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Family Cruising Discuss family cruising - kids programs, babysitting, infant care, etc.

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old November 14th, 2003, 08:06 AM
Meghan Pearsall
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Default Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated--my husband just won a cruise on Holland America's ms. Ryndam to Mexico this March and we will taking our 2 year old with us. We upgraded to the mini-suite already to get the extra space, bathtub, mini-fridge, veranda and VCR but any other thoughts and suggestions would be really appreciated. We have never been on a cruise before and have no idea what to expect/pack! Thanks in advance for your help.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old November 14th, 2003, 09:49 AM
stew
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

we are bringing the following......night lite...travel clock...diapers...wipies....other necc that might be too expensive there...some of his favorite books and small toys, so room will seem familiar to him.....and of course small amounts of his fav foods.....i know they have lots of food on board but kids can be particular...example being that he loves applesauce, and yes they will have that on board, but he only wants the purple kind!!!...etc......we have come to terms with what we can or can't do with a child on ship, so we have become more relaxed and looking forward to it......watching him see this all for first time will be a joy.....good luck....Stew.....p.s...don't forget the small travel stroller!
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Old November 14th, 2003, 09:54 AM
stew
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

oh i forgot....we were paranoid about our mini suite, the sliding doors.....we called and ships have safety locks on them, but as crazy as this may sound we brought a bath curtain rod, tension type....this would go between sliding door and jam....no way that between the safety and the rod he can slip it open....i know this may seem paranoid, but that's just our love i guess.....Stew
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Old November 14th, 2003, 08:11 PM
Meghan Pearsall
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Default Re: Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Many thanks!
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Old November 17th, 2003, 10:03 AM
Luisa
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Meghan:
I'm the family cruise editor here and you may want to read the article I wrote on this site, "Taking the baby." It gives you suggestions on how to pack for a cruise with a baby or toddler (wipes, diapers, etc.). My two year old has been on 4 cruises and we've enjoyed them all. Make sure you alter your expectations though -- it's going to be great but not as relaxing as travel before children was!
Smooth sailing,
Luisa Frey Gaynor
Family Cruise Editor
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Old November 22nd, 2003, 12:55 PM
Meghan Pearsall
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Default Re: Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Luisa,
Many thanks--I am looking for your article--is it in the news and features section?
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Old November 22nd, 2003, 05:24 PM
Meghan Pearsall
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Default Re: Re: Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Nevermind--I found it and printed it out! Thanks!
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Old November 24th, 2003, 09:29 AM
dayna
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Default Re: Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

I would not worry so much about the sliding doors. Have been on 2 cruises with my little ones. It is very difficult to move the doors. I have had trouble moving them. They are very heavy. Have a great cruise.

Dayna
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Old December 2nd, 2003, 09:18 AM
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Hi Meagan
We have been on three cruises with our daughter since she is a year old. One thing I highly recommend is an umbrella stroller that reclines to 180 degrees. I got mine, a CHicco, on QVC.com for about $150. Till this day my daughter who is now 3 1/2 takes her afternoon nap in this stroller, while we walk around in port or enjoy a peaceful lunch.We just returned home from the Millennium and so many people stopped me and commented on what a great idea this stroller was and asked where I got it. On the morning of disembarkation we had to go through immigration at 6:30 AM. I put my daughter, pajamas and all in the stroller and she slept through the whole thing. We even went to breakfast afterward and she woke up about 8 AM. If your daughter still naps, I strongly suggest this or any reclining umbrella stroller.
Have fun!
Suzanne
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Old December 17th, 2003, 10:12 AM
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

We are on RCL Navigator over New Years. We are bring the basics, and then some. Aloe, sunblock, first aid stuff (our son burned his hand last year sending us to the ship dr and simple supplies are always good to have when theres no walmart nearby!), medicines (cold-just in case, tylenol, allergy) hat, lycra sun/swim suit, some small toys and small books, dvd player/dvds (for the plane ride mainly), some of his favorite snacks (fruit chews, bob cookies), straw cups, coloring supplies, a backpack to carry all his stuff in, bucket and shovel for the beach (he loves to dig), umbrella stroller (with shade and reclines), and blankie. Our son liked yogurt and it wasn't out at the lunch buffet. We had to ask a waiter to bring us one, and then wait around. Same thing with juice (although we are bringing some juice boxes). If your cabin has a fridge, take advantage of it and stock it from the breakfst buffets (fruit, juice, milk, yogurt, etc). I also got my son a inflatable sleeping bag (Bob the builder). It comes with a shoulder carry bag. He is too big for the portable cribs they have on board, and the cabin's sofa bed takes up too much room. This way he can sleep comfortably on the floor (with no worries of rolling out of bed), and then we can store the bag during the day. They say to put out what you want to bring and cut it in half............when it comes to toddlers, bring it all! It doesnt take up a lot of space and you will have a hard time finding toddler/infant stuff, or waste time looking around in port for stuff. Happy cruising!!!
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Old December 17th, 2003, 11:14 AM
jcbmommy
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

I'll be traveling with my 1 year-old in a few weeks. This was very helpful to me too.

