Sponsored by TakingtheKids.com
Many of us have had a long hiatus from traveling and are itching to get “back out there.” And that stretch of time at home seems to have given us a lot of time to develop our sea legs and eagerness to get back on a cruise.
The good news is that cruise lines are returning to the ports just in time for summer travel.
In fact, with the recent departure of Carnival Splendor from the Port of Seattle, Carnival Cruise Line has become the first major cruise line in the U.S. to restart its entire fleet!
Plus, Carnival operates from 12 homeports across the United States, from San Francisco to Galveston; Miami to New York City; there is a port within an easy drive for most Americans.
Cruising is Back!
What are the benefits of a cruise vacation for families?
As a family, especially one of our size, we’ve discovered that cruises are the absolute best way for all of us to travel. Why?
Here are just a handful of reasons:
- Easy to visit different destinations without unpacking, repacking
- Exciting and affordable way to see the world with your family
- Avoid the hassle of driving long hours
- Cheaper to drive to a nearby homeport and save on gas
Not to mention, when traveling with multi-generational families, the ship offers something for everyone! From programs specifically for children and teens to adult-only decks and services, there is plenty to keep everyone entertained on board.
What food do they serve on ships?
Oh, and your picky eaters? Don’t worry! There are so many food options! Your kids are guaranteed to find something they’ll eat.
Ships serve everything from hamburgers and hot dogs to pizza and pasta; in addition to all the ice cream you can eat.
Never fear though! You can still eat like a king/queen if you have a more upscale palate.
Onboard Carnival you’ll find new upscale foodie restaurants with celebrity chef designed menus; more sustainable farm to fork and sea to plate meals; and new outdoor dining venues.
What is there to do on a cruise?
One great thing about cruising is the array of ships and itineraries available. You have the flexibility to choose the ship and destinations that best fit your needs and your budget.
For example, Alaska Cruises feature sled dog rides, fishing for local salmon, a chance to be outdoors in nature, and learning opportunities for kids. Furthermore, Alaska is a great bucket list destination to knock off your list!
With over 100 ships sailing to over 700 destinations, you are sure to find something that will work for your entire family.
Cruise Vacations for Families
You will easily discover that cruises have something fun for everyone. There are even education opportunities for the whole family with local guests who come aboard to inform you about the local culture.
Plus, there are cruise cabins designed with families in mind:
- Some Carnival Cruise ships feature “Family Harbor” staterooms located near the Family Harbor Lounge, which features breakfast in the morning, snacks throughout the day, plus activities like board games, family movies, video games and more
- Select Princess Cruises suites have bathtubs that are ideal for families traveling with young children
- Holland America Line’s MS Koningsdam was built with families in mind by accommodating up to 5 with two lower beds convertible to one queen-size bed; one sofa bed for two persons; and one upper bed, as well as two bathrooms
Many ships also feature connected rooms and make keeping your family together while cruising easy.
Even more exciting, you’ll want to check out Carnival Mardi Gras™.
“Why,” you ask?
Mardi Gras features six themed areas packed with brand-new experiences for eating, drinking and “spectacularly getting down to fun.” Plus, and this is a big plus, it is home to BOLT™, the first-ever roller coaster at sea!
And if you’re looking for an equal amount of fun both indoors and out, look at Carnival Vista. This ship features more onboard places than ever before that span both the indoors and outdoors.
From the SkyRide® at SportSquare™—a twin-track suspended bike course— to the Serenity Adult-Only Retreat™, there truly is something for everyone!
Bonus! On Cunard Transatlantic Cruises, you can even bring your pet along!
Do I need a COVID-19 vaccine to cruise?
Perhaps the biggest, most often asked question today, is “Do I need a COVID vaccine?” As of this posting date, the simple answer is, Yes.
Most cruise lines require anyone over the age of 12 to be vaccinated. For kids under 12, the requirements change. Each cruise line is different, so be sure to check your cruise line before booking and definitely before embarkation day!
How are cruise lines adapting post-COVID?
The pandemic taught the world a lot about public safety, especially in the world of cruising. It’s with that in mind that Carnival Cruise Line has adapted to help ensure the safety and health of their passengers.
New COVID protocols onboard include:
- proof of a negative COVID-19 test prior to boarding
- regular testing of crew
- an environment where every eligible person is vaccinated
- ongoing sanitation of all public spaces and guest/crew rooms
- mask wearing while indoors, except when eating or drinking or in staterooms
- enhanced air ventilation
- other measures that public health experts around the world have endorsed
Additionally, there are new Online Check-in and disembarkation procedures to avoid large congregations of people forming.
And, as in the past,the cruise lines will continue to ask guests to help maintain a healthy onboard environment by using the hand-washing sinks and hand sanitizer dispensers at venue entrances and in high-traffic areas throughout the ship.
With all of the safety guidelines in place, it’s easy to see why cruising may be one of the safest ways to travel this summer!
The only thing left to do is book your next cruise!