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Cruising with a baby

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Hello! I am a very experienced cruiser (20+ sailings) but this March I will be cruising for the first time with a baby! 

 

Has anyone used the crib on a Princess ship? How did it fit in the room? We will be using 2 twins, not a king, and hoping we can put the crib in between the 2 beds. 

 

Any other tips for cruising with a baby? He will be 9 months old. 

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There will be a space for a crib...hopefully NOT between the beds, or you won't be able to access the floor!  Put the crib in a corner...more the coffee table, if you have one....it will work.  Works for thousands every year!

 

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Unless you have a minisuite on Princess, there will not be a coffee table, or a chair other than the one at the desk.  The crib will probably be a Pack n Play or similar size.  For better suggestions, we need to know ship and cabin type.  EM

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14 hours ago, Essiesmom said:

Unless you have a minisuite on Princess, there will not be a coffee table, or a chair other than the one at the desk.  The crib will probably be a Pack n Play or similar size.  For better suggestions, we need to know ship and cabin type.  EM

We have a Deluxe Balcony room on the Regal Princess. So we have the 2 twin beds, a couch, and the desk. Thank you for your response! 

Edited by JSZDcruisers

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15 hours ago, cb at sea said:

There will be a space for a crib...hopefully NOT between the beds, or you won't be able to access the floor!  Put the crib in a corner...more the coffee table, if you have one....it will work.  Works for thousands every year!

 

I figured I could just use the foot of the bed to get into bed each night and the other bed would have the open space on the other side where our couch will be. I would rather try to keep the open area in front of the couch if we can, rather than fill it with the pack n play/crib. We have the Deluxe Balcony room. 

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23 hours ago, JSZDcruisers said:

Hello! I am a very experienced cruiser (20+ sailings) but this March I will be cruising for the first time with a baby! 

 

Has anyone used the crib on a Princess ship? How did it fit in the room? We will be using 2 twins, not a king, and hoping we can put the crib in between the 2 beds. 

 

Any other tips for cruising with a baby? He will be 9 months old. 

 

Bring your own pack & play + sheets if possible, or at the very least, your own fitted sheets.  


Bring a foldable stroller and request 'assisted' or 'priority' service for getting on and off...they may let you use the elevator and get on/off at deck 1, instead of having to go up and down the 4-5 storey gangplanks.

 

And Watch they don't charge you gratuity for the baby!!!

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I've scoured Royal and Regal on cruisedeckplans for pictures of deluxe balconies with beds separated.  All of them have one nightstand between the beds, and one remains between the bed and the couch.  Maybe noone asked for both to be between the beds, or that one is fixed in place?  Perhaps you could ask on the Princess board if anyone has had it moved - or tried.  EM

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32 minutes ago, ladybug.2009 said:

 

And Watch they don't charge you gratuity for the baby!!!

While anyone can remove tips for anyone in their party, the majority of those I've seen commenting on this board in the past don't adjust tips for babies, unless it is to increase.  Many of us pay extra gratuity since babies create so much more diaper/feeding mess and the staff usually does so much to keep baby (and parents) happy.    Of course, anyone who doesn't receive great service should adjust, but it's a shame to make that decision before departure.  One of the reasons I loved cruising with my babies was how much work I didn't have to do because the staff took care of it.  Great way to travel!

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4 minutes ago, Kerry's Girls said:

While anyone can remove tips for anyone in their party, the majority of those I've seen commenting on this board in the past don't adjust tips for babies, unless it is to increase.  Many of us pay extra gratuity since babies create so much more diaper/feeding mess and the staff usually does so much to keep baby (and parents) happy.    Of course, anyone who doesn't receive great service should adjust, but it's a shame to make that decision before departure.  One of the reasons I loved cruising with my babies was how much work I didn't have to do because the staff took care of it.  Great way to travel!

 

I don't understand what you mean at all...how is a baby more work for the staff?  For the parents certainly, but not the workers...total opposite in fact.

 

They don't eat or drink anything (or barely anything if they're a toddler), they sleep half the day, and you've got to be kidding me that diapers are any work for anyone other than the parents!

