Jump to content

Thinking of booking our first cruise
advice from experienced cruisers


  • Please log in to reply
21 replies to this topic

#1 PaulineN

Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:12 PM

Hi DH suggested we go on a cruise this year for our yearly get away.  Every year we usualy go up the coast and stay in an appartment on the beachfront. So, looking for something totally different.

People have said cruises are great for kids as there's heaps for them to do as well.

So my questions are:

How was your cruise holiday? would you do it again?
Did you kids enjoy it? if so what were their ages? (my ds is 6.5yrs)
How did you cope with the tiny tiny tiny cabins?
Who did you book through? the cruise line itself or a travel agent.

Any other advice for someone who knows nothing about cruises and finds some of the info on the web a bit hard to follow - for example if there is 2 adults and 1 child, do we pay as if it is twin share or quad share?

thanks in advance

#2 Hufflepuff

Posted 14 February 2013 - 05:25 PM

Don't hesitate just do it!!!

You pay for three people & need a 3 berth cabin. A travel agent will be able to help you or you need to look at the deck plans there will be a symbol for 3 berth cabins.

Your son will have a ball in kids clubs. You will have a ball doing  activities without him. You will all have fun together too discovering the ports, swimming,  having meals together etc....
Don't worry about the size of cabin. You really are only in there to sleep.

Unless you get a 'Suite' you will be sleeping in bunk beds. We cruise every year & our kids have been cruising since 12 months of age.

Cruise Sale Finder is a good place to book through & usually have the cheapest fares. I have used them for my last few cruises with no problems at all.

#3 LittleMissPink

Posted 14 February 2013 - 07:12 PM

You will pay for 2 adults and one child, there will be 3 beds in the room, one bunk and one single.

PP is right, you only sleep in the cabin and shower.

#4 amabanana

Posted 14 February 2013 - 07:26 PM

QUOTE (LittleMissPink @ 14/02/2013, 08:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
You will pay for 2 adults and one child, there will be 3 beds in the room, one bunk and one single.

PP is right, you only sleep in the cabin and shower.


Why do you sleep in the shower.   biggrin.gif

#5 whatnamenow

Posted 14 February 2013 - 07:49 PM

As PP's have said.

Although I would choose Just Cruises to book through as they will change the price for you if it drops.  (ie say you book for 799 and suddenly the price drops to 599.  Usually they will honor the new price and refund you the difference.)

Think of what cruise line you want to use.  Royal Carribean has a drinks package ( all you can drink sotdrink packages) which can save you money if you drink alot of it.  But P & O allow you to take cartons of soft drink and poppers on board.

Some people say you should get an outside cabin as some people are sensitive to not seeing daylight in their room, but some people with young kids say it helps to get them off to sleep.  If you do get an inside cabin switch the tv over to the view from the front of the ship and leave the tv on all night.  That way when you wake up you can see straight away if its daylight or not.

Book early if you have kids as they only let a certain number of kids at certain ages on and it fills up fast.

Be careful about ticking yes to upgrades.  It may not actually be an upgrade ie you can go from outside unobstructed view but midship to 2 floors up unobstructed but at the front or back, as long as its considered a more expensive cabin then p & O consider it an upgrade and once changed you cant go back to your original cabin.

Speaking of which midship and nice and low is considered to be the best for sea sickness.

If you can afford a suite go for it.  Sooo nice and with only 3 of you you can fit into a mini suite on p & O.  

Some people have issues with using credit cards for paying for their on board credit as p & O uses a holds system similar to car rental companies, so use cash or simply get a credit card purposely for the cruise

P & O have a fantastic facebook page.  If you have any questions if you ask on there someone will tell you.  Which islands are you considering heading too?  I can help with suggestions for most of them.

#6 7LittleAustralians

Posted 15 February 2013 - 09:04 AM

How was your cruise holiday? would you do it again?
Definitely. I have 2 more lined up already

Did you kids enjoy it? if so what were their ages? My children loved it and can't wait to go again. They ranged in age from middle school to toddler.

How did you cope with the tiny tiny tiny cabins?
Didn't require anything bigger, we were barely in them.

Who did you book through? the cruise line itself or a travel agent.
Travel agent.

#7 pascalls

Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:47 AM

We went on the Carnival Spirit last October and that was our first cruise. We had a 9 year old & a 5 year old & we all loved it! The kids went to kids club a bit & enjoyed it. We would check the timetable & they only went if there was something on they wanted to do.

Our cabin was actually bigger than I was expecting (though not huge). We had enough cupboard space to unpack everything for the 4 of us & store the suitcases under the bed. We had a king size bed for DH & I, a sofa bed for DD and a bunk bed that came down from the roof for DS.

