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Old 06-23-2012, 02:51 PM   #1
flipflops42
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Question Teen's First Cruise

DS (14) and I are taking a trip together on Disney Fantasy on July 21st to celebrate this new journey into high school. I know he loves me, but I know he doesn't want to hang out with mom 24/7. He has never cruised before; and I want him to have a great trip. Any suggestions?

(I am very protective and I am trying to loosen up) I know that Vibe is safe and monitored. However, would you let your teen wander the ship alone?
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Old 06-23-2012, 03:37 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by flipflops42 View Post
DS (14) and I are taking a trip together on Disney Fantasy on July 21st to celebrate this new journey into high school. I know he loves me, but I know he doesn't want to hang out with mom 24/7. He has never cruised before; and I want him to have a great trip. Any suggestions?

(I am very protective and I am trying to loosen up) I know that Vibe is safe and monitored. However, would you let your teen wander the ship alone?
At that age kids are allowed to come and go as they please, without having to sign out, so it will be up to you what he can/cannot do. By the time our son was 14 he had been on several DCL cruises, so we had no problem letting go where he wanted. HOWEVER...... he had to let us know where he was going and with whom (if anyone). He liked to hang out on the sports deck and play basketball, which was fine with us.
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Old 06-23-2012, 03:46 PM   #3
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Some tips:
1. Make sure he goes to the Vibe planning time on the first night. The time will be in the Navigator, usually around 10pm. The kids get together, do a little mixer/get to know you and then plan activities for the cruise. My DS was 15 on our last cruise and made his friends for the cruise that night.

2. Each stateroom has Wave phones that can call or txt. Our DS had to txt whenever he changed locations so we knew where he was. It was quick and simple. We trust our DS but we did pop in from time to time to make sure he was where he said he was, pool, movies, etc.

3. We make a rule that no one, kids included, is allowed in our stateroom, and he is definitely not allowed in anyone else's stateroom, even for a minute.
Enjoy!
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Old 06-23-2012, 04:24 PM   #4
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Some tips:

3. We make a rule that no one, kids included, is allowed in our stateroom, and he is definitely not allowed in anyone else's stateroom, even for a minute.
Enjoy!
That has been one of our rules as well, and strictly enforced.

I'm going to miss cruising with our DS when he was younger..... our upcoming August cruise on the Dream will be his first since he turned 18 and can go anywhere on the ship. We do have reservations for his first brunch and dinner at Palo and we can't wait to share it with him.

To flipflops42...... enjoy your cruise and try not to over plan (been there, done that, not doing it any more). Take things as they come and enjoy your time with your DS. They grow up WAY too fast!
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Old 06-23-2012, 05:36 PM   #5
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I went on th magic when I was 14. My mom gave me a walkie talkie and I was required to respond whenever necessary. I also had a rule I had to be back every single night on time for dinner.
There really isn't anything took terrible he can be doing. I usually came back to the room before 4-5 am. As long as mom had a way to reach me she let me be out.
I am now 17 so she completely doesn't care what I do on the ships, and our cruise next week I don't have to have a walkie talkie.
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Old 06-23-2012, 06:13 PM   #6
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On my last cruise, my curfew was 11:00. I would call them and sometimes, I would be with the characters
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Old 06-23-2012, 06:49 PM   #7
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Your DS is going to have a blast. The WAVE phones really help to keep in touch with teens. The VIBE has many activities for the teens. Last year, on most days, I would not see my DD until we were getting ready for supper. We are going on the same cruise as you and DD is so excited. I agree with going to the VIBE on the first night so your son can meet people. After a year, my DD still talks to a girl she met their last cruise. Teens who go to VIBE get different Keys To The World cards so try to go by on the afternoon on embarkation days so your DS can get his card. Teens need this card to get in the club. Hope to see you there.
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Old 06-23-2012, 07:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flipflops42 View Post
DS (14) and I are taking a trip together on Disney Fantasy on July 21st to celebrate this new journey into high school. I know he loves me, but I know he doesn't want to hang out with mom 24/7. He has never cruised before; and I want him to have a great trip. Any suggestions?

(I am very protective and I am trying to loosen up) I know that Vibe is safe and monitored. However, would you let your teen wander the ship alone?
It depends on your teen and your own tolerance for risk.

My teen walks (and skates) to and from school, to shops and otherwise all around the neighborhood alone. I figure the Fantasy is at least as safe (and probably safer) than here, so yes, he has run of the ship. I don't even worry about curfew unless it's early wakeup the next day (due to an excursion - he can stay up late with friends the last night) . I don't even make him take a Wave phone - he knows to show up in time to change for dinner.

