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rcg1422

Children's activities/daycare on Oasis of the Seas

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Hello all. I am taking my first cruise with children 04/21/11. My children at that time will be almost two (turns two 5/7) and five. I am one of those moms that is uncomfortable leaving my kids with people I don't know VERY well, but I would love to get some alone time with my husband considering it happens so rarely. Can anyone tell me more about the child programs on RCI, or specifically, Oasis of the Seas? Any firsthand stories? Thanks!

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My family was just on Allure last week, so the experience should be the same. I have a 2 year-old and a 7 year-old.

 

Your 5 year-old will be in the Aquanaut program (3-6). You may drop him/her off at any time during open hours (search the forum for those) to be entertained by the staff, play structured games, and do activities. The staff is very good and very nurturing. I would equate it to preschool in a lot of ways. They are very good about controlling entry into/out of the space. After 10 PM, it becomes a payed service until 1 AM, I think, but we never let our daughter stay past 10.

 

Your toddler will be too young for the included programs, but there is a nursery for the under-3s. The cost is $8 per hour and there is a three hours at a time, 21 hours for the cruise threshold. The nursery has a play area and a crib area with a white noise generator to give children an opportunity to stay asleep. The staff will play with the children in the play area, change diapers (or take them to the bathroom for potty trainers like my daughter), and put movies on for them to watch. My daughter got fussy and cried a bit at one point, so they put her in a stroller to watch a movie and she was happier. At one point, we spied on them to find one of the staff members holding my daughter at the front desk to tap on the computer while attending another couple. You may also drop snacks off with them to feed your child while you're out. The great thing about this program is that they will give you a DECT phone without a fee to use for the whole cruise so that they can call you if you're needed in the nursery. That was great piece of mind for us. You can then leave the number for your older child as well.

 

With the younger one, she had never been watched by anyone other than family at that point but will start pre-school in the fall, so we figured that it was time to move on. We did a one-hour test early in the cruise to first see how she would do. After that, we used the service a few more times, including one evening to enjoy a meal at Chops. Our older one never wanted to leave her program. It all worked out great for us.

 

My best advice would be to make your reservations in advance, register your kids just after you board to get the phone, and then give it a shot. If it doesn't work out, you can always cancel the reservation. But, I'm willing to bet that you'll all do fine. Have a great cruise!

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I too am taking my 2 1/2 year old on a cruise in two weeks and we're going on Oasis. I was wondering how it worked out for you and had some questions. Did you find there were enough children for your little one to play with?? Also, did you just bring your child's dinner and the staff handled all of that?? I'm a little concerned that my daughter will be bored if not enough 2 year olds are there to play with. Did you feel like the staff did a good (attentive) job with the potty training?? Thanks so much and hope you had a terrific time!!!

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I have not used the nursery, but I have used Adventure Ocean and in-stateroom babysitting. I don't know how to stress enough that my DH is EXTREMELY OVERPROTECTIVE!!!! My kids are not watched by anyone other than family, they do not drive in a car that my DH or I is not driving, they don't go on playdates without one of us, I think you get my drift. So needless to say I was shocked when he was willing to let us try AO and babysitting on our last two cruises :eek: I should also add that my middle child has special needs so it makes attending AO a little more complicated.

 

With all that said....I cannot, cannot, cannot convey how WONDERFUL the AO staff is on Oasis! They were so accommodating and nurturing. We let the kids pick which morning and/or afternoon sessions they wanted to attend, but did ask that they went after dinner so that daddy and I could go to a specialty restaurant, or bar, or show, etc. We also requested in-stateroom babysitting some nights that we knew wanted to catch a late show. We would pick them up from AO, get them ready and tucked into bed and the sitters would show up. We recognized one of our sitters as one of the guest relations officers and would wave to her at the guest relations counter during the day. Royal always sends two sitters now for liability purposes (this made us feel a lot better about the service).