CAN'T swim in the pool, or use 99% of the facilities, can't order drinks, use the climbing wall, etc.

 

Other than offering a few extra smiles, the staff on our last cruise did next to nothing to 'care' for our baby, nor would I have expected them to.

 

No, charging gratuity for an infant / baby/toddler is a travesty and if I won't ever go along.

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1 hour ago, ladybug.2009 said:

Bring your own pack & play

Why? What’s wrong with the one provided by the cruise line? We never brought our own pack & play, and never felt like we needed to do so. In fact, the more we cruised with babies and toddlers, the more stuff we left at home. 

 

1 hour ago, ladybug.2009 said:

And Watch they don't charge you gratuity for the baby!!!

Say what?? If there’s something that I learned traveling with babies is that the crew deserves every single penny if not more. If anything, the work extra hard to cater to babies. 

 

The first time we cruised with a baby, the cruise line that we sailed on didn’t charge gratuities for our baby. At the time, I thought that it was fair. But by the end of the cruise, I felt horrible. I was chasing our cabin steward down the hallway with an envelope filled with cash. I just couldn’t leave the ship without tipping him for all the things that he had to do for our son. Not doing so would’ve been insulting. 

Edited by Tapi

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10 minutes ago, ladybug.2009 said:

 

I don't understand what you mean at all...how is a baby more work for the staff?  For the parents certainly, but not the workers...total opposite in fact.

 

They don't eat or drink anything (or barely anything if they're a toddler), they sleep half the day, and you've got to be kidding me that diapers are any work for anyone other than the parents!

CAN'T swim in the pool, or use 99% of the facilities, can't order drinks, use the climbing wall, etc.

 

Other than offering a few extra smiles, the staff on our last cruise did next to nothing to 'care' for our baby, nor would I have expected them to.

 

No, charging gratuity for an infant / baby/toddler is a travesty and if I won't ever go along.

I get that you have justifications, I just didn't want to leave your comment unanswered so the OP would know that this thinking is the minority.   The fact that my baby can't have a cocktail (darn!) or use the facilities has nothing to with the staff who receives tips.  My baby created trash, laundry, mess in the dining areas, etc.    Most of us appreciate the staff's effort in that respect.  Not arguing with you - just wanted the OP to know it's not common.  

   

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23 hours ago, JSZDcruisers said:

We have a Deluxe Balcony room on the Regal Princess. So we have the 2 twin beds, a couch, and the desk. Thank you for your response! 

we've been in that cabin, and yes, you should have space for a crib/pack and play if you don't unfold the sleeper sofa.

But there won't be enough space for it anywhere else - not between the beds or at the foot. My opinion is that you will have to use the space between the sofa and the desk.

Edited by Itchy&Scratchy

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18 hours ago, Essiesmom said:

I've scoured Royal and Regal on cruisedeckplans for pictures of deluxe balconies with beds separated.  All of them have one nightstand between the beds, and one remains between the bed and the couch.  Maybe noone asked for both to be between the beds, or that one is fixed in place?  Perhaps you could ask on the Princess board if anyone has had it moved - or tried.  EM

ours were separated. DH and DS slept on the beds, and I slept on the sofa bed.

But OP could ask for the beds to be moved together if OP needs it. However, my assumption is that the beds will have to be moved away from the wall to allow access to make the beds, so that won't create more space for the pack and play.

IMG_0051 - Copy.JPG

Edited by Itchy&Scratchy

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18 hours ago, ladybug.2009 said:

 

I don't understand what you mean at all...how is a baby more work for the staff?  For the parents certainly, but not the workers...total opposite in fact.

 

They don't eat or drink anything (or barely anything if they're a toddler), they sleep half the day, and you've got to be kidding me that diapers are any work for anyone other than the parents!

CAN'T swim in the pool, or use 99% of the facilities, can't order drinks, use the climbing wall, etc.

 

Other than offering a few extra smiles, the staff on our last cruise did next to nothing to 'care' for our baby, nor would I have expected them to.

