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Welcome to family cruising

Welcome to family cruising

Cruise ships come in all shapes and sizes - from less than a hundred passengers to over 6,000 – and everywhere in between. On family-friendly ships there’s a cabin suitable for everyone, whether it’s a minimum grade inside cabin or a top suite with balcony. Cruise lines are making it easier for families to travel together thanks to a variety of connecting room configurations. You can book two cabins of the same type with an interior connecting door to create more space and easy access for a large family wanting to be together. Another savvy option is booking a cabin with a balcony for Mum and Dad, and put the kids across the corridor in a less expensive inside cabin. Check with Cruise Direct about any age or cabin location restrictions to booking kids in a separate cabin.

If you plan on spending time in your cabin, rather than just sleeping and showering there, dig a little deeper and invest in a family suite. These have more square footage than the average family cabin, often with multiple bedrooms, living areas, a balcony and bathrooms with a bathtub.

It’s also a good idea to weigh the pros and cons of child-care options, family activities (including age requirements for kids clubs) and meal times for kids. Another thing to consider is sea-sickness and how your little ones will cope. Book a cabin that has a central location where there is less motion. Keep in mind that amenities such as childcare options vary among cruise lines. Cunard accepts children starting at one year; some Royal Caribbean ships offer nursery care for children aged six months to three years; NCL accept youngsters aged two and older; while Celebrity and Princess require children to be at least three to participate in their kids clubs. Many ships also offer ‘tween and teen clubs with video games, music and dance parties.

If you have your sights set far afield – for example the Caribbean - it would be folly not to fly out to Florida the day before your cruise starts – you can even tack on a visit to a theme park if your fly out a few days in advance. This way you won’t be constantly worrying about flight delays due to bad weather or industrial action and if for whatever reason your luggage goes astray, there’s time to be reunited with it before you set sail. Plus this will give your family time to adjust to the time change and not spend the first days of the cruise totally zonked.

If you are thinking about a family cruise its imperative that you don’t leave it to the last minute. Three- and four-berths cabins are usually in short supply on many ships and waiting for a last minute cruise deal is likely to leave you disappointed. Literally these cabins can sell out in minutes – never more so than during school holidays. One call to our cruise specialists on 0808 256 6742 will help your family enjoy a smooth sailing.

  • 7th January 2018