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siena1 Dec 25th, 2008 11:04 AM

car seat needed at ports?
I'm hoping to take a cruise with my husband and daughter sometime in the next year or so. Daughter will be nearly 3 at time of sailing.

How do you get from the cruise ship to...wherever? For instance, if we cruise to Grand Cayman, how do we get our daughter from the port to 7 Mile Beach? I can't imagine lugging a car seat around all day, but I also don't want to take a cab without using a car seat.

It seems like there should be a simple solution for this, but I'm having trouble coming up with it. Are we confined to taking excursions that use a bus/shuttle? I don't want to bother pursuing the cruise idea any further if it isn't going to work with our daughter.

Thank you!

p.s. I've looked at Cruise Critic and can't see an answer to this question.

siena1 Dec 26th, 2008 05:44 AM

Just found this on I guess I have my answer. :(

Q: Can I use my child's car seat when we go on a shore excursion?

A: This is a difficult situation since most buses at home and abroad do not have belts to buckle in a car seat. And throughout the Caribbean, we have rarely found taxis equipped with seat belts. If you do find a vehicle that allows you to belt in the car seat, then keep in mind that you have to carry the car seat with you. There is no easy solution: Either you have to forego excursions until your child is old enough to travel by land without a car seat, or you have to forego safety by holding an infant/toddler on your lap. It's your choice!

gail Dec 26th, 2008 08:28 AM

Many excursions use shuttles, buses, etc that do not have means for securing a car seat - so you could be lugging it all day and never even use it. Same for cabs outside of US. At Grand Caymen, for example, our excursion 2 years ago used a mini-bus that never could have accomodated a car seat - no set belts, space between seats too narrow, seat too small. (I think when the bus was built car seats had not even been invented).

You are unlikely to get reliable answers from cruiseline as many excursions are booked with a variety of private vendors at port - and these vendors may even subcontract out the transportation to and from the activity.

You might be more comfortable looking at cruises that have ports where one can walk to someplace - like those stopping at private islands, Nassau, Key West come to mind. Many countries where ships port do not have the same idea of need for child restraint as we do in US - so if having your child in a car seat is important you may have to make some other compromises about activities, ports, excursions.

You did not ask, but another thing to consider when cruising with a child that age is availability of childcare/activities for kids under the age of 3 - and "almost 3", maturity, etc will not matter - age is the only thing that often counts.

siena1 Dec 26th, 2008 03:04 PM

Thanks Gail!

One of the reasons we were considering a cruise in the first place was that we thought it might be more convenient, but I think the opposite may be true! Now we're totally re-thinking things. Perhaps a large city with a good subway system. We might have to hold off on the cruise...

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