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Old 01-16-2009, 08:43 AM
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We are leaving on AOS 2/1 and this will be our first time cruising as a family (3 kids- elementary age). We last cruised for our honeymoon 15 years ago on Celebrity. Any special tips or hints for us? We live in PR (military stationed here) so no issues with air, hotel, or transfers). I do have a question about drinks. We are not big soda drinkers and are considering not buying the soda card or maybe just getting one. I had heard from a recent cruiser that it was harder to access the tea, lemonade, fruit punch on the ship. Any thoughts on this?
Thanks in advance for any help!
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Old 01-16-2009, 08:56 AM
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Gabbyw:

We'll be on the same cruise! We've never had trouble getting something to drink, but if you think it's going to be a problem you can take whatever (non-alcoholic) drinks with you.

You picked a nice ship for your first cruise! Enjoy it.
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Old 01-16-2009, 09:57 AM
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The soda card only pays if you drink 4+ per day, and having the kids share a card is more or less teaching them it is okay to deceive or steal if it saves money (had a man in line behind me at a high school basketball game last night trying to convince a child who was loudly declaring he was 6 1/2 that he could still get in for a 5 y/o price--cool). We have had no problems getting lemonade or water--you do have to go into the windjammer and that isn't always super-convenient. There was water available at Cafe Prominade also--in dispensers with a stack of glasses nearby so you didn't have to ask for it. Dining room beverages were all charged for except coffee, tea, milk and water. Lemonade is not availabe in the dining room and soda required a fee or the soda card. Lots of people take one of those insulated mugs or a Nalgene from home and fill at the windjammer and toss in their bag for use in the pool area of whatever. Not a bad idea.
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Old 01-16-2009, 10:05 AM
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Thanks for the help so far. Just to clarify- we weren't planning to get one card and "milk it". My husband and I don't drink any soda and the kids only for a special treat. I think if water is readily available and we can get milk or lemonade we will be fine.
Any thoughts on +not to be missed+ or favorite things to do on Adventure of the Seas?
We are super excited!
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Old 01-16-2009, 12:45 PM
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We first cruised on a Voyager class ship with our kids when they were young teen and pre-teen. They liked the 70s night on the prominade (everyone dances a little, and it is for families) They like the serve yourself ice cream machines in a BIG way (Originally there were several locations around the ship, now some voyager class have this only available afternoons on the pool deck, check around). The kids liked to walk on deck 4-5 to the very front of the ship (heleport deck) when underway, you really get a bit blown around--thrilling to kids! There is under utilized shuffleboard on this deck as well, it gave the kids some time one on one with us and less people--mini breaks. Mini golf in the dark was a big deal, something not an option at home (if it is warm enough in Minnesota to Mini-golf it doesn't get dark until "bed-time"). People like the parades for the kids of all ages. My children's favorite times were developing personal relationships with the dining room waitstaff--they know more about the culture in India and Turkey than they ever learn in school (what's a favorite meal at home? Do many people have cars? How do people date? That got really interesting when they discovered our handsome waiter from India was in an arranged marriage) Look for anything in the cruise compass that says it is for families and if it interests any of you check it out.

Tip: There is adult only entertainment on the ship. Gameshows and comedians with sexual humor or bad language. You will not accidently get into these venues with the kids. Anything geared for adults is clearly indicated as such.

Go on the day you board to the welcome in the kid zone--they will tell you what is up for just kids--my kids never liked it or went, our friend's kids liked it so well they could hardly get them to go with the family. You stay with the kids at the welcome so you will have a feel for the staff as well after that, and get a tour of what's available. The kids will get age appropriate information in the room as to what is going on for kids and they can attend as much or little as they care to. Almost all kids programming is included in your fare, certain hours have a fee (as it is assumed you are needing a babysitter) and extra fee times are made clear in the information so no surprises. Whether your kids go or not they will get an age appropriate wrist band so that in the event of an emergency they can be united with you. If you take it off helpful staff around the ship will get you a new one as you could become separated in an emergency, kids club or not.

The rock climbing wall is fun--take pictures from the side--with the ocean in the view it looks like they are waaaay up there.

Most people will tell you the ice show is a don't miss--it will depend on the age/gender of the kids if they appreciate it. You will have to get (free) tickets for this, this is not a problem and I never heard of people who tried to get tickets at the appropriate time and were unable to--they do go though so watch your cruise compass for when to pick them up. The time and day you choose will be appropriate to your dinner seating.

If you go with a positive attitude, expecting this to be fun, it will be for you and your kids. Good Travel.
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Old 01-16-2009, 01:14 PM
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Well here are a few tips:

* Arrive early 11:30 am to 12:30 so you can board ship early, no lines and have some cookies and free lemonaid on the terminal.

* If the soda card is not an option you still have a few juice drinks you can enjoy free, they are limited but you can.

* If you have the route which include Aruba, go to Carlos and Charles



if you can go to the sail away buffet go to the top of the ship, here is the funny part, you can see a few cruisers running from carlos and charles just minutes before they close the ships gangway leaving them on the island.

* Also if you want to party during night,go to the pub on the stairs to the acuarium theme bar, I don't remember its name, but is near their formal restaurant.

* Also on 2006 they had a great show MOSAIC using vocal sampling insted of instruments is incredible.

* there is also Johny Rockets it hava a fee of $3.99, but still a good place to enjoy a Hamburger specially for the kids.

* once I read that someone use to make a reservation on the "portofino" restaurant the night they Sail away from Puerto Rico or one of the island so they can enjoy the view on a Romatic way, I don't know if you can reserve it the very first night of your cruise but I remember that the view of " El Morro" during night is WOW specially if it's an aniversary.
If you can do it from PR consider to do it on Aruba.
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Old 02-13-2009, 05:49 PM
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Would love to hear how you enjoyed your cruise. We are leaving on the same cruise in 3 weeks!
 
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