First time cruiser, sailing 5/8/04 on Carnival Glory. I am a little considered about being paired up with dining companions, who don't want to dine with a 3 year old. Do they take things like children, interests, age, etc. into consideration or do they just randomly place people together. Any advice? Thank you!
As far as I know, if you told them youre traveling with a toddler they will take it into consideration. On our one trip, we were paired up with a family of four with 2 girls (teenager and an 8 yr old). I was a little worried, but the oldest gril was terrific! She would take my son out in the hall to play for a few minutes when she didnt have a first course. I also had my dad and brother along, so that was a huge plus. This past trip we all had a table to ourselves, but the people next to us were never happy so long as my son made a peep ( and he was pretty good). I dont think I ever saw them smile. What you may want to do is bring along some toys, crayons, etc for your child to play with as dinners can get long. The sugar caddy works great too. My dad brought a gift every night too, though that may or may not work for some. If your child likes Thomas the train, I just found a neat little toy-Bring Along Thomas. Its a small green case that holds a few items inside. You open it up and it becomes a track. No batteries are required, though you have to wind up Thomas all the time which is a pain, but it keeps our son occupied. Toys r Us had it for around $10 I believe. Request your child's meal be brought out with your salads so he doesnt fill up on bread and he keeps him occupied. Re highchairs-make sure you put a request in ahead of time if you need one. And if the people youre sitting with arent happy, they can always request to move to a different table/time slot. We always eat at the first seating otherwise it gets too late for our little guy!
Well that worries me, that some guests behaved that way. Not even a smile. Common, where did they think they were at a couples resort. They are on a FAMILY cruise. I hope I don't run into people like that, I will give them a piece of my mind. If they were rude to my child, especially if they are behaving well, or at least like a mannered toddler.
I failed to mention that the couple also had their own 2 kids (though they were older maybe 6-10)! They didnt show up a few nights (and those were the times my son was at his best), including the last night (wonder if they tipped). This real kicker was when my dad had put in a request for a bday cake for me (my bday is New Years Day) a few days before. When they brought the cake out, we got some nasty glares from the couple. A few minutes later, the waiter brought out a small piece of cake with a candle for the couples boy. Upon leaving, my dad and I wished the boy a happy birthday, and all the parents did was grunt back something that we never couold understand. Really nice people! But we didnt let it ruin our trip, in fact it sort of humored us that some people can be so miserable! The couple couldve asked to move to another table if we were that bad (no one else around us seemed to notice or complain-and my son is pretty good). Dont let it worry you-no matter where you go, there will always be someone who no one can ever please. Just smile and be friendly-maybe they will realize how miserable they really are!
Thanks so much for the info on the Thomas thing, it is no longer made that small the new ones have 4 seperate tracks that I could see being thrown around the dining room. But I found one Thomas store on the web who still have them. It is coming next week. Our cruise is one week after my 2 year olds birthday so it will be perfect.
What the heck do you do with an infant on a cruise other than stick em in day care?
We are going to be invited on a 7 day cruise in 3 months (but not Disney due to cost) and there will be 8 kids from newborn to 4. I checked out Disney - looks great for 7 and up and they have day care if you want to dump them off. It's the first kid and I really like hanging out with him, we go backpacking and camping alot - I am just not seeing the value of a cruise for kids so young. What is there to do? I understand kids can't go in the pool until pottey trained - makes sense for saltwater pool. Sunburn issues? Why would we want to do this with a 1 year old? Could someone make a case that it's a good idea to go on a seven day cruise with a teething infant that doesn't sleep through the night? The cruise will most likely be a transition cruise.
My two year old has been on 5 cruises and we've enjoyed them all. Cruises allow you the opportunity to see many different destinations yet kids get used to the same bed/crib each night. Lines like Royal Caribbean and Celebrity have private babysitting while Disney has a nursery for infants/toddlers.
See my article on Taking the Baby for tips on cruising with babies/toddlers on this section of the web site.
Luisa Frey Gaynor
Family Cruise Editor