Say the word "cruise" when talking about a family vacation and your teen will probably be all over the idea. Mention "Disney" in the same sentence and he might lose some of his enthusiasm. But you can turn your teen's groans into grins as long as you emphasize the right aspects when talking it up before the trip. While cruises in general are relatively safe, your teen needs to know that normal safety rules will apply on the ship, which will help avoid on-board arguments.
Disney cruises have rooms dedicated as strictly teen hangouts, where no one younger than 14 or older than 17 can walk through the doors. Open until around midnight, teen areas feature large-screen TVs, video gaming systems, board games and organized activities designed to get teens engaged and to have the opportunity to meet other teens without pressure. Teen hangouts do have adult supervision, with several counselors in each section.
What could be better for teens than their own beach? When Disney cruises stop at Disney's private island, Castaway Cay, your teen can head directly to the private teen beach area while you go enjoy the company of the over-21 crowd and the availability of libations. Or you and your teen can take a glass-bottom boat tour, rent boats and take your own private cruise, parasail, jet ski, snorkle, kayak or fish together. Games, sports water rides, nature classes or just biking can occupy your teen's time on the island.
Disney provides hungry teens the opportunity to stoke up with their favorite fast foods all day long, right up until midnight or so. Ice cream, pizza, burgers and hot dogs are all plentiful and easy for teens to grab when they're on the go with new friends.
Teens on the Disney cruise ships can watch shows, participate in games, see movies, jog around the outdoor track and use the pools, including the water coasters on the Dream and Fantasy lines. Disney cruise ships don't have casinos, so you won't have to worry about your underage teen sneaking in and putting all your hard-earned cash into a machine. If your teen is worried about in-your-face Mickey 24/7, you can assure him that characters meet only in specified places at specified times and he can avoid them, if he prefers.
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