We are scheduled on our 7th cruise with Princess this January and this will the our first cruise with our new baby. She will be seven months old when we sail. We were wondering if anybody else has sailed with their infant baby and if you have any advice or information that would be of help to us. Some of our concerns are the cribs provided, are they safe? How about high chairs? Did anyone take their baby to formal dinning? Was baby food or rice cereal provided by the ship? How did their baby react to the moving ship? Any and all information and experiences would be appreciated to make this an enjoyable cruise for our baby and ourselves. Thank you
John, Laura and Gabrielle
Our now 2.5 yr old son has been on 2 RCI cruises (1st @ 11 mos, 2nd @ 23 mos, 3rd coming up). Where to start....we requested a highchair ahead of time to be sure they had them available in the dining room, and they were the really nice ones. We brought our own pack and play since I wasnt sure about the sleeping situation, and they had one already set up for us. I told them they could take it and we used ours since I wouldnt have to take up space storing it. You might want to bring your own sheets from home-familiar smell, clean, etc. Our son was walking at 9 months and we did use an umbrella stroller on board if we were going to do a lot of walking or at shows in case he fell asleep (which he did). We did use it in ports too. The car seat stayed back home in the car as there was no use for it on buses or cabs. My son was a picky eater (still is) so I brought a lot of his favorite foods from home (Cheerios, snacks, instant oatmeal, etc). I ended up taking quite a bit of it back home with us since there was plenty on board that he liked to eat (yogurt, bananas, bread, etc). I did bring kid size utensils, sippy cups, and dish soap to wash things out daily. Weve eaten every night in the dining room, and breakfast we usually did the cafeteria style. I brought some new small toys (really quiet ones, or silent ones) with us for meal times to hold his interest. He did fine the first time, but the second cruise he wouldnt sit still long. During a break in courses (like if one of us skipped one) we would take him outside for a quick walk / ride on the elevator. Our waiters have always been great about little kids-they bring his food out with our first course, entertained him in so many ways, etc. We eat at the early seating too. Afterwards we go to the shows. The first trip he usually fell asleep during them. The second trip we stuck to the flashy upbeat shows and he did fine. During sea days we explore the ship (he usually learns where things are before we do) and the pool was off limits since he was in diapers still (as was the kids club). The pools were too cold anyways. In port, we didnt do excursions. Instead we headed to the beach, and afterwards my husband took our son back to the ship so I could shop, or we all walked around town. I brought along some beach toys for our son to play with and his lifejacket so he could swim in the ocean. This time we are going to try snorkeling on our own. Be sure to bring lots of diapers and wipes, any medications (including infant tylenol, etc) as they may be hard to find on board and time consuming to look for in port (not to mention expensive). And dont forget lots of sunscreen and a hat! I had a sunscreen lycra suit (long arms and legs) for my son, now he wears a suit and a rash guard to cover up. The sun and sea air will wipe your child out pretty quick so be prepared to take breaks during the day (back in your cabin). This is very important if you want to make it through dinner and shows! Feel free to email me with any other questions. As Ive said, Ive only had him on RCI so I dont know about Princess.
Hi we cruised with our almost 2yr old and our almost six month old.
I brought my own crib sheets and blanket( those nice cotton thermal ones) that way i knew they were really clean and wouldn't have industrial soap residue on them. We used the crib they provided.
Brought an umbrella stroller( the type with a canopy for sun) and also brought a baby backpack( snuggli) this was very useful as in some ports the streets are very crowded and pot holey, pushing a stroller was difficult.
Ship provided no baby food, we brought our own boxes of pablum, I also brought a small hand mill that I could puree his veggies with, just asked waiter for plain steamed veggies, and I did it right at the table. I did bring a few jars of baby fruits and veggies for port days.I was BF him, but I did bring a six pack of ready to feed formula for emergencies. I used the bottles with the plastic liners, and just washed the nipples in the cabin.
Brought the two yr old his own sippy cup.
Brought all the medicines that one could ever need ( never had to use them , but I didn't want to have a crying feverish child at two am and then try to get the ships doctor up and have to pay 100 buck for baby tylenol!)
Brought the baby in his carseat since it was the smaller type that he used to sit in at the dining room and shows, plus he liked sitting up in it. Did not bring the two yr olds since you can't use it in port anyways.
Brought and used sunscreen Ombrelle , recommended by our dermatolgist( husband has had serveral close calls with skin cancer) we ALWAYS put sunscreen on the kids BEFORE we went out in the sun so it could soak in( reapply also) . My kids have never had a burn and they have been on a cruise and to Hawaii, they are blonde blue eyes, and if I can keep them safe from the sun then anybody can if they use sunscreen . It correctly.It really bugs me when I see kids with sunburns. There is no excuse.
The moving ship was not an issue for either child.
I strongly recommend cruising with a baby, I am not such a strong advocate of taking a young toddler. The baby is way easier than a two yr old.
My 2.5 yr. old grandbaby has been on 2 cruises. First one at 7 months and second at a yr. old. She was fine in the dining room and she had her party dress on for formal night. She never ate in the dining room as Mom brought all her food. We brought a small stroller for her. She never cried or disturbed anyone in the dining room, and the waiters made a big fuss over her. The one waiter teared up every time he saw her because he had a 7 mo. old daughter at home in Europe. She slept in the pac n play the ship provided.
did you post your question over on the Family Cruise Board? Also check the articles, Luisa the Family board hostess wrote a great article all about crusing with infants.
As for the food, have your TA check with special services to see what they do and do not proovide.