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jesmarcad

Best cruise for kids

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We are looking to go on a cruise again. We have been on carnival liberty and we did not care for that one. There was not a lot to do for the kids. There will be 4 adults and 4 kids 15, 12, 6, 7. We want something budget friendly as well. What are the best ships for kids. Ones with the most for them to do? 

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For those ages, I would look at one of the newer NCL ships ( Breakaway, Escape, Getaway, Bliss, or Joy) or one of the larger RCI ships (Oasis, Allure, Harmony, Symphony, Anthem).  Carnival has so newer, bigger ships with more to do (Vista, Horizon?) and some people like MSC’s new ship (Seaside).   

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We were on royals navigator of the seas and my kids loved it.  They are adding features now that will make it even better.

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I have taken my grandchildren on Royal Caribbean twice and they had so much fun they never wanted to leave. They were ages 7 and 9 at the time. So much for them to do and the entire crew treated them like they were their own.

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I've heard Royal Caribbean is fantastic. We've only done one cruise with them, and my kids loved it. We have mostly done Disney, and out kids love the Disney ships, but I'm starting to get the feeling that they are outgrowing them now that they are getting a little bit older. But there are a lot of good Broadway style shows on the ships, and plenty of outdoor activites for the kids. The kids clubs are fantastic - and from what I've seen, they teens seem to bond and form their own little cliche while on the ships, so maybe it's great for the teenagers too. The 6 and 7 year old will love them.

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We have been on several lines.  Carnival is our choice right now but no older ships.  It has to be a newer one  or one with all of the upgrades.  We did the Breeze last trip with the water slides, 3d  thrill theater, ropes course etc.  The price was just so much cheaper than other lines when we priced it out.  I would like to try one of Royal Caribbeans newer ships, but haven't found the price with the itinerary i want yet.  

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On 1/13/2019 at 9:54 PM, jesmarcad said:

We are looking to go on a cruise again. We have been on carnival liberty and we did not care for that one. There was not a lot to do for the kids. There will be 4 adults and 4 kids 15, 12, 6, 7. We want something budget friendly as well. What are the best ships for kids. Ones with the most for them to do? 

 

Do consider either Princess or Celebrity .  

While not "floating amusement parks",  ample fun activies for the children & young teens  as well as offering  the adults a very nice cruising experience.  :classic_cool:

 

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15 hours ago, OCruisers said:

 

Do consider either Princess or Celebrity .  

While not "floating amusement parks",  ample fun activies for the children & young teens  as well as offering  the adults a very nice cruising experience.  :classic_cool:

 

as a family cruising with a kid starting at 3 (who doesn't do kid's club), I must say I disagree about Princess having "ample fun activities for children". If your kid doesn't do kid's club, there is nothing else to do with a kid... Our kid has to tag along to everything adult with us (happy hour, cooking demonstrations, bingo, etc.) being bored to death (thank goodness for a tablet with cartoons and games), and only once there was a family party in the Piazza which we thoroughly enjoyed...

On Princess ships he mostly soaks in a hot tub on sea days because there is nothing else to do. Although the premium free on demand movies and cartoons on Regal Princess are great. But we can also watch them at home...

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On 3/7/2019 at 5:32 PM, brookeq said:

We have been on several lines.  Carnival is our choice right now but no older ships.  It has to be a newer one  or one with all of the upgrades.  We did the Breeze last trip with the water slides, 3d  thrill theater, ropes course etc.  The price was just so much cheaper than other lines when we priced it out.  I would like to try one of Royal Caribbeans newer ships, but haven't found the price with the itinerary i want yet.  

 

 

Try to find RCI’s Kids Sail Free promos.  We’ve cruised both Carnival and RCI, and we prefer RCI, even if they happen to be a bit more for a particular sailing.  I have found many cases where RCI has been less expensive than Carnival, though. My opinion is that the extra entertainment and activity options that RCI typically offers over Carnival seems to make sense to us even at a slightly higher price.   

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We will be going in our first cruise next month. It's me, my 6 and 9 year old boys, and bringing Grandma along for help 🙂 I chose Royal's Symphony of the Seas - it seemed like the best mix of activities for kids, things I wanted, and itinerary (which was really the least important since we've never been before). With the Kids Sail Free promo, the 7 night cruise was actually less expensive than on a slightly older ship (Harmony) OR on Carnival or Norwegian. Disney is just out of our price range, period. Good luck - the research will drive you crazy! 

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On 1/13/2019 at 9:54 PM, jesmarcad said:

We are looking to go on a cruise again. We have been on carnival liberty and we did not care for that one. There was not a lot to do for the kids. There will be 4 adults and 4 kids 15, 12, 6, 7. We want something budget friendly as well. What are the best ships for kids. Ones with the most for them to do? 

I will give you a perspective of their age. I have been on Celebrity, NCL, CCL, and RCL. I loved NCL and CCL. VIFP Gold for CCL. NCL's prices are too high! There goes budget. CCL and RCL are in the "budget" price range. There are so many things to do on Harmony of the Seas, and if your children aren't/don't act mature, they will love RCL's newer Quantum/Oasis Class Ships. I personally prefer Carnival Vista-class ships, as the age groups were divided, not combined to have 12-year-olds and 17-year-olds together. Carnival Dream/Vista/Sunshine-class ships offer the most "bang for your buck". 

