Going on holiday with the kids is as equally rewarding as it can be frustrating. This is especially true if you are trying to travel to a range of different destinations. Corralling little ones onto flights can be tricky at the best of times and this is only exacerbated when you have multiple transfers and connecting flights to make. Fortunately, there’s one way to simplify the process and let the whole family travel to various places with ease – by taking a cruise.
By opting for a family cruise holiday, you just travel to the departure point, get comfy in your cabin and let the world come to you from the comfort of a luxury cruise liner. No longer the preserve of wealthy pensioners, cruise holidays are available to anyone. Whether you fancy touring the Mediterranean, The Caribbean, or even chillier climes – it’s up to you.
Don’t worry if you’ve never cruised before. It’s easy! And to make it even easier we’ve compiled a short list of tips for getting the most out of a cruise with kids. Read on.
Feel free to take the kitchen sink
It is received wisdom these days that it’s best to pack light when traveling. And usually this is the case. However, on a cruise you have the luxury of your cabin as a base of operations throughout the holiday. You don’t have to pack and repack (beyond a day bag for excursions). Combine this with the fact that there are not lots of shopping options on the seven seas, you don’t want to get caught short by forgetting any necessities. So, don’t worry about packing your suitcases a little fuller.
Also, while cruise ships are chock full of entertainment, there can still be a little downtime at sea. Beat the boredom by making sure you have plenty books and gizmos to keep the wee ones amused, as well as yourself.
Arrive at your departure point a day early
Missing a flight is a pain, but there’s always the next one to catch. This isn’t true of cruise ships. And a 60,000 ton luxury liner isn’t going to keep waiting if you’re late! Make sure you have plenty breathing room in case there are any travel hiccups by arriving at the departure point 24 hours before hand. It not only gives you a buffer, it also makes the trip out much less stressful.
Be picky with your cabin
Your cabin is where you’ll be for the duration of the trip, so make sure you pick the right one. Not all rooms are created equally and some may not have the facilities you need for your trip. If you require a room with a bath for example, you need to make sure you book one. If any of your family are prone to seasickness then be careful where the cabin is located. By choosing a room near the center of the ship, the effects of the sea are lessened and everyone will have a less-nauseas time while they get their sealegs.
Read up on the excursions available
Most cruise operators have a full list of excursions and activities posted well before they set sail. It pays to do your homework on these and choose the ones you want to do. Not only does it mean you’re well prepared, it also ensures you don’t miss out before they are fully booked.
Pack walkie talkies
There isn’t much phone reception in the middle of the ocean, so by packing walkie talkies you can keep in regular communication with the family when you’re in different parts of the ship. The kids will love it too!
Check the age requirements
Different cruise operators have different age policies and you need to know these before you head off. This doesn’t just include minimum ages for the cruise itself, but also the age requirements for kids clubs activities and baby sitting services – if the cruise offers them. A good rule of thumb is that if your child is potty trained they should be able to attend most kid focused activities, but make sure and check.