7 toddler-friendly cruise lines for the best family adventures at sea
These cruise lines will make your little one smile.
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From toddler-friendly activities and playgroups to nappy deliveries and child-minding services, these days, cruising with a toddler could not be easier.
So if you’re planning to bring your little wonder onboard, check out these cruise lines that go the extra mile to treat your child as the “very important toddler” that they are.
1. Disney Cruise Line via CruiseAway
Booking a Disney Cruise with your toddler is a no-brainer.
The ships have nurseries for kids younger than three, practically everything is Disney-themed and there are character meet-and-greets too. Disney Cruise Line provides diaper disposal units, cribs and playpens upon request.
2. P&O Cruises
Older toddlers can break out of the nursery and benefit from P&O Cruises' toddler/preschool-friendly youth clubs.
The Turtle Cove children's playground is geared at two- to six-year-olds and features a range of age-appropriate fun and educational activities. Toddlers two years or older are welcome on shore excursions and will be charged children's prices.
3. MSC Cruises
Free travel for children younger than 12 is not the only perk of travelling with MSC Cruises, but it sure doesn't hurt.
MSC Cruises offers an extensive range of services for babies and toddlers including baby care services and a baby laundry service.
4. Norwegian Cruise Line via CruiseAway
Norwegian Escape features the Guppies Nursery. It's the cruise line's first ever nursery for babies and toddlers aged six months to three years.
Toddler facilities within the Escape's nursery include a room with sensory based toys, an open playroom and a quiet room for sleeping.
With a Doctor Seuss theme running across its fleet, Carnival Cruise Line knows how to take care of its littlest guests.
Dubbed the "fun" cruise ship, there is something for everyone onboard a Carnival Cruise. Tots aged two to five will be entertained with an extensive lineup of games, arts and crafts and parties.
6. Royal Caribbean International
Tots receive the royal treatment on a Royal Caribbean cruise, each and every time.
And so do parents, who can rest easy knowing that Royal Caribbean has it all sorted for them. Nappies and baby food can all be pre-ordered and delivered to your stateroom the for the ultimate peace of mind.
7. Celebrity Cruises via CruiseAway
Have an award-winning cruise experience for the whole family, including toddlers, with Celebrity Cruises.
Join your little one at Celebrity Cruises' dedicated playgroup Toddler Time and meet other parents as your little one plays with their newfound friends. Celebrity Cruises offers changing tables and baby wipes in bathrooms for added convenience.
Are there discounts for toddlers onboard?
Most cruises do not offer discounted rates for toddlers, however many do offer discounted rates for third and fourth guests sharing the same stateroom as two fare-paying guests. Some port excursions will allow toddlers aged two or younger to travel free when on a parent’s lap. Discounted shore excursions may be available for children aged 2-12 years old.
Family-friendly cruises often have child menus that cater to its younger guests. In certain dining areas these meals are included in the fare price.
Cruises for toddlers compared
|Toddler club||Nursery/babysitting service||Discounted room rate|
|Disney Cruise Line||Yes, for kids aged 6 months to 3 years old||USD$9 per hour||Yes, when sharing the room with two full-fare paying guests|
|P&O Cruises||Yes, for kids aged 2+||Group childminding is available, but no one-on-one or in-stateroom minding||Yes, when the child is the 3rd or 4th guest in a room and the child is under 13|
|MSC Cruises||Yes, for kids aged 1-3||Childminding is available at the Mini Club, but no one-on-one or in-stateroom minding||Children under 12 travel free|
|Norwegian Cruise LIne||Yes, for kids aged 6 months to 3 years old||Guppies Nursery is US$20 per time block||Yes, when the child is the 3rd to the 8th guest|
|Carnival Cruise Line||Yes, for kids aged 2-5||Childminding is available for kids aged 12 months to 11 years old for a fee||Yes, when the child is the 3rd or 4th guest in a room|
|Royal Caribbean International||Yes, for kids aged 5-35 months old||Available for kids aged 6-36 months old from USD$6 per hour||Yes, when the child is the 3rd or 4th guest in a room|
|Celebrity Cruises||Yes, for kids aged 6 months to 3 years old||Available for kids aged 6-36 months old from USD$6 per hour||Yes, when the child is the 3rd or 4th guest in a room (select sailings only)|
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