questionswhat's the best way to communicate with others on…

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I suppose the two way radios/walkie talkies would be the best option.
But, how important is being in constant communication with the rest of your family anyway? A ship, while large, isn't huge. If you know the general area where people will be, you could walk over and find them. Preset arranged meeting times and places would work as well.

People were able to get along fairly well without being able to directly communicate with each other at every moment of the day.

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I was hoping for a text solution - my parents are in their 70s, and we'd like to be able to coordinate with them to meet when necessary. The ship is about 1/4 mile long (Freedom of the Seas). Also, our family is roomed on different decks of the ship, so I'd love to have some way to communicate infrequently.

Of course we can do things the old fashioned way, planning, room to room calling, etc., but I was wondering if anyone knew of a solution.

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Free app called Voxer. Works with iOs and Android. Turns you phone into a walkie talkie of sorts.

My GF and I use it. I LOVE it for the fact that I don't have to sit on the phone forever saying nothing. (you know what I'm talking about guys)
Plus I don't have to respond back immediately, which comes in handy during gaming sessions.

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@wickedd365: Wouldn't that need a cell phone signal though?

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@wickedd365: But that insinuates that you havs some kind of Wi-Fi or 3g signal on the boat, right? To get either on a Royal Carribbean ship there's a per-minute rate - it wouldn't be cost efficient at all for this kind of use.

2 way radio is going to be your best bet - but honestly, as mentioned previously, the ships aren't that big. You'll also have some favorite spots pretty quick - if you end up seperated from the rest of your party, you'll usually have a good idea where they could be.

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Speaking of wifi, have you checked to see if the cruiseliner has wifi?

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2 way radios do work but keep in mind, every other family uses them too. Lots of jabbering going on. My son lost his the second day.

Make plans at breakfast and hope for the best. It always works out. Have fun!!

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Walkie-talkies would be good.

Alternatively, you can just agree to meet at certain places at certain times.

I don't know how predictable your family members are, but mine have basically always stuck to the pool on a cruise...circle it and I'm bound to see at least one family member.

If the ship has wifi and you have iPhones or iPod Touches you can use iMessage. Or a similar service on Droid, I know third-party wifi texting apps exist. I would imagine that pretty much all cruise ships these days have wifi

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They charge a fortune for onboard wifi, so android apps are out.
The cheap 2-way radios get too much interference and clogged channels.
Fortunately both me and my son have our amateur radio licenses so that makes it easy, but not an option for most of you.
Our best solution...
Post it notes stuck to the mirror in the cabin. "We're on the promanade deck in the hottub. Be back in an hour"
Don't disrespect the power of old school.

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My first thought was flare guns...

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@jsimsace: There IS no other answer. Always go with your gut.

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@bsmith1: lol. that idea wins.

Signal fire would be a good second.

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Yes, you would need a cell signal or WiFi. I assumed the boat would have WiFI for you. As much as you pay for the cruise it's the least they could offer.

Other than that a cheap set of walkie talkies would be your best bet. You might even hear some fun chatter from others and/or staff.

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Well, my first reaction on looking at the question was a huge laugh. On the bay here it's not unusual to "communicate" with others is by mooning them as you float by. The standard reply, to note communication was received, is loud clapping.

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My friends and I use three basic methods: room-to-room calling, planning ahead, and favorite spots. If I am not with the guys, I am sitting on the shady, non-smoking side of whichever deck is furthest from the pool deck, reading, using my tablet/laptop or just enjoying the sea and the salt air. I usually pick a spot on the first day and stick with it throughout, as do a lot of other "quiet" cruisers. If Bob isn't with me, he's in the casino or in the room watching TV. If Steve isn't with us, he's in his room reading. If any of us participate in onboard activities we invite the others, and even if they don't join they know where we are. The only tricky part is when we have separate shore excursions, further complicated by the fact that I don't wear a watch (I stop