I’ve been corresponding with Bonnie Childs while on Regent Seven Seas Mariner. Many of you know Bonnie. She’s one of the extremely dedicated cruise consultants for Cruise Specialists. She’s also a dedicated grandmother, and she knows a thing or two about cruising with families, as she’s cruised with her own family. Yesterday, Bonnie shared this cute story with me about cruising with her grandsons.
Not long ago, she and her husband picked up their grandchildren in Tucson and drove to San Diego for a Mexican Riviera cruise (Bonnie didn’t say, but I’m betting they were on a Holland America Line ship).
The children’s program was excellent, and the grandchildren had a great time. As proof, Bonnie still has a little note from her grandson Drew.
“Thank you for the cruise. It was the best experience in my
life (but I am only eight). I’ll always think about it. My favorite
part was the Ice Cream bar!!! Love Drew.”
Bonnie says she keeps that little note by her desk, because she thinks it “says it all” about the special experiences families can have when cruising.
Cruises offer a lot of “kid centric time,” when kids can be with other kids in the children’s programs, and a lot of family time, when the entire family comes together, especially for dinner, even on formal night.
Formal night can be fun for kids. Her grandsons dressed to the high nines, proud to be in their tuxes and “shiny shoes.” They felt so grown up and sophisticated, Bonnie says.
As someone who values a quality family experience herself, Bonnie is extremely committed to helping her clients get the best experience they can on their cruises. She says she listens carefully to her customers and qualifies them to put them on the ship she knows they’ll be most happy on.
It’s because of the dedication of people like Bonnie that business at Cruise Specialists remains brisk and strong. Despite the downturn in the economy, the phones are ringing constantly. “Sometimes people hesitate for a little while, and maybe they will take a shorter cruise,” Bonnie says, “but then they realize they that they really want to travel and they find the funds.” (My own philosophy is don’t delay living your life: travel and enjoy.)
To gain first-hand knowledge of the ships, Bonnie tries to get on every cruise that she can and confesses, “My last cruise is nearly always my favorite.”
She’ll never have to go alone, as there’s always a willing companion. If you have any doubt of that, you simply need to read the postscript on that note from her grandson. It reads:
“P.S. if you ever think about taking me on a cruise, please do!”
There’s no better music to Bonnie’s ears.
Editor’s Note: Yesterday, by the way, I met a family of four doing Regent’s whole world cruise. The kids, ages 11 and 14, are being home – er, ship-schooled. What an education. Drew, are you reading this?