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  #21  
Old September 4th, 2012, 11:30 AM
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junglejane junglejane is offline
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We have taken our kids on several 3 week European trips, including two Med cruises and one British Isles cruise. They sometimes get a bit homesick but they love the sea days. On our pre-cruise land trips, we tend to pack in nonstop activities and sightseeing. By the time they board the ship, they are longing for a chance to relax and slow down. They always tell us "more sea days."

We spent 10 days in Paris over Spring Break, also renting an apartment with a view of the Eiffel Tower (did you use Paris Perfect, by chance?). We had a great time but our kids said cruises are better!

Also, I think your kids are at an ideal age for the Fun Factory, especially the 8 and 9 year olds. I think Celebrity does a really good job with that age. Having a few other kids is nice but more kids does not necessarily make for a better experience, a fact which seems to escape those who try to direct all families to Carnival and Disney.

A few years ago, some of our empty nester friends gave us some valuable advice. They said, don't hesitate to travel as much as you can when your kids are in elementary and middle school. Because once they reach high school, it will become much more difficult. We have found this to be very true. Our oldest DD is a sophomore. It has been a real challenge to schedule trips around her school demands, including honors and AP classes, sports, extra curriculars like speech and debate, community service requirements, etc. The summer is also becoming filled with opportunities for her to do internships or attend sports or speech & debate camps. Our vacation desires now have to be worked around so many things that she needs or wants to do. Next year she will be a junior and we will start visiting colleges. So I don't regret any of our trips, even though each one may have had moments here and there of homesickness.
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Past Cruises:
Cunard Queen Mary 2 - Eastbound TA - 6/13; Celebrity Silhouette - W. Caribbean - 3/13; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 12/12; Celebrity Equinox - E. Mediterranean - 6/11; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 3/11; Queen Victoria - Mexican Getaway - 2/11; Mariner of the Seas - Mexico - 3/10; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 10/09; Crown Princess - British Isles - 7/09; Celebrity Summit - E. Mediterranean - 6/08; Dawn Princess - Pacific Coastal - 5/08; Golden Princess - Mexico - 3/08; Diamond Princess - Mexico - 3/07; Celebrity Infinity - Alaska - 8/06; Caribbean Princess - 6/05; HAL Ryndam - Alaska - 8/96
Upcoming Cruise:
Crown Princess - Mexico - 12/20/14
Caribbean Princess - Baltic Heritage - 6/27/15
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  #22  
Old September 4th, 2012, 11:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by junglejane View Post

We spent 10 days in Paris over Spring Break, also renting an apartment with a view of the Eiffel Tower (did you use Paris Perfect, by chance?). We had a great time but our kids said cruises are better!

Also, I think your kids are at an ideal age for the Fun Factory, especially the 8 and 9 year olds. I think Celebrity does a really good job with that age. Having a few other kids is nice but more kids does not necessarily make for a better experience, a fact which seems to escape those who try to direct all families to Carniva.

A few years ago, some of our empty nester friends gave us some valuable advice. They said, don't hesitate to travel as much as you can when your kids are in elementary and middle school. Because once they reach high school, it will become much more difficult. We have found this to be very true. Our oldest DD is a sophomore. It has been a real challenge to schedule trips around her school demands, including honors and AP classes, sports, extra curriculars like speech and debate, community service requirements, etc. The summer is also becoming filled with opportunities for her to do internships or attend sports or speech & debate camps. Our vacation desires now have to be worked around so many things that she needs or wants to do. Next year she will be a junior and we will start visiting colleges. So I don't regret any of our trips, even though each one may have had moments here and there of homesickness.
We did use Paris Perfect. We are staying in the Romanee'. So excited for that.

I agree that more kids does not = better. My kids, in particular, are easily overwhelmed and overshadowed in a giant group of kids. They really prefer to hang together on vacations and are typically separated in larger groups. My middle son and youngest daughter are best buddies, so being apart on vacation is not for them. They would choose to be in the room together watching TV over being in kids club separated.

