Thinking of booking a cruise with kids? Great! You’re in for a fun-filled trip! When deciding which destinations and which cruise line to choose, their are several things you should consider.
Cruising is a wonderful way to experience multiple destinations in a short period of time. It allows you to have a comfortable home base, with all the luxuries of a 5-star hotel. They’re also all-inclusive. This means that most of your food, accommodations, and entertainment are included in your initial payment.
If you’ve never gone on a cruise with kids before, there are a few things you need to be aware of. Here are a few of the things to consider.
5 Things To Consider Before Booking a Cruise With Kids
- The Age of Your Children –
Most cruise lines require your youngest child to be 6 months to 1 year before allowing them on board. If you’re pregnant, you must be less than 24 weeks along. These restrictions have been put in place for your family’s safety, since medical help is limited at sea.Also be aware that until a child reaches the age of 3 and is fully potty-trained, they won’t be able to attend the kids clubs. Same goes for swimming in the deck pools.
- Stateroom Sizes –
The average stateroom can only accommodate up for four individuals. If you have a family of five+, you’ll be forced to either upgrade to a larger suite or book two adjoining rooms. The cost and layout will greatly depend on each line. Google images so you can get a better idea of how that square footage will look.
- Entertainment Options –
Every cruise line specializes in catering to a certain demographic. While one line may be aimed at the younger party crowd, like Carnival, another will be perfect for retirees and couples, like Holland America and Celebrity. Royal Caribbean, Disney, and Norwegian, all strive to be family inclusive. They offer friendly entertainment, engaging kids clubs, and tons of deck fun.
- Destination Choice –
As much as I’d love to cruise to Alaska or Northern Europe, chances are that my younger kids wouldn’t find it fun. It’s cold on deck, and the destinations include more historical landmarks. They also tend to be more expensive. Until your children are old enough to appreciate it, I suggest you stick with sunny destinations that include at least one beach stop.
- Your Budget –
Ultimately, what cruise you book will have to come down to what you can afford. Be prepared to make some sacrifices in order to keep your price low, but don’t let that ruin your vacation. If your stateroom is small, spend more time on deck. If the entertainment isn’t family friendly, opt to spend your time playing board games in the library or at the pool. If your kids are young, eat ice cream and watch a movie in the theatre. A vacation is what you make of it.
Booking a cruise with kids may take a little more research than your average vacation, but once you’ve decided, things get real easy! You won’t have to cook or clean. You’ll enjoy room service and chocolates on your pillow. And if your kids are old enough, you’ll even have the ability to get in some adult-only time thanks to the kids clubs.
Do your research. Consider the destination. Find a line that will make the most sense for your family. A cruise with kids can be a blast!