"Tweens" on Ryndam to Alaska - Help!



Hi all -- glad to see so much experience represented here!

We're headed to Alaska in August. My girls are 11 & 9 and will be going on their first cruise. I'm sure Club HAL will be fun for them, but I'm wondering about leaving them in our Verandah suites alone for short periods of time. They are allowed to stay alone at home while I run to the grocery, etc., and follow strict instructions not to answer the phone or door. They think it is a big treat to get to do this!

Would we be crazy to let them stay alone while we work out, or have a room service dinner while we go to the dining room?

They are good travelers and we eat at nice restaurants together all the time, so having them to dinner with us is not a problem, but I am expecting them to ask permission to "stay in" and need to know how to proceed.

We have used walkie-talkies to stay in touch in a Disney resort hotel while I went to fill coffee mugs, but I don't know if they would work on a ship. Anyone know?



Hi TallTexan!
Walkie-talkies: Yes, they work very well on a ship. There has been very little of the interference you would experience while in other locations such as Disney because so few people have them. Just try to keep the volume down at dinner so as not to disturb the other guests around you and if the girls call for you, politely step out of the dining room to have your conversation. Others will appreciate it.

Our DD has sailed with us on five cruises and a few in that age range on HAL. Club HAL has always satisfied her need for contact with other girls her age and we have allowed her to stay in our cabin while we went to dinner if she didn't care to join us. However, we always had an outside, no verandah, until our most recent cruise and by then she was 14.
I think it really is up to you and how you perceive your daughters' common sense about safety and following your rules. If you have seen them be very careful at home, you may feel comfortable leaving them in your verandah stateroom with the strict rule that the verandah door stay closed and they stay inside watching a movie or playing a game until you can be around to supervise.
Put the Privacy Please sign on the door and kindly notify your cabin steward that the room does not need to be made up during dinner. They do their work when they see you go out for breakfast and dinner.

Back to Club HAL- be sure you don't miss the introductions on the first evening. They're very important to the kids feeling like a part of the group!
Given your concerns about safety, they are also not too old to be told they must wait with the group leader until you come to escort them back to the cabin. We insisted our DD stay with the group rather than wandering around the ship unsupervised until she was almost 13.

Enjoy your cruise and do report back. We'd love to hear your thoughts!


The privacy sign would be a good idea, but I would still be nervous though. My children are 9 and 11 also. Our children stick to their bedtime even when on vacation. They are absolutely exhausted so we call it a night too. So on our last cruise the steward must have thought we were out, so much to our surprise the door opened while we were in bed. Although an accident it was a bit disconcerting. So better safe than sorry.