The timing of this trip was good for us. Oldest is in 5th grade, youngest in 2nd. All three are great students and motivated. Husband has a long sabbatical from work. Silhouette has a family stateroom that is perfection for us. Cruise was a bargain. All the things lined up to make it an easy call to try. As the deadline closes in, I'm having some anxiety creep in.
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  #23  
Old September 4th, 2012, 11:49 AM
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Paris Perfect is a great company. We have rented apartments in Manhattan, London, Rome and Paris. Our experience with Paris Perfect was hands down our best rental experience. They were very professional and a pleasure to deal with. (Our worst experience was a VRBO rental in Manhattan where the A/C broke and the owner was difficult to reach and didn't get it fixed while we were there.)
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Past Cruises:
Cunard Queen Mary 2 - Eastbound TA - 6/13; Celebrity Silhouette - W. Caribbean - 3/13; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 12/12; Celebrity Equinox - E. Mediterranean - 6/11; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 3/11; Queen Victoria - Mexican Getaway - 2/11; Mariner of the Seas - Mexico - 3/10; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 10/09; Crown Princess - British Isles - 7/09; Celebrity Summit - E. Mediterranean - 6/08; Dawn Princess - Pacific Coastal - 5/08; Golden Princess - Mexico - 3/08; Diamond Princess - Mexico - 3/07; Celebrity Infinity - Alaska - 8/06; Caribbean Princess - 6/05; HAL Ryndam - Alaska - 8/96
Upcoming Cruise:
Crown Princess - Mexico - 12/20/14
Caribbean Princess - Baltic Heritage - 6/27/15

Last edited by junglejane; September 4th, 2012 at 12:00 PM.
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  #24  
Old September 4th, 2012, 01:04 PM
Kerry's Girls Kerry's Girls is offline
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My girls were younger when we did a long crossing on a more "conservative" line - we did a two week from Los Angeles to Hawaii and back on Princess with only 4 port days the whole time and still none of us were ready to get off the ship when it was over. There were very few kids, but the ones who were on board were having a great time in the kids clubs. It's still one of the most relaxing and enjoyable cruises we've ever done. I think it sounds like a perfect way to end a European trip. I'm envious.

All the best,
Mia
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Last edited by Kerry's Girls; September 4th, 2012 at 01:08 PM.
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  #25  
Old September 5th, 2012, 07:51 AM
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It sounds like an incredible trip and I am envious as well! I think many adults who do the "dog pile" on the kid hater threads are simply jealous that they a) never did that for their children and b) forgot what it was like to be a child a long time ago.

What an amazing experience you are providing for your children!
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RCI Allure of the Seas 5/4/14
Norwegian Getaway PreInaugural 1/27/14
NCL Breakaway PreInaugural 5/8/13
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Disney Magic 2/05
NCL Norway 6/02
RCI Sovereign of the Seas 9/98
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Kids club schedules and children's menus including RCCL Adventure Ocean, Camp Carnival,
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  #26  
Old September 5th, 2012, 12:28 PM
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We cruised 12 nights on the Celebrity Equinox in the Mediterranean last summer with our kids. My younger daughter was 8 and loved the Fun Factory!! Celebrity has been her favourite ship so far - we have also sailed Disney, Princess twice and Holland America. I would love to sail a transatlantic but the timing doesn't work well for us. We have never met anyone on board who was anything but pleasant to our girls. I wouldn't worry about the anti-kid sentiment on message boards - it's easy for people to get nasty when they are anonymous on the internet and most of them would never dream of saying the same things to anyone's face.

Lisa
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Crown Princess - S. Caribbean - New Year's - Jan 2014
Disney Magic - W. Caribbean - New Year's - Jan 2013
Celebrity Equinox - E. Mediterranean - Aug 2011
Emerald Princess - Baltics - August 2009
Eurodam - Eastern Caribbean - March 2009
Diamond Princess - Alaska - June 2007
Disney Magic - W. Caribbean - March 2006


