The Jakarta Post
When you do your research, find a ship that is suitable for the ages of your family members, the interests of your children and of course, your budget. (Shutterstock/File)
Nowadays, there are many newly developed cruises that are practically floating resorts. They offer entertainment for all ages and are a convenient way to explore the world – that is if you don’t get seasick easily. Other than that, to go cruising with the entire family is not an opportunity you should miss.
As compiled by kompas.com, here are six tips for smooth sailing with the little ones:
Choose a child-friendly cruise ship
There are a range of cruise lines, each coming with their own perks. When you do your research, find the a ship that is suitable for the ages of your family members, the interests of your children and of course, your budget.
To name a few, the best in the child-friendly cruising industry are the Carnival Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line and the Royal Caribbean International. Other options include the adventurous expedition-themed Lindblad Expeditions (who collaborates with National Geographic) and Disney’s European lake-themed AmaWaterways.
Take advantage of their ‘Kids Club’
Make sure that the cruise ship you choose offers a Kids Club. Available for children of ages 3 to 17, the club provides fun activities like hunting, karaoke, arts and crafts, as well as billiards. Parents can trust their children with the club while they enjoy some of their own quality time at the spa, casino or a cozy restaurant. Other than a club, cruise ships may also offer babysitting services with additional costs.
Carnival, Disney and Norweigian cruises have the best Kids Clubs. Other notable cruises with the service include Princess Cruises and Royal Caribbean International.
Consider the children’s age restrictions
While some family-friendly cruises are suitable for children aged 3 years and above, others put a maximum age on 6 months up to 1 year old. Otherwise, cruise ships may also not allow children to access the pool and water park area unless they are potty trained.
Cunard Line, Disney, Norwegian and Royal Caribbean offer a play area intended specifically for infants and toddlers.
Book shorter travel schedules
Cruises that sail for shorter durations usually depart from an easily accessible port, which is why this option is considerably safer and more comfortable for families.
Carnival, Disney, Norwegian and Royal Caribbean offer vacation schedules of three to five nights.
Choose an appropriate cabin
If the Royal Suite and connected cabins do not fit with your budget, booking a third or fourth-class standard cabin would provide your family with a pull-out sofa or bed. However, be sure to book a family cabin equipped with a dividing curtain, a separate seating area and a balcony.
Bear in mind that because most cabins only have showers, remember to bring an inflatable bathtub for your baby.
Choose a cruise line with a pool and a water park
Generally, guests can only enter their cabins a few hours after their luggage has been checked in and delivered to the room. To fill in the time, larger and newer ships provide a pool and water slides – the perfect leisure activity for a blazing summer day. (saz/kes)