walks in and arrests a man suspected of being for the resistance. Your cruise ship docks at Batuu, where you spend the day exploring the markets of the Black Spire Output and seeing the infamous Millenium Falcon that made the Kessel Run in less than twelve parsecs. Then you return to Halcyon to help Chewbacca hide from Kylo Ren.

Seriously, that all happened to me. You spend two days in this fantasy world, never leaving the bubble. Along the way, you can help the first order, join the resistance, or go on a mission that has you enter a secret room on the ship. 

How much is the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser?


This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Your cruise to outer space includes parking, a one-day park ticket, food, a two-night stay aboard the Halcyon, meeting all your favorite Star Wars characters, dinner shows, and the chance to play your childhood fantasy. Alcohol, except for one drink in Batuu, is not included. 

Is there a way to make the Starcruiser more affordable? 

Go with friends.

It is a lot of money for one family to spend on a two-day trip, but I split the cost with four friends. The rooms are small, but we easily fit the four of us. There was a pulldown bed, bunk beds, and a queen bed.

With four friends, I only paid $1,772. Yes. You can pick your jaw off the floor again. Consider that a Disney World vacation at another deluxe resort can cost even more.

Tip: Book during the week when prices are lower.

I love Disney and Star Wars but want to avoid being stuck in space with screaming children for two days.

I agree. Most of the children on the Star Cruiser were past the crying, nap-needing phase.

Disney recommends that children be old enough to use a cell phone since all the missions, cruise activities, and private transmissions are on your data pad (aka your phone). 

Several events, such as lightsaber training, are only available to guests seven or over. 

Tip: They will provide phones if your children do not have their own, but they only have a limited number, so call ahead.

Playing Sabacc on Disney's Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser
Enjoying a game of Sabacc on the Halcyon

How immersive is this Star Wars experience?

100%. You are on a cruise in the outer rim and will meet people from all over the galaxy. The windows in your room look out into space. Everyone from your waiter to your room attendant is a part of the experience and will never break character. Our waiter told us about his wife and kids on his home planet and how he ended up working on the Halcyon.

What about your visit to Disney’s Galaxy’s Edge? Will it break the illusion? 

On the day of your “excursion,” you will board a transport vehicle and get transported down to the planet of Battu. When they open the door of the transport vehicle, you are already within the walls of Galaxy’s Edge. There is a separate entrance where you never see the outside world. 

Yes, there are tourists in Battu, but they were visiting just like us. We had pins that told cast members we were part of the Halcyon, so they played along.

Do I need to be a Star Wars fan?

There is nothing throughout the experience that you need to know about the Star Wars Franchise. Anyone can cruise through outer space and participate in missions. 

I was never a Star Wars geek, but I love movies that intertwine, like the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I loved the idea of being inside the Star Wars Universe, and I love dressing up in costumes. 

That being said, there is something about meeting Chewbacca, traveling on the ship where Han and Leya had their honeymoon, and talking to a Twi’lek about growing up on Ryloth that only a Star Wars fan can appreciate.

Disney's Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser
Hanging out with Chewbacca

Tip: Need a crash course into the Star Wars Galaxy. Check out this guide to locations and vocabulary referenced on the Starcruiser. 

Was it worth it? 


But only if you participate. Dress up. Have a backstory. Go on the missions. It is not a hotel. It’s an experience. It is only worth it if you can go in 100%. 

I began a crash course in Star Wars. I watched every movie, cartoon, and tv show before I went on the ship. I was going to be prepared for the amount of money I was paying.

Ready to Book

Guide to Route 66 (During the Pandemic)

Guide to Route 66 (During the Pandemic)

Let’s face it. Our international summer plans are over. But with the US opening up, we will be able to (responsibly) explore the US and Route 66 during the pandemic. Route 66 has been on my bucket list since I saw the original Disney-Pixar movie, “Cars.” My boyfriend and I had the chance to take Route 66 from Chicago to New Mexico, and we wanted to share our favorite attractions.

