Two children playing in the play area on Brittany Ferries

Travelling with the kids

Travelling as a family by ferry is a relaxing and enjoyable experience. Generous luggage allowances mean you don’t need to worry about packing the minimum and with space to walk (or run) around, or to sit together in your own area, means that the holiday begins as soon as you step on board.

Family facilities on board ferries

There is plenty to keep children entertained whether they are looking for wildlife from the deck or window, or checking out the dedicated children’s zone. On board cafés and restaurants cater for the whole family with a range of refreshments and meal options.

Facilities vary per vessel, even within the same fleet, so make sure you check what facilities the specific ship has to offer before you book.

Younger children

  • Dedicated play area
  • Changing area
  • Family movies
  • Downloadable children’s entertainment apps
  • Live entertainment during peak season

Cinema on Isle of Man Steam Packet Company

Older children / Teenagers

Boy on arcade bike video game

Arcade games on Stena Line

  • Wifi
  • Cinema
  • Video games area
  • Wildlife spotting from deck/ windows

Wildlife Spotting

Whether out on deck or watching from the window, British waters are teaming with wildlife. Check out our wildlife map for what you should look out for.

Tips for travelling with children on a ferry

Before you book

  • Research the facilities available on different ferries to best suit your family.
  • Think about the time of day you want to travel. You might want to consider a night-time sailing if you want the children to sleep through most of it.
  • Consider booking a cabin on longer sailings whatever the time of day, as it provides you with a base and your own private space for the journey.
  • If you are travelling with an infant on a night crossing check the operator’s website for more details about which cabins are best suited to travel cots.

For the sailing

You won’t have access to the car deck once the ship sets sail, so pack a bag with everything you need including, for example:

  • Warm clothes for on deck, where it can often be windy
  • Games and activities for the children to do
  • Snacks
  • A change of clothes, just in case
  • If your children are prone to suffer from travel sickness, consult your local pharmacist about the possibility of your child taking anti-motion sickness tablets.
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