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Cruising with children

13 replies

rosehip · 23/06/2002 21:49

Have just returned from 2 weeks in the Med on the P&O liner Aurora. What a fantastic holiday! We took our 2 children aged 5 and 21mths and we all has a great time I cannot tell you how wonderful the childrens activities are and it's almost 24 hours - dinner in peace is priceless!! The night nursery is very efficient(and free) from 6pm - 2am and you are given a bleeper in case of any awakenings. The price of the holiday compared to a quality hotel in the Med was a bargain - you need to book early for the 4 bedded cabins and if you are interested in cruising P&O have got it so right...
(and no I don't work for them, only wish I did!)

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Cityfreak · 04/07/2002 03:02

rosehip, I thought of going on a cruise with grandparents, but my mother was dead against it and said that a travel agent had told her that there was no guarantee a toddler could not climb overboard. This seems weird to me, but what were the systems for stopping a toddler climbing over railings etc?

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rosehip · 11/07/2002 22:00

That is a horrible thought! We just did not take our eyes or hands off our youngest, and they would only climb over if you left chairs or tables near the railings. I would not let this put you off though, as I said previously it is such a fantastic quality family holiday, everything about P&O is so professional. I've never heard anyone complain about anything yet whilst onboard.

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monkey · 13/05/2003 13:37

Hi rosehip - my dh has just returned from a work conference on the Aurora. He said they seemed to have good kids facilities, and I was seriously thinking of trying a cruise for a week, before our 3rd child is born. Could you give me any more blurb about the facilities with little ones (ours will be 4 & 2.5) Thanks

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rosehip · 13/05/2003 17:36

Hi Monkey! Serious 'cruise fever' in our house at the moment we are due on Oceana in 4 weeks and can't wait. What can I say about the children' facilities other than free (but we do tip at the end of the hols), flexible(9am - 2am, a night nursery operates from 6pm - 2am and you are given bleepers), professional staff, varied games/crafts/entertainment, children's tea 5.15 this is then follwed my a magic show or similar, you sign the children in and out and handles are right at the top of the doors to avoid ecapees!, there is a family pool right in front of the children's club so you can actually see your children having fun and then asked them when they want to come out, prizes, games, gifts and competitions galore. And Monkey if you think this sounds fun for the children wait until you see what is on store for the adults!! The brochure for next year is out within the next two weeks so be sure to grab a copy. We have aso been on Oriana and she is lovely too. I think (and probably said in the opening thread) cruising is perfect for 'fussy families' and you get some time for you and your partner too. It is truly a lovely experience and compared to some 5* hotels we've stayed in Cyprus - a bargain ....
Feel free to ask more as I love to share my addiction!! Forgot to mention the fabulous food, but I'm sure your partner took pleasure in that!

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monkey · 13/05/2003 17:54

Oh, Rosehip, you've just added to my misery! I was getting myself all worked up about how fab it would be, dreaming of a wonderful relax, I've always wanted to go on a cruise etc etc, then I checked the p&o website - they won't take women who are more thasn 28 weeks by the end of the cruise I can't go till September, which'll make me about 30 ish weeks at the start of it.

By the time no. 3 comes along there'll be no way we can afford to take 3!

And it's my fault - I pursuaded dh to go to UK for 10 days in August. Maybe other companies have different policies? I suppose it's worth a try. Any idea how they enforce it - do you reckon you have to supply a doctor's note?

Anyway, thanks for such a prompt reply - hope you enjoy your cruise - where will you go?

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rosehip · 13/05/2003 20:11

Hi Monkey. I was pregnant with no2 on one cruise we sailed on 28 April and DS was born on 18 Aug can't remember how many weeks I was. What a real pity, are you sure your dates are correct? I feel awful now for doing may 'sales patter'. Ah! I've got a better idea go along with hubby on next conference and leave all 3 children with grandparents!! We are sailing to Sardinia, Gibralta, Rome, Barcelona, Ibiza and Florence. Just out of interest how long are these conferences and do they sail anywhere? What a fantastic marketing tactic on P&O's part they must hit a huge target audience amongst the candidates onboard. Cheers.

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monkey · 13/05/2003 20:34

I reckon you must have only been about 24 weeks pg! You can tell I'm starting to obbsess! Unfortunately the conference was only for delegates - not spouses too. Anyway, he was only on board for 3 days, working his bum off for the entire time (champagne receptions every evening are soooo tiring, I'm told) and they docked off Guernsey for a coouple of days before pootling back to So'ton. Not quite what I've got in mind!