Now I admit, I was raised in a different era. It wasn't any less dangerous than today's world, but you didn't have the media scaring you 24x7, so we kids could pretty much go anywhere we could reach by foot or bike. I was allowed to wander Disneyland for a few hours with just one friend when we were 7. So I probably fall on the more liberal side in terms of letting teens go where they want and trusting them to use their own good sense and judgement - and deal with cases when they don't use good sense and judgement.

For example: I was on a cruise with a few teens and one of them (14) brilliantly decided that playing basketball barefoot was a good idea. It wasn't, and he hurt his foot. I found out about it when I bumped into them coming back from the medical center where they had gone to get it fixed up.

My annoyance with him over not wearing shoes was more than offset by my pride that he had the good sense to get treatment, and the self-confidence and initiative to deal with the situation on his own with the help of friends.

I suspect the medical staff felt the same way, because the visit never showed up on our bill :-)
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Old 06-24-2012, 04:24 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by wdwnuts View Post
Your DS is going to have a blast. The WAVE phones really help to keep in touch with teens. The VIBE has many activities for the teens. Last year, on most days, I would not see my DD until we were getting ready for supper. We are going on the same cruise as you and DD is so excited. I agree with going to the VIBE on the first night so your son can meet people. After a year, my DD still talks to a girl she met their last cruise. Teens who go to VIBE get different Keys To The World cards so try to go by on the afternoon on embarkation days so your DS can get his card. Teens need this card to get in the club. Hope to see you there.
Your DD was pretty much like me last time. With the exception of ports, meals, and shows, I was gone alot. I was either there or seeing characters. I was on an Alaskan cruise so there was one days I was gone for 6 hours. I did have a curfew though. I met a girl that I still keep in touch with. We will not be on the same cruise this time. The girl's cruise is right after mine, same port.
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Old 06-24-2012, 05:12 PM   #10
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Does your cruise have a group forming in the meet and greet forum? If so you can see if there are kids his age going and he can maybe meet a few before even going.

I also second the comment about making sure he attends the vibe meet and greet.

Enjoy your cruise
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Old 06-24-2012, 05:41 PM   #11
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We've cruised with our two girls as well, and the oldest is the same age as your son. On the last cruise she was given the wave phone and in the beginning of the cruise if she and her friends left the place they hung out in, we asked her to let us know. She did a great job of keeping in touch with us, so we gave her more latitude to hang out later. Towards the end, sometimes she came home more than an hour before curfew, because she and her friends were all tired. They keep them busy!

The rules re rooms are great. Our eldest still keeps in touch with her friends from last years' cruise.
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Old 06-24-2012, 06:22 PM   #12
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What time is the meet and greet?
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Old 06-24-2012, 06:33 PM   #13
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My DS is also 14 and will enter high school this fall. We are on the same cruise. DS is very excited about Vibe, last year when we were on Dream he was 13 so went to Edge. He was able to move about the ship on his own but he had to let us know where he was. Our wave phones were hit and miss, so he had to go back to our stateroom and leave us a note on where he would be. It worked for us.
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Old 06-24-2012, 08:13 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noahsmom View Post
My DS is also 14 and will enter high school this fall. We are on the same cruise. DS is very excited about Vibe, last year when we were on Dream he was 13 so went to Edge. He was able to move about the ship on his own but he had to let us know where he was. Our wave phones were hit and miss, so he had to go back to our stateroom and leave us a note on where he would be. It worked for us.
You guys need to join your cruise's meet...many times the teens on the ship start their own Facebook page so the kids can get to know each other....my kids love it! I know this s mother son trip but if you can afford it, think about inviting a close friend of his...we did this for my son and they had a blast! Maybe they will offer kids sail free and it'll be free for the friend!
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Old 06-24-2012, 10:00 PM   #15
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You guys need to join your cruise's meet...many times the teens on the ship start their own Facebook page so the kids can get to know each other....my kids love it! I know this s mother son trip but if you can afford it, think about inviting a close friend of his...we did this for my son and they had a blast! Maybe they will offer kids sail free and it'll be free for the friend!
I started your meet thread, the last time I checked it though there wasn't any activity. It was before the facebook page was started. I have requested to join the FB group. This is cruise is part 2 of a back to back adventure for us. We are very excited.
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