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Old 01-16-2013, 12:09 PM   #1
**eeyore**
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Cruising with an almost 3 year old? Will she have fun?

We are considering cruising with our 3 children - 8 year-old twins and an almost 3 year old (2 years, 10 months). We know the 8 yo's will have plenty to keep them entertained while on the boat with the kids club, but we are worried about if our youngest will be entertained enough. I'm thinking she might be bored in the nursery (she is used to playing with her older sisters), and I'm guessing there is no option to have her in the older kids club (she is fully potty trained, if that matters at all).

So, I guess I'm wondering what others' experiences have been with children this age. What did you and your child do to keep entertained while on the boat (we will have 2 at-sea days)?

TIA!
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Old 01-16-2013, 12:16 PM   #2
lanejudy
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While you can't necessarily plan that she'll be allowed to use the Club - once you are onboard, visit the Club during open house and discuss it with the staff there. They will watch her and evaluate how she functions in that setting. As long as she is fully potty trained (can do it ALL herself, no help dressing, etc.), and she is relatively close to being 3, they may allow her to use the Club. It may depend on how many children of each age group are on that particular cruise.

If they don't allow her to use the Club, you can bring her there during Open House hours (an adult must stay), and there are many other "family" activities about the ship throughout the day if she isn't enjoying the nursery.

Enjoy your cruise!
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Old 01-16-2013, 12:17 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by **eeyore** View Post
We are considering cruising with our 3 children - 8 year-old twins and an almost 3 year old (2 years, 10 months). We know the 8 yo's will have plenty to keep them entertained while on the boat with the kids club, but we are worried about if our youngest will be entertained enough. I'm thinking she might be bored in the nursery (she is used to playing with her older sisters), and I'm guessing there is no option to have her in the older kids club (she is fully potty trained, if that matters at all).

So, I guess I'm wondering what others' experiences have been with children this age. What did you and your child do to keep entertained while on the boat (we will have 2 at-sea days)?

TIA!
Yes, under 3s go in the nursery. HOWEVER, exceptions have been made. You can talk to the CMs at the Oceaneers Club to see if your DD will be given a trial run to judge socialiblity. One note, potty-trained here means, able to recognize that they need to use the toilet, undress, use the toilet, clean up, redress, and wash hands without assistance. CMs are not allowed to "help" during this process.

If the trial run is successful (and there is room in the Club/Lab) they will most likely allow her in the club. I will point out here, she will be sharing space with up to 12 year olds, will she be able to handle that?

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Old 01-16-2013, 12:23 PM   #4
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Most "almost 3s" who are fully trained are allowed to participate fully in the Club programming....and the big sisters will be able to be with her as much as they choose.

Of the CMs decide that she is not ready (unlikely with big sisters!), you can still take her into the Club during "open house" hours.

I suspect she will do great, in part because of the older sibs. Kids at that age are a mixed group. Some love all the characters, some only like face characters (afraid of fur), and some don't want to have anything to do with any of them. There are lots of family activities that you can do as a group. She'll probably be a lot more into them when she sees her sisters participating.

And yes, I think she'll be bored in the nursery...but if she were mine, I probably wouldn't plan on using the nursery much.
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Old 01-16-2013, 12:25 PM   #5
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We went last year when my daughter was 2 weeks before her 3rd birthday, it was great because she was free for the cruise but since she was fully trained and so close to her 3rd birthday they said she could go in the kids club. I think when I called they said either eithin a month or maybe two months of her bday and fully trained. She was scared at first and I was alittle nervous leaving her with alot of big kids but she did have fun and we only would do an hour at a time. I did gte paged to pick her up twice, one time she locked herself in the bathroom and was crying and the other time she bumped heads with another kid and was upset but the CM were really nice to her and they all remembered her and my sons names everytime we were there. My daughter loves princesses so this made the trip more amazing for her!
We leave this coming weekend for another sailing on the Dream and both kids are sooo exicted about the kids club! Let me know if you have any specific questions since we were in the same spot last year
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Old 01-16-2013, 12:45 PM   #6
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I'm SO happy to see this post! I was literally about to initiate one on the SAME topic.

When we sail, it will be just one month before my DD's third birthday. Yet, she is well socialized, potty trained, and a little too "with it" to go to the nursery. Not that I was planning to take her to the nursery much (or at all) but I would like for her to experience that group play atmosphere onboard.

