Hey, let's all stop picking on each other! I have always tried to make this message board a place where parents feel comfortable asking for advice of other parents who have successfully sailed the high seas with their kids. If we attack each other, parents will certainly not feel comfortable posting future messages and this message board will not be as helpful to others as it has been in the past. I hope we can once again continue to generate positive feedback on the family message board.
As to your questions, your children have to be potty trained to participate in the youth program. However, unlike some other cruise lines, PRincess allows those under three or those not potty trained to use their facilities for the 3 to 6 year old group w/parental supervision. Since the Diamond is a new ship, it should have plenty of Little Tykes style toys as did the Caribbean Princess, which we were recently on w/our two year old. He enjoyed going to the youth room w/us briefly each day and it worked out fine.
Alas, Princess does not have private babysitting services -- Royal Caribbean, HAL and Celebrity are the few which do. There is group babysitting which starts at 10 p.m. for an hourly fee but I always found this too late to drag my toddlers/pre-schoolers out to. They were long asleep before then.
Luisa Frey Gaynor
Family Cruise Editor