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  #27  
Old September 5th, 2012, 12:33 PM
rebeccalouiseagain rebeccalouiseagain is offline
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Quite frankly the kid haters are in the minority but do tend to be childless couples (by choice or by fate) who are retired and have plenty of time to post on here.
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Past cruises: Norwegian Pearl Pacific Coast 5/3/2014 My Birthday! Celebrity Solstice Alaska 5/8/2014Enchantment of the Seas 12/6/13 Bahamas, Grand Princess Alaska 7/19/13, Celebrity Solstice California Coast 5/13, Serenade of the Seas Western Med (1/4/13)Celebrity Summit Bermuda(8/12/12),Celebrity Infinity Alaska 7/6/12
Caribbean Princess New England (8/11), Holland America Maasdam New England (6/11)Celebrity Equinox Norway (7/09), Royal Caribbean Independence of the Seas (4/09) Grand Princess British Isles (08) Holland America Zuiderdam Greece/ Turkey (08) Oceania Regatta Caribbean Southern Caribbean (08) QM2 Transatlantic (07) Celebrity Millenium Western Med (7/07), Royal Caribbean Radiance of the Seas Eastern Caribbean(4/06), Disney Wonder Bahamas (8/05), Celebrity Constellation (4/06), Sapphire Princess Alaska (5/24/05) Celebrity Millenium Transatlantic (5/1/05), NCL Spirit Eastern Caribbean (3/05), Celebrity Galaxy (10/04), Carnival Victory (6/04), Celebrity Zenith Bermuda (10/01), Celebrity Zenith Eastern Caribbean (4/01),NCL Dynasty (12/00) NCL Sky Alaska (7/00), NCL Wind Alaska (5/98), Crown Princess Pacific repo (5/98), Royal Sovereign of the Seas Bahamas (10/97), Costa Victoria Western Caribbean (3/97), Crown Princess Alaska (6/96), Vera Cruz Christmas (1981), Holland America Volendam Christmas (1980), Holland America Veendam Christmas (1975).

Upcoming cruises:Celebrity Constellation 8/9/15
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  #28  
Old September 5th, 2012, 12:56 PM
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I don't necessarily think they're all childless (as in never had children). I think many of them are people who raised their kids in a different era, and who themselves yearn for the bygone era of cruising when ships were smaller and mostly occupied by affluent retirees. I also think that it's natural for some older folks to think that the younger generation is too permissive and that the world is generally going downhill.

What gets me is that everyone recognizes that adults vary in their tastes and budgets, and that different cruising options appeal to different people. But families are supposed to all be identical and all happily flock to Disney or Carnival. There's a failure to recognize that one size does not fit all with families any more than with adults.
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Past Cruises:
Cunard Queen Mary 2 - Eastbound TA - 6/13; Celebrity Silhouette - W. Caribbean - 3/13; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 12/12; Celebrity Equinox - E. Mediterranean - 6/11; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 3/11; Queen Victoria - Mexican Getaway - 2/11; Mariner of the Seas - Mexico - 3/10; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 10/09; Crown Princess - British Isles - 7/09; Celebrity Summit - E. Mediterranean - 6/08; Dawn Princess - Pacific Coastal - 5/08; Golden Princess - Mexico - 3/08; Diamond Princess - Mexico - 3/07; Celebrity Infinity - Alaska - 8/06; Caribbean Princess - 6/05; HAL Ryndam - Alaska - 8/96
Upcoming Cruise:
Crown Princess - Mexico - 12/20/14
Caribbean Princess - Baltic Heritage - 6/27/15
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  #29  
Old September 6th, 2012, 06:35 PM
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crusinmama06 crusinmama06 is offline
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JungleJane - what's funny is to go on the Carnival board and say you are bringing a child. The thread is guaranteed to be 30 pages long saying that you will be sure to ruin their "adult only" vacation.

The Carnival board seem to think they are cruising on Seabourn simply because they are owned by the same company
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RCI Allure of the Seas 5/4/14
Norwegian Getaway PreInaugural 1/27/14
NCL Breakaway PreInaugural 5/8/13
NCL EPIC 11/24/12 - Ewes Baby!
RCI Enchantment 8/3/12 - Addicted to BERMUDA!
NCL Gem 10/2/11 - Back to Bermuda!
RCI Enchantment of the Seas 5/28/11 - Bermuda
RCI Grandeur of the Seas 9/11/10
Carnival Triumph 6/7/09
RCI Independence of the Seas 2/1/09
Disney Wonder 09/11/08
Carnival Sensation 08/07
RCI Freedom of the Seas 5/07
Carnival Elation 11/06
Disney Magic 2/05
NCL Norway 6/02
RCI Sovereign of the Seas 9/98
RCI Sovereign of the Seas 9/97
Kids club schedules and children's menus including RCCL Adventure Ocean, Camp Carnival,
Disney, NCL, Princess, HAL and Celebrity posted here....
http://photobucket.com/cruisekidpages

