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LynnTTT

Kids- Freedom vs rules

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We are taking two grandchildren, girl age 13 and boy age 8 on a 4 day cruise.  They are bright kids, well behaved and fairly sophisticated . So we are thinking about how to physically keep track of them on board.

First, we are not going to keep them chained to us every minute, so if that's your advice ... never mind.

If they want to go to the clubs, we will let the 13 year old sign herself out and join us .  We'll leave updates in the cabin.

The 8 year old cannot sign himself out, but we'll let his sister sign him out to join us.  He is a little fearful and will stick to his sister

In the buffet, we'll all go together and try to seat ourselves in the same area everyday.  Then when the kids leave the table they can go to the buffet and find their way back. (and I know the 8 year old will get lost!)

Naturally, they'll get the common sense rules; no going into any cabins, don't go to crew areas, don't drink anyone's drinks, don't sit on the rail, no running etc.

Any other advice?

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1 hour ago, LynnTTT said:

We are taking two grandchildren, girl age 13 and boy age 8 on a 4 day cruise.  They are bright kids, well behaved and fairly sophisticated . So we are thinking about how to physically keep track of them on board.

First, we are not going to keep them chained to us every minute, so if that's your advice ... never mind.

If they want to go to the clubs, we will let the 13 year old sign herself out and join us .  We'll leave updates in the cabin.

The 8 year old cannot sign himself out, but we'll let his sister sign him out to join us.  He is a little fearful and will stick to his sister

In the buffet, we'll all go together and try to seat ourselves in the same area everyday.  Then when the kids leave the table they can go to the buffet and find their way back. (and I know the 8 year old will get lost!)

Naturally, they'll get the common sense rules; no going into any cabins, don't go to crew areas, don't drink anyone's drinks, don't sit on the rail, no running etc.

Any other advice?

 

Here's a biggie: No fooling around, horseplay or button-pushing on the elevators

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2 minutes ago, wwcruisers said:

 

Here's a biggie: No fooling around, horseplay or button-pushing on the elevators

That's a given.  They are usually very considerate kids, but I know if they are hanging around other kids sometimes kids will do things they wouldn't on their own.  Same with adults who sometimes get really stupid on cruises 

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I would want them checking in with you regularly.  Both of them, together.  That way, you know they are TOGETHER.

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14 minutes ago, VennDiagram said:

I would want them checking in with you regularly.  Both of them, together.  That way, you know they are TOGETHER.

Of course.  And since we are in our 70's we won't be partying all night.  And when we go to bed they come with us. We're all in one room. 

We were on a cruise once where someone told us they went to bed and let the teenagers (14 or so) come in whenever they felt like it!  No way.

Recipe for disaster.

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Posted (edited)

No way would I let 2 those ages roam the ship on their own without supervision.   You are on a small floating city.  Would you turn them loose in a small with only a handful of check ins a days?  It's not your kids you need to be worried about its the other 2000 strangers on the ship

Edited by nascarcruiser

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Which ship? I think the size of the ship might sway me one way or another as to how much free rein I give the kids.

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Standard advice: If you get lost find a crew member.  Don’t go into anyones cabin, trust your instincts avoid anyone creepy, etc.

 

If the 13 yo has a phone, consider getting the messenger app. 

 

With the 8 yo might not be a bad idea to get those fake tattoos and tattoo the room number on him (kids love the fake tattoos) 

 

As for the its a small city folks.....  when i was 6 i was navigating myself to and from school all by myself.  Basic rules.... don’t take rides from strangers etc were taught to me. I could have handled a cruise ship at that age.  

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, ed01106 said:

I could have handled a cruise ship at that age.  

 

Me too.  And, I would have pushed all the elevator buttons.  Kinda sorta would still like to do that.  Haha

Edited by ldubs

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Posted (edited)

Can the 13 year old sign the 8 year old out of the kid's club? I thought an adult needed to. Not sure which cruise line you are on, but you might want to double check this. 

Edited by MaiTaiMary

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What are these "kids" to which you refer? Are they some sort of pet?

 

They sound a bit scary to me.

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A child being given that type of freedom at that age nowadays is different than being given that same freedom even 20 years ago

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You didn’t mention what cruise line or ship, which makes a big difference.