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14 minutes ago, BlueChairBlessing said:

6 and 9 year old boys, and bringing Grandma along for help 🙂 I chose Royal's Symphony of the Seas - it seemed like the best mix of activities for kids, things I wanted, and itinerary (which was really the least important since we've never been before). With the Kids Sail Free promo, the 7 night cruise was actually less expensive than on a slightly older ship (Harmony) OR on Carnival or Norwegian.

Yes, with younger cruisers, kids sail free is great. But once your little ones become teenagers, it's like a middle ground of discounted rates and full paying adult rates. MSC also has a Kids Sail Free on Select Sailings sale. Norwegian supposedly has a "3rd and 4th" sail free, but the adult rates are outrageous! Simply too high! 

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RC has more to do for all ages but remember they're also going to be higher priced. Sometimes you gotta spend a little more to really get what you need and want from a vacation. That being said, look for deals and follow the line's social media and such for whatever line most interests you. RC often has kids sail free and that really helps the pocket book! 

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On 3/13/2019 at 1:01 AM, jbethel11 said:

Yes, with younger cruisers, kids sail free is great. But once your little ones become teenagers, it's like a middle ground of discounted rates and full paying adult rates. MSC also has a Kids Sail Free on Select Sailings sale. Norwegian supposedly has a "3rd and 4th" sail free, but the adult rates are outrageous! Simply too high! 

Depends where you go. 

 

Just booked our 2nd cruise with MSC to the Med. Kids are free($56 in port fees) and for my husband and I it’s less than $1500. Flights to Europe are just a little more than a flight to Miami. There’s a reason I tell people it’s cheaper to go to Europe than Disney!

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9 hours ago, Baletrina said:

Depends where you go. 

 

Just booked our 2nd cruise with MSC to the Med. Kids are free($56 in port fees) and for my husband and I it’s less than $1500. Flights to Europe are just a little more than a flight to Miami. There’s a reason I tell people it’s cheaper to go to Europe than Disney!

well, kids don't sail free in the Caribbean, and, hmmm, I haven't seen flights to Europe for a teensy bit more than $200 RT.

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1 minute ago, Baletrina said:

You seriously are the most negative person on these board. Not everything applies to you Becky. 

I would advise against calling someone a "Becky." They are not the most cynical person on these boards, by a mile! I think they are just stating the truth, which quite frankly, was a little harsh. Yes, some posters are very open to voicing their opinion, but that doesn't warrant such a harsh term. 

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12 minutes ago, jbethel11 said:

I would advise against calling someone a "Becky." They are not the most cynical person on these boards, by a mile! I think they are just stating the truth, which quite frankly, was a little harsh. Yes, some posters are very open to voicing their opinion, but that doesn't warrant such a harsh term. 

You’re right. I let them get to me and I’m 

better than that. 

 

She said some rather mean things to another mom on the board. I saw her profile pic and went back and checked and sure enough it was the same snarky person from another post. I don’t like bullies nor do I want to be one. 

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4 minutes ago, Baletrina said:

She said some rather mean things to another mom on the board. I saw her profile pic and went back and checked and sure enough it was the same snarky person from another post. Don’t worry. I blocked her already. 💁🏻‍♀️

I mean, the word "Becky" is derogatory in itself. I agree some vitriolic people on this forum may be like this poster; however, don't use words like that. Anyway, just put this poster on the ignore list, and you will be alright!

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37 minutes ago, Baletrina said:

You’re right. I let them get to me and I’m 

better than that. 

 

She said some rather mean things to another mom on the board. I saw her profile pic and went back and checked and sure enough it was the same snarky person from another post. I don’t like bullies nor do I want to be one. 

I am not a bully and I am not negative - just realistic. MSC doesn't have Kids Sail Free in the Caribbean (and that's where we sail), and flights to MIA/FLL are $200, which aren't anywhere near what the fares to Europe are.

So, your cruise savings (KSF) would ordinarily be negated by the airline ticket fees.

But hey - if you found such low fares for both cruise and air - more power to you!

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We've been able to take some nice trips with our family by looking for air deals and then looking for opportunities to pair with "kids sail free" type of promotions.  For example, several years ago we did a Med cruise (round trip Rome, Greece, Turkey) at the end of the season (free shore excursions for kids paired with low cruise fare) when we found good airfare.  A couple of years ago we booked crazy low airfare to Martinique then figured out the rest (not a cruise on that one but same approach).  It's not for the faint of heart and takes some research but it can be done if you're flexible on location and timing!

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On 3/13/2019 at 12:24 AM, A2Mich said:

 I have found many cases where RCI has been less expensive than Carnival, though.

Yes, this.  When I price out the specific carnival ship, route, and date I want and compare it to a Royal ship, route, and date I want, I have always come out better with Royal.  Maybe others are finding different sales and prices than me or I am looking at odd times.  Anyway, we have had amazing experiences with our kids.  They are 5 & 9 and taking their third cruise in August.  My older child loves the kids club, my younger would prefer to stay with us.  They enjoy the water slides, kids splash area, pools, mini golf, etc.  We have never run out of options to keep them entertained.

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