Congratulations on your decision to take a family cruise vacation!
We travel agents get this question a LOT from parents with little ones. Generally the answer to this question is "yes". There are however, several points that you may want to consider when it comes to sleeping like a baby when you're all on vacation together.
Getting infants to sleep through the night is something exhausted parents dream about!
Absolutely!...and mom & dad can actually enjoy a fun family vacation too.
This is certainly a hot button topic for many parents. At Vacationkids we get this question ALL the time. The short answer is...Yes. "TECHNICALLY" babies and toddlers under the age of 24 months can fly for "Free". Airlines and travel agents use the industry word "LAPCHILD" to describe a baby or toddler flying seated in their parent's lap. Everyone likes the idea of a "free ride" but there are some VERY important points parents need to consider when deciding whether or not to buy an airline seat for their baby. We want our parents to be informed so that they can make the best decisions regarding their child's safety and finances so we'll do our best here to outline this important topic.
A family cruise with a baby or toddler who is not yet potty trained comes with it's own set of challenges. One planning issue that young parents need to keep in mind when selecting a cruise ship is whether or not your child will be allowed to use the pool. Cruise lines have specific health rules regarding the use of swim diapers in cruise ship pools. Often it depends on the facilities available on specific cruise ships.
Just in case you've been living in the dark ages, a swim diaper is a disposable diaper made from a special material the will supposedly absorb poop and pee but will not swell up with pool water while your baby or toddler is swimming. Of course there are also old school renditions of swim diapers which can be a new specially designed swimsuit to a cloth diaper and rubber pants. According to the Center for Disease Control any swim diaper offers a false sense of security because they can leak.
Urine is not really the issue. It surprises many people to learn that urine from a healthy person is sterile and germ free.
The problem is poop. Fecal material contains many germs that can cause illness...Ecoli, guardia and particularly Cryptosporidium which is a chlorine resistant parasite that can cause diarrhea. If you're baby or toddler enters a pool with a leaky, poopy diaper then your child and everyone else is at risk.
Not all cruise lines or cruise ships will allow babies and toddlers in their main pools. Newer family friendly cruise ships have been designed with specific baby pools. These pool are smaller in size with a separate, dedicated filtration system allowing for easy and effective sanitation. Splash parks offer babies and toddlers cool, wet fun. In a splash park, diapers are not totally submerged as they would be in a regular pool so it does help to prevent the spread of germs.
Here is a list of swim diaper rules from each of the family cruise lines....
Toddler friendly vacations have lots of moving parts, just like toddlers themselves. These kids are always on the move. We define "toddlers" here as children to be between the ages of 2 and 4 years of age. By travel industry definition, they are old enough to require the purchase of their own airline seat but too young for most kids clubs that start at age 4. Parents taking their toddlers on vacation are generally looking for....