 

Not sure if the 13-year-old can sign out an 8-year-old; thought it had to be an adult.

 

Remember they might not be able to do everything together. Again, depends on the ship.  Eight year-old might not meet height/weight requirements for some things. 

 

Make sure you have all boarding paperwork, insurance information, waivers, etc. signed. 

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2 hours ago, nascarcruiser said:

A child being given that type of freedom at that age nowadays is different than being given that same freedom even 20 years ago

Why? The world is statistically much safer now. I would never expect a 13 year old to babysit her 8 year old brother on vacation. He should be with his grandparents, or the kids club. The teen club doesn’t have sign in and out, it’s a place to meetup and gather, and make plans. I’ve had kids ages 4 - 20 on cruises, once they are old enough for the teen club, we see them at breakfast, dinner, some shows, all excursions, and at 1 am curfew. 13 year olds are upcoming high school freshman, who go out to eat with friends, go to the movies, mall, parties, babysit children... On cruises, they tell us where they are going, we meet their new friends, they are not allowed in cabins. Our paths cross many times a day, they are not allowed to be late coming back to the cabin or meeting up with us.

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3 hours ago, nascarcruiser said:

A child being given that type of freedom at that age nowadays is different than being given that same freedom even 20 years ago

 

Why?  The world has become a more safer place.  And while a cruise ship isn’t crime free, with all the cameras it is not an ideal place to commit a crime.  

 

Is the 13 yo at risk of being a victim of sexual assault?  Absolutely, but not by some 30 yo that is going to grab her by the hair in the hallway and drag her into a closet. What could happen is she and another teen go into a cabin room with her only planning on kissing and he has more elaborate plan.  But that risk occurs every single day at home.  The best way to keep her safe is to teach her to how to avoid those situations  and how to defend herself when it happens.

 

Could the 8 year old get lost?  Yes, but unless he leaves the ship, eventually he will find his way back home.  Possibly after some stressed out Grandparents, him crying and some help from the crew, but he will be reunited.  Cruise ships have PA systems and crew members have walkie talkies.  It doesn’t take long to connect that Grandma that is looking for an 8 yo in a red shirt with the 8 yo who is alone and wearing a red shirt in the arcade are connected.

 

Practical tip:  every morning and then again every time they change outfits take a photo. That way when someone asks, “what was he wearing?” you will know the answer. ( Don’t tell the kids that is the reason.  Grandparents taking an insane number of pictures  of their grandchildren on vacation needs no explanation other than you are grandparents )

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One more tip, be friendly with the crew and when you are with the kids talk to the crew and mention they are your grand kids etc.  That way when the call comes over the walkie talkie, “We got a lost kid looking for his Grandmother, kids name is XXX, grandmas name is Lynn”. A crew member will immediately respond back, “ hold on one sec, l think she might be one of the woman in the corner of the bar playing bridge”

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When our youngest was 8, he insisted on going off on his own, which he did.

 

He would check back during meals and other times during the day.

 

Somehow he got himself on the Bridge tour

 

And during the deck party , we were shocked to see he was part of a conga line that formed.

 

Funny thing is that set the stage for him to be Mr Independent as an adult

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At that age, I would allow enough freedom to do SPECIFIC things...but certainly  not to "roam".  I doubt they'd be interested in aimlessly roaming about, but you never know!  I would have frequent physical check ins with them.  Tell them where you will be, and have them find you to get permission for the next adventure!

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Sadly, on those cruises we have taken outside of school term time, l have nothing but adverse experiences of unsupervised kids.

 

Apart from the widespread 'fun' of pressing all the elevator buttons, l have had kids sat on the little bays overlooking the atrium throwing food over the railings; kids roaming the corridors switching 'parked' mobility scooters (so next morning, the poor scooter user finds someone else's scooter outside their door); kids scattering the leavings from plates left out from room service along the corridors.

 

It seems to me that some parents step on board, say "we're on vacation! Off you go kids, go and have fun" and abdicate all parental responsibilities thereafter.

 

If you really must take the little darlings, please supervise them!

 

Bah humbug.