 

No, charging gratuity for an infant / baby/toddler is a travesty and if I won't ever go along.

babies make a lot more messes than I do (soiled diapers, crumbs and smeared food everywhere alone require a lot of cleaning effort....). The cabin attendant and the waitstaff deserve every penny of the gratuities.

 

 

 

Princess doesn't have a climbing wall, but even if it did - there are no gratuities associated with its use. Same with the pool - no grats.

Edited by Itchy&Scratchy

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this is what you are going to have... Perhaps, you could put the baby on the sofa and prop it up with the chair and the table so the baby wouldn't roll off.

When DS was 5 month old, we traveled to a beach location and didn't bring the entire pack and play. We brought only the small mat that goes on it and laid it out on the floor of the rental unit. Of course, kids are a lot more mobile at 9 months....

Deluxe Balcony Cabin on Regal Princess Cruise.png

 

Edited by Itchy&Scratchy

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On 11/14/2019 at 3:57 PM, Tapi said:

Why? What’s wrong with the one provided by the cruise line? We never brought our own pack & play, and never felt like we needed to do so. In fact, the more we cruised with babies and toddlers, the more stuff we left at home. 

The first one we got was broken.  The 2nd was pretty beat-up, but useable.

Bring your own fitted sheets too, they just give a folded up regular sheet, which of course never fits well.

 

On 11/14/2019 at 3:57 PM, Tapi said:

Say what?? If there’s something that I learned traveling with babies is that the crew deserves every single penny if not more. If anything, the work extra hard to cater to babies. 

 

The first time we cruised with a baby, the cruise line that we sailed on didn’t charge gratuities for our baby. At the time, I thought that it was fair. But by the end of the cruise, I felt horrible. I was chasing our cabin steward down the hallway with an envelope filled with cash. I just couldn’t leave the ship without tipping him for all the things that he had to do for our son. Not doing so would’ve been insulting. 

I don't think you are differentiating between a tip specifically for the baby, and tipping at all.

 

we still paid gratuity for us, just not the extra amount they wanted to charge for the baby ($14.50 per day). 

 

If you want to provide extra cause you're a slob, or asked the stewart to change diapers or whatever, then go nuts, but in general a baby should not be asked to tip, PERIOD.

 

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1 hour ago, ladybug.2009 said:

If you want to provide extra cause you're a slob, or asked the stewart to change diapers or whatever, then go nuts, but in general a baby should not be asked to tip, PERIOD.

 

LOL, we don’t need to be slobs to justify tipping for our kids when they were babies/toddler. Pretty blunt and unfounded statement there about us. I would love to have you over to our house if you lived near us so that you can make a more educated statement. Even with two kids, we keep our house impeccably clean, and we do the same when we cruise. I also travel for a living so I’m very proactive about keeping my hotel room as clean as possible. It’s home for 3 nights a week, and the last thing that I want is to live in filth when I’m on the road. I’ve become very good about cleaning after myself when I’m not home, and I apply those habits when I cruise as well. But I digress...

 

My kids are now 7 and 9 years old. They started cruising at 13 and 15 months of age. They’ve cruised 10 times across 5 different cruise lines, from the Caribbean, to Alaska, to the Mediterranean. By now, I’d like to think that we have gathered enough experience to make an educated statement about the hard work that crew members put in to take care of little ones. Their work goes beyond tending to basic needs. They go out of their way to make everyone feel extra special.

 

One of my fondest memories from our first cruise with our toddler son (a Carnival cruise out of Jacksonville) is from when my 13 month old son knocked over a cup full of Cheerios on the floor at the MDR during dinner. My wife automatically got on the floor and started picking them up, one by one, on her knees. Our waiter tapped on her shoulder, grabbed her hand, helped her up, and said “I got it, relax, you’re on vacation”. Our waiter’s kind reaction brought tears to my wife’s eyes. He always had milk waiting for our son before we even sat down, and whatever food we ordered for him, it would be delivered ahead of the rest of all other orders. We deeply appreciated that he deviated from his routine serving the table in order to tend to our son. 