Our cabin was classed and priced as an inside cabin but it was actually on the outside with the lifeboats right outside the door. There were french doors that we could open & get some fresh air and our room was at the front of the lifeboat so we could see a bit of the ocean underneath the curve of the boat.  

We booked directly through Carnival and got some onboard credit. I'd definitely do it again!

#8 B.feral3

Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:53 AM

I absolutely hated cruising and you wouldn't get me on another cruise-liner again!!

It might have been better if I'd managed to get my head out of the toilet a little less often. OMG I was so sick. For the times I was able to compose myself, I found the entertainment cheesy, the activities and drinks expensive and the food really really average.

We won't do it again. We love taking the kids to a different resort every year though. Last year we did Twin Waters on the Sunshine Coast and loved it.

#9 Peppery

Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:57 AM

How was your cruise holiday? would you do it again?

- Most definitely. I booked our next cruise (DD & I) while we were on the cruise. We will be cruising again this October. I am counting down the days.

Did you kids enjoy it? if so what were their ages? (my ds is 6.5yrs)

- DD was 3 when we went on the cruise. She absolutely loved it. The staff make such a fuss of the kids. DD wanted to stay in kids club the entire time.

How did you cope with the tiny tiny tiny cabins?

- I found the size of the cabin comparable to motel rooms i have stayed in. We didn't really spend much time in the cabin though.

Who did you book through? the cruise line itself or a travel agent.

- We booked directly through P&O.

I am a single mum, normally i am the one doing all of the driving, meal preparation and keeping DD amused. I got to switch off and just relax.

Edited by Peppery, 15 February 2013 - 11:58 AM.


#10 ~Kee~In~Hawaii~

Posted 15 February 2013 - 12:06 PM

I think I am well known around here for being cruising obsessed original.gif

Though I don't have kids, I have friends who have been on a cruise with their kids and they all loved it. The kids club kept the kids entertained during sea days and all the shore excursions they did were tailored to suit families.

I think cruising is fantastic because you unpack once and it's like your hotel room goes to all these different places with you in it, rather than having to re-pack and make the mad dash to the airport to get from place to place.

If you do drink, it pays to get the drinks packages. Also check what you are allowed to take on board with you so far as snacks and non-alcoholic drinks go as having some juice and soda with you in your cabin may cut down on costs.

I've done 5 cruises and I have always made it a point to have a sea sickness tablet every morning with breakfast. I have no idea if I get sea sick, I've never waited to get sick to find out. Prevention is better than a ruined holiday.

I purchase my cruises through a cruise wholesaler based in Texas who deals with Aussie customers all the time. So far the actual cruise line hasn't even been able to beat their prices each cruise so I will continue to book through them. They have some really great cabin credit offers as well.

So far I've cruise multiple times around the Hawaiian Islands, the Bahamas, I'll be cruising this year from Hawaii to Australia, I'm in the process of booking an Alaska cruise and after that it's a cruise to Mexico and Jamaica. I definitely think cruising is THE way to travel original.gif


Edited by ~Kee~In~Hawaii~, 15 February 2013 - 12:07 PM.


#11 PaulineN

Posted 16 February 2013 - 04:30 PM

Thank you so much for all your feedback. I really appreciate it original.gif

One thing I've found strange when looking on the internet is there are no prices or it says n/a for Balcony Cabins, Mini Suites or Suites if there are 3 passengers.  Which seems weird with the suites - as they are larger? On the P&O sight when looking at mini &b cabin descriptions it says king bed plus a roll away. Might have to ask a travel agent.

Could you also tell me what you think is a good length of time? DH thinks max 7 days before we'd be sick of it?

thanks

#12 7LittleAustralians

Posted 16 February 2013 - 08:02 PM

My DH thought he'd get bored or sick of it too, he didn't. There were so many things we never got time to do. I will admit the food kind of got a bit boring though towards the end, however we really only tried 1 of the restaurants and could have quite easily tried the others. 7 days would be a good place to start though to see if you like it or not. Everyone is different and although some of us love it, it might not be for everyone.

As for the cabins, if it says N/A it means they are not available either because they don't have 3 berth cabins to begin with of that class or they have already all been booked out.

#13 whatnamenow

Posted 16 February 2013 - 08:25 PM

balcony cabins are max 2 berth, they actually are smaller than a standard cabin in that the balcony makes up the inside space in a standard cabin.  

Mini suites can sleep up to 3 but do sell out fast.  Suites sleep 4 and are usually the last to sell.  If you keep getting N/A it could also be because the ages of the kids have been filled.  to give you an idea of hw fast that fills up i just did a quick search and even up to november all the kids spaces have limited availability left.

