Deciding to take the family on a cruise is a huge commitment when you factor in the money and time that goes into planning. Is it worth taking a young child on cruise? People ask, “will everyone really enjoy it?” The answer is YES, if your trip is with Disney Cruise Line!
A few years ago, we sailed on our first Disney voyage with our ten-month old daughter. Everyone wondered why we decided to plan such a big trip with such a little baby. Simply put, we love to travel, and, after weighing the pros and cons, we saw no reason why we couldn't bring her along. My husband convinced me to check out “It’s a Small World” Nursery. For a small hourly fee, parents can drop their babies off, feeling confident that their little ones are safe and happy. I felt guilty even thinking about spending time apart from her, but I also knew I needed to take some time to do a few things I enjoy as well.
Once we purchased a pass to the Rainforest Room, I knew I had to give the nursery a try. During their open house on the first day of the trip, she walked right in and seemed interested in everything they offered. I immediately noted that the staff members are well-trained professionals, and that she would be perfectly fine if we dropped her off for a few hours. Here are four reasons why “It’s a Small World” nursery on Disney Cruise Line is a great option for families with toddlers and babies.
- Worry-free care: Parents can drop their 6 month to three-year-old children off, knowing that they will be in good hands. The caring counselors are so gentle and sweet with the kids, and it put my mind at ease. For parents that may have a little separation anxiety (like me), there is a two-way mirror that allows you to check in on them for added peace of mind. In my observations, I found there was constant interaction and the babies' needs were met.
- Safety and Sanitation: The sign in/out process is very secure. Kids and their belongings (diapers, wipes, snacks, etc.) are dropped off with the counselors, who escort them back to the play area. Parents fill out a form that lists contact information, allergies, snack and sleep schedule, amongst other things. Counselors can contact parents if the child is upset or asks to be picked up. When parents return, a secret password is required, and identification is checked. We knew we did not have to worry about the dreaded image of kids running away; they cannot escape without their parents. Additionally, the nursery is very clean and organized. I was impressed with the level of proper sanitation.
- Communication: Disney Cruise Line offers two methods of communication. First, the onboard Wave Phones are cell phones that enable you to make phone calls to other rooms and to the nursery. The nursery can call and send text messages with updates. Additionally, the Navigator app allows you to receive text messages from the counselors. I kept my Wave Phone and Navigator app with me while my daughter was in the nursery because I asked them to send me updates. It made me ecstatic to hear that she interacted with other kids, played musical instruments with special visitor, Doc McStuffins, and was taking a much-needed nap. This peace of mind allowed me to rest and refresh myself as well.
- Fun Activities: Disney Cruise Line truly caters to people of all ages. My kids enjoyed the surprise character appearances, arts and crafts, toys, Disney movies and snacks. There is also a quiet area that allows them to rest comfortably. In addition, counselors offer “toddler time” during certain parts of the day at the outdoor “Splash Zone.” They bring age-appropriate toys and make the splash area private for the younger aged children.
We now take a yearly Disney cruise with our five-year-old daughter and two-year-old son. They enjoy their time with us during the day, but they also look forward to the many wonderful activities and events that the cruise line offers them. We can be confident that they are well supervised and having a ton of fun while we enjoy a few hours on the adult pool deck and in the spa.
For more information on "It's a Small World Nursery," please visit The DIS' info page.