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Keeping track of children


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1st time cruisers! We are looking to book a group of 8 family holiday on symphony of the seas and my brother is worried about losing his kids. Is there any way of keeping track of children whilst on board? 

Also what are the queues like for different activities and getting on/ of the ship? 

Edited by Stuart
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What age are you talking?  If you're are talking under 12 and they are going to adventure ocean, that is very different than terms.  Do people all have phones?  My youngest was 13 on our first cruise and we didn't have voom...we set up times and places to meet and it was fine.  If we have data, we use Facebook Messenger.  The royal app was spotty when I was on allure but I'm sure it will get better and better.  My understanding with walkie talkies is that the metal of the ship can interfere and they are very annoying to other passengers so I'd hesitate to rely on them if you have phones.  Finally there is the nontech of simple whiteboards on the doors.  Jane

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I highly recommend that you register the children with one of the kids or teens clubs.  They have special activities for them and the children are well accounted for there.  

You can use the royal app if they have smartphones to text them, or they can text you in case they get lost.

I always recommend those with children to take a photo in the morning of the kids.  Especially on port days.  The reason for this is in case of the worst, god forbid, you have an exact description of the child and what they're wearing.  Saying a 12 year old brown haired boy in a white shirt is not a good description.  Having a picture has all of the details of the child.  You can do the photo thing onboard as well in case the child is lost.

Even on a large ship, there's plenty of crew and you should encourage your child to ask directions from staff.  You can set up a "I got lost" plan for the child to return to a specific location on the ship (your room, the pool, the windjammer, whichever location you'd like) if they ever get lost.  They then can text you with the app, and you can retrieve them from the designated location.

And queue times really depend on the activity and how high in demand it is.  A high demand activity like the Florider could have a bit of a line.  Same with the standby line for shows.  On embarkation day the queue in the Windjammer can get a bit intense which is a great reason alone to get onboard as soon as you can.  Usually the embarkation line isnt too terrible and it moves quickly.  For me, the longest line was at customer service on disembarkation day.  That's why I try to prepay for as much as I can before I cruise so my bill at the end is minimal.  Usually it consists of ship souvenirs (blinky cups, ship models, RCI shirts), some duty free and additional tips I might charge.   

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10 hours ago, Stuart said:

1st time cruisers! We are looking to book a group of 8 family holiday on symphony of the seas and my brother is worried about losing his kids. Is there any way of keeping track of children whilst on board? 

Also what are the queues like for different activities and getting on/ of the ship? 

Is he worried he won't be able to lose them?

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What ship?  Will your kids have phones?  Will you get internet?  Reason I'm asking is they are testing free texting on some ships (I forget which one, but I'm sure someone here remembers).  Or if you all have phones and internet, then you're good.

For us, we don't get internet and our last cruise on Symphony doesn't have the free texting.  However, our kids were 13 and 9 and it was the first time we let them go on their own for periods of time.  They stuck together and we would just meet back in our stateroom at a specific time.

PS - I'm like you and was nervous about it too.

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6 hours ago, Stuart said:

Hi thanks for your help. His kids are 13 and 10. I think they will be fine. He is just being over cautious. 

We are on symphony now and we bought the 4 device package for my kids who have phones which my 12 yo does.  I highly suggest it for the piece of mind.  I am assuming since he is so worried that the 10 yo won’t be allowed to wander on their own.  However the 13 yo could and hopefully has a cell phone or iPod to use to connect.  The 13 yo will be on the teen club if he wants and the 10 yo in adventure ocean. 

For the 10 yo, the parents can decide who can sign him out of the club and allow him to be a self signer.  

For the most part during the day we stick together as a family.  Night time is when things get tricky if the kids don’t want to see the shows.  

Every family is different and your brother will set whatever boundaries, he feels are appropriate.  I would still highly suggest a Voom package as  you can find a 4 device package on sale for about $26 a day.  The number of ‘where r u?’ texts  I send and receive on the cruise is very high!  

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