Cruise Age Restrictions for Kids and Babies By Cruise Line
If you’re planning a holiday on a cruise ship, you may be wondering whether or not you can take your baby along, so you don’t have to hire a babysitter. Well, you’ve come to the right place! We will answer all your questions about cruise age restrictions to figure out when to take baby on your next cruise trip.
As a general rule of thumb, babies under 6 months old are not allowed to board cruise ships. This minimum age, however, can vary by the cruise line. Some cruise lines and river cruises don’t allow babies of any age to board the ship, while other lines will allow babies of any age to board.
To learn more about the minimum age requirements of some of the most popular cruise lines, and to learn about tips for traveling on a cruise ship with your baby, continue reading!
Babies Traveling on Mainstream Ocean Cruise Lines
While the minimum age of babies brought aboard an ocean cruise ship is most commonly 6 months old, there are some exceptions that vary by the cruise line. Here are some of the most popular mainstream cruise lines that travel via the sea and their minimum infant age requirements.
|Cruise Line||Minimum Age Requirement||Exceptions|
|Carnival Cruise Line||6 months at the time of embarkation||12 months for trans-ocean crossings and remote itineraries for trips over 2 consecutive sea days, or for any cruise that includes one international port|
|Celebrity Cruises||6 months on the first day of the cruise||12 months for transatlantic cruises, transpacific cruises, South American cruises, and cruises over two consecutive sea days|
|Costa Cruises||6 months at the time of embarkation||12 months for transatlantic cruises, world cruises, cruises that last 15 or more days, and any cruise itinerary not medically equipped for infants|
|Cunard Line||6 months||12 months for transatlantic cruises, exotic cruises, and full world cruises|
|Disney Cruise Line||6 months on the day of sailing||1 year on the day of sailing for transatlantic cruises and Panama Canal itineraries|
|Holland America Line||6 months at the time of embarkation||12 months for transoceanic cruises and itineraries in South America, South Pacific, Asia, and Hawaii|
|MSC Cruises||6 months for any cruise||N/A|
|Norwegian Cruise Line||6 months||12 months for cruises over 2 consecutive days at sea|
|Princess Cruises||6 months||12 months for trans-ocean crossings and remote itineraries, 5 years for escorted cruise tours|
|Royal Caribbean International||6 months on day 1 of the cruise||12 months for transatlantic or transpacific cruises, as well as all Hawaii cruises and some South American cruises. Infants must be at least 12 months for cruises over 2 consecutive days at sea|
Cruise Age Restrictions For Traveling on River Cruise Lines
Because of the nature of these cruises, which often have more of a rough ride than ocean cruises, the age requirements are more strict and generally prohibit infants and young, toddler-age guests.
|River Cruise Line||Minimum Age Requirement||Notes|
|A-ROSA||No infants, children must be 2 years old or older||N/A|
|Amadeus||No infants, children must be 8 years old or older||N/A|
|AmaWaterways||No infants, children must be 4 years old or older||Additional beds are not provided in cabins with 2 adults and one or more children. Children 4-7 are not recommended to sail on any program. The age minimum for Africa program is 12 years old.|
|American Cruise Lines||No infants, children must be 10 years old or older||No children’s programs available on cruise ships|
|American Queen Steamboat Company||6 months old||No crib or sleep accommodations for babies/children, discounted fares, or children’s programs/facilities|
|APT||No infants, children must be 4 years old or older||Not recommended for children ages 4-7|
|Avalon Waterways||No infants, children must be 8 years old or older||N/A|
|CroisiEurope||No minimum age, infants allowed||N/A|
|Crystal River Cruises||6 months||The number of kids under 3 years of age is limited|
|Emerald Waterways||No infants, children must be 12 years old or older||No discounted fares for children or children’s programs/facilities|
|Gate 1 Travel||No infants, children must be 8 years old or older||Discovery tours’ minimum age is 12, walking tours and European river cruise minimum age is 16|
|Grand Circle Cruises||No infants, children must be 13 years old or older||No discount fares for children or children’s programs/facilities|
|Scenic||No infants, children must be 12 years old or older||No discount fares for children or children’s programs/facilities|
|Tauck River Cruises||No infants, children must be 3 years old or older||The minimum age varies by shore excursion. No discounted fares for children but children’s programs available on Tauck Bridges’ cruises|
|Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection||No infants, children must be 4 years old or older||50% discount fare for children. Special programs and facilities available onboard and onshore for children|
|Vantage Deluxe World Travel||No infants, children must be 8 years old or older||Workshops and programs for children available|
|Viking River Cruises||No infants, children must be 12 years old or older||No discounted fares for children or children’s programs|
Tips for Cruise Traveling with Babies and Young Children
Some parents find that when their baby is between 6 and 12 months old that this is the best time to travel on a cruise with them. This is because their baby likely hasn’t learned to walk yet, so they don’t have to run after them all the time.
They also like the convenience of just carrying their baby in a shoulder sling or a carrier backpack while they attend programs and activities onboard the ship or while exploring the various excursions at each cruise stop. It’s recommended that you have another caregiver or adult with you to help you care for the baby in moments when you need it so that you can enjoy the amenities more fully.
Be sure to bring everything your baby or toddler needs, and while many cruises will provide baby play pins or cribs upon request at booking, they won’t provide anything else.
If you’re bringing an older baby or toddler, many cruises will provide childcare services so that you can leave your child in good hands while you go to enjoy all that the cruise has to offer. Just be sure to look into what the minimum age for these childcare services is before you make your cruise plans.
These childcare services will keep your child occupied and entertained while you’re away. These are generally included in cruise ships catered more towards adults, whereas family cruises will expect you to be with your child at all times.