10 Tips for Cruising with a Baby

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Cruising with a baby can be nerve-wracking.  Follow these tips to make your cruise go smoothly.

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*Most of these tips are geared towards Royal Caribbean cruises but may apply to other cruise companies. No matter which cruise you are going on, make sure to check if these tips are still valid since rules, products, and pricing are constantly changing.

Our family is taking another Royal Caribbean cruise in a few months and I was thinking back to when we took our son at 8 months old. We had been on a few cruises with my parents before we had him, but this was our first with him and without my parents. I was so worried I was going to forget something important we needed for our son but everything went smoothly.

Here are some tips that I found helpful for taking a baby on a cruise.

  1. First off, most babies must be at least 6 months old by the date the cruise departs to go. Off topic, but if you are pregnant, you usually cannot be more than 6 months pregnant by the date the cruise departs. You will also need to check if there are any documents you need to submit before you leave or when you get there. I had to have a letter from my doctor stating that I was not more than 6 months pregnant and that my pregnancy wasn’t having any complications.

  2. Need milk? Cartons of milk are available through Room Service and in some of the restaurants. There should be a mini fridge in your room to keep the milk cold. We would go to the Windjammer Cafe every night, before going back to our room, to get milk for the next day.

  3. Evian bottles of water are available for purchase (by the case) before you leave or once you arrive. They’ll deliver them to your room and have them there the first day. This came in handy to make bottles of formula or just have water whenever you want a drink. We always pre-order a case so that is in our room when we arrive.

  4. Don’t want to pack all the diapers and baby food needed? Royal Caribbean has a website called Royal Gifts that you can purchase diapers, wipes, organic baby food, diaper bag set, an octopus toy and blanket set, and a dinnerware set that includes large divided plate, sippy cup, bowl, bib, fork, spoon, and bag to keep it all in. (These items are only available on certain ships) Highchairs and booster seats are available in all of the dining areas.

  5. There is a nursery, children’s programs, and babysitters that will come to your room available on the ships. The children’s programs are split up by age and are included in your cruise fees. No additional charges apply. The nursery and babysitters that come to your room cost extra. I have heard nothing but great things about all these programs and it gives the adults time to themselves to do what they want to do. We have not utilized these services yet personally.

  6. Pack n’ Plays are available to be brought to your room for babies to sleep and play in. The Room Attendant usually has it noted that a baby will be in the room and need a Pack n’ Play. If not, make sure to ask for one.

  7. Royal Caribbean has a “kids under 12 sail free” offer that goes on at different times throughout the year. This is a great time to take kids, but it usually doesn’t include dates when the kids are out of school. We did book during Fall Break and the discount was available.

  8. If you are a Crown and Anchor member, make sure you sign up your children after their first cruise. They will automatically be at the same point status as you are. If you’re not a member yet, make sure to sign up everyone who sailed on the cruise. You receive gold status after your first cruise on Royal Caribbean. This means on your next cruise you get priority boarding, RC merchandise discounts, and other special offers.

  9. Most, if not all, pools are only available to children that are potty trained. Swim diapers are not allowed. If your cruise has a splash park, non-potty-trained children can play there. I recommend water shoes for any kids able to walk in this area. It can be a little slick.

  10. Take a small umbrella stroller. It’s easy to carry and will navigate easily around the ship. They are usually around $20. Something like this is perfect:

Disney Umbrella Stroller with Canopy, My Hunny Stripes

We love cruising and have always been extremely happy with Royal Caribbean. We went on Norwegian back in the 90’s and had a great time, but every cruise after that has been on Royal. I think this will be my 7th cruise and my parents have been on over 20.

It’s nice to pay upfront and know that all of your food, entertainment, and lodging is completely taken care of. Besides some souvenirs and tips, we usually don’t spend much once we get on the ship. If you get cruise credit when you book, that will help cover some of the costs once you board.

If you’re taking your baby, be prepared for them to bring lots of attention from passengers and staff!!!

Have you been on a cruise with a baby?  Let us know what tips you found helpful.


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