Last edited by crusinmama06; September 6th, 2012 at 06:35 PM.
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  #30  
Old October 7th, 2012, 05:51 PM
veravin veravin is offline
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I am not the OP but I have had similar concerns of late. My family (DH, DD-7, DS-9 and my parents) are booked on a Baltic Cruise for next summer. We chose Celebrity because of the itinerary and the availability of the family cabins. I then came on Cruise Critic and visited the Celebrity boards and was terrified that I had made the wrong decision. Most of the posts seemed anti kid and sort of snooty. I have been feeling sick to my stomach that the kids were going to be shunned and we would all have a terrible time. I do appreciate the thoughts and should have come to this board much earlier!
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  #31  
Old October 7th, 2012, 06:05 PM
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junglejane junglejane is offline
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Veravin, glad you made it over here to the Family Board as well! You'll have a great time, I'm sure. For one thing, you're going during the summer and can expect other families to be onboard. The OP in this thread is doing a December transatlantic, so there probably won't be many other other families on her cruise. But we've taken our kids to the Med in the summer on Celebrity twice. The first time was in 2008 on the Celebrity Summit when they were 7 and 11, and the second time was in 2011 on the Equinox when they were 10 and 14. Both cruises had a good turnout of families onboard, and we didn't feel the least bit unwelcome.

I would expect a summer Baltic cruise to have other families onboard. Not a huge amount, but enough to provide some companions for your kids in the Fun Factory. Enjoy yourselves!
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Past Cruises:
Cunard Queen Mary 2 - Eastbound TA - 6/13; Celebrity Silhouette - W. Caribbean - 3/13; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 12/12; Celebrity Equinox - E. Mediterranean - 6/11; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 3/11; Queen Victoria - Mexican Getaway - 2/11; Mariner of the Seas - Mexico - 3/10; Sapphire Princess - Mexico - 10/09; Crown Princess - British Isles - 7/09; Celebrity Summit - E. Mediterranean - 6/08; Dawn Princess - Pacific Coastal - 5/08; Golden Princess - Mexico - 3/08; Diamond Princess - Mexico - 3/07; Celebrity Infinity - Alaska - 8/06; Caribbean Princess - 6/05; HAL Ryndam - Alaska - 8/96
Upcoming Cruise:
Crown Princess - Mexico - 12/20/14
Caribbean Princess - Baltic Heritage - 6/27/15
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  #32  
Old October 7th, 2012, 06:28 PM
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Just over a month until we leave for our trip and everyone is so excited!! We can hardly wait and everyone on our Roll Call has been really supportive.
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Carnival Ecstasy, Carnival Fascination (Last time ever on Carnival!--ha! See below), Disney Wonder, Norweigan Sky, RCCL Monarch, RCCL Majesty, and Celebrity Millennium, Carnival Legend (putting Carnival back on our map, sort of)

Favorite line so far: Celebrity by a mile.

Future trips:





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  #33  
Old October 8th, 2012, 04:59 PM
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Veravin, Our family has sailed on Celebrity in the Mediterranean and on Princess in the Baltics during summer vacations and found them both to be quite family-friendly. Our kids were 12 and 6 when we went to the Baltics and we had a great time. I'm sure your family will have a wonderful vacation!!