Route 66 During the Pandemic

By no means is this list an all-inclusive guide to Route 66. Many attractions and restaurants are closed. And each state has different guidelines regarding COVID. All of the recommended attractions in this article are promoting social distancing. Many are outside and those inside are at low capacity. Please call before visiting these attractions as regulations are changing daily.


Route 66 and the towns along it died with the building of a faster and more convenient route. Many of these towns are still there hanging on by a thread. Downtowns are almost empty. Hotels and gas stations closed and falling apart.

To get the true story of Route 66, don’t take any shortcuts. Drive through town, visit that one restaurant left and talk to the locals about the past. 

Route 66: Illinois

(Due to Illionois state regulations, a majority of attractions were closed.)

Original Route 66 Brick Road

Original Route 66 Brick Road 

After Springfield, there is a 1.40-mile long brick section of the original Route 66. Not very long but a great piece of history. Directions: Between the towns of Chatham and Auburn on Snell and Curran Road.

Atlanta, IL

Although the businesses and attractions in this small town were closed, it was worth a stop. There are several giants including, The Nuyan Giant and The Giant Hotdog. Murals and historical markers cover the town. There were several Route 66 antique and collectible shops that looked interesting. The COVID shut down regulations really put a new perspective on “window shopping.”  I will go back someday when the world returns to normal.

Guide to Route 66 During the Pandemic
Atlanta, IL

Nelly’s On Route 66 (Wilmington, IL)

Fun Route 66 interior. Awesome food. Try the Reuben or the Chicago Dog. It was one of the few Route 66 restaurants we found open in Illinois.

Guide to Route 66 During COVID
Nelly’s on Route 66

Chain of Rocks Bridge (Madison, IL)

The Chain of Rocks Bridge was part of Route 66 from 1936 to 1968. It was built with a 22-degree bend to appease boat traffic. As the cars grew in size, the curve became a point of congestion and travel delays. A new bridge was built, and the Chain of Rocks Bridge was decommissioned. Today, it is a hiking and biking trail. It is a convenient point to stop and stretch the legs. We had a snack and enjoyed a glass of wine we had packed (passengers only). 

Guide to Route 66 During the Pandemic
Chain of Rocks Bridge

Guide Book: EZ66 GUIDE For Travelers

If you want to follow the original Route 66, this is the guide. Written by a Route 66 historian, it contains turn-by-turn directions along the oldest sections of Route 66. It looks complicated at first, so I suggest you familiarize your self with it before taking it on the road.

The author gives his personal recommendations for the trip, including places not to go, unlike the Lonely Traveler or other big name travel guide who tend to recommend places based on hearsay instead of personal experience.

I do suggest getting a comprehensive guide book as a supplement. I used the Moon Route 66 Road Trip.

Route 66: Missouri

Wagon Wheel Motel (Cuba, MO )

I am obsessed with Disney. I first got the idea to travel Route 66 after watching “Cars.” Please watch it before you start on your journey. Although “Cars” is based on a fictional town, Radiator Springs, many of the characters and locations are based on the real Route 66. Do you remember the Wheel Well Inn that Sally and Lightning McQueen re-open at the end of the movie? It was based on the Wagon Wheel Motel.

The rooms are small and basic but affordable and clean. Check out Missouri Hick BBQ place (located next door) for dinner and the Cuba Bakery and Deli downtown for breakfast. The donuts are amazing.

Guide to Route 66 During the Pandemic
Wagon Wheel Motel (Missouri Hick in the background)

The Ozark’s through Missouri

I hope you plan to stick to the original Route 66 from Chicago to LA. But if you don’t (Shame on you), I highly recommend at least driving the section through the Ozark’s in Missouri. Beautiful green rolling hills away from I-40. A real sense of what Route 66 was about in its heyday.

If you are still not convinced to take the original Route 66 route, remember the road less traveled allows for social distancing. The goal is to navigate Route 66 during this pandemic safely.

