Family Cruise Cheat Sheet

Ready to sail away on your next family vacation, but not sure where to start? Find your match with our chart that breaks down the deal-makers and breakers for each major U.S. line.
Catie McCabe

Carnival

Biggest Draw: connecting cabins; onboard water park; kid-free areas

But know this... appeals to college and spring-break crowds too

Character tie-ins: Dr. Seuss parades, storytimes, and more; plus, life-size Hasbro games

Big-kid & family thrills: IMAX theater; Skyride; water park; mini golf

Price (Starting prices for a family of four on a seven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean): $539 per adult and $349 per child 

Disney

Biggest Draw: favorite characters throughout; all onboard entertainment is included

But know this... not awesome for adrenaline-fueled/ adventure-seeking teens/tweens  

Character tie-ins: Mickey and the gang; the princess posse; Marvel and Star Wars characters abound

Big-kid & family thrills: AquaDuck waterslide; sports simulators

Price (Starting prices for a family of four on a seven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean): $1,736 per adult and $974 per child

Norwegian

Biggest Draw: mealtimes are flexible, with lots of options; familyfriendly Broadwaystyle shows 

But know this... important to book shows and dining times in advance to avoid missing out

Character tie-ins: None

Big-kid & family thrills: ropes course; zip line; rock-climbing; sports courts

Price (Starting prices for a family of four on a seven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean): $574 per person based on four guests

Princess 

Biggest Draw: destination themed onboard activities

But know this... no adrenaline pumping extras

Character tie-ins: Discovery and Animal Planet show tie-ins like MythBusters, Deadliest Catch, and Shark Week

Big-kid & family thrills: sports courts; mini golf

Price (Starting prices for a family of four on a seven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean): $799 per adult and $399 per child

Royal Caribbean

Biggest Draw: wide selection of onboard activities that are great for older kids

But know this... large-capacity ships can feel crowded

Character tie-ins: favorites from Dreamworks films like Kung Fu Panda and Madagascar roam the ship

Big-kid & family thrills: ice-skating; surf simulator; bumper cars

Price (Starting prices for a family of four on a seven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean): $2,025 per adult and $799 per child

MSC

Biggest Draw: kids under 11 sail free (except for taxes and fees) and 12- to 17-yearolds sail at a discounted rate

But know this... only U.S. port is in Miami

Character tie-ins: Lego-themed games and competitions on board; Lego Sailor character meet-and-greets

Big-kid & family thrills: race-car simulator; waterslide/videogame combo ride

Price (Starting prices for a family of four on a seven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean): $777 per adult and $277 per child

Family Fun

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