Lisa
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Crown Princess - S. Caribbean - New Year's - Jan 2014
Disney Magic - W. Caribbean - New Year's - Jan 2013
Celebrity Equinox - E. Mediterranean - Aug 2011
Emerald Princess - Baltics - August 2009
Eurodam - Eastern Caribbean - March 2009
Diamond Princess - Alaska - June 2007
Disney Magic - W. Caribbean - March 2006


My Blog: www.gonewiththefamily.com
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  #34  
Old October 9th, 2012, 01:41 AM
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We did a TA with Royal when my daughter was five ( see below for review) it was April, and there were about 100 kids on board, we all had a blast!
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Commador 7 nights, 1984
Sunquest/Thompson Dream Cruise 7 nights, 1997
Windjammer Barefoot Poly 7 nights, 1998
DIS Wonder 4 night 2009
RCL Transatlantic Liberty of the Seas 2011 (14 n)http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1420775
CCL Mexican Baja 4 night 2012 - Inspiration http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1550583
CCL Mexican Baja 3 night 2012 - Inspiration http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1692101
RCL B2B Monarch and Brilliance 2013 -11 nights http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1772543
CCL Mexican Winter 7 Baja 2014 - Miracle
CCL Mexican Spring 7 Baja 2014 - Miracle
RCL - B2B 25 night Legend of the Seas. 10 night Caribbean followed by 15 night Panama Canal FLL to SAN.

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  #35  
Old October 9th, 2012, 06:25 AM
Mercury Mercury is offline
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BirthdayGirl, I have just seen your thread.

Don't worry for a moment - you are going to have an awesome cruise. The Fun Factory is wonderful and the counselors are born to work with children.

See my thread just above/below this one!
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  #36  
Old December 12th, 2012, 05:00 PM
alise007 alise007 is offline
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would love to hear how your kids enjoyed the TA when you return!

We are in the process of moving to Frankfurt for a year in the Spring and when you consider airfare at 1k/pp a cruise for 3k to get me and the kids there....well....seems like a GREAT idea!!!!

My kids are 4 and 6 will be 5/almost 7 this spring.
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  #37  
Old December 13th, 2012, 02:56 AM
dijid dijid is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alise007 View Post
would love to hear how your kids enjoyed the TA when you return!

We are in the process of moving to Frankfurt for a year in the Spring and when you consider airfare at 1k/pp a cruise for 3k to get me and the kids there....well....seems like a GREAT idea!!!!

My kids are 4 and 6 will be 5/almost 7 this spring.
Honestly, I wouldn't recommend a TA when you are actually moving overseas. Having moved to Europe myself, I know that luggage is a huge concern. I'm not sure what your arrangements are, but we maxed out our luggage allotment on the flight over because we knew it was going to be a very, very long time before our stuff that had been packed by the movers met up with us. No way would we have been able to fit it all in a cruise cabin. Plus, you'll have to figure out how to get it from the port to your new home -most inter-European flights will charge you an arm and a leg for checked bags. Those fees alone may really affect the financials of the situation.

Good luck with the move. I hope you enjoy your time in Europe!
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  #38  
Old December 13th, 2012, 07:52 AM
rebeccalouiseagain rebeccalouiseagain is offline
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I cruised with two families that were moving back to Europe (May 2005) on a Transatlantic. They did ship the majority of their stuff over- they didn't bring it on the cruise ship. Both families took advantage of the cheap cruise fare and were able to bring alot more with them than had they flown over. So it is a good option.
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Past cruises: Norwegian Pearl Pacific Coast 5/3/2014 My Birthday! Celebrity Solstice Alaska 5/8/2014Enchantment of the Seas 12/6/13 Bahamas, Grand Princess Alaska 7/19/13, Celebrity Solstice California Coast 5/13, Serenade of the Seas Western Med (1/4/13)Celebrity Summit Bermuda(8/12/12),Celebrity Infinity Alaska 7/6/12
Caribbean Princess New England (8/11), Holland America Maasdam New England (6/11)Celebrity Equinox Norway (7/09), Royal Caribbean Independence of the Seas (4/09) Grand Princess British Isles (08) Holland America Zuiderdam Greece/ Turkey (08) Oceania Regatta Caribbean Southern Caribbean (08) QM2 Transatlantic (07) Celebrity Millenium Western Med (7/07), Royal Caribbean Radiance of the Seas Eastern Caribbean(4/06), Disney Wonder Bahamas (8/05), Celebrity Constellation (4/06), Sapphire Princess Alaska (5/24/05) Celebrity Millenium Transatlantic (5/1/05), NCL Spirit Eastern Caribbean (3/05), Celebrity Galaxy (10/04), Carnival Victory (6/04), Celebrity Zenith Bermuda (10/01), Celebrity Zenith Eastern Caribbean (4/01),NCL Dynasty (12/00) NCL Sky Alaska (7/00), NCL Wind Alaska (5/98), Crown Princess Pacific repo (5/98), Royal Sovereign of the Seas Bahamas (10/97), Costa Victoria Western Caribbean (3/97), Crown Princess Alaska (6/96), Vera Cruz Christmas (1981), Holland America Volendam Christmas (1980), Holland America Veendam Christmas (1975).

