I had some concerns about crowds prior to our Mariner Of The Seas cruise in 2004. I was quite surprised in that the ship never seemed crowded - and they said the ship had set a record for bodies aboard that week. The only time the crowd was noticeable was in the Windjammer on embarkation day and on port mornings when it seemed everyone felt the buffet was the only breakfast available. We started doing all breakfasts in the dining room after that. But otherwise the ship felt no different than any other one with regard to crowds.
The Freedom has more people but I feel confident the design will handle them in the same manner as the Voyager-class vessels.
Enjoyed your review of the Elation. My wife, Mercedes and I have not ventured outside of RCCL as of yet. We want to read more about other cruiselines before we go on one. We really are very pleased with RCCL.
I have been checking into Holland America because one day, when the four boys are doing their own thing, I would like to go on a 105 day around the world cruise.
I think I will start a new discussion to see if anyone has taken this cruise and how they liked it.
The reason I am writing this to you is I was very concerned about letting my boys run the ship. We have taken them on a cruise before, but had to check on them all the time.
They had different check in times and check out times with the cruiseline. One was with his group and another was alone or with us. It was too much. We only caught one show the entire cruise. We never even went to the formal dining area. We always ate at Windjammers.
We did enjoy the cruise, but plan to make the most of it this time now that the boys are older.
I will do the walkie-talkie thing and hope for the best. Like you said I worry about the intoxicated cruiser harming or harrassing any kids. I haven't heard of any problems but you don't hear about everything that happens on these cruises.
Well, once again, enjoyed your article.
Maybe we will bump into you and your four boys on a cruise some day.
My boys are 22(did not go on Elation, going on FOS), 16, 14, 11 and 7. I had no worries about them on their own, although the 11 year old wasn't allowed to until day two or three, when I was sure he knew where he was going. The 7 year old would make quick runs to the cabin from the pool or Tiffany's but I had my eye on the clock at all times. The thing is that all they did was walk around and report to me where everyone else was. All day. "Mom, Nick's in the gym with Grandma. Will's at Tiffany's. Mom. Mom. Are you sleeping. Watch me on the slide. Hugh just got out of the pool. Nick just left the gym. Will is walking out of Tiffany's." Walkie talkies would have been extreme overkill. Basically my 11 year old was on endless missions to report back to me where everyone was.
Maybe it's just me but I never had a moment's worry. We left two kids in CC when we went ashore, knowing full well the 11 year old would be walking around on his own- no worries.
Dave, you make me feel special, but I have 0 juice with the cruise lines. In fact, I believe they would rather see me fall off the face of the Earth...VBG. I don't think there are many sites where cruisers can express their true opinions and get them published on sites without fear of retribution from advertisers. I am not sure that will ever change with CruiseReviews.com
I am so looking forward to reading your review of the Freedom!
We MUST get a video review attachment!! If not of Dave, then of any mature sole that is brave enough.
Will look forward to it!
Pacific Princess Sept/01 - Family in Pacific Northwest
RCI Radiance Of The Seas April/06 - 25th Annversary in Panama Canal
HA Volendam Sept/06 - Dad's Surprise in Alaska
Crown Princess April/07 - Fun In The Sun in Eastern Caribbean
RCI Brilliance Of The Seas March/08 - Here We Go Again
RCI Vision Of The Seas Dec/08 - Joining Sis On Her Redneck Honeymoon in Mexico