Uranus Fudge Factory and General Store (St. Robert, MO)

Who doesn’t want to say they had fudge in Uranus? Uranus is a great place to stretch your legs and get a little laugh. See the world’s biggest belt buckle. Visit the strange museum or shop in the general store. There is even an escape room (closed due to pandemic). As they say, “Everything you need is in Uranus.”

Guide to Route 66 During the Pandemic
Uranus Fudge Factory

Travel Tip:

Pack lunch and drinks. There were a lot of excellent places to pull over and eat. It saved money and our stomachs. Greasy roadside food is excellent but can get old. Remember, you need to sit in a car for hours with your road partner. Maybe frank and beans are not the best option.

Gary’s Gay Parita Sinclair Station (Ashgrove, MO)

We happen upon this stop by accident, but I highly recommend it—a 1930 Route 66 gas station recreation with restored cars, signs, and other memorabilia. Although Gary died in 2015, his son in law took over, and he was excited to answer any questions we had about Route 66. The attraction is free, but there is a small gift shop if you feel like contributing to the future of the Sinclair Station.

Route 66: Kansas

CARS on The Route (Galena, KS)

On the right when you enter the town, there is a great place to pull over and eat lunch that is decorated based on the movie “Cars.” Drive further into town and look out for “Tow Tater,” the inspiration for ‘Mater. 

Picnic Spot in Galena, KS

Travel Tip:

Illinois, Missouri, and Kansas are well marked with Historic Route 66 signs. Oklahoma and Texas only had sporadic signage and did not always follow the original route, so be sure to have your guide book handy.

Cars on the Route, Galena, KS

Route 66: Oklahoma

Hotel Indigo (Tulsa, OK)

Awesome hotel downtown. It had a rooftop bar that overlooked Tulsa. The hotel was in a great area if you are looking for nightlife. It was surrounded by bars and restaurants. The staff was friendly. The hotel was clean. The food was excellent. Due to COVID, the included breakfast was delivered to our room. Free breakfast in bed. Yes, Please. 

Original Route 66 Concrete Road

Even though Route 66 follows the interstate for a large portion of the drive, don’t cheat and take the I-40. A large section of Route 66 in Oklahoma is on the original concrete. The light yellow roads with tiny curbs give a sense of original Route 66. It is slowly being replaced with asphalt, so drive it while you can.

1913 Pope Bike (Seaba Station Motorcycle Museum)

Seaba Station Motorcycle Museum (Chandler, OK)

The owners have an extensive collection of old motorcycles, dirt bikes, and other memorabilia. Worth a stop even if you are not into motorcycles. It is free (they ask for a donation).

Guide to Route 66 During the Pandemic
Uranus Fudge Factory

Rock Cafe on Route 66 (Stroud, OK)

I met Sally from Disney-Pixar, “Cars!” If you saw the movie, you will understand my excitement. The character of Sally is based on Dawn Welch, owner of Rock Cafe. I recommend stopping for lunch. Get the bread pudding. 

Blue Whale (Catoosa, OK)

The Blue Whale is one of the first pictures that pop up when you google Route 66 attractions. It was built as a play area for the creator’s grandchildren and is an excellent spot for a photo and a picnic lunch. It was recently sold to the town and is being renovated (at time of writing). I spoke to the son of the original owner. We both hope the town keeps the original charm. Note: You can not swim in the pond. 

Route 66: Texas

U-Drop Inn (Shamrock, TX)

You can’t drive by this restored art deco gas station without feeling like you have seen it before. If you have watched Disney-Pixar “Cars,” you have. Seriously, someone did stop because they recognized the building, but they couldn’t figure out where they had seen it. I am glad I was there to educate them. The U-Drop Inn was the inspiration behind Ramone’s House of Body Art. It is now a tourism office. Stop by for a photo and while in Shamrock, kiss a piece of the Blarney Stone.

