Posted October 10th, 2008, 06:25 PM
Last edited by crusinmama06; October 10th, 2008 at 06:27 PM
I just want to say that I think it's awesome that they want us to weigh in on this question. It seems like Family Cruising is finally becoming more accepted in the cruise community.
My 4 and 8 year old are set to go on their 7th and 8th cruise.
What can cruiseline do better?
I think some cruiselines are already setting out to do things better for families with kids. But some improvements....
--Water splash areas for non-potty trained babies/infants on every
ship, not just the RCCL new ships and Disney.
--Babysitting for kids under the kid clubs minimum. Disney has Flounders as a pay per hour service so the parents can get away for a quiet dinner, other cruiselines should start this as well.
--In cabin sitting for 1 year olds and above on RCCL and Celebrity should be part of the kids club and not just "first come first serve basis", and performed by staff actually trained to be child providers
--Portable bed rails for kids under 8 - it's inexpensive to have a few onboard and alot safer then the metal rails on the pullmans. The bedrails could also be used on the couches for the younger kids.
--CUPS - lol - it seems simple, but some cruise lines (Carnival) serve kids drinks in large glass goblets...some kid size paper cups would be better than packing sippies for the tot lot.
--More balcony cabins with tubs. Most families have to step up to a suite if they want a tub to bath the kids in.
--Kids clubs all have cell phones or pagers for parents of 2-5's (basically), but there should be an option to have cell phones for 6-8's and dect phones for those who have kids signing themselves out in the older age groups. Parents should be able to know where their kids are at all times.
--Luggage Valet service for all cruiselines/airlines. The last day is so hectic. The kids are depressed. Everyone is rushing. It would be easier if the bags are already enroute to the airport instead of searching the baggage area when disembarking.
--All cruiselines should use pack n plays for the infant beds.
And two more suggestions for specific cruiselines...
--RCCL needs to get more like Carnival and Disney when planning the activities for the 3-5 year olds. There have been many complaints around here that the 3 year olds are expected to sit and be quiet, join circle time, do crafts and stay away from the slides. Kids that age aren't used to school and staying within the rules of a group. Carnival and Disney understand that and allow more individual play for the kids who don't want to be a part of the group. Kids can slide on Disney, color or play games on their own if they don't want to be a part of the group storytime. Carnival allows children to play on their own too. RCCL needs to allow 3 year olds to BE 3 year olds.
--On the flip side, RCCL has been doing a great job with the new onboard ammentities geared toward families AND with the FAMILY events like Family dance parties, family karoake, family scavenger hunts, basketball tourneys, family trivia, etc. Each day there is one morning activity and one afternoon activity (or night) that is just for families. Carnival had one of these events but it was a "Build A Buddy Family Event" - which was just a glorified build a bear meant to get the parents to pay for a new bear.