Travelling with a 7 month old

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#1
VANCOUVER Canada
463 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
we are a couple in our early 30's looking to take a cruise with our 7 month old baby. We have done lots of cruising in the past but because we have never travelled with a baby were unsure what cruise line to go with.
Is there a particular cruise line that offers daycare for a baby ?

Ideally we want a family friendly ship as possible any suggestions would be a great help.
#2
357 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
Disney and a limited number of Royal Caribbean ships offer a for-fee babysitting service for infants. Carnival will sometimes on their ships offer a short period of available for-fee babysitting for infants under 2 years old, usually during midmorning or lunchtime on sea days. In terms of activities for the babies, Royal seems to have decent offerings in programs for babies and their parents to participate in. NCL has the under 2 zoo which is usually just a room w/ some toys somewhere onboard. I would note though that NCL is one of the only lines that charges significantly less for infants - basically port taxes/fees only rather than a full 3rd passenger fare.
#3
VANCOUVER Canada
463 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
Originally posted by NJfoodie
Disney and a limited number of Royal Caribbean ships offer a for-fee babysitting service for infants. Carnival will sometimes on their ships offer a short period of available for-fee babysitting for infants under 2 years old, usually during midmorning or lunchtime on sea days. In terms of activities for the babies, Royal seems to have decent offerings in programs for babies and their parents to participate in. NCL has the under 2 zoo which is usually just a room w/ some toys somewhere onboard. I would note though that NCL is one of the only lines that charges significantly less for infants - basically port taxes/fees only rather than a full 3rd passenger fare.
thank you so much for the info. I was looking last night and noticed the big diffrence in price on NCL. We have saild RCL but never NCL have you cruised with them is there much diffrence in either line
#4
Fredericksburg, va. USA
79,853 Posts
Joined May 2001
The differences are minimal. I don't know if NCL has "in cabin" babysitting...RCI does most of the time. Only a few RCI ship's have a "daycare" setting for the under-3 crowd.

Whatever differences there are will only be important to you...your baby won't really care where they are!!!

NCL has NO formal nights...they do have a "dress up or not" evening. RCI still has a couple of formal evenings, if that makes a difference. Both have entertainment, pools, outdoor activities, bingo, etc....
#5
VANCOUVER Canada
463 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
Originally posted by cb at sea
The differences are minimal. I don't know if NCL has "in cabin" babysitting...RCI does most of the time. Only a few RCI ship's have a "daycare" setting for the under-3 crowd.

Whatever differences there are will only be important to you...your baby won't really care where they are!!!

NCL has NO formal nights...they do have a "dress up or not" evening. RCI still has a couple of formal evenings, if that makes a difference. Both have entertainment, pools, outdoor activities, bingo, etc....
Thanks you for that added info. We were not aware that RCI had in room childcare. We are open like we said before on which cruise line as long as it is somewhat child friendly.
#6
357 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
I think in-room sitting on RCI may still be limited to babies over 1 yr old. It still may be best to check w/ the lines directly as well to confirm what is and isn't on any given ship.

We will be sailing w/ friends and their 7 month old this may. We'll have our 3 yr old with us and we're sharing a suite. Their offerings for the under 2 set are limited though they are rolling out new programs this spring. We will be finding out on our trip whether the new progams have anything available for infants. I'll report back after. We chose NCL for the more flexible dining options and laid back atmosphere. To not have assigned dining times, tablemates, the option of shorter meals if needed w/o the buffet being the only other choice, just make it easier for us. We chose the suite to add an extra level of dining flexibility, more space for both families, and a lot less waiting in lines to make the trip logistics easier on us.
#7
New England
443 Posts
Joined Jul 2004
I'll second NJFoodie's recommendation of NCL. Pre-kids we also sailed on Carnival and Celebrity, but we think NCL is doing a great job of meeting families' needs, especially those with kids ages 3 and up. That's not to say they aren't a good fit for younger kids though; we took our older daughter on an NCL cruise at 15 months, and she had a great time.

Even though there isn't any babysitting for babies, NCL's flexible dining options and casual atmosphere are priceless when traveling with a baby. There's no need to worry about getting to the dining room for a specific seating, and you won't be seated with other passengers unless you request it. If your child is napping, no worries, dinner can be pushed back a half hour or an hour. If all heck breaks loose, you can order off of the room service menu for free, though tips are appreciated. (Most cruise lines charge extra for room service.)

Also, consider getting a balcony room. It is really nice to have that extra pseudo-separate space when one or both parents are hanging out in the cabin with a napping baby.

If you can, you might want to choose an itinerary that avoids tender ports, and/or bring along a Type I (suitable for open water) PFD for your baby. While we had no trouble on tenders, it was clear that there were no infant-sized life jackets on any of the tenders we took on our Mexican Riviera cruise.

