Oasis of the Seas Family
Oasis of the Seas is an extremely infant-, child- and teen-friendly ship, offering a large variety of activities and brightly colored spaces for children, from ages 6 months to 17 years. The entire kids' program, officially called the Youth Zone, spans more than 28,700 square feet, and is (surprise) the largest of its kind at sea.
RCI has started new Royal Tots and Royal Babies programs, which provide childcare and activities for children from 6 to 36 months old. All parents have an opportunity to reserve spots for their kids at the beginning of each cruise at a cost of $8 per hour, per child. Remaining hours are then opened up on a first-come, first-served basis.
Children, ages 3 to 5 (Aquanauts), 6 to 8 (Explorers) and 9 to 11 (Voyagers) have their own spaces to run around, take part in arcade games and Nintendo Wii tournaments, conduct science experiments (like volcano-making) and take in a mini-musical or perform in shows of their own as part of the "ImaginOcean!" theater program onboard. Partnerships with Crayola and Fisher-Price mean that the Youth Zone is also outfitted with the latest toys, games and supplies. Daytime activities are free, but late-night activities are also offered for a fee of $5 per child, per hour.
Teens, the hardest demographic to impress, probably won't want to leave their designated areas. The ship was intentionally designed to distance the teen section from the rest of the Youth Zone, and away from the throngs of younger kids, teens can enjoy several lounges, juice bars, Nintendo Wii stations, a music room, the Wipe Out Cafe, themed parties and D.J. lessons.
For families, Oasis of the Seas is so large that walkie-talkie devices -- long a popular way for Cruise Critic members to stay in-touch onboard -- don't always work properly. As a result, Royal Caribbean has introduced its new Royal Connect "Wow Phone" device. These are iPhones that lack outside calling or texting capabilities. For $17.50 per device, per week, you'll have deck plans and the Cruise Compass right at your fingertips, as well as a way for your kids to reach you onboard. They can dial the phone's number from any house phone on the ship. If you give one to your child, he or she can be tracked at all times.