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Transatlantic with a 1yr old?


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Am I nuts to consider a 14 day transatlantic on Harmony with our son who will be 1 and a half by then? Hes 8 weeks now and we can't wait until we can get back cruising with him!

 

I was eyeing up a 7 day med itinerary on Harmony in Oct 2021, but it seems we could do the 14 day transatlantic for the same price (plus the more expensive flight home). We had in mind to only get off the ship for quick wanders anyway on port days as long excursions would be too much for the little one and we've done most of the ports before. The transatlantic only has 1 port stop in Malaga (which we have been to but happy to go again). We love megaships so are pretty happy to make the ship the destination and just enjoy hanging out and letting baby do whatever he wants. We could take turns in the evenings to see the shows while he sleeps in the cabin etc.

 

So I'm curious if anyone else has done a transatlantic with such a little one? Did you enjoy it or do you think we shouldn't do it?

 

Looking at a central park view interior- anyone have any experience how that works with a young child as the 3rd guest? Is there a sofa bed or can we request a cot?

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Have you TA indicate on the booking that you are looking to have a pack and play "crib" in your room. If it is not there call guest services as soon as your room is open or ask your stateroom attendant for help. 

 

For your room setup, depending on pricing it might be worth pricing out two connecting rooms opposed to putting everyone in one room. The benefit here aside from 2 bathrooms is that at bed time you have the child in the one room and close the connecting door except for a crack and you can go about your business in the other room. One of you will also then be a solo cruiser therefore will get 28 CA points if that is important to you. 

 

My son is 3 and has been on 3 cruises (We started @ 6 Months) and it has always been an enjoyable experience. Oasis has so much to do, 1.5 will be a little young for some things but you should find a nice relaxing routine to settle into for a 14 nighter. 

 

Diaper packing will be your enemy here, obviously ~10 diapers a day x 14 days = 140 + Extras (And Wipes). Make sure you also bring your OTC baby meds if teething gets out of hand. Baby will also have to use the shower for bathing (Unless you spring for a Junior Suite). 

 

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40 minutes ago, jbr5049 said:

Have you TA indicate on the booking that you are looking to have a pack and play "crib" in your room. If it is not there call guest services as soon as your room is open or ask your stateroom attendant for help. 

 

For your room setup, depending on pricing it might be worth pricing out two connecting rooms opposed to putting everyone in one room. The benefit here aside from 2 bathrooms is that at bed time you have the child in the one room and close the connecting door except for a crack and you can go about your business in the other room. One of you will also then be a solo cruiser therefore will get 28 CA points if that is important to you. 

 

My son is 3 and has been on 3 cruises (We started @ 6 Months) and it has always been an enjoyable experience. Oasis has so much to do, 1.5 will be a little young for some things but you should find a nice relaxing routine to settle into for a 14 nighter. 

 

Diaper packing will be your enemy here, obviously ~10 diapers a day x 14 days = 140 + Extras (And Wipes). Make sure you also bring your OTC baby meds if teething gets out of hand. Baby will also have to use the shower for bathing (Unless you spring for a Junior Suite). 

 

Thank you for all the tips and good point about the diapers etc. I read a good tip about bringing a small inflatable pool for bath time and filling it with the shower! We wouldn't be able to afford 2 cabins unfortunately, can't believe they charge full fare for an under 2yr old!

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You can also book a double occupancy cabin as long as you son is under 3, under 45” tall and under 45 pounds.

 

This is usually a lot cheaper than paying for a triple occupancy cabin where

because of limited availability the price for guests 1 and 2 are increased. 

 

You can’t book this way on line but a TA can or if you call they should be able to do it.  

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2 minutes ago, SquishTheWhale said:

cabins unfortunately, can't believe they charge full fare for an under 2yr old!

It’s not really full fare.  It is a reduced fare fir 3 and 4 guest.  This applies regardless of age. 

Edited by Ourusualbeach
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5 minutes ago, Ourusualbeach said:

You can also book a double occupancy cabin as long as you son is under 3, under 45” tall and under 45 pounds.

 

This is usually a lot cheaper than paying for a triple occupancy cabin where

because of limited availability the price for guests 1 and 2 are increased. 

 

You can’t book this way on line but a TA can or if you call they should be able to do it.  

Didn't know that thanks. I'll request a quote from a TA

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We will be on the same cruise with our son who will be 3 years old by then, you should join the roll call if you book! We did his first cruise right after his first birthday, it was an 11 nighter. It’s defensively a different experience. Nursery is great for only $6-8 an hour and Harmony has lots for little kids including baby splash zone. Less ports may actually be easier with that age. Personally, I believe you should include kids in your trips so they know how to travel, adjust, and be flexible. It’s such a great experience. Our son had about a dozen flights under his belt before his first b-day.
 

