Hi everyone! I'm traveling with my husband and our new addition (he'll be about 10 months by then) this December on Celebrity Summit to the Western Caribbean (Anyone else going to be there?) This is our 2nd cruise (the first was our honeymoon!) I'm kinda getting nervous as the date is coming closer. Has anyone taken Celebrity before with their little ones? I heard that sometimes the crib which cruises provide are smaller than a pack and play, and uncomfortable.. do I bother bringing my own? Also, how will babysitting services work out if I put my little guy to sleep at like 8 or 9ish and then go out - the sitter just sits there in the dark with the crib right next to them? (From what I remember, there's not much room in the cabin to NOT be right on top of a crib!) Also, does anyone know if Celebrity would allow babies with "little swimmers" in their kiddie pool? Do I bother bringing my own blow-up pool as suggested? What about shore excursions... does anyone know (re. my specific itinerary going to Key West, Cozumel, Puerto Limon, Colon, Oranjestad, and Georgetown) if I can just walk off the ship with my stroller and explore the area, or if I require taking another form of transportation to the main city (i.e. bus, taxi, etc..). I guess if buses/taxis are necessary, we should stay on the ship as I won't have a carseat (and these vehicles may not accept them anyway!). Any other tips? I'm just trying to go through a typical day on the ship with a baby, but I can't! (Also, where does one wash their baby?!) Any suggestions/comments are appreciated! Jasmine
I'm the family cruise editor and you asked good, practical questions about cruising with a baby. I suggest you read the article I wrote, "Bringing the Baby" which addresses many of your questions. It's on the main page of the family cruise section.
I've used the babysitters on Celebrity and Royal Caribbean and found them very good. Actually, I used them to get my son to sleep and they had no problem. As I recall, once he was asleep, she put on the bathroom light and the t.v. quietly -- no problem. Book the sitter for specific nights and times soon after you get on board to insure you'll get one.
If you find that your other questions are not addressed in the article, feel free to email me back.
Luisa Frey Gaynor
P.S. My 3 year old has been on 5 cruises already and we enjoyed them all! Just change your expectations -- it'll be a nice family vacation but surely will be different from vacations you took prior to having a child!
We did that itinerary in April on the Summit and had a super time- I'm not sure about December but in April it was so hot it was hard to breathe. Just warning you since I saw and heard many irate babies/children on the "tours" and walking around the towns, vs. just splashing around at the beach which all the kids loved since it kept them cool. We actually left our kids on the ship for Costa Rica and Panama, since we were doing the Panama Canal tour and since both countries are pretty "third-world" feeling. No beaches right off the ship either place- more of a secured shopping area. We requested a female sitter from the Fun Factory and she was awesome for sitting the boys. Key West, Cozumel, Aruba are all good beach spots- we didn't get to go to Grand Cayman because of the weather. Most of these ports require a taxi ride to get to a beach or renting a car (which may be a good option for you if they also rent car seats). I don't think they allow babies in pool so I'd bring a little blow up one to splash around in (everyone's pretty freaked about cruise ship viruses so they're pretty vigilant about the pools, they have attendants handing you towels in bathrooms, etc.) The Summit's gorgeous, take advantage of the sitter after your baby's asleep and have a super second honeymoon! (we felt like we were on ours again).
We were on the Century in 1994, our daughter was under 1 years old, even if they had enough kids for the kids center yours will not be old enough, they have to be 3 or older and pottty trained, we did have a wonderful female worker on her off time at night come in and babysit from 10pm until whenever, same person all 7 nights, she was great and only charged us $4 per hour, she just sat at the end of the bed all night, we told her she could read or watch tv, but she did not want to disturb our child, we told her that our child could sleep through a hurricane, which she did, ANDREW.
Have a great time, go early to the pursers desk and set it up early as this was very popular and price is negotiable.
When we were on Century, they provided us a decent crib. I suggest you bring some clothsepins and ask for an extra shet to drape around the crib. this will allow your child to not see you and perhaps take naps. We didn't use the babysitters, but found the advice on this board most helpful. I would also get a good portable stroller. We bought a Cambi and it was great. We also purchased a travel bag for our car seat that had wheels. It also worked out well. Don't forget to pack lots of wipes, diapers and supplies, they are either not available on board or expensive. Also, we found that the clothe napkins that they provide at meals are better then having to bring and wash bibs. Have a great time!!!