Dining preference with children.

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199 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
For those with experience of dining with children in tow can I ask what your preferred dining option has been and the reasons for your choice, without knowing the kids clubs schedule's its difficult to know which option to go for, we have a 12 year old son who will be dining with us then moving onto the kids club, he won't entertain the childrens tea so would like to know what options we have, could we take him to the buffet and dine later as a couple? Any advice appreciated.
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3,220 Posts
Joined Dec 2011
Carrying on from The jugglers comprehensive advice. If it were me I should go for club dining 1st or 2nd sitting on a large table of eight. Going for 1st sitting gives longer evening entertainment but may be tight with port calls and late excursions. 2nd sitting is easier to get ready for but the evenings are shorter. With the same table each night with the same waiters they get used to you as a group. Parents can sit either side of son if you think this is a good set up. Maitre'd always sort you into a sensible table mix making it unlikely to get put on a table of all pensioners.

I have done this with my daughter from age 2 to 14 and had no problems. Basically I have taught her to select items from the main (adult) menu and if she does not like what she has been given after trying it to just stop eating and go on to the next course as and when necessary and it arrives. By the end of the meal we can then go up to the buffet immediately or go to children's club and be picked up late and go on to the buffet then. We have rarely attended the buffet on this schedule and she has, as she has got older, sampled food that you will never get at home or in local restaurants lobster, escargot and frog's legs. These rarely come up on P&O but duck, pheasant etc. do and you can find out what the children like and dislike without wasting money. I have told her to avoid the children's menu as chicken nuggets and chips etc. are worth trying to get beyond in my opinion. I have also told her to experiment with things she would never get at home mussels for example and to ask me what things are and I advise on the probability she will like things and of course what things actually are cullen skink for example. Often a table discussion will ensue where the cruise line has fielded a tricky menu and other diners will help until the waiter confirms things.

I have never had problems with other diners and as I say this has been over fourteen years and the later ones are easier as 12 to 14 year olds are a lot more predictable.

Regards John
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John Watson

Ships cruised on
RMS Queen Elizabeth, SS France, Oronsay, Oceana, Vision of the Seas, Caribbean Princess, Aurora,
Queen Mary 2, Star Flyer, Star Clipper, Grand Princess, Queen Elizabeth, Azura, Ruby Princess, Ventura, Diamond Princess, Britannia, Emerald Princess, Navigator of the Seas, Queen Victoria, Pacific Princess
199 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
Thanks for you advice John we may well go for 1st sitting as you've suggested.
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