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Old 03-07-2007, 04:00 AM
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OK Ė My 4 year old son is obsessed with ships. Not a bad thing in itself but now he wants to go on a cruise. Iíve never been on one myself and the only tour operator I have been away with that does cruises is Archers Direct: Cruises

I have a few obvious concerns:

How safe is it? (I assume a child cannot fit through the railings)
Is the food child friendly?
Is the entertainment suitable?

Has anyone ever taken their children on a cruise and if so was it a success. Itís a lot of money and I donít want to make a mistake by booking one.

One brain wave I have had is a canal holiday in the UK or possibly France. Can anyone recommend a good operator?

Would really appreciate any advice from anyone has experience.
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Old 03-07-2007, 04:00 AM
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OK Ė My 4 year old son is obsessed with ships. Not a bad thing in itself but now he wants to go on a cruise. Iíve never been on one myself and the only tour operator I have been away with that does cruises is Archers Direct: Cruises

I have a few obvious concerns:

How safe is it? (I assume a child cannot fit through the railings)
Is the food child friendly?
Is the entertainment suitable?

Has anyone ever taken their children on a cruise and if so was it a success. Itís a lot of money and I donít want to make a mistake by booking one.

One brain wave I have had is a canal holiday in the UK or possibly France. Can anyone recommend a good operator?

Would really appreciate any advice from anyone has experience.
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Old 03-07-2007, 04:42 AM
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Carnival or Disney would be great for kids, lots to do.
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Old 03-07-2007, 07:18 AM
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Thomson, Island Cruises & Ocean Village all cruise the med from Majorca, with charter flights ex-uk.

All of them can do a cruise & stay... 1 week cruise and 1 week hotel, which might be ideal for you. All have childrens activities, too.

Like anywhere, there are dangers, but on a cruise ship there are no roads, no strangers, so you are relatively safe in what is virtually a closed community.

Of course you can fall over railings if you climb on them... as you can in a hotel... the answer is responsible supervision.

I would not go for the canal/river holiday idea... the boats will be small and your 4 year old will have nowhere to burn off energy. The age range of most river cruise passengers is also older, so many would find a 4-yr old a nuisance.

The Thomson, Island and OV ships are much larger, with play areas, swimming pools, childrens entertainment programmes and buffet restaurants.

Of all, for a first cruise holiday, I would say Island Cruises... it's part of First Choice holidays, and they certainly know about family holidays. I had a week on Island Escape last summer, and the crew really do go the extra mile in looking after all their passengers.
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Old 03-07-2007, 07:58 AM
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Personally I would wait til he's 5...then go on the Disney Cruise!
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Old 03-07-2007, 05:04 PM
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Hi Hot pepper sauce, and welcome to cruise-chat.

When I saw the title of your post -- "Is a cruise a good idea for 4 year olds?" -- my immediate response was "Yes, yes, yes!"

And when I read that your son is obsessed with ships, I strengthened my answer to "Absolutely!" I am a liner fan myself, and it always pleases me to hear that this obsession will be carried on by younger generations.

Our son has been on more than 20 cruises, and he just turned 13. His first cruise was at barely one year old, and his second was before his second birthday. We had the same concerns as you, initially, particularly about safety, and it never turned out to be a problem. If possible, I would suggest NOT getting a cabin with a balcony for your first cruise, as that will make it one less thing for you to worry about. But, when he is with you on public decks, he will be fine.

I know very little about cruising from the UK or other parts of Europe, yet it sounds like you've gotten some good advice from Meldrew of the Seas, above.
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Old 03-08-2007, 12:50 AM
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Many thanks to everyone for your replies. I'm certainly going to take the cruise idea further.
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Old 03-08-2007, 09:09 PM
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How about you Hot pepper sauce? Do you want go on a cruise? The resulting relaxation, pampering and care-free life on a cruise ship will have more of an impact on you! It will also give you the chance for quality time with your son who has extraordinary taste at such a young age!

As to the question regarding the rail, the safest answer I can give is yes he would fit through and that will require you to keep close tabs on him around the rail but there is plenty of real estate on board to keep him away and distracted.
 
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