Thanks for all of the suggestions here!
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Old 01-16-2013, 01:14 PM   #7
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2 cruises

Our youngest DD who is about to turn 4 has been on cruises since she was 2 in the nursery and then last year in the Club/lab. As long as they are potty trained, you will be fine. Ours is fearless but did find it more comfortable to have her big Sis around to ease her in the club at times. Sometimes drop off was difficult though we usually had her with us most of the time.

We DID not have her with us in the MDR except for desert after the first night. She could not handle the long meals....I would also go pick her up early the nights we knew they were going to do a show, like AP.

She loved the character meetsin the club like storytime, etc.
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Old 01-16-2013, 01:24 PM   #8
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Kids that are close to the shift-over birthday can be evaluated by the manager of the club in question, if there is room, to determine if moving up or down is appropriate. DD boarded the ship as a two-year-old, fully potty trained, and experienced in holding her own with older kids due to her attendance at a mixed-age classroom Montessori school. She was given a Mickey band after only a few minutes of observation.

If there's any way you can push the cruise to your child being 2 yrs and 11 months as opposed to 10 months, that would be even better.
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Old 01-16-2013, 01:28 PM   #9
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We went on the Dream last year when my twin daughters were 2 years 8 months old. They spent time in the nursery and LOVED it. They cried several times when we took them out because they did not want to leave. They were not old enough for the Club but I don't know that they could have enjoyed it any more than they did the nursery. They were never bored on the cruise. Nemo's Reef was awesome. I was really surprised at how attentive they were in the shows. They came away with a love of Maleficent!
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:17 PM   #10
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Wow, thanks for all the helpful replies! I will talk it over with my husband tonight and see what he thinks, but it sounds like our youngest would manage to have plenty of fun - even if she isn't allowed in the older kids' club. Sounds like there are plenty of family activities we can do with her while on the boat. Thanks so much!
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Old 01-16-2013, 04:50 PM   #11
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Both my kids went around the 2 year 10 month makr and they were some of our best vacations.

They were both potty trained and social so went to the club and loved it. In fact one year we had trouble getting my daughter out of the club.

The only challeneg I had, with both kids, was the Pirate Deck party it is way too late and even with a forced nap they didn't make it through it or got cranky. One of the cruises it was the night of Cast Away Cay and may daughter was wiped out by dinner and slept through. It was our last cruise where we all finally ended up going as a family as opposed to doing a baby swap of approach.
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:15 PM   #12
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When we go in April my son will be 2 weeks shy of turning 3 & fully trained. I am sure he would LOVE the club & to be with his 9 year old brother. Socially he would be fine, but to give us some parent time I booked 2 hours per night @ the nursery incase he cannot go to the club due to space/number issues as I still want a few hours of adult time & dinner without the boys.
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:40 PM   #13
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My daughter (2 years 6 months) will be hitting Gold Castaway Club status a couple months after she turns 3. She LOVES the "Mickey Boat" so much we keep going back. There is plenty to do outside of the kids club. From swimming in the pool, hanging out with characters, dance parties, watching movies, and other family activites. Every child is different but DD never had a problem with finding something to do at the nursery. They have a tv that plays Disney shows and movies that they can watch if they are too tired or don't want to play with the toys.
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:11 PM   #14
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Just a bit of a warning for those saying you know your 2 and 3 years old will love being in the Club.

My DD turned 3 one month before we cruised and was completely potty trained. She is in daycare and usually very outgoing and social. She loved being in the Club during the Open House times, but refused to go without me or DH. She wouldn't even go with her 7 year old brother. We tried about 3 times leaving her and we were paged every time because she was crying uncontrollably. At that point we gave up on it. I felt like it was her vacation, too and I didn't want her to be miserable or stressed. DH and I had no alone time together at all. We even had to cancel our Palo reservation. The counselors in the club were great and they really tried to make it work. We made the best of it and it was a wonderful FAMILY vacation!

I hope it works out better for all of you, but be prepared that it may not.
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:28 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melissa S
My daughter (2 years 6 months) will be hitting Gold Castaway Club status a couple months after she turns 3. She LOVES the "Mickey Boat" so much we keep going back. There is plenty to do outside of the kids club. From swimming in the pool
Since it came up, only potty-trained kids are allowed in the pools. So not everyone in the nursery will get to do that. DD hated the splash zone while she was still in the nursery and only liked it once she was eligible for the pool and clubs. Go figure. I'm hoping if I get DS in the water as soon as our YMCA will allow (next month) he will be more amiable to the splash zone on the WBPC.
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