The longer cruises have less kids and they really get dotted on. Finally made it to the diamond lounge or third night or so and concierge knew my sons name. I was shocked and she said it’s because he’s the youngest diamond member on board. 😀

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I've never cruised when my (now grown up) kids were small, so probably not qualified to answer. But I don't see why not. Little ones that age just want to have fun. They are too young to get board as might an older child (in my opinion). There's always the children's clubs to share the fun of looking after children. The bigger ships will have more to do for all ages. The only negative is there may not be many other kids for your child to play with, though not sure how relevant that will be for an 18month old compared to older child. 

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We have done TAs when one of our kids was 15 months and when one was 13 months.  We loved it.  It totally depends on your expectations.

 

The nursery will be dead empty so you can use the nursery all you want as you do not have to fight for nursery hours as there are so few babies.  Your baby will be totally doted on by three bar majority of passengers as there will be so few on the ship.

 

  There are also always a couple grumps that will say something that is totally judgmental, about some parenting style or something, but you just have to ignore them.

 

We had a great time. Just temper your expectations as to what you can accomplish and it’s a blast.  
 

Just be warned that if your baby isn’t used to daycare, that the nursery will only let them fuss for so long before you have to come get them.  If they aren’t used to it then that could be a problem, as I have had some friends who have had babies in ships but they wouldn’t stay content not being with the parents and that would be a big road block.

 

The nice thing is that on the way home your luggage will be considerably lighter from the lack of diapers and wipes that you brought for 14 days.

 

Start them cruising as young as you can!  Our 5 year old Is Diamond and our 9 year old is 30 from D+ all on their own points.  Ours love the Shirley temples in the D lounge.

 

we tried to start a travel blog at one point. (Non monetized.  No ads)

 

https://thesmallworldfamily.com/2018/09/19/how-to-take-a-cruise-with-a-baby-and-have-a-great-time/

 

There’s one about cruising with babies. Has lots of great articles we made for cruising with babies.  We just didn’t have time to keep it updated.

Edited by rimmit
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Our thoughts on cruising have vastly changed the past few months, but......if this pandemic never happened here would have been my answer......

 

We were on Allure this past February with our 2 year old and 6 month old and on Harmony last February with our then 1 year old and wouldn't hesistate to bring them on a transatlantic as long as we had at least a balcony room and preferably a JS. Don't worry about diapers, you can buy them in advance and have them in your room waiting for you.....will save a tonne of luggage space. Harmony is a great ship for kids of all ages.

Edited by Mapleleafforever
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1 hour ago, SquishTheWhale said:

Thank you for all the tips and good point about the diapers etc. I read a good tip about bringing a small inflatable pool for bath time and filling it with the shower! We wouldn't be able to afford 2 cabins unfortunately, can't believe they charge full fare for an under 2yr old!

Wait to book when there's a Kid's Sale Free offer.  TA's usually sail during times kids are in school so you should be able to take advantage of this.  

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11 minutes ago, Cruiser24 said:

Wait to book when there's a Kid's Sale Free offer.  TA's usually sail during times kids are in school so you should be able to take advantage of this.  

Although the kids sale free offers have been extended through 2021, they excluded the transatlantic and longer cruises for some reason. 😔

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2 hours ago, SquishTheWhale said:

Am I nuts to consider a 14 day transatlantic on Harmony with our son who will be 1 and a half by then? 

Since you're seeking opinions.....    We wouldn't dream of spending money on a cruise to camp there for 14 days with a small child.  But that's just us.  If you want to do that, go for it. 

 

Also just remember there's the issue of being a long way from any decent health care if something comes up (any health issue, not referring to "the virus").  Another reason we wouldn't do it.

Edited by bouhunter
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8 minutes ago, Heymarco said:

Although the kids sale free offers have been extended through 2021, they excluded the transatlantic and longer cruises for some reason. 😔

Repositioning cruises are included.  The KSF currently extends to May 17, 2021.

 

the KSF applied to this falls  Allure TA. 

 

 

Kids Sail Free applies to select 4-night or longer Alaska, Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada, Caribbean, CaribNE, Coastal, Europe, Hawaii, Repositioning and all 2020 Serenade of the Seas sailings departing between September 1, 2020 – December 17, 2020 and January 8, 2021 – May 17, 2021. Off er excludes 2020 Thanksgiving sailings (Sailings between November 21 - 28, 2020), 2021 President’s Day Sailings (Sailings between February 12 – 15, 2021), and 2021 Spring Break and Easter sailings (Sailings between March 13 – April 4, 2021)

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Most kids under 2-3 are pretty good in the nursery...they haven't gotten to the "clingy" stage yet!  Sounds like you'd do fine with your little one...after all, you're a family, and this is how families vacation!

 

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We haven’t done a TA but we have done cruises every year from the ages of 1 up. The longest of those was 14 days. 
I can’t see why you wouldn’t do it. No vacation is the same with kids but we have years of special memories of the kids on cruises. 
I suspect with a TA you’ll have lots of older cruisers who forget that families are allow vacation time too. So do what we did and revel in the disapproving looks from the stuffy set. 
 