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1 minute ago, Sancho_proudfoot said:

Sadly, on those cruises we have taken outside of school term time, l have nothing but adverse experiences of unsupervised kids.

 

Apart from the widespread 'fun' of pressing all the elevator buttons, l have had kids sat on the little bays overlooking the atrium throwing food over the railings; kids roaming the corridors switching 'parked' mobility scooters (so next morning, the poor scooter user finds someone else's scooter outside their door); kids scattering the leavings from plates left out from room service along the corridors.

 

It seems to me that some parents step on board, say "we're on vacation! Off you go kids, go and have fun" and abdicate all parental responsibilities thereafter.

 

If you really must take the little darlings, please supervise them!

 

Bah humbug.

Of course some unsupervised cause problems.  But I have seen plenty of bad behavior from adults too. Saying all kids need constant supervision because a few do, is like saying alcohol should be banned from the ship, because every cruise there are disruptive drunks.

 

The kids should live in fear that the first time a crew member reports to us that you were misbehaving, you will spreading the rest of the cruise staring at the cabin walls.

 

Going on a cruise with Grandma and Grandpa is pretty sweat, if the have even a lick of sense, they are going to want you to be talking about how awesome they behaved and how we should do more trips like this rather than wait until I tell mom what miserable misbehaving brats they are.  

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I always thought  that mobility scooters were to be kept in the user's room overnight.               

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On 7/2/2019 at 8:42 AM, LynnTTT said:

We are taking two grandchildren, girl age 13 and boy age 8 on a 4 day cruise.  They are bright kids, well behaved and fairly sophisticated . So we are thinking about how to physically keep track of them on board.

First, we are not going to keep them chained to us every minute, so if that's your advice ... never mind.

If they want to go to the clubs, we will let the 13 year old sign herself out and join us .  We'll leave updates in the cabin.

The 8 year old cannot sign himself out, but we'll let his sister sign him out to join us.  He is a little fearful and will stick to his sister

In the buffet, we'll all go together and try to seat ourselves in the same area everyday.  Then when the kids leave the table they can go to the buffet and find their way back. (and I know the 8 year old will get lost!)

Naturally, they'll get the common sense rules; no going into any cabins, don't go to crew areas, don't drink anyone's drinks, don't sit on the rail, no running etc.

Any other advice?

 

Since a 4 day cruise could well end up a booze cruise, some cautionary words about avoiding drunks might be in order.

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Thanks for all the advice. I like the one about the tattoos for the room number.  But years ago my oldest granddaughter got a "temporary tattoo" at the beach.  She had a bad reaction to it, itchy and almost a raised scar.  You can still see the reddish area of an American eagle on her lower back after 13 years! So I'm not taking that chance!

We're on the Carnival Victory, which I think is a medium sized ship at 2700 passengers.  

Basically, we'll "go with the flow". The only thing I'm insisting on is at least one meal in the MDR.  Because I want a Chocolate Melting Cake with vanilla ice cream!  Clubs/no clubs/snorkeling/no snorkeling sit with us by the pool or not. Never had a problem with them in the past and don't anticipate problems this year.

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I just wanted to thank you for being one of those parents who release their kids on the unsuspecting public with an idea that they'll behave because they always do when you're around. 🙂

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On 7/2/2019 at 9:42 AM, LynnTTT said:

We are taking two grandchildren, girl age 13 and boy age 8 on a 4 day cruise.  They are bright kids, well behaved and fairly sophisticated . So we are thinking about how to physically keep track of them on board.

First, we are not going to keep them chained to us every minute, so if that's your advice ... never mind.

If they want to go to the clubs, we will let the 13 year old sign herself out and join us .  We'll leave updates in the cabin.

The 8 year old cannot sign himself out, but we'll let his sister sign him out to join us.  He is a little fearful and will stick to his sister

In the buffet, we'll all go together and try to seat ourselves in the same area everyday.  Then when the kids leave the table they can go to the buffet and find their way back. (and I know the 8 year old will get lost!)

Naturally, they'll get the common sense rules; no going into any cabins, don't go to crew areas, don't drink anyone's drinks, don't sit on the rail, no running etc.

Any other advice?

You have all the ideas I would suggest!

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