Believe it or not, about 20 million people take a cruise each year and that includes a cruise infant. If you’ve recently had a baby, you might think that just because you have a kid you won’t be able to go on a cruise.
However, that doesn’t have to be the case. If you can’t find a sitter or your baby is too small to leave with someone else, you’ll need to know how to go on a cruise with an infant. Read on to learn more!
Paying For Your Baby on the Cruise
If you are going to take your baby on a cruise with you, you’ll also have to budget money for your infant.
You will have to pay for them, and you probably won’t get a discount on it as well. Normally there isn’t a discount because there is still a lot of work on the ship to care for the baby.
However, you obviously won’t have to pay for things once you get them on board, like buying them cocktails or expensive dinners.
Some cruise lines offer a deal for kids to sale free, so before you book a cruise, make sure that you do your research before booking a cruise.
Check the Food Options Beforehand
Finding food for you and your partner may be easy, but you will also have to make sure the cruise line offers food for your new baby.
Some cruise lines, like Cunard and Disney, offer puree food or mash. Other cruises like Royal Caribbean and Carnival, don’t offer food for babies.
This is why you should research the cruise line before you book. If the cruise line doesn’t offer baby food at the restaurants, you can always bring your own jarred baby food. You want to make sure that you have enough food to sustain your baby for the whole trip.
You should bring a little bit extra as well in case something happens like you lose some of it or the cruise takes longer than you anticipated.
If your baby is still drinking milk or formula, you can check to see if the cruise ship offers any certain type of milk. You can also bring your own milk onboard. Most cabins have a refrigerator so that you can store some of the breast milk as well.
Make sure that you bring any utensils and bottles for your baby as well as the cruise line won’t be able to provide these.
Request a Playpen for Your Infant
Most cabins don’t come with a crib for your infant, so you will need to request a small, portable crib for your baby.
When you are booking your cruise, you can request your crib then. You can sleep with your baby in the bed, but this may mess up their sleeping schedule. If you don’t want them to sleep in a new bed, you can also bring your own portable crib.
If your child is a little bit older, they could sleep on a pullout sofa, but again, you should check to see if there is one in the room before you book it. Most cruise ships don’t offer bed rails for the beds either.
Just like you would make sure you have all your documentation and passport, you should also bring some documentation for your baby.
You may not need to get them a passport, but you should bring your child’s government-issued birth certificate. You can show the birth certificate at check-in and check out, but you probably won’t need a passport.
Consider Babysitting Options
While you’re on the cruise, you and your partner may want to enjoy yourselves and have a little bit of fun as well.
Some cruises offer options for babysitting so you can enjoy yourself for a little bit. Some cruise lines will offer to watch your child in your cabin, but most of the kids have to be over a year old to qualify for the program.
There are some cruise lines that offer nurseries, and you can drop your kid off in a group daycare type of setting.
When booking your cruise, make sure that you reserve a spot in the babysitting option early because it could fill up early.
Plan Your Packing
When you’re packing, you should make sure that you make a list of all the things you will need for your baby.
You should also strategize what items you pack in which bag. Most bags don’t arrive in your room until later that night, so you should make sure that you pack some things like diapers and bottles in your hand luggage so that you can have them with you at all times.
Don’t Have a Tight Itinerary
It can be tempting to plan a bunch of activities for your cruise, but if you’re taking your baby with you, you may want to leave some wiggle room in your schedule.
You need to make sure that your baby has enough rest so that they aren’t cranky all the time. If they are cranky, then chances are likely that the parents will be cranky as well.
Sit down with your partner and decide what you really want to do on the trip and make sure you plan enough rest time for your infant in between activities.
Plan a Cruise with an Infant Today
Taking a cruise with an infant can be a challenging thing, but it’s not impossible. Following these tips and learning what to do and not do can really help the whole cruise go smoothly with your brand new baby.
If you feel like you are ready for your next adventure, book a cruise through us today!