Amarillo, TX 

First, stop and visit Crocodile Lile. His studio, Lile Art Gallery, is on 6th street. The day before, while driving, I was calling places on the route to see what was open. I called a number in the guide book, and I met Croc. I was just calling to see if his studio would be open the next day. After confirming it was, I went to hang up. Croc stopped me, “Wait, not so fast. Who are you? Where are you from? Where are you headed?” He said to call him if we had any questions about places to go or stay. He was serious. I felt like we were old friends by the time I made it to his gallery. After you visit him, have some lunch or a drink at one of the bars on 6th street. Also, check out the Bug Farm, which is a bunch of VW Bugs buried halfway in the ground. Less busy than the famous Cadillac Ranch.  

NOTE: We planned to stay at The Big Texan Motel, a famous route 66 attractions. Croc told us that they, among other things, did not financially support Route 66. We decided to stay elsewhere. Please do your own research.

Blarney Stone Shamrock Texas
A piece of the Blarney Stone, Shamrock, TX

Midpoint Cafe and “Flo”

Guide to Route 66 During COVID
Guide to Route 66 During COVID

Congrats, you made it halfway on your Route 66 journey. Stop and take a photo at the official sign. Then visit the Midpoint Cafe for the coconut pie. The original owner of the MidPoint Cafe, Fran, was the inspiration for the “Cars” character, Flo. Look for a red truck covered in autographs. I didn’t find out about the truck until after my visit.

Guide to Route 66 (During the Pandemic
Midpoint Cafe

Route 66: New Mexico

1865 Brewing (Santa Rosa, NM)

On the way out of town from Santa Rosa, on the right side, was a small brewery. Cliff spotted it, and the door was open. Screeching breaks. U-Turn. The brewery wasn’t open for dine-in, but they were selling growlers of their lager. Check it out and support local breweries.

Joseph’s Bar and Grille (Santa Rosa, NM)

Santa Rosa, NM is known for the Blue Hole, a popular diving spot. During our trip, it was closed, but we were able to get take-out from Joseph’s and sit in the park. Great Food.

Guide to Route 66 During the Pandemic
Check out the murals throughout the route.

Russell’s Travel Center (Glenrio, NM)

If it weren’t for Croc’s recommendation, we would have driven right by this travel plaza. From the outside, it looks like your typical highway plaza with a gas station and convenience store.  In the back corner of the store is a doorway that leads to a classic car and memorabilia museum. Free and worth a visit. Although, I was upset to learn that floppy disk’s, flip phones, and handheld TVs are now considered “classic.” The Travel Center also has a Route 66 Diner and a Chapel. 

The Ghost Town of Cuervo, NM

We were following the original dirt Route 66 through New Mexico when we stumbled upon this Ghost Town. Many of the buildings, including a church and schoolhouse, are still intact and look like people just left a few months ago. Cuervo is one of the “newer” ghost towns on the route. It was an incorporated town until 2011 when the post office shut down and still has 58 residents.

Guide to Route 66 During the Pandemic
Bug Farm, Amarillio, TX

The Castaneda Hotel (Las Vegas, NM)

Six miles east of Route 66 near Romerioville, NM is the town of Las Vegas. There are no casinos or flashy lights. But they do have a Moth Infestation. (Yes, moths) Despite the moths, I recommend staying at The Castaneda hotel. Originally built in 1898, it was recently restored and is beautiful. You feel like you are transported back in time. They also do tours if you don’t have time to stay the night. 


Now about the moths. Imagine. I am in a creepy old hotel. Due to COVID, we were one of the only guests. I am going to take a shower. Everything is pretty standard at this point. Until I turn on the water, and I see two moths flying around. I kill them. Then I turn around, and I see three more. As I try to kill them, two more appear and then two more. I don’t know where they are coming from. Clif hears the commotion and knocks on the door. He opens it to find me standing in the middle of the bathroom, crying and swatting moths. Long story short, I made him stand in the bathroom while I showered and then held my pee for the rest of the night.

Munger Moss Motel, MO (Pull over for a picture opportunity)

Sadly, we ended our trip in Las Vegas, NM, and headed up towards Colorado but do plan to finish the route this summer. Please comment if you have any suggestions for the rest of the journey. I hope this article motivated you to explore Route 66 during the pandemic.

