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Cruising is no longer just for the elderly. Families are flocking to cruise ships for an easy, all-inclusive vacation. And it’s not just Disney Cruise Line that caters to kids! Royal Caribbean, Carnival and Norwegian Cruise Lines are all competing to lure families on board.
However, some families are hesitant to book a cruise due to safety concerns. Parents who are new to cruising may wonder if it is safe to book a balcony cabin on a cruise if they have small children. It is a valid concern based on the recent headlines in the news of a toddler falling off a cruise ship.
Let’s take a closer look at cruise ship balconies so you can make your own decision as to whether or not cruise ship balconies are safe for kids.
Safety Measures in Balcony Staterooms
Cruise lines have some safety precautions built into cruise ship balconies. For starters, the sliding glass doors are usually fairly hard to open, even for adults.
The doors to the balcony have two locks, and one is towards the top of the door. It would be very difficult for a small child to reach that lock unless they pulled a chair over to the door and climbed on it.
The balconies also have walls and railings with plexi-glass that are at least 42 inches or taller. At that height, it would be difficult for children to hoist themselves over the balcony unless they climbed on furniture.
Precautions Parents Need to Take
The safety measures that cruise lines have on balconies are not foolproof. Kids can be very creative to get what they want.
Always keep the balcony door locked, and accompany your children on the balcony. Talk to your kids about balcony safety and explain your rules, even if your kids are older and should know better. If necessary, ask your room attendant to remove the furniture on your balcony.
Why Families Should Book a Balcony Stateroom
Balcony staterooms cost more than inside or porthole staterooms. But, if you can splurge, balcony staterooms on a cruise ship are awesome.
If your kids are still in the napping phase, you can relax on your balcony while your kids are napping. Balconies give you extra living space and make your stateroom feel larger.
On sea days, the upper decks are crowded. You can use your balcony to sunbathe with a guaranteed seat.
My family loves to be on our balcony during sail-aways. We can wave to people on the shore and sometimes catch dolphins paying in the ship’s wake.
I also like to breathe in the fresh air from the balcony every day. Cruise ships have a lot of people crammed into small spaces, so I find the fresh air is a good respite.
My family doesn’t have a balcony stateroom on every cruise, but if it fits in our budget, we will book it. My youngest was 4 years old when we first sailed with a balcony stateroom. I admit I was nervous at first, but I quickly began to relax and enjoy the benefits of cruising with a balcony.
Parents, do you feel comfortable with a balcony stateroom if small kids are in your room? Why or why not?
Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.
Nancy lives near Dallas, Texas, with her husband and three kids. Her favorite vacations include the beach, cruising and everything Disney.