Carnival Cruises Children's Programs Overview

Carnival_waterworksIt is no surprise that Carnival is a favorite amongst kids. There is so much for kids to do onboard a Carnival Cruise ship and Carnival makes it easy for them to connect with people their own age in a safe and fun environment. For the adults, this means the peace of mind and a little extra time for couples to reconnect as well. However, while there are plenty of ways for the kids to "do their own thing", there is ample opportunity for family time as well.

Carnival's youth program is divided into groups based on age ranges:

  • Club O2 for ages 15-17,
  • Circle "C" for ages 12-14.
  • Camp Carnival group covers ages 2-11,

There are age appropriate divisions within Camp Carnival for toddlers, juniors and intermediate age kids.

Qualifications of Kid's Program Staff, and Staff Numbers

Each group has their own Camp Director overseeing the program, their own dedicated space, and age–appropriate planned activities for their group. Carnival's camp "Directors" have experience and/or education in child-care, are trained in first aid and CPR, and have passed a background check.

On average, expect 12 to 16 youth staff on your ship. There may be more staff onboard for cruises which occur at peak times for kids, such as during spring break, the summer, and the holidays.

This information is provided as a general overview. It is best to verify the availability of services with the Carnival Youth Program Staff for current pricing and operating hours once you are onboard.

Carnival Cruises Kid's Program Costs and Operating Hours

There is no cost for the youth programs between 9 AM and 10 PM. For "after hours" programs starting at 10 PM, the cost is $6 per hour for the first child and $4 per hour for each additional sibling.

Club O2 (Ages 15-17)

Club O2 feature a more casual way for teens to hangout and connect in an environment that suits them. They can watch movies, listen to tunes, play video games and participate in karaoke. There are teen-only shore excursions so the young adults can enjoy a day onshore with their peers. Back onboard, of course there is even more to do including basketball, volleyball, ping pong, pool parties and even their own dance club.

Circle "C" (Ages 12-14)

Kids in the Circle "C" program also have their own dedicated space that gives them a place to call their own. They can enjoy watching movies, video games, air hockey, foosball, and karaoke – just to name a few. There are also special activities planned for them including pool parties and dance parties. Like the Club O2 group, the Circle "C" group also has their own optional shore excursions just for them. Under the watchful eye of the Circle "C" Camp Director, they will have plenty of fun making new friends in a safe environment.

Camp Carnival (Toddlers Ages 2-5, Juniors Ages 6-8, Intermediates Ages 9-11)

Children are supervised by staff who have experience and/or education in child-care. You'll see your child's excitement grow as soon as they meet their counselor and get assigned to their group. And when it's time to eat kids get their very own menus, featuring all their favorites like hot dogs, chicken nuggets, pizza, macaroni and cheese, hamburgers and more. From finger painting to cartoon time, arts and crafts to puppet shows, your little ones will have a blast! Carnival also provides babysitting services in the evenings. So plan a "date night" or "quiet time" just for two. Toddlers do not have to be potty-trained in order to be part of Camp Carnival; parents simply need to provide the youth staff with diapers and toiletries for their child.

Babysitting On Carnival Cruises

Carnival does not offer in-room babysitting. Instead, an after-hours program is available to take care of kids after 10 PM.

Carnival Cruises After Hours Programs For Kids

Carnival does not offer in-room babysitting. There are after hours programs for children ages 2-11 starting at 10 PM that include slumber party sleeping arrangements. After 12 a.m., juniors and intermediates (ages 6-11) will join the younger cruisers for the Slumber Party service until 3 a.m. If your child is under 8 years old, you will be provided a beeper in case the Camp Director / Counselors need to contact you. The cost for the after hours services is $6 per hour for the first child and $4 per hour for each additional sibling. There are late-night / after-hours programs for Circle "C" and Club O2 participants, however, they vary by ship and you should consult with the youth program staff for details.

Good to Know Essentials for Parents and Guardians

  • Carnival youth programs are not considered to be daycare facilities as these are activity based services.
  • When you register your two to 8 year old child for Camp Carnival activities, you will need to specify two adults over the age of 18 authorized by you to sign your child in or out of activities. Only these authorized adults with the Sail & Sign card will be allowed to pick up your child, for safety's sake.
  • Until 10:00 PM, 9 to 11 year olds may sign themselves in or out of Camp Carnival activities. If they have opted to sign themselves out, Camp Carnival staff are not responsible for them. Parents of 9- 11 year olds may decide to assume the sign in/out responsibility rather than leaving this up to their child, but any changes after that can only occur once the parents have contacted the Youth Director and the change has been approved. After 10:00 PM, parents will need to sign their 9 to 11 year old children out of Night Owls Rule, and fees will apply.
  • Depending on the ship, from 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM or from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM, parents may bring their children aged two or younger to the Playroom for Family Play. At that time, parents may opt to stay or leave their child in the care of Camp Carnival staff.
  • In Camp Carnival Sony, Playstation 2 comprises 90% of the games. There may be one or two Nintendo Wii's and Microsoft X box 350 videao game systems.
  • Strollers and game boys are available to rent, and you arrange this with Camp Carinival staff.
  • Carnival does reserve the right to deny a child admission to activities due to unruly behavior and/or a violation of rules by the child and/or guardian.
  • Carnival recommends a maximum of 6 hours of Camp Carnival activities. As a rule, Camp Carnival does not provide lunch, but will do so if you are on a port excursion.
  • Camp Carnival does provide suppers most nights for children only on the Lido restaurant.

Information for Children with Special Needs

Carnival staff have regularly worked with children with Autism, ADD/ADHD, Cerebral Palsy, MS and other disabilities. As a parent of a special needs child, you are likely well-aware of the abilities and challenges with your child. While there are no guarantees, the Carnival youth program staff will usually do their best to help you create an environment that will be suitable for your child.

Important Forms for Youth Program participation

Parents/guardians must complete the Registration form and the Medical Release form before their child/teen can participate in Camp Carnival, Circle "C," and Club O2. The Registration form does require specific information about the child/teen, including the child/teen's stateroom number. The Medical Release form gives the Camp Carnival Staff, the Circle "C" Director, and the O2 Director authorization to care for the child/teen in case of emergency. By completing these forms, parents/guardians are also agreeing to the terms and conditions of the Policies and Procedures for Camp Carnival, Circle "C," and Club O2.