Try this site to give you an idea on prices and availability and then start hunting..

ozcruising

#14 LouiseA1

Posted 17 February 2013 - 10:24 PM

It totally depends on which cruise company you cruise with as to how many each cabin will hold and how big the cabins are.  wink.gif

We are a family of three and always have a balcony.

#15 JAMFC

Posted 17 February 2013 - 10:47 PM

Are there any cruises out of Brisbane or Sydney that can take 2 adults and 3 children in a cabin?

#16 2girlzandhoney

Posted 18 February 2013 - 03:00 PM

I would love to go on a cruise but as a family of 5 i have often wondered whether or not there are inter-connecting rooms? My kids are 11, 8 and 4 so I'm not really sure if i would be comfortable with them being entirely on their own.

#17 Fabulous

Posted 18 February 2013 - 03:11 PM

This family took their 7 kids on a cruise!
http://www.essentialbaby.com.au/forums/ind...039091&st=0

#18 PaulineN

Posted 18 February 2013 - 05:47 PM

QUOTE (2girlzandhoney @ 18/02/2013, 03:00 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I would love to go on a cruise but as a family of 5 i have often wondered whether or not there are inter-connecting rooms? My kids are 11, 8 and 4 so I'm not really sure if i would be comfortable with them being entirely on their own.

I was looking on P&O website and it did show a piciture of an interconnecting room.

#19 KT1978

Posted 18 February 2013 - 06:01 PM

I think if you aren't sure if you'll like it or will get sea sick, consider a cruise with a larger land component. We have done two-a captain cook one in Fiji, and pride of America in Hawaii. Both cruises we were off the ship everyday, but used it more as a traveling hotel and a base to eat, sleep, leave our stuff.

We are pretty certain we would never do an Australia to south pacific cruise as being on the ship for days on end would do our heads in.

#20 LouiseA1

Posted 18 February 2013 - 07:01 PM

There are quite a few cruise lines that have interconnecting rooms. The ones I can think of off the top of my head are Holland America Line, Royal Carribean Line, P&O.

I'm pretty sure that princess do also.


#21 antiq

Posted 19 February 2013 - 04:09 AM

MSC offers kids cruise for free and they do have a cabin for 4 (with bunk beds).

#22 mards

Posted 19 February 2013 - 06:53 AM

KT1978 - We have done 2 Captain Cooks - one in Cairns and the other in Fiji - OH HOW WE LOVED IT!! - we took the kids to Fiji - and they were the ONLY kids on board and they were treated like KINGS> - there is a swimming pool on the boat  - the kids were in there ever second. It was the best holiday we had ever had - HIGHLEY recommend it - they have 3 or 4 or 7 night cruises...




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Teaching our son to say no to violence against women

Today, on White Ribbon Day - and every other day - we're teaching our son to say no to violence against women.

Mothers told to breastfeed in 'spacious' toilet

If there is one thing the owners of Tillings Cafe can be certain of, it is that the eatery won't win the award for Britain's best baby-friendly coffee shop any time soon.

Mother gives name to son dumped down drain

A woman who admitted to dumping her newborn baby down a Sydney drain has reportedly been allowed to give him a name.

Taking small steps to reduce stress

Are you feeling used up by life's stress, family problems and a demanding job you can't turn off? Many people are way beyond work-life exhaustion. They are functioning as robots.

Bad news: we're running out of chocolate

The world's biggest chocolate-maker says we're running out of chocolate.

Born at 23 weeks, 'Chopstick Baby' survives first week

A baby who was born at 23 weeks has survived her first week of life outside the womb.

Manic stations: the nesting instinct in pregnancy

It might sound like temporary insanity, but almost obsessive nesting as you near your due date isn’t uncommon – even if you’re not usually a particularly clean person.

How a baby can survive alone for days on end

The baby found abandoned in a Sydney drain may have been alone for up to six days without being fed, leaving many asking how he could have survived.

When it begins to look a lot like Christmas

A child's excitement at Christmas time is a beautiful thing, but one dad ponders whether his toddler daughter is getting into the festive mood a bit too soon.

Hospital lets dads the experience some of the pain of childbirth

A new experience is radically altering men's views of childbirth.

Italian doctors questioned over formula bribes

Italian police have placed 12 doctors under house arrest on suspicion of promoting baby milk formula over breastfeeding.

Heartwarming prank gives single mum the house she was hired to clean

Cara Simmons arrived at work to clean a large and beautiful house in time for a party planned for that evening. It was soon hers.

Those special moments of sibling bonding

Every now and then your child does or says something that is truly memorable.