Route 66 Resources

For more Disney-Pixar “Cars” references:
Guide Books: EZ66 and Moon Route 66 Road Trip
Stay up to date on everything Route 66:
Check out this guide to Route 66 in Illinois:

This page contains affiliate links, and I may receive compensation if you click on a link. You can read my full advertising disclosure here.

Travel Accessories

Top 10 Travel Accessories That You Can’t Live Without

I love travel accessories. I would preferably buy a new airplane pillow over a new pair of shoes. Throughout my travels, I have found items I hated and some that I can not live without. I own every item recommended on this list. And I promise these items will change how you travel.

#10 Folding Bag

A folding bag is a must-have travel accessory. We have all heard the motto: Leave room in your suitcase for souvenirs. Well, I have never been able to do it. No matter how big or small my bag is, I will fill every corner. A folding bag takes up little space to pack and can be used for all those shot glasses, magnets, and “I was here” t-shirts that you know you are going to buy. I bought the RuMe cFold Downing bag, and it has lasted many trips.

I also love to use it as a beach bag instead of getting sand in my pocketbook or carryon. You can fold it up at the end of your vacation and do not have to worry about sand getting everywhere.

#9 Anti Theft Pocketbook and Purse

I go on a lot of solo trips and very rarely feel unsafe when I travel. The one thing I do look out for is pickpocketers. Areas with a large number of tourists looking up at the surrounding and not paying attention attract thieves.

One time in Barcelona, a girl at my hostel had her phone taken right out of her hands while she was texting. I even had a friend get her phone stolen from her pocket on the beaches of Thailand.

I carry a travel anti-theft bag with me when I know I am going to be in a tourist area. I like to use the Travelon Women’s Anti-Theft Tailored Convertible Crossbody Clutch Cross Body Bag for going out at night. It can be used as a wristlet or a crossbody bag. The larger, Travelon Anti-Theft Active Tour Bag is perfect for the daytime. It will fit your camera and all the other touristy things people carry. Both bags have lockable pockets, slash-proof straps, a slash-proof body, and RFID blocking pockets.

It might sound like overkill, and in most cases it is, but I highly suggest this travel accessory for big tourist traps like La Rambla street in Barcelona or the Colosseum in Rome.

#8 Packing Cubes

I love organization, and I love to squeeze as much as I can into my suitcase. Packing cubes are a must-have. I have small ones for makeup and large ones for my winter snowboarding gear. I don’t have to dig through my suitcase looking for that one sock I can’t find. I just pull out the packing cube with my socks and underwear in it.

There are two types of packing cubes I use: regular cubes and compression bags. Compression bags have an extra zipper that allows you to squish your clothes down to half the size.

My only complaint with the compression bags is that I have trouble zipping them up. It is entirely my fault as I try to put too many items in the bag, but I still do it. It might have played a role when I missed my Air Asia flight.

Both sets of cubes I recommend have not ripped despite all the overpacking I do.

#7 PodSox

Thankfully a friend introduced me to PodSox. They are compression sox that are fun to wear. There are tons of fun prints. My favorite is unicorns.

I was flying home from Peru after hiking to Macchu Pichu. I slept most of the nine-hour flight. When I woke up, I looked down and saw elephant feet. I was only 30 years old. The only people I knew that wore compression stockings were people having surgery and old crotchety nurses.

More importantly than being travel accessories, they are great for your health. Long flights increase your chance of getting a blood clot. Compression socks help prevent blood clots and those ugly varicose veins. I never fly without them.

Pod Sox Travel Accessories
Pod Sox Travel Accessories

#6 WANDF Expandable Toiletry Bag

Everyone has a toiletry bag in one form or another for traveling. I’ve used every size and shape imaginable, including a gallon zip-lock bag, more than once.

