My wife and I just went on a week-long trip with our 7-month-old son to Orlando. We were running the Disney marathon, and had to take him (versus leaving him with his grandparents) because he is still nursing.
NEVER AGAIN will we travel with a baby. It's just too much hassel, and left us feeling drained at the end of the week versus refreshed. He was well-behaved and (thankfully) didn't cry on either flight.
Perhaps you should reconsider, and travel at a later date without the child? Certainly, I hope you're not sitting next to me at lunch or dinner, or anywhere near me for that matter!
All that being said, I think you have a legitimate point and should not be charged the full price, unless the ship is filled to capacity and they had to turn someone away. I think you do owe the three-berth room fee, and the the port charges and taxes per person, but shouldn't have to pay whatever they allocate per guest in terms of food, etc.
Just my two cents worth....I don't think you will have an enjoyable cruise if you bring an infant so young along with you. It would be so much extra work for you and your husband and the point of taking a cruise is to relax. The walls between cabins are so thin and a crying baby will upset all the guests around you that are trying to sleep. Sometimes a crying baby can bring out the worst in people. I am assuming this is your first child. Believe me, it won't be too long until you realize that a little time away from you child is a great thing! Why not take your child on a cruise when it is older so it can enjoy all the wonderful kids programs? You and the hubby deserve a break and the baby can bond with its grandparents.
Thank you all for your rsponses and I do understand each and everyones point. Unfortunately, the entire family is going on this cruise, both my side and my wife's. We are up to 12 cabins (27 people)now and still counting.
What I am looking for on this board is some support regarding the pricing that RCCL has adopted regarding infants. I have no issues paying a pro-rated amount, but a full 3rd person rate is a bit over the edge. I know that from speaking with numerous travel agents, they to agree that RCCL policy is a bit over board.
I agree with the cruise line. What's next? Charge by the pound? Everyone rationalizes that their situation is different and want to be treated as such. If you don't like it, don't go. I have 4 kids and had to get 2 cabins. I could have tried to have us all in one cabin to save money,but since the cruise line has rules, I followed them. I suggest you do too! Something tells me that you probably won't tip the staff for your infant either.
Tom, your are further from the truth. I guess it is hard to have some people rationalize certain topics. Like I said, I have no issue paying for an infant, but gripe with the cruise line is that they are charging full rate. I have cruised many times. I avergae 2 cruises a year 10days each, I am not new to this form of vacation and I tip well above the suggested amount.
All that I am saying is that a newborn infant is different than a child who is 1 year of age.
I hope that you can see my point and not turn this thread into a bash! This is not what I am trying to get out of this.
Disney, Carnival and Princess all charge a reduce rate for infants, and would like some support for RCCL to do the same.
I understand your position and I support your family values to keep everyone together and not always drop them off on someone else when it may be inconvenient for you. However, I cruise to try and get away from certain distractions and babies (as cute as they may be) can be quite a distraction for other cruisers. Crying, diapers in the pool, etc... If the prices are lowered for infants, in a way, that is "Promoting" the ability to bring infants along which will increase the number of infants on every cruise which is the opposite of what I want to see on a cruise. If infants are charged the normal fare, it's hard for me to complain about them being a distraction. Same as smokers etc... I didn't mean to imply that you were "Cheap", but if someone is upset about a price for something, they usually tend to take it out when it comes to a gratuity and in the case of a cruise, that would hurt the staff who can least afford it.
I agree with the above posts..I think this may be RCI way of discouraging bringing a baby on board.
Awhile back I read a review posted on another board (it was either Cruise critic or cruisemates...maybe cruise addicts) anyway, the review was posted by a gentleman who borught his 9 month old infant on a cruise with him and his family (sounds similiar to your situation with the WHOLE familiy going on the cruise). Anyway, he had very little nice to say about his cruise...he stated numerous times that RCI staff did nothing to help his situation with his infant, such as having baby type food on board and easing the noise from the Promenade below his window so his infant could sleep. He just did not seem to have had a very good time, though he did state some positives to his cruise.
As a mother of a 9 month old infant myself...I would not take my darling on the boat with me...it would be a very difficult vacation...and I too would probably think the whole cruise was negative....this may be what RCI is trying to avoid.
(Just a complete side note, someone above posted something about how some moms think it is "OK" to breastfeed in public, even when covered by a blanket...why isn't this OK? It's perfectly natural!!
I haven't checked into the pricing for children so I don't really know what the cost is but I am sure there is a reason for it. PROFIT!!! The cruise lines are out to make money and not to provide free vacations. If children got to go free the cruises would be overloaded with the bring along friend and darling grandchildren.
Has anyone thought to check with Coast Guard rules on persons per room? An infant is a person - no matter what. I've had infants and yes, it seems as though "everyone is picking on us." But, I had to pay full price at an amusement park for my youngest daughter who wasn't even tall enough to ride 1/2 the rides. Rules are rules. I understand and sympathize with your frustrations. But someone said that if you need a room for 3, you are taking a room that someone else with 3 people could be paying for. There was someone else who I think was a bit harsh about "leaving the kids home" -- what the heck is a family vacation then??? There are cruise lines that don't allow any children - that's for you. If you choose to take your infant on this cruise, then you have to agree with the rules or don't go. Also, you mentioned that an infant is different from a one-year old. I don't mean to poke fun at you, but honey, you have a lot to learn! Just roll with it or don't go. But you will find that companies aren't going to pat you on the head because you had a baby. I have two kids and nobody cares! They are two more bodies. I'm not being harsh, just being true.
11/20/04 Voyager of the Seas
11/23/03 Carnival Paradise
01/10/02 Carnival Fantasy
11/20/04 Voyager of the Seas
11/23/03 Carnival Paradise
01/10/02 Carnival Fantasy
My wife and I have a 3 year old and 1 year old. We took our 3 year old on CCL and it was a nightmare traveling with a baby. The cabins do not have friges, you must take all the diapers, formula etc with you. God forbid you lose you luggage. The cruise line had diapers on board and charged..get this for a pack or #1 Huggies....$100.00..Heck we can them for 10 bucks at home. Major rip off. We were charged $560.00 for the baby for a 7 night cruise and the baby did not eat, drink or use anything on the ship. We had to bring our own portable crib because CCL did not have enough. We then took our family on HAL...big difference. The cabin had a bathtub for an average outside cabin, frig was rented for $2.00 per day. There was babysitting available and was excellent. But it is very stressful to take small kids on a cruise. We found that going to a resort is easier, cheaper (the kids go and eat free). My wife absolutely refuses to go away with the kids until they are older. Its just not a vacation. About breast feeding in public. Come on you stupid Americans whats wrong with it? Its not like mommy will whip out a boob in public. There is nothing wrong with breastfeeding in public. And about the crying, remember we were all babies at one time and we all cried. On the cruises we have taken...34..it was the older kids and adults who were yelling in the halls and keeping us awake....the cruise lines did nothing. When we do cruise again with the kids you can be sure its with Holland America....the kids program is top notch and not a kid drop off area....you gotta see it to believe it. CCL and RCCL have a lot to learn about families onboard. Just a thought.