Why we should stop telling new parents to 'enjoy every moment'

A few weeks ago, some dear friends of mine had their first baby. As the proud dad texted me a picture I had to fight the natural instinct to say “Enjoy every moment!”

Baby monitor footage posted online

Footage of Australian babies and children sleeping in their bedrooms are among the images on a Russian site showing live feeds from thousands of homes and businesses around the world.

Did this new dad really hit on his wife's midwife?

Was there really a man who was actually there by his wife’s side as she laboured and gave birth to his child, all while he was making what he perceived to be meaningful eye contact with a midwife?

Keep calm and ignore the Tantrum Trolls

Tantrum Trolls are a small but growing species of predatory bottom-feeders who delight in picking on parents at their most vulnerable.

It's okay to never 'get over' the death of a loved one

The death of children, siblings, and parents has long term impacts on the rest of our lives.

What Mark Latham needs to know about depression and motherhood

Love has nothing to do with mental illness. But love may drive a mother to do something about it.

'We're just trying to keep our child alive': life with FPIES

We have a beautiful seven-month-old son, and his allergy rules our life.

Transgender dad breastfeeds his babies

A transgender man who breastfed his first baby - despite having his breasts removed as part of his transformation from female to male - has now had a second child.

Couple face $1 million medical bill and bankruptcy after babymoon birth

A Canadian couple were slammed with a million dollar medical bill after their daughter was prematurely during their babymoon.

Cigarettes, junk food dominate supermarket sales growth

One in every five dollars spent at supermarkets goes on cigarettes or junk food, according to industry data.

Teacher under fire for breastfeeding in class

There is no doubt mums have a right to continue breastfeeding after they have returned to work, but one teacher in the US has taken it to the extreme.

Win a family pass to Disney Live!

We have 4 family passes to give away to see Disney Live! presents Three Classic Fairy Tales, touring Australia this December/January.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Join PADDINGTON on the red carpet!

To celebrate the release of PADDINGTON, we are giving five lucky winners the chance to win a family pass to the exclusive Australian Premiere in Sydney on December 7!

The tragedy of losing a favourite teddy bear

We were green and uninitiated, perhaps a little naïve when it came to the favourite toy responsibility.

Video: Baby sniffs beardless dad to make sure it's him

She looks him up and down and then touches his chin, but baby Lindsey still isn't sure this clean-shaven man is her dad.

It's possible to workout while pregnant

Medical experts say intense fitness routines can be done safely during pregnancy - if the mums-to-be follow some guidelines.

What parents really want for their kids

Are our hopes, dreams and expectations for our children what they really need?

'I had a feeling something was seriously wrong'

Before even giving birth, Katie Myers' maternal instincts warned her something was wrong with her baby.

When your pregnancy causes a relationship rift

Some dads-to-be don't miss a beat when their partner is pregnant; others struggle with a range of issues and can become withdrawn, right when their support is needed most.

Couple uses group photo trick to announce pregnancy to loved ones

Katharine and Kris Camilli devised a clever trick to immortalise their family and friends' reactions to their exciting pregnancy news.

Why Tracey Spicer has given up make-up

"After 30 years on television, I had become what I despised: a painted doll who spent an hour a day and close to $200 a week putting on a mask."

Knowing you are one of the lucky ones

I am secure, confident and strong, but the responsibility of protecting my children can almost bring me undone.

Why I am so emotional now I have kids?

There are so many ways in which parenthood changes us as women, but one of the most noticeable, for me, has been the changing state of my emotions.

Baby survives despite sharing womb with 'foreign body'

Baby Maia was conceived against the odds, only to find she was sharing a womb with an ominous "foreign body".

Video: Baby shows dog how to jump - or vice versa

They say dog is man's best friend, but this playful pooch seems to have chosen a jumping baby as her number one buddy.

10 ways to soothe a crying baby

New paernts can get frustrated when their newborn gets fussy and can't settle down. When you're feeling overwhelmed, try some of these simple tips to help soothe your baby.

20 baby names that are becoming more popular every year

The data-lovers at nameberry.com have been at it again – this time, they’ve discovered the names that are continually rising up the ranks, ready to take out some top spots in the next few years.

10 great meals to make for new parents

Ideally, you want to give food that isn’t expensive to make, isn't too difficult to create, and freezes well; stews, bakes, soups and pasta sauces are perfect.

Weird pregnancy products

Some pregnancy products come to market and are just awesome. Others just leave you scratching your head.

Carers admit to force-feeding children

Two children who were given to the wrong families at birth will soon learn if they will be returned to their biological parents.

 

How many weeks til Christmas?

On your To-Do list

Get the "Santa" shopping done without the kids in tow.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.