As cruising becomes more popular, more and more families are taking holidays at sea. In fact, Cruise Lines International Association reports that some 1.5 million kids now are cruising every year. That’s no surprise when you think about what cruising offers for the whole brood – from hair-raising waterslides to bumper cars as well as dedicated zones for everything from pre-schoolers to teens. Still not convinced? Here are five reasons cruises are perfect for families.
The Kids Will be Entertained (Whatever the Weather)
It’s no secret that happy children make for happy families. And cruising – more than any other holiday – is designed to keep kids happy. Most cruise lines offer supervised kids’ programs for different ages during days at sea that are absolutely free. Younger children can meet cartoon characters on ships such as Mickey Mouse (Disney) and Shrek (Royal Caribbean), while older children and teens will enjoy specially designed activities such as karaoke, movie-making and even mocktail classes. Beyond the organised activities, you’ll find everything from rock climbing walls to zip-lines on modern cruise ships.
There’s Plenty For Parents, Too
It goes without saying that the kids will be happy, but cruise ships are also a kind of Disneyland for parents. With celebrity chef restaurants, spas and bars as well as Broadway-quality stage shows there’s enough to keep adults entertained day and night for weeks on end. Many ships, such as Carnival and Princess vessels, also have adults-only zones with twin lounge chairs, jumbo-sized whirlpools and bars with top-shelf drops.
You’ll Get More Bang for Your Holiday Buck
One of the biggest shocks on a family holiday can be the bill for all those lemonades your older children ordered poolside without your permission. Paying upfront for all of your accommodation (and most of your food and beverages) as well as all-day programs means you’ll be better off. Just be sure to check the fine print of any deal so you know what’s included.
There’s Food to Keep Everyone Happy
While some cruise lines have high-end restaurants, there’s no shortage of burger places, pizza joints and sushi bars on almost every ship to keep the smallest members of the clan happy. There are, of course, also kids’ menus galore.
It’s a Hassle-Free Way to See the World
The great joy of cruising is that you’re transported to a new place every day or two – but only need to unpack once. Parents will understand how much more relaxing it is not to have to pack and repack for a family on holiday. Instead, a cruise is a hassle-free way to see the world with organised shore tours or the option of exploring a destination on your own. And if someone would rather stay put when the ship is in dock, there’s plenty to keep them occupied.