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Family Cruising Discuss family cruising - kids programs, babysitting, infant care, etc.

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Old May 28th, 2010, 11:50 AM
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Default At what age do you pay for them?

With all the people talking about taking babies (under 2 years it seems) on these cruises, do you actually have to pay for them as well, or are they free to a certain age. I have twins, no way would I pay up to $2000 to have them on a cruise with me, not to mention air fare for them. Seems a waste, so I am looking local stuff instead.

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Old May 28th, 2010, 11:59 AM
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You'd have to pay the 3rd and 4th person rate for them, which is less than the price for the first 2.

Some lines, every once in awhile do run "kids sail free" specials, so you may want to contact a travel agent and have them do some research finding those.
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Old May 28th, 2010, 12:43 PM
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Thanks, that is what I was afraid of. Most of the places on the ocean here in NC I can get the kids in for free, same in the mountains. And now extra plane tickets, just a drive.

Oh well, no more cruising for us anytime soon. Maybe when they are old enough to enjoy it.

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Old May 28th, 2010, 01:49 PM
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Our 7 month old granddaughter was $399, 3rd person like Kuki said. For that price we had a Pack N Play in both cabins, anything extra for her, lots of attention in the dining room, theatres, etc. Much better than staying home or cheaper than leaving her home with a baby sitter. You are right, all land resorts, children under a certain age are free. On one cruise we met a 3 families that had 9 children between them (4 cabins). They brought along their 17 year old babysitter for the younger children. She bunked with the other teenagers and they said for $400 it was worth it to have all their children on vacation together.
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Old June 22nd, 2010, 09:42 AM
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the prices for the 3rd/4th a much cheaper so you never now you might find a good deal if you look hard enough. Also with the free kids places it is best to book early as you will find that they get taken quickly.
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Old November 12th, 2010, 01:28 PM
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Thanks to everyone! My kids are now over a year old, and to be honest, we have gone no where!! Well, not totally true, we drove about 450 miles each way for a wedding and a week "off" which we spent with family. I started going to my old standby to get prices on the cruises. Now that I am adding the 2 little ones no matter how I choose it says that I have to put in my info and they will get back to me (email or phone). Is this normal? If so, I may just go with a travel agent, since then I will know who I am picking rather then having a random call back from someone I never heard of. If you were wondering I was looking at Princess, not sure, but I remember always getting quoted prices online when I looked at them in the past.

On a side note, my kids were born very early and it caused them to have issues. They are both doing much better now but my son is legally blind. How are the companies with handicaps like this? I would guess, based on everything else I have seen in the industry, that they are great at handling this, but was wondering if anyone had first hand experience?
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Old January 23rd, 2011, 09:11 AM
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Late to thread but wanted to share my experience with taking a baby under 2 once.

I would never consider bringing children under 2 without a nanny and after my own experience with taking a nanny along one cruise-- would never do it again. I continued to cruise while having children under 2, however, but paid a nanny to keep my babies at home most often flying my mother in to stay with her for added security.

That cruise was hands down my worst cruise to date (out of 25 total).

My 'then' baby (now 14) became very ill and doctor visit on board $150 a pop had no clue what was wrong (turns out was infantile roseola-infant measles), put him on amoxicillin, (waste as viral illness), nanny became severely seasick almost immediately upon departure- her first cruise- and so I became 'nanny' to baby and 'caregiver' for the sick nanny all week, yet she seemed well enough to get up for dinner each night to dine in the main dining room while I hung back to care for my sick child... ???

Never again.

Anyway, my experience is that programs for children don't start until 2 and so you're stuck with 'baby on hip' all week and it limits your activities a great deal. Other than that one cruise with the nanny I've never taken a child under 2, but I can tell you that I have witnessed couples with babies under 2 embarking the ship so happy and excited who weren't even on speaking terms by the time they disembarked. This one couple had no idea that the children’s programs didn’t start until 2 and they would not budge on their rules.

IMO, it is not worth bringing babies under 2 if you can't get a break from time-to-time, i.e., children programs that you know will accept babies under 2 or taking a nanny along-- and hopefully no one will experience what I did on my cruise from hell family vacation...lol

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Old January 23rd, 2011, 09:54 AM
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Some lines actually charge you tips for babies...
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Old January 23rd, 2011, 10:20 AM
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A&B .... my experience was totally different!

When we cruised DREAM last year, we booked two cabins .... one for our chidlren and their nanny and one for us. For the most part, it was a great experience. We did not have to do any "work' with respect to dressing, bathing etc. The children were always dressed and ready to go, and we had a built-in babysitter so we could enjoy the shows and the casino at night. Our kids were 2.5 and 4 at the time. It was a perfect experience except for the fact that our nanny (about half way throught he cruise) started to get facebook,texting,email, internet withdrawal and then turned into quite the grump. By the end of the trip, I could not even stand to be around her.

We figured what we would be paying in overtime for the week, would be offset by the cruise, and this way our kids got to enjoy it too. Plus we were expecting her to leave us last year (which we did) so wanted to take her on the cruise, hoping she might get some enjoyment out of it - which I don't think she did.


We'd do it again in a heartbeat except this time, we would have clearer discussions up front on expectations, work hours etc. We're taking the Eurodam in a March, and it will be just the four of us..... but our kids are older now and more self-sufficient (3.5 and 5). It still would be nice to have someone watch the kids though at night



To the OP .... I wouldn't personally take children under 2 on a cruise. You want them to be at least old enough to take part in the children's programs. Also, if they are not potty trained, they can't use the pools. My son was 2.5 when we cruised last year, but he is very advanced ... he was potty trained, very independent, was speaking in full sentences, conversational etc.

As for your son's blindess, I would not count on or expect any levels of service. You may want to call the cruiselines to discuss how they could help.

As for booking, yes watch for specials. We will not take our kids on Royal, because their 3rd/4th pax pricing is exorbitant for children. I should not have to pay the same price for my child that an adult would pay. IMHO, Carnival offers the best pricing for chidlren. We also just got a great deal on HAL, whereby we were paying $99 for the 3/4 passenger ....
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Old January 24th, 2011, 01:11 PM
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That was my exact reason for booking the nanny to begin with-- to have that built-in sitter so we could enjoy all the activities that babies were not suited for, only it didn't work out that way. My nanny had never sailed before, was elder and did not do well out at sea at all, so I became 'nanny' to the children, missed all shows and activities I had wanted to particpate in due to having an ill child and ill nanny and why I reference that cruise as my 'cruise from hell.' Live and learn. I often flew my mother in to stay with my babies, especially when they were under 2. My mother is an RN and would have known instantly that he had infantile roseola as all 4 of my siblings and I had it. The ship doctor had no clue what it was causing me to worry much more and I couldn't get off that ship fast enough to get him home to his regular doctor.

After that, I just left the babies at home with a nanny and mother until they reached 2 and were old enough to enter in programs on board. I love having my children on board with me, but I also need that necessary break from time-to-time, as any parent does, and why I do not recommend anyone ever booking a child under 2 without a nanny unless they have confirmed that their cruise line will accept babies under 2. I have heard of some accepting tips as someone posted above, but my experience was that was for late in the evening. Rules may have changed over the years as well.

My children are much older now so I don't have the stressors of worrying about that kind of thing anymore thank goodness.

Glad your experience with the nanny turned out much better than mine did.

Beth
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Last edited by A&B; January 24th, 2011 at 01:17 PM.
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