If you’re looking for something different for your next family vacation, a cruise may as well be the perfect solution. It may seem that preparing for a cruise vacation with your family is a bit more challenging, but if you know what to focus your attention on, there’s really not that much difference compared to regular vacations. You still need to choose the package that suits your family the best and pack the essentials. In that respect, a cruise may be even more accommodating than some hotels.
Consider Your Budget And Needs
First things first – you have to check out the available cruises and find one that will work for your budget and your family. Luckily, it’s easy enough to find detailed info about available cruises online these days. This won’t only let you choose based on price but the available child offerings as well.
Essentially, different cruises offer different deals for kids. While most have kids clubs, some will have clubs divided into age groups, separating the younger kids from the teens. Others may offer more kid amenities, babysitting service and playrooms. And some will offer a free spot or price reduction depending on the child’s age. That said, you should really look into the available offers carefully.
Make Sure The Available Cabin Space Is Enough
If you have a big family, chances are that you’ll have to compromise on something. It’s up to you to decide whether that something will be the cabin space or not. Keep in mind that the standard cabin size is not all that big and that may pose an issue for a large family. There’s also the question of inside and outside cabins.
If your kids are a bit older, then you may be perfectly fine with organizing yourselves and sharing the space, but if you have a baby or a toddler, you’d have to consider a place for a cot as well as the possibility to bathe your kids in such a small space. So, make sure you know what cabin size you need and let the staff on the cruise know about the potential baby necessities when booking.
Take The Safe Path
In case this whole cruise consideration and comparison is a bit overwhelming for you, you can play it safe like many families do by simply hiring a travel agent. This will make things a lot easier for you since all you really have to do is to share your wishes, needs and budget with the agent and wait for them to find the best cruising option for you. Traveling in groups with other families has become a very popular cruising package and this is where a travel agent can be very helpful.
Furthermore, secure the safety of your family by getting cruise travel insuranceto keep you covered. After all, it’s better to be safe than sorry as you can never predict the mishaps that could happen, especially with children on board.
How To Pack Clothes
In order to pack both for you and your kids properly for the cruise, make sure to check the weather forecast. Once you do that, visualize the outfits you’d wear as well as the ones your kids would wear for each day and opportunity. This will make things a lot easier. Also, do try to go for items that are all easy to mix and match.
In general, two pairs of shorts, a pair of light pants, a skirt or a light dress for the ladies, 3-4 tank tops, versatile shoes and flip flops, swimsuits, pyjamas, a long-sleeved shirt and a jacket, and a cover from the sun will be more than enough for both the adults and the kids. Of course, pack underwear appropriately but don’t go crazy with the socks as you’ll probably all be in flip-flops most of the time.
Other Packing Essentials
You have to check with the cruise what amenities will be available to you. If you’ll have provided towels, you won’t have to pack these yourself. The same goes for gadgets such as a hairdryer. But you’ll still have to think about other necessities that your family would need.
Apart from toiletries, you should make sure that your first-aid kit is packed and prepared for both you and your kids. Sunscreens, mosquito repellents, kid vitamins, pain and sea sickness meds and Band-Aids are a must. Of course, consider the packing space for your tablet/laptop, camera as well as a power board as you probably won’t have as many outlets in your cabin as you’d like to.
Also, keep all of your documents in one place and don’t bring them with you when you’re just exploring the ship. You may lose them or your kids may decide to use them as a toy and damage them. It’s best to leave all documentation in the cabin when you’re on board.
Cruises are a great way to see many different sights at various ports along the way and enjoy the open sea with your whole family. Precisely because you’ll all probably get to explore different port towns and other surrounding areas, remember to bring a day bag with you as well. This is especially important if you’ll be traveling with small kids.