I am planning on taking my 7-YO son on our first cruise this summer. We live in Houston so want a cruise from Galveston. It will just be him & me & I know he will enjoy the ship as much as anything!
Questions: what cruise line do you recommend? And what ports? Also should I go for 5 or 7- day cruises? I have noticed that for every cruise you lose the first & last days, because the first day you leave so late in the day & the last day you get back to port so early. So to me the 5-day cruise ends up being a 3-day cruise & likewise for the 7-day.
One more thing: is is better to book early to get a 'place' or wait until say, a month before we plan to go & try to get a major cruise bargain through priceline.com or orbitz or another site?
Thanks in advance for any & all help for this first-time cruiser!!
I'm sure a Texas travel agent will know which ships leave from Galveston these days. I suggest booking early for an early bird discount. While there is a chance of getting a lower fare possibly if you book close in, you won't have much of a choice of the type of cabin available. I also suggest you book a 7-day cruise -- I find it takes kids a few days to get into the relaxing routine of a cruise. We've always sailed 7 day cruises and my daughter (who's has sailed on 15 cruises) was never bored!
Luisa Frey Gaynor
Family Cruise Editor
I went on the Rhapsody of the Sea last summer and we are going again this summer. I saw many children on the ship. They seemed to love the activities. It is a beautiful and fun ship. I think both you and your son would enjoy it.
We live in Houston as well and are taking our children on their first cruise next month! We were booked on the NCL Sea, but was always hesitant, because it is older and smaller and I was afraid it would be a little too stuffy for my children. So, now I am booked on the Carnival Elation. I've have heard from many people that Carnival has the best program and the most to do on their ships for kids. Even the slides are a big plus!
I did a lot of price research and finally found a wonderful TA with the best prices on the back page of the Travel section in the Houston Chronicle. He's based out of San Antonio but we handled everything by phone. Since he is associated with a large TA out of Miami, he gets blocks of rooms at great prices, then sells them individually. E-mail me if you want any more info!