Upcoming cruises:Celebrity Constellation 8/9/15
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  #39  
Old December 13th, 2012, 08:57 AM
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CruisingSwedes CruisingSwedes is offline
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I was happy to find this thread and yes it is very positive and encouraging. It makes me scared to even hear about all the kid hating posts on Cruise critic!

We have done three TAs with our children. First on Royal Caribbean, then on Disney, and our latest on Celebrity reflection (we are still in Florida on our post-cruise vacation as I write this). Our youngest child is five and she's done all the TAs with us. We brought her when she was two on the Royal Caribbean independence TA. We did the Disney magic trans-Atlantic last year when she was four.

We have always had a fantastic time! The kids have had a wonderful time in fun factory or kids clubs and we've always felt and been told that people are happy to see them because they miss their grandchildren.

On the celebrity reflection they were only 15 children (this is the smallest number of children I've ever heard of on a cruise that we've been on with our kids) but they still had a great time.

On the Disney magic there were 300 kids but sometimes Disney cruises have over 1000 so it was still not many kids for Disney. Again a fantastic time.

Waiters and and stewards have always been very accommodating. So many waiters have told us about their children at home, shared their ages and their names, even showed us pictures.

The activities staff have always been very friendly towards our children.

The one thing that our family enjoys the most are sea days so the trans-Atlantic route will probably always be our favorite.

Our older daughter is now in high school and can't miss school days anymore. I am so happy that we did as much traveling as we could when she was able to miss school. Our family memories and photographs are all fantastic and priceless, and the incredible value for money that cruising gives you (especially on TAs!) has made it all possible.

I'd love to hear when you get back about how your cruise went! I'm sure you had a fantastic time! :-)
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RC Quantum of the Seas - New Year's December 27, 2014
RC Oasis of the Seas - TA - October 14, 2014
RC Rhapsody of the Seas - South Pacific - February 22, 2014
Disney Fantasy - Halloween - October 31, 2013
Carnival Sunshine - Mediterranean - May 12, 2013
Celebrity Equinox - Mediterranean - April 30, 2013
NCL Breakaway - April 28, 2013
Celebrity Reflection - Inaugural TA - November 18, 2012
RC Vision of the Seas - Baltic St. Petersburg - July 28, 2012
NCL Norwegian Gem - Caribbean - November 13, 2011
Disney Magic - WBTA - September 10, 2011
Celebrity Solstice - Meditteranean Greek Isles - June 19, 2011
NCL Epic - Eastern Meditteranean - June 12, 2011
MSC Fantasia - New Year's Egypt - December 2010
NCL Sky - Bahamas November 2009
NCL Gem - Bermuda October 2009
NCL Jade - Norwegian Fjords North Cape June 2009
RC Independence of the Seas - Transatlantic April 2009
Celebrity Infinity - South America Cape Horn April 2008
Celebrity Constellation - Panama Canal Caribbean April 2007
Disney Magic Caribbean May 2006
Disney Magic Caribbean November 2004
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  #40  
Old December 13th, 2012, 09:05 AM
sprockie sprockie is offline
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Those of us who cruise with our kids are making them into future cruise loving consumers. The old snooty anti-kid people you will run into on rare occasions will soon die off. I have no tolerance for that attitude. They somehow think they have more right to be on the cruise than young folk. I think they believe they're on a Cunard ship or Seaborne and have some sense of entitlement that I can't comprehend.
You'll have a wonderful time. 99% of people will be wonderful - especially the crew who no doubt miss their children at home very much.
Ignore any scowlers and feel sorry for their spouses who have to put up with them 24-7.
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