 

And the the extra special treatment didn’t end there. In our stateroom, our cabin steward always made sure he replenished our ice and placed extra mini cartons of milk in it, and he placed extra boxes of cereal on our desk. This took us by surprise because we knew that he was going out of his way to get these items. We never asked for these things, but our steward took it upon himself to do so because he knew that our son was consuming these products frequently. He also insisted on changing crib sheets on a daily basis because he believed babies should be in the cleanest environment possible. He also provided us with an extra trash can with a bio bag for diapers. Every night we’d come back to our stateroom to a towel animal on our bed, and a smaller version placed on our son’s crib. 

 

Throughout the ship, crew members would frequently approach us to greet our son and try to place a smile on his face. One waiter at the buffet (where we normally ate breakfast), would approach our table every morning with flowers and other things made out of paper napkins and offer them to our son. One thing that we learned speaking to these crew members is that many of them were parents, with small children back home, spending months away from them and sorely missing them. So being able to interact with our son, and going out of their way helped them alleviate some of the feelings associated with being away from home and from their kids. No matter how hard we tried to tend after our son, a crew member would always approach us and say “don’t worry, I got it”.

 

So this is why on the last day of our cruise I gave out envelopes full of cash. These crew members knew that they were getting $0 tips for tending to our son, yet they went way out of their way to make our vacation extra special. Some things were part of their job, but many were not. 

 

It would be easy to say that what we experienced on that first Carnival cruise is not the norm, but as mentioned before, we’ve cruised enough times with our children to know that it’s not. No matter what cruise line we’ve sailed on, crew members have always been extra special. And we greatly appreciate that. I do respect your opinion when you say that babies don’t need to tip, but I don’t agree with it. 

Edited by Tapi

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17 hours ago, ladybug.2009 said:

The first one we got was broken.  The 2nd was pretty beat-up, but useable.

Bring your own fitted sheets too, they just give a folded up regular sheet, which of course never fits well.

 

I don't think you are differentiating between a tip specifically for the baby, and tipping at all.

 

we still paid gratuity for us, just not the extra amount they wanted to charge for the baby ($14.50 per day). 

 

If you want to provide extra cause you're a slob, or asked the stewart to change diapers or whatever, then go nuts, but in general a baby should not be asked to tip, PERIOD.

 

Pretty nasty comment from a cheapskate who thinks nothing of removing tips from hardworking crew members. Fortunately, while people who disagreed with you on a similar thread on the RCI forum received multiple “likes,” you received none. BTW, I don’t know who Stewart may be but the cabin comes with a room steward. 

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I was on the Royal Princess in April and here was our PnP in our room. Pretty sure we had a deluxe. DD was 16 months on this cruise. Her first cruise she was 8 months old and we went to Cuba from Miami. We had a small ocean view cabin then and initially had a PnP but sent it back because it was too cramped. She co-slept with us on that trip. 

 

We gladly paid for gratuities for her on both trips. The staff works hard and I don't mind paying for them . 

 

As for general tips, she was much easier on the first cruise because she was not that mobile yet. She had her first of many solids food on that sailing. We did not ask for puree food but ordered mostly soups and other soft foods off the MDR menu. MDR worked much better than buffet because you did not have to carry all your own stuff. DD was able to sit through longish dinners at 8 months. At 16 months, not so much so we ended up taking turn walking around with her. At 8 months, we did bring the umbrella stroller but mostly wore her in a carrier so we could just walk up and down the stairs. We did fine in the shower for both trips. First trip, we laid towels on the shower floor so she could sit on it and use the shower head.  We knew she could not use the pool so spent an extra 3 nights in a Miami hotel so she could use the pool.

crib in cabin.jpg

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We are going to change from the deluxe balcony to a mini-suite. I still have the same concerns/questions about using the pack and play provided by Princess. Does anyone know if I can move BOTH of the night stands in a mini suite? So rather than having only one in between the twin beds, can both of them be placed together in between the twin beds, like they usually are in an interior room? Thinking the pack and play would then be able to go in between the beds. 

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