Opinions may vary, but I personally think a Bermuda cruise is ideal with an infant. There's no need to book excursions, because you can use the inexpensive and efficient public transportation system to get around the country, instead of having to rely on sometimes dodgy taxis (thinking of Caribbean and Mexico). You stay in the same port for 3 days, so there's a lot of built in flexibility, and you can come and go from the ship at will.

Happy cruising!
#8
357 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
Originally posted by jplain
I'll second NJFoodie's recommendation of NCL. Pre-kids we also sailed on Carnival and Celebrity, but we think NCL is doing a great job of meeting families' needs, especially those with kids ages 3 and up. That's not to say they aren't a good fit for younger kids though; we took our older daughter on an NCL cruise at 15 months, and she had a great time.

Even though there isn't any babysitting for babies, NCL's flexible dining options and casual atmosphere are priceless when traveling with a baby. There's no need to worry about getting to the dining room for a specific seating, and you won't be seated with other passengers unless you request it. If your child is napping, no worries, dinner can be pushed back a half hour or an hour. If all heck breaks loose, you can order off of the room service menu for free, though tips are appreciated. (Most cruise lines charge extra for room service.)

Also, consider getting a balcony room. It is really nice to have that extra pseudo-separate space when one or both parents are hanging out in the cabin with a napping baby.

If you can, you might want to choose an itinerary that avoids tender ports, and/or bring along a Type I (suitable for open water) PFD for your baby. While we had no trouble on tenders, it was clear that there were no infant-sized life jackets on any of the tenders we took on our Mexican Riviera cruise.

Opinions may vary, but I personally think a Bermuda cruise is ideal with an infant. There's no need to book excursions, because you can use the inexpensive and efficient public transportation system to get around the country, instead of having to rely on sometimes dodgy taxis (thinking of Caribbean and Mexico). You stay in the same port for 3 days, so there's a lot of built in flexibility, and you can come and go from the ship at will.

Happy cruising!
Of course you agree with me - that's why we're sailing on the same Bermuda itinerary in 2 months!
#9
5 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
We are travelling on celebrity constellation with our 7.5 month old in january. he sleeps trough the night and is pretty easy going.i was very pleased o find out that celebrity provides baby food jars of gerber food , formula and infant cereals such as rice or oatmeal. they emailed me a form and i got to choose the type of baby foods i wanted and the brand of formula and if i wanted ready to feed powder or concentrate and the type of cereals. they also provide a pack and play crib for the room. its nice not having to lug baby food and formula i chose the ready made kind. this is all included in the price that you pay for the third person so at least were getting some value for the money for bringing our baby. i am not sure if other cruise lines do this or not.

we also are bringing a inflatable baby bath tub to use in the shower for him and can double as a infant pool for our balcony or by the main pool as babies in swim diapers are not allowed in. we booked a aft family balcony on the back corner of the boat its 242sq ft which is great cause we can tan out there and it has a shaded covered part for our son. the room also has a separate sitting area with a partition door from the master so we can still be awake while he sleeps.

we have been on many cruises before with out our son but never on celebrity and we are looking forward to the experience. we know that cruising will be different with a baby but we know that going in and have different expectations then before. happy cruising everyone
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#10
Dallas, TX
252 Posts
Joined Jul 2004
Good advice from the folks above.
I think my girls were @ 10 months old on their first cruise - and looking back - that was pretty easy - they weren't really mobile - we just pushed them around everywhere. Next week will be their 5th cruise and they are 4.5 - all have been on RCCL out of Galveston (so we didn't have to fly, or drive very far).

They provide pack-n-plays and they will put a sheet down for you, although I brought my own PnP sheets. A balcony is nice - so you can step out and relax during baby's naps or at night. RCCL (to me) has become undependable when it comes to in-room babysitting. We used it previously, but, the rules (and rates) will not match what it says on the website or what they tell you on the phone - although I think on the phone you have a better shot of getting the scoop. They require two babysitters (probably due to liability) -usually for kids 1 year and up. Their rates have gone way up - I think last I heard/saw it was like $19/hr - you usually can't get babysitters the boarding night because the crew is exhausted from all the regular work. If you KNOW you need a babysitter, get to the customer service desk immediately upon boarding to put in your request. Also, be aware of cancellation policies as well.