Are you in a 4 berth caabin or adjoining ones? Couldn't see either 4 berthers or kiddies prices on the p&o site - do you pay full for kids? Oh, I'm trying not to get jealous, such an ugly trait.............

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rosehip · 13/05/2003 20:57

The discounts for children range from FREE to 40% off the adult price. There are adjoining cabins, however we are in a 4 berth. Children are 6.7 and 2.10. We got 70% discount for the children n our current cruise but there have been some fantastic deals recently and to be honest I think we would have been better waiting and booking 2 cabins and paying full adult price for the kids as the adult discounted price x 4 was less than the total cost of our holiday booked in june last year!!.
The twin cabins are the one usually available on late deals, the 4 berths go very quikly as soon as the brochure comes out there is a real rush - you can also pick your cabin number (ie convenient location - usually near the lift or childrens club for us!) I'm waffling on, sorry!! This cruising is a bit of an addiction. I took my dd and my mum last October on one of the 'party cruises' to Guernsey & Amsterdam - fantastic time ds stayed with dh - another thought Monkey, don't know how old your children are?! I'm doing a similar thing in a couple of years with my grilfriends, we are hoping to go on a short cruise for my 40th ....

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monkey · 14/05/2003 09:49

Hey, now that IS an idea - dump the kids on dh and go on a luxury cruise on my own!

Mine are currently nearly 4, 2.5 & next due in November. I am a bit fed up, about the timing - just a couple of weeks out (well 4 or 5 really, as they say 28 weeks by the END of the cruise). Dh said about going next summer when new babe will be over 6 months, but what fun will it be when still b/f, probably still having sleepless nights, just starting weaning etc. Doesn't sound like much of a holiday to me So for the sake of a couple of weeks I'll probably have more like a 2 year wait.

Or - dump the kids on DH, get him to pay, and go on my own.......

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northernlass1 · 14/05/2003 10:17

rosehip

have been on a cruise myself and it was ok but what did you think about your fellow passengers - zimmer frames at dawn?

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lisaj · 14/05/2003 11:18

Rosehip - my SIL took my nephew (2) on Aurora and couldn't praise it enough. She said it was absolutely brilliant. We were invited too, but didn't go one reason was because we thought, like Northernlass, that it would be full of OAPs, but she said that was not the case at all. Another thing that has put us off is the black tie dinners etc, as we don't go to any functions like that nowadays, so it would have been a lot of extra expense buying formal clothes. Are all the dinners very formal?

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rosehip · 14/05/2003 14:11

Hi, I think it depends on: time of year, whether is is a cruise that offers FREE children and if it is a theme cruise. If the theme is say classical music then you are probably heading for trouble. However, if it is a newcomers cruise or say 70'80's music/fashion/lifestyle/football etc. then there are usually many more 'younger' (we are 38 & 40, parents of two but love a bop and several glasses of wine!!). The shorter 4 day party cruises usually attract groups of younger people/couples. The cruises offering free child places in school time usually attract those with younger children. It is really worth looking at the brochures and official videos (these are SOOOOO accurate!) As for formal dinners it all part of it - usually on a 14 night cruise there would be 4 formal (black tie and black suit not necessaily a dinner suit though), 5 casual nights and 5 informal (suit or jacket for men and cocktail dress/trousers for ladies). I rally cannot speak highly enough or bore people enough about cruising - IT IS FUN FOR ALL! Still not working for P&O (pity Southampton is 300 miles away .......).

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rosehip · 14/05/2003 14:11

Hi, I think it depends on: time of year, whether is is a cruise that offers FREE children and if it is a theme cruise. If the theme is say classical music then you are probably heading for trouble. However, if it is a newcomers cruise or say 70'80's music/fashion/lifestyle/football etc. then there are usually many more 'younger' (we are 38 & 40, parents of two but love a bop and several glasses of wine!!). The shorter 4 day party cruises usually attract groups of younger people/couples. The cruises offering free child places in school time usually attract those with younger children. It is really worth looking at the brochures and official videos (these are SOOOOO accurate!) As for formal dinners it all part of it - usually on a 14 night cruise there would be 4 formal (black tie and black suit not necessaily a dinner suit though), 5 casual nights and 5 informal (suit or jacket for men and cocktail dress/trousers for ladies). I rally cannot speak highly enough or bore people enough about cruising - IT IS FUN FOR ALL! Still not working for P&O (pity Southampton is 300 miles away .......).

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