I would suggest leaving her at home with a good sitter (grandparents?). You would enjoy your cruise much more and be able to relax. We decided not to take our 4 year old daughter with us. Left her with grandparents who had many activities planned for her. She wouldn't have remembered the cruise and I would have been constantly worrying about her on a big boat. Take some time for yourself. Enjoy.
Advice isprobably not what you want to hear. Leave the infant with someone you trust completely. The baby takes too much of your time onboard and takes lots away from the experiance not to mention it will not benifit the child in the least and ships are not set up for that type of pediatic care if an emergency arises.
Have a great time with your baby on the cruise. Bring along an umbrella stroller to use on the ship and in ports to make things a little easier on yourself. The big strollers that come with the travel systems are to big to be practical on the ship. I believe that the Spirit and maybe the Pride have programs where you can rent a stroller on-board to save a little packing room.
If your sailing stops in St. Thomas there is a Kmart very close to the port where you can restock on basic baby supplies (diapers, wipes, ect) so you don't need to bring quite as much along with you.
Carnival will arrange to have a crib in the room if you ask, they are generally the pack and play type cribs so you might want to have your baby start to sleep in one (if you have one) a little while before you leave so he/she gets used to it.
I would suggest getting travel insurance just in case something does happen and you have to cancel at the last minute or you have to visit the doctor on board.
There is a lady on another message board who has a whole infant cruising packing list if you are interested. She seems very organized, but I guess if you have taken your baby on 3 cruises and it is 3 yrs old you have the packing down pat. I can try to get her e-mail address and have her send it to you if you are interested.
Have a great time. It will be different then cruises just as a couple but everything is different after having a baby. Not better or worse just different.
I 2nd the above motions. While I have seen some infants I just can't imagine putting yourself thru that. If you can't bear to be without her/him then hold the cruise for another time when they are older. You might also check into Disney and see what they have for infants if anything. Carnival does not have a program for infants.
Thank you for all the responses. I guess I should have mentioned that not taking my children is not an option. If anyone has advice about how to travel with an infant, or suggestions than please post them. Thank you.
Is there babysitting available onboard?
Group babysitting is available for children 12 weeks to 3 years old in Flounder's Reef Nursery, located on Deck 5, Midship. Guests must sign up their children between 1:30 and 3:30 p.m. on embarkation day. There is a fee of $6 per child per hour, and $5 per additional child per hour, 2-hour minimum required. The facility will be open daily. Rates and times subject to change. Services are subject to availability. Please note: All children 3 (and potty trained) to 12 years old are welcome to join us. For the safety and enjoyment of all, our operation has been designed for children to participate in age-appropriate groups which allows them to interact both socially and comfortably with peers of their own age and size. Unfortunately we are unable to provide one-on-one care.
Land Cruise, Britain and Belgium
Now posting as MichelleP.
I saw a group of people getting on the Monarch last July with an infant in a stroller.......I have to admit.....I thought to myself, ARE THEY CRAZY??? But to my surprise...I saw them all over the ship with the baby, having a wonderful time.
We took 3 kids in February 9,6, and 20 months. Although I would have preferred to cruise without the baby, there is nobody to watch her (grandparents are all passed away), and the last vacation we left her with my sister at their house and she was traumatized by being without us. I think the whole thing would be easier with your age infant versus a toddler, like we had.
The airports and getting to and from the ship were the most stressful. Cabbie wouldn't take us with the baby because we didn't have a car seat (yeah, like we're going to drag a car seat for 2-18 mile trips to the port...). Once on the ship, she was fine, except that I couldn't quite relax at the pool, needed to watch her more so she didn't wander off or fall in. She was fine in port also. We took an umbrella stroller with a top for shade. We did kid-friendly shore excursions.
Kids Club won't take kids under 2 for day/evening activites, but will babysit them (for a fee) after 10 pm in the Kids Club area, but that may be over 1 year old, I'm not sure. That was nice so that we could have a few hours to ourselves in the evening. It was worth the extra $$.
Good luck! If you have more questions, feel free to email me.
We have cruised a lot with our little one since she was 9 months old. I used to have a packing list and passed it around cruise critic a few years ago but don't know where I put it. We are now in the toddler stage.
The umbrella stroller is a great idea. Also, skip the video camera. You will be too busy to use it and it is another thing to carry. Use a backpack type purse.
Carnival has evening babysitting for a few and in port babysitting also for a fee for children under two. Use it to get some rest and relaxation. Our daughter loves to cruise and you will have a great family vacation. If you are organized you can carve out some family time and alone time without stressing out too much. Decide ahead of time who leaves dinner if baby is cranky. Also, if your island time is after the babysitting time (it's till noon or two) decide who is taking care of the little one in each port or if it is family time. Hubby and I sometimes switched off or we put our daughter in day care to go to a casino or something and then went back and got her to do the rest of the port.
Good suggestion, Hoski, hopefully they will pay heed to that to taking the infant out of the dining room if screaming & crying begins so that everyone else's dinner won't be ruined. It usually doesn't happen on cruises, but in the "real world" we've seen rude parents who subject others to their "darlings" screeching.
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