Thanks!
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Old January 6th, 2004, 09:14 AM
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Default Re: Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Hi, I will be cruising with my 5 and 2 year old in February. What is your opinion about travelling from NYC on NCL Dawn during that time of year? NYC is far more economical.

Would the NCL Sun from Miami be a better choice?

Thank you for your time.
Jackie
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  #13 (permalink)  
Old January 6th, 2004, 09:20 AM
Luisa
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Default To Meghan

Hi Meghan:
One more thing I forgot to point out... Holland America is one of the few lines which offers private babysitting, so you may want to take advantage of that. Make sure you book a babysitting with the main desk early in the cruise. We did that one night with our infant and the woman was very lovely.
Smooth sailing,
Luisa
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old January 6th, 2004, 09:23 AM
Luisa
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Default To Jackie

I think you'll be fine on the Norwegian Dawn out of NYC. Supposedly, by the afternoon of the first full day, it should be warm enough to be out on deck. Not sure if that means it's warm enough to go swimming though! The Dawn has great outdoor water facilities for little kids -- lots of small water slides, playground type equipment, mini splash pool, etc. We were on its sister ship in Hawaii and my one and 9 year olds both loved it. The Sun does not have as extensive outdoor water facilities for kids. So it's a bit of a toss up...
Let me know what you decide.
Smooth sailing,
Luisa Frey Gaynor
Family Cruise Editor
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  #15 (permalink)  
Old January 6th, 2004, 09:33 AM
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Default Re: Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Now I am really confused. What should I risk? The weather or the ship? I
am very nervous about rough seas. I am traumatized from a cruise 7 years
ago in Greece and can't seem to shake it. I was sick for an entire day and
now with two kids, I don't think that would be too pretty. I do want my
kids happy, but having the kids club I thought would acheive this. What do
you think based on this added info I have given? Is there perhaps a different ship I should look into?

How do I email you directly instead of replying to others comments?

Jackie
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  #16 (permalink)  
Old January 8th, 2004, 03:27 PM
Luisa
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Hi Jackie:
If you're leery about rough seas, they should be calmer cruising from Miami to the Caribbean than from NYC down to Miami and the Bahamas (NCL Dawn). You'll be in more open ocean from NYC to Miami, whereas you're a stone's throw from the calm Caribbean if you depart from Miami. Either way, NCL's youth program for little ones is good.
Let me know which you decide.
Smooth sailing,
Luisa Frey Gaynor
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Old January 8th, 2004, 08:22 PM
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Default Re: Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Thanks Luisa,

I decided to go with the Dawn. I'll take my chances with the motion. Dramamine and patches will definately be in my posession.

Jackie
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  #18 (permalink)  
Old January 12th, 2004, 12:22 PM
Luisa
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Jackie:
I think you'll like the Dawn's family friendly facilities. I carry sea bands with me -- they are elastic wrist bands that apply pressure points and help with nausea. They work well for us and our kids. However, if you're really sensitive, you are probably better with a patch or medication.
Smooth sailing,
Luisa
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Old January 19th, 2004, 07:17 PM
Amy S
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Default Re: Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

Hi -We are taking our 1 year old on the Millenium and were surprised to just find out he can't even go in the pool since he isnt potty trained. I have never heard of this kind of policy since swimming diapers are so prevalent. Was wondering...have you had to deal with this issue? It is going to make it really rough since our 5 year old loves to swim.
Thanks for your thoughts
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old January 20th, 2004, 10:04 AM
Luisa
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Default Re: Advice for cruising with 2 yr. toddler?

There was a post this fall on the same subject which caused a lot of controversy!
Yes, most lines these days, due to health codes, post that children in diapers are not allowed in the pools. It's your call whether you take your child in the pool with swim diapers or not. There usually aren't any life guards or personnel at the pools. However, since we had such a heated discussion last fall, I'm not advising you what to do! It's your call!
Smooth sailing,
Luisa Frey Gaynor
Family Cruise Editor
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