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1 hour ago, bouhunter said:

Since you're seeking opinions.....    We wouldn't dream of spending money on a cruise to camp there for 14 days with a small child.  But that's just us.  If you want to do that, go for it. 

 

Also just remember there's the issue of being a long way from any decent health care if something comes up (any health issue, not referring to "the virus").  Another reason we wouldn't do it.

 

All opinions definitely welcome. We're one of those cruisers who enjoys the ship just as much (or maybe more!) Than the ports. Some good points re healthcare etc seeing as how much little kids pick up!

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1 hour ago, Ourusualbeach said:

Repositioning cruises are included.  The KSF currently extends to May 17, 2021.

 

the KSF applied to this falls  Allure TA. 

 

 

Kids Sail Free applies to select 4-night or longer Alaska, Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada, Caribbean, CaribNE, Coastal, Europe, Hawaii, Repositioning and all 2020 Serenade of the Seas sailings departing between September 1, 2020 – December 17, 2020 and January 8, 2021 – May 17, 2021. Off er excludes 2020 Thanksgiving sailings (Sailings between November 21 - 28, 2020), 2021 President’s Day Sailings (Sailings between February 12 – 15, 2021), and 2021 Spring Break and Easter sailings (Sailings between March 13 – April 4, 2021)

Previous sales had the entire year but still excluded the TA. Even with the current sale, no cruises past Jan have kids sale free on Harmony. Really hope that changes at some point, thanks for the encouragement!

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35 minutes ago, Heymarco said:

Previous sales had the entire year but still excluded the TA. Even with the current sale, no cruises past Jan have kids sale free on Harmony. Really hope that changes at some point, thanks for the encouragement!

I cant speak to past TA's other than the fall ones are currently included.

 

While they don't specifically not include TA's any of the spring ones fall in the general exclusion dates due to March break and Easter.  That's probably why you are not seeing harmony sailings however there definitely is KSF available for sailings on Harmony in Jan, Feb, First week of March and May

 

 

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7 hours ago, jbr5049 said:

at bed time you have the child in the one room and close the connecting door except for a crack and you can go about your business in the other room

 

That's what the balcony is for... you can fit a pac-n-play on a balcony can't you 🙂

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Jumping in as the family expert from Cruise Critic's editorial team! 😉

 

Is this your first kid? 1.5 year olds are all kinds of energetic, and it's hard to know at 8 weeks the personality of yours. Will he be the kind of kid who happily sleeps in a stroller through a show and play happily with whatever toys are at hand, or will he be like mine who at 1 was trying eat the decorative rocks in the atrium, spent endless hours pushing a walking toy up and down the cabin hallways and would only nap in his pack n play. I can tell you the latter is exhausting, and 2 weeks with nowhere to go would have been torture. YMMV -- which is why I recommend getting to know your kid before booking a long cruise with no ports. Some will handle it gracefully, and others won't.

 

Also, my son at 1 and my daughter at 2 on cruises did a typical kid thing and stopped eating/drinking normally while away from home. While this is a normal little kid response to change in routine is that something you want to handle on a long sailing? Sleep also gets disrupted; transatlantic cruises involve daily (or almost daily) time changes, and your kid is not going to adjust as well as you to the schedule. Make sure you're cool with that.

 

If you do choose a long cruise with a toddler, bring extra clothes, diapers, toys, kid snacks, etc. Be prepared to pay for laundry or bring a lot of detergent for washing in your sink. Also soap to wash out bottles or sippy cups each night. And be sure to get them adorable outfits for formal nights (we got my son a tuxedo onesie!) because those photos will be priceless. 🙂 

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10 hours ago, SquishTheWhale said:

Fair enough but what I meant is 'the same price as an adult' I guess!

Royal has actually become more Family friendly and offering more 3/4/5 berths. 20+ yrs ago when my kids were 2, 4 and 8 was more expensive for passenger 3/4. One Cruise passengers 1/2 was $799ea, 3/4 was $1099. During peak Summer/Spring Breaks Cruises 3/4 could be higher at $1399ea. I know, we paid. Thee were standard OV 7niters on Royal...

Edited by ONECRUISER
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Assuming TA cruises are sailing again.  Taking a 1 YO.  Who will be going through teething, crying & fevers is completely unfair to both the child and the people on either side.  Longer cruises typically attract older clients.  You will get lets of snickers and jeers and crooked looks from your fellow passengers.  
 

I truly believe taking any child under the age of two that has not been fully immunized into a closed environment where too many people are is close quarters is a recipe for disaster.  Even putting aside our current C-19 virus pandemic for a moment. it’s just not worth it.  
 

I have three kids myself.  And we waited to cruise and don't regret that decision one bit.

then it was 5-7 day cruises.  Would not start on a 14 day cruise plus the extra time traveling to and from an international port on long haul international flights.

 

Bye...  

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