There’s no denying that Disney and excitement go hand in hand, with the giant corporation’s productions and merchandise loved by children and adults across the globe but for one family, their hopes of a dream Disney cruise holiday came crashing down, as a four-month-old infant was told she was too young to be on board.
On December 30th 2014, Florida-based Dave Berg and 30 of his family members boarded Disney’s Wonder in Miami for a five-night cruise. Mr Berg’s mother-in-law – who is sick with cancer – was also on board, with the holiday said to be part of her bucket list.
The family were enjoying their cruise to the Bahamas but two days later Mr Berg’s four-month-old granddaughter began spitting up. Jennifer Moak, the child’s mother, took the infant to see the ship’s doctor, who prescribed her with medication for seasickness.
But a few hours after the visit, Ms Moak received a phone call from the doctor asking to see the baby for a check-up once more. However, what followed was some rather distressing news. Instead of giving the child a check-up, the family were told they would have to disembark from the cruise.
Previously, Disney Cruise Lines’ policy allowed infants aged twelve weeks or older to board, but starting from January 1st 2015, this changed to a minimum age requirement of six months. Families who had booked before this date were still eligible to travel, but following the doctor’s request, Mr Berg, Ms Moak and her husband and child packed up and left the ship.
This is heartbreaking for the family, especially as it is down to a policy change not in place at the time of booking. Cruise lines all have very different rules in regards to how old their youngest passengers can be. If you intend to cruise with a young child, it’s always best to check our official Babies on Board guide, detailing how old children must be on each cruise line to be a passenger!
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