Tips to Keep Your Kids Under Control and Happy While on a Cruise

I've never been on a cruise, and to be honest, I have no plans on going on one. But I know many people who find this to be a great way to spend a vacation, often with family get togethers as part of a cruise. But once you add kids to the mix things get complicated, as they do on any family vacation (as I discovered on my trip to Bulgaria). Here's how you can help things go as smoothly as possible with kids on a cruise.

If you have ever booked a family-friendly cruise, you have likely seen a few frustrating situations. This includes things like stampedes of children going down the halls, splashes at overfilled pools, dropped snacks everywhere, and bad behavior in the buffet line.

You shouldn’t blame these scenes from “kids gone wild” on the cruise line itself. While most cruise lines have and enforce certain conduct policies, it is still the responsibility of the parents to make sure their children are abiding by the rules. This is true for cruises to Puerto Rico, Alaska, or anywhere else you may go.

If you plan to take a cruise with your kids in the near future, even if it is a kid-friendly cruise, use the tips and information below to help ensure they mind their manners and have a great time.

Choose the Right Ship and Schedule

Choosing a cruise that doesn’t offer kids’ activities or programming can cause bad behavior and boredom. So can an itinerary that includes too many days at sea. For example, your teenagers may roam around the boat searching for something to do while kids get bored and act out. It’s a good idea to find a cruise line that offers itineraries that are full of activities, including family-friendly ports, or have your children pick the activities that interest them. Hopefully, this will help them act more behaved while on the cruise.

Modern cruises have non-stop activities for children; however, not all activities and programs are created equal. They run the gamut from smaller and more personalized programs to those that include a teen disco. Some cruises even offer entertainment in the evening that the entire family can enjoy, while others offer late-night childcare so parents can enjoy their vacation time. Be sure you choose a cruise ship that offers the amenities and personality that suit your family to ensure a successful and fun vacation for everyone.

Make the Rules Known

Be sure that your kids know what you expect from them. If it is a family vacation, make it clear that everyone will have fun and that curfews will be stretched. However, you still need to make it clear that they need to be on their best behavior.

Some good rules to establish include no cursing, shoving, pushing, or running in public areas, and saying please and thank you is a must. It’s also important to make sure they know they should not cut in line, shout in the halls, or throw food while eating. If the rules are broken, they should also know there will be consequences.

If you or someone else on the cruise catches them not behaving properly, make sure they know what will happen. If your teens miss curfew, they should be grounded or face other consequences the next night.

Make Sure Your Kids Know the Rules Established by the Cruise Line

Before departing for your cruise, be sure that you and your entire family have read the code of conduct established by the cruise line. Most of these will outline the guidelines that children need to follow while on board. Along with kids behaving properly, parents need to do their part and always supervise them.

Cruise lines also typically have established rules and guidelines for teens, too. If issues arise, your child may even be banned from certain activities for the remainder of the trip. Knowing the rules and guidelines established by the cruise line is essential to ensure that you and your kids follow the rules and don’t have any issues.

Making the Most of Your Time on a Cruise with Kids

As you can see, when it comes to going on a cruise with kids, there are certain rules that you must follow. Be sure to keep the tips and information here in mind, which will help ensure that everyone at your party has a great time. Being informed and knowing the rules is a must, so keep the guidelines above in mind to do this.

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal

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