Caregiver Cruise

2016 Caregiver Cruise to New England and Canada!

We know it can be difficult to travel when your loved one has memory impairment, but we all still need a vacation! Both the individual with a dementia diagnosis and their caregiver are able to attend the cruise, making the program possibly the first of its kind in the country. Insight provides supervision during excursions, and respite at sea, giving cruise participants the opportunity for a vacation in a safe environment, in the company of others who “get it.” In addition to the many benefits a cruise offers – the chance for a vacation, seeing new sights, a getaway – the caregiver cruise provides families with a sense of normalcy.

One caregiver shared: "It was just fun to be with other people because at home I’m pretty isolated and this gave me an opportunity to be with people, be entertained, go to the shows, just relax and enjoy things - without my husband and with my husband."

Check Out What We Did!

We made daily posts here with trip highlights and excursions so you can feel like you've cruised along with us!
We departed from Baltimore on Thursday, May 26, 2016, and returned Saturday, June 4, 2016 with stops in Boston, Portland, Bar Harbor, St. John, and Halifax.

Day 1: We Made It!

Day 1: We Made It!

May 26, 2016

Our day started off with a 9:45am departure from Insight headed towards the Port of Baltimore to board Royal Caribbean’s Grandeur of the Seas for our 9 Night New England and Canadian Caregiver Cruise. But of course there’s never a dull moment with Insight! We were only 15 minutes into the trip when we discovered that all our cruise documentation was missing. It was suspected that we had left it all at Insight. So, after an encore return trip to IMCC, it was discovered on the shuttle, waiting for us under a seat. After our false alarm, we were back on the road again!

Once we arrived at the Port of Baltimore, our group successfully completed the security and check in process. We boarded the ship where we had some lunch in the Windjammer Café and then got everyone to their state rooms once they were available. Then onward to our mandatory Muster Drill! We all reported to our Muster Station in the (highly unlikely!) event of an emergency and learned how to safely evacuate the ship. We got to celebrate completing our safety drills with the Welcome Party on the Pool deck where we had a great time with music and dancing!

As we spent a little time settling onto the ship, Christi and Sophie were locked out of their room and one of the group members locked themselves in the bathroom, but all have been successfully unlocked and released! Christi and Joel worked with the Groups Coordinator, the fabulous Natalie, to get our dining options all sorted out, and the ever so helpful Jason at the Excursions desk to obtain all our tickets.

Of course NOTHING ever goes completely smoothly – one of our passengers luggage was confiscated due to suspected “excessive alcohol limits.” They had to go to the security deck to open their luggage and what they suspected as the excessive alcohol was actually Milk of Magnesia! So the luggage was released and sent to their state rooms.

Later that evening, the group rejoined for dinner in the Gatsby Dining Room where we dined on salmon, steak, soups, pork chops, and all sorts of sweets. It was a great Welcome Dinner! The best part of the evening was the company and conversation of the group members, as we all got to know each other a little more.

Finally the night ended with some folks retiring to their state rooms after a long day, while others took in a show at the Theater. Improv Night! Apparently, Simon Says is still a crowd favorite!

All in all, it was a great first day and we are looking forward to our next day of cruising – where we will have our first day of Respite Care while at sea.

En route to Baltimore!

We all took the bus together.

Getting to the ship!

On board!

A few smiles on the ship.

A few minutes to relax in the afternoon.

Exploring what’s on deck!

We labeled each of our rooms!

Enjoying the sun and the view!

Gathering for dinner.

Enjoying the food!