We are planning to go on a New Years cruise with our infant who will be 1 at the time of sailing. We are considering the Navigator of the Seas vs. Caribbean Princess. I am a seasoned cruiser and I have basically grown up going on cruises for family vacations. We can't decide which ship to go on, and were wondering if anyone has any suggestions beyond Personal Choice dining. We have been on both ships, and just can't decide. Price is virtually the same.
We recently sailed on Enchantment of the Seas with our one year old son. The staff really took to him, which really enhanced our experience. I suggest the Windjammer for breakfast and lunch, it worked well for us. We ate all meals with our little guy. The dinner experience will be nap dependant. Better naps=better dinner experience. A couple nights we had to take turns eating as we had to walk him around a bit. Our tablemates were great as well as neighboring tables. Look into the Aquababies program with RCCL. I don't know if Princess offers something similar.
Voyager of the Seas March 2000
Adventure of the Seas March 2002
Navigator of the Seas March 2003
Serenade of the Seas March 2004
Enchantment of the Seas January 2006
We just had our 6 mos old (and ~4 yr old) on Brilliance over Christmas and New Years. The ~4 yr old has been cruising over New Years since he was 11 mos.
RCI will only do in cabin babysitting if the child is at least 1. You luck out there. We have never used it though. Normally my dad and brother join us and they will watch the kids sometimes. Weve always eaten dinner in the main dining room until this past cruise when we pretty much ate in the Windjammer for all our meals (our extra help didnt come, and it was easier for all of us). The older our son got, the less he wanted to sit still through dinner, even with toys to occupy him. When he was 11 mos, whoever was skipping a course would take him out briefly to walk around (he was walking at 9 mos). The following years, he wanted to ride in the elevators (until he feared heights), and on the Navigator they had an old car in the promenade that he just had to "drive" all the time.
Our 6 mos old did great on the cruise. We did do tours (havent done them with our son until now), but they were shorter (few hours) and mostly in ac. I left the stroller in the cabin and wore a sling with her, which she slept in most of the time. By the way, the other poster is right-better nap=better dinner. The staff and other cruisers really enjoyed her too. She was the youngest on board that I saw. We never did Aquababies since it was only once a day, very short, and usually scheduled while we were in port or doing something else. We did bring some new toys for her to play with too.