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Old 09-08-2012, 03:11 PM   #1
loricdietzel
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Nursey on the Dream (and kids club)

We will be going on a 4-night cruise in October on the Dream. I will have a 23-mo old and a 4 1/2 year old. Hubby and I would like some time to ourselves since we I can count how many times we have been without the kids in the past five years. HOWEVER, we also want to enjoy the cruise with our kids and take them to a show as well as take the 4 1/2 yr old on the aquaduck.

When would be a good time to sign up the 23-mo old for the nursery? We have never been on a cruise and have no idea when ideal times would be. We would like to prebook the hours. Also, if we prebook and don't send him during that time do we just pay the $6 as if we were there or is there an additional penalty fee? (Not that we would want to pay and not use it, I just don't know how ds will do as he tends to not like nurseries and it is hard to know what we are going to do when when we have never been on a cruise. Plus we don't want him to miss out on something he would enjoy (like characters) because we prebooked him for the nursery.) Also, if they have space availability, do they allow drop ins? For example, if we decide we would like to have a drink by ourselves and the nursery is not full, will they let us drop our child off? (With paying of course!) If he is there during a meal time how does that work since he will need to eat and definitely is not eating baby food?

As for the older child, how does kids club work? Do we have to pre-sign her up for it or is it just a drop off (again she will be 4 1/2, but is very outgoing.) How hard will it be to get her in the same time as we are in the nursery? When is the best times for her to go?

Lastly, are the kids club and nursery open on port days? I know we will want to enjoy CC with the whole family, but I heard things are limited for the younger set on Naussa, so we probably will be on the ship half the time that day.

Any advice or suggestions will be appreciated! Thanks!!!!!
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Old 09-08-2012, 03:29 PM   #2
kcashner
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OK...Oceaneer's CLub is easy. You can register the child on line in advance. All this does is to save time later. In the terminal or shortly after you board, you will go to the OC and get a wrist band that the child must wear while in the programming (they can put it on an ankle if it bugs them on the wrist). No band, no playing. At the time of registration you will specify who can pick up the child and establish a password which will confirm that they are permitted to take the child. They will also need a KTTW card to prove their identity.

OK, you take your kid to the OC at any time during the open hours. YOU can keep their KTTW card so they don't lose it....they don't need it once inside. You can pick up at any time as well. No advance scheduling needed. On Castaway day, the programming takes place on the island, but works the same way.

The Navigator will list activities planned for the various age groups. There is also free play time.

Nursery--totally different animal. Nursery time must be booked in advance. However, the staff will work with you to change your times if you wish. They do allow unscheduled drop offs on some sailings on a "space available" basis. If you have reserved time and don't show up, you will be charged. If you call, they will often allow you to reschedule the time.

How to choose times--if you are doing Palo/Remy, or spa, book those times. Then just pick some times. Characters are out primarily around dinner times (starting like 30 minutes before dinner). Yes, there are afternoon times too, but you can catch most or all around dinner. If you want aquaduck time with the older (and the other parent isn't taking care of the little one), book an hour one afternoon. Of course, you could do the duck while the little one is napping under the care of the other parent.

Both are open on port days.
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Old 09-08-2012, 09:02 PM   #3
DisMom1981
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Nursery on the Fantasy was awesome. You can cancel up to four hours in advance. We never had problems booking times or just dropping off. We booked some time in the middle of the day so we could enjoy adult pool, some dinner times, and a day for Palo brunch. We also left our baby (was only twelve months) when we went to CC since the wave phones will work and the baby didn't walk yet....there would have been nothing for her to do. My 3 1/2 year old was able to stay the whole day! Be sure to have a diaper bag and label bottles, blankets, cups, etc.
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:15 PM   #4
kgundyfire
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We went on the Disney Dream last September. DH, DD 9, DS 3 1/2. Our whole family went, so each of the kids had a playmat that was the same age of them - we had a total of 6 kids ages 3 -9 with us. We were really planning on having some adult time with the kids being in the kids area - not all the time, but at least once in a while. The older kids did fine, but didn't really want to be in there a lot. The 3 year olds, didn't do so well in there. We only got to have 1 adult night, and we barely got that. We figured that as long as the kids would be with their cousin, they would be ok - but there just wasn't enough structure for the 3 year olds to feel comfortable enough to stay in there. So I just want to let you know, that your older child may not do very well in the kid area. I am sure the nursery is fine. We are going on an 8 night cruise in January, and our DS will be 5 than, so we are hoping he will do better in the kids area and want to stay this time so we can do some more adult things. We will also have a baby that will be about 13 wks old, so who knows if we will get any "date nights" on the cruise this time either. LOL.
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Old 09-09-2012, 12:07 AM   #5
loricdietzel
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I have a very outgoing 4yr old who is not used to tons of structure (she was never in daycare or anything like that) so I think she will do fine. She is also used to hanging out with older kids so I think she will fit in. But thank you for the heads up! I will keep my ears open for her not liking it. We don't plan on her going there often since our ds has to be in the nursery (and I am much more concerned about him not doing well in there) and we have to prebook the nursery and pay for it separately.
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Old 09-09-2012, 12:14 PM   #6
DisMom1981
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kgundyfire
We went on the Disney Dream last September. DH, DD 9, DS 3 1/2. Our whole family went, so each of the kids had a playmat that was the same age of them - we had a total of 6 kids ages 3 -9 with us. We were really planning on having some adult time with the kids being in the kids area - not all the time, but at least once in a while. The older kids did fine, but didn't really want to be in there a lot. The 3 year olds, didn't do so well in there. We only got to have 1 adult night, and we barely got that. We figured that as long as the kids would be with their cousin, they would be ok - but there just wasn't enough structure for the 3 year olds to feel comfortable enough to stay in there. So I just want to let you know, that your older child may not do very well in the kid area. I am sure the nursery is fine. We are going on an 8 night cruise in January, and our DS will be 5 than, so we are hoping he will do better in the kids area and want to stay this time so we can do some more adult things. We will also have a baby that will be about 13 wks old, so who knows if we will get any "date nights" on the cruise this time either. LOL.
I had the same with my 3 1/2 yo. He was much better suited for the nursery. We took him to the clubs during open houses for fun but I didn't think he would self advocate and would get lost in the mix alone in there. I guess you just have to feel it out on day 1 since each LO is different!

We were also told by the nursery that once a child was registered you couldn't change your mind and send them to clubs. However this conflicted with what clubs told us..... That they could be registered for club and nursery! I think there is a lot of new staff and maybe policy too.....but we were really happy with the Fantasy nursery team!
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August 2014 Trip Report (In progress) http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3324325

Pre -Trip Report for August 2014
http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3215904

July 2012 Disney Fantasy
August 2013 Walt Disney World - Pop Century
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