I bought this bag in 2017, and I have been on over 30 trips with it. It ripped for the first time last month; however, I consider that excellent for a reasonably priced toiletry bag. I can stuff full-size bottles and 20 tubes of lip gloss (I’ll lose 19 of them throughout my trip) into the bag. It isn’t fancy, but more importantly, it works and will last.

Now that it ripped, I did look at other bags. Two things I wish it had were an area for the wet stuff. It would come in handy when you get right out of the shower and have to leave for the airport, but your loofah is wet. Also, It would be nice if it could sit on a counter. I will update you if I find one.

#5 Travel Blanket

I need a travel blanket for the airplane because I get freezing, plus I love to feel all cozy. I have had many over the years. My main complaint is how bulky they are. Sometimes you need a whole other bag for your blanket. And if they are not bulky, they are barely big enough to cover your legs. I was looking for something very compact and big enough to tuck under my chin and my toes. I found it.

Not only is the cocoon Coolmax Travel Blanket compact, but I can also get it back into the bag without a problem. How often can you get your sleeping back into the bag it came into?


I must stress that this is a very thin blanket. I usually fold it in half. It is still big enough to cover your body. I debated buying a thicker one, but I really like how big and compact it is.

#4 Lumbar support pillow

I have a pretty good back (knock on wood), but there is something about airplane seats that make my lower back hurt. It doesn’t matter if it’s Spirit or British Airways. I always ended up using my neck pillow as a back pillow.

I found this blowup lumbar support pillow, and it works perfectly. It is compact and easy to inflate and deflate. It doesn’t look like much; however, I guarantee it will make your flight more enjoyable. Plus, it can be used as a pillow if needed.

#3 Hydro Flask

My name is Susan, and I am addicted to ice. I can not drink fluids that are not on the ice. Well, Except beer. I do drink my wine with ice, though.

I love my Hydro Flask. I sleep with my Hydro Flask. My boyfriend is jealous of my Hydro Flask.

My Hydro Flask will sit on the front seat of my car all day in the Las Vegas sun and still have ice in it. It’s magic. Ice is hard to find outside of the US. People look at you like you are crazy if you ask for it. Therefore, if I do find some, I want it to last.

Hydro Flask makes a large selection of sizes, and I own most of them. I like the Hydro Flask standard mouth water bottle for travel because it fits in most water bottle holders. They even have a pint glass that will keep your beer at the perfect temperature.

#2 The Best Travel Pillow Ever

I am that person that likes to sleep with their head on the tray table. I am sure it is not the cleanest, but when I am tired, I don’t care.

I have tried every type of travel pillow, and this is the only one that works for me. I was hesitant at first because it is pretty silly looking. Now I don’t care because I can sleep for long periods. My back doesn’t hurt. If you are a side or stomach sleeper, you need to get this. You might look silly, but who cares when you are snoring away on a 7-hour flight.

My only complaint is the area where you put your face is a little rough. I bring a pillowcase with me to wrap around it.

#1 TSA Approved Clear Travel Toiletry Bag

The number one travel accessory I can not live without. I am horrible with my liquids. I need different hair products, lip glosses, bug spray, sunblock, and I never leave home without Poop-Pourri. If you have never used Poop-Pourri, you need to try it. It works. Your poop will not smell.

TSA requires all liquids to be in a clear 1-quart size bag. That is insane. Especially when I am only taking a carry on, a 1-quart zip-lock bag will barely fit a shampoo, a conditioner, and some makeup. This bag can fit at least 50% more. It is also well made, and I have been able to overstuff it without the zipper breaking.

I didn’t believe TSA would actually count it as a 1-quart bag, but I have not had any questions. I was traveling in Europe, and security made everyone empty their liquids into 1-quart zip lock bags that they supplied. My poor boyfriend had to throw out several items. Finally, when it was my turn, they looked at my bag and let me go through. I couldn’t believe it.

Nor could my boyfriend, who now always uses this bag when traveling. Of course, I don’t want to make empty promises. I can’t guarantee this will work every time; however, I can just say I have been using this travel accessory since 2017 and have never had an issue.