For ports, I think we just walked around in cayman a little. In Cozumel, we rented a driver/van and saw the sites, went to a restaurant and stepped out on the beach. On the ship, we didn't bother with trying to do a splash pool although we brought the blowup tub for the shower.

the crews usually looooove kids, especially babies - they miss their families!
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#11
558 Posts
Joined Dec 2011
Originally posted by tbosh
We are travelling on celebrity constellation with our 7.5 month old in january. he sleeps trough the night and is pretty easy going.i was very pleased o find out that celebrity provides baby food jars of gerber food , formula and infant cereals such as rice or oatmeal. they emailed me a form and i got to choose the type of baby foods i wanted and the brand of formula and if i wanted ready to feed powder or concentrate and the type of cereals. they also provide a pack and play crib for the room. its nice not having to lug baby food and formula i chose the ready made kind. this is all included in the price that you pay for the third person so at least were getting some value for the money for bringing our baby. i am not sure if other cruise lines do this or not.

we also are bringing a inflatable baby bath tub to use in the shower for him and can double as a infant pool for our balcony or by the main pool as babies in swim diapers are not allowed in. we booked a aft family balcony on the back corner of the boat its 242sq ft which is great cause we can tan out there and it has a shaded covered part for our son. the room also has a separate sitting area with a partition door from the master so we can still be awake while he sleeps.

we have been on many cruises before with out our son but never on celebrity and we are looking forward to the experience. we know that cruising will be different with a baby but we know that going in and have different expectations then before. happy cruising everyone
Please post when you return about your experience- next january I will (assuming everything goes well) be cruising with my 7 month old on Celebrity. All information will be helpful!
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#12
Moon Township, Pa
23,124 Posts
Joined Oct 2000
Originally posted by BCCRUSINGCOUPLE
Thanks you for that added info. We were not aware that RCI had in room childcare. We are open like we said before on which cruise line as long as it is somewhat child friendly.
For in cabin sitting, the child must be 12 months of age or older. There is no program for infants under age 1 on Royal Caribbean, other than the 45 minutes a day that you can take the baby for the Royal Infants program, and you must remain with the baby for the whole time. Only a few RCI ships have a nursery for those under 12 months, so you have to make sure the ship you choose has the nursery.
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Darcie
#14
Long Island,NY
21 Posts
Joined Jan 2007
Originally posted by tbosh
We are travelling on celebrity constellation with our 7.5 month old in january. he sleeps trough the night and is pretty easy going.i was very pleased o find out that celebrity provides baby food jars of gerber food , formula and infant cereals such as rice or oatmeal. they emailed me a form and i got to choose the type of baby foods i wanted and the brand of formula and if i wanted ready to feed powder or concentrate and the type of cereals. they also provide a pack and play crib for the room. its nice not having to lug baby food and formula i chose the ready made kind. this is all included in the price that you pay for the third person so at least were getting some value for the money for bringing our baby. i am not sure if other cruise lines do this or not.

we also are bringing a inflatable baby bath tub to use in the shower for him and can double as a infant pool for our balcony or by the main pool as babies in swim diapers are not allowed in. we booked a aft family balcony on the back corner of the boat its 242sq ft which is great cause we can tan out there and it has a shaded covered part for our son. the room also has a separate sitting area with a partition door from the master so we can still be awake while he sleeps.

we have been on many cruises before with out our son but never on celebrity and we are looking forward to the experience. we know that cruising will be different with a baby but we know that going in and have different expectations then before. happy cruising everyone
Hi- we too will be cruising with our 6 month old in May on the Summit to Bermuda. Any feedback and tips would be greatly appeciated. We cannot wait!!
Also- please let us know if you found the crew and other passengers accepting of a 6 month old cruising on the ship. I have read some nasty forums here about people not accepting of infants cruising.
Thanks so much.
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#15
13,957 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by NYK9COP
Hi- we too will be cruising with our 6 month old in May on the Summit to Bermuda. Any feedback and tips would be greatly appeciated. We cannot wait!!
Also- please let us know if you found the crew and other passengers accepting of a 6 month old cruising on the ship. I have read some nasty forums here about people not accepting of infants cruising.
Thanks so much.
Crew members love the children. Other passengers, perhaps not so much. Just ignore them.
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#16
Timonium, Maryland
3,834 Posts
Joined Jul 2007
One thing you may want to consider, the cabins do feel a bit confining with the crib and all the baby things you need to bring with you. I highly recommend getting the largest cabin you can afford- a suite if possible.

On our last cruise we were upgraded to a suite and found that we enjoyed dining in our suite after a long day of touring. For your purposes- it might be nice for you if you want to have a meal in your cabin or on your balcony. This worked well for us- since suite passengers can get the same dinner menu in the cabin as what they are serving in the MDR.

When my son was 6 months we cruised and my parents had a suite. They babysat a lot for us. The suite had a DVD player and we took along his favorite- Elmo and Baby Mozart. He was able to crawl around in this larger area. So when we did explore the ship with him- he was happy to sit in the stroller because he had had time to explore on all fours.

So if you bring the baby- I'd get a suite. It will be more relaxing. That or bring a nanny!
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