 

Here is a link of the Adventure Ocean planners another member had posted. It will help to give you an idea of what the activities are.

https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=explorer&chrome=true&srcid=0B56Hn45CpW7XZTNlMTMwMTctMmZmMy00ODc0LWFhM2EtYzFmMzM1NzQ0OTEw&authkey=CJn_79IO&hl=en_US&authkey=CJn_79IO

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gberry, I haven't gone yet; we're not leaving until April. I am just trying to get my ducks in a row. Let me know how yours went!

 

Babyberger, thanks for all of the info! My husband and I sound a lot like you on the overprotective factor; 5 year old girl, 1 year old boy and neither have been watched by anyone but my parents. :)

 

I can honestly say that I was a little nervous about cruising with two little ones, but it sounds like I have nothing to worry about. :-)

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rcg1422 - Our cruise was great. The daycare is just as described by other parents...fantastic! They do meals for you, so we'd call ahead to see what they were having that day in the event that we had to bring different food for our little one, but fortunately we didn't have to do that. They do wonderful activities and were great with the kids. We were provided a cell phone that worked anywhere on the ship and could call to check on our daughter or they could reach us if needed. We also used the cell to call other family members' cabins since it worked that way too! Was definitely handy. My only negative remark and it's not even really negative is that there weren't more children on board for her to play with at the daycare. We cruise late in the year (October) for this reason exactly..so we're not overwhelmed with families and children on summer break, so that's really our own doing. But just would've been nice for the times we used the daycare. They also would provide a report after every stay that discussed what our daughter played with, what and how often she ate/drank, how often she went to the potty (she was potty training and they were AWESOME with this too), etc. It was great and I think you'll find that you trust them far more than you expect to. Plus, your kids will have a blast!! Enjoy time with your husband and let me know if you have any other questions. I'm happy to answer!!!

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The nursery was wonderful! We sailed last May with a 10 month old and used the nursery often. Everyone was great and he loved it there. I think when he was not there he was bored as he wasn't really able to crawl around and play anywhere else so he was mostly confined to the stroller. The nursery is quite big, with lots of play area. They also have several cribs. They will feed them and put them for naps. Everytime we dropped him off, he would get such a big smile and would actually cry when we came to pick him up. They also give you a cell phone that works on the ship so they can call you or you can call them to check up. We actually book on the Liberty for Feb because they are another ship with a nursery and we will use it again.

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I didn't realize they accept them so young, that's great. Do you recall if they had the infant nursery on the Explorer too, or only the Oasis? Thanks.

 

The nursery was wonderful! We sailed last May with a 10 month old and used the nursery often. Everyone was great and he loved it there. I think when he was not there he was bored as he wasn't really able to crawl around and play anywhere else so he was mostly confined to the stroller. The nursery is quite big, with lots of play area. They also have several cribs. They will feed them and put them for naps. Everytime we dropped him off, he would get such a big smile and would actually cry when we came to pick him up. They also give you a cell phone that works on the ship so they can call you or you can call them to check up. We actually book on the Liberty for Feb because they are another ship with a nursery and we will use it again.

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edesyatnik,

 

They started out with Oasis and Allure. In the meantime they´ve added it to the Liberty and Freedom and other ships are to follow.

 

steamboats

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I didn't realize they accept them so young, that's great. Do you recall if they had the infant nursery on the Explorer too, or only the Oasis? Thanks.

 

No its not on the Explorer yet :(

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gberry...2 1/2 year olds don't really "play together" like older kids might....they may play in the same room at the same time, but the "give and take" isn't quite there yet for "together" play! But no worries...there will be other kids in that age group, no matter what time of year!

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Thank you so much for this great information. I just booked on Oasis with my DH and almost 2 year old DD. First "real" vacation for us and my fears are put to the side with the great feedback. I wasn't aware of the in-stateroom babysitting, which is just fantastic. My DD goes to bed at 7PM, so this is just perfect. Wonderful news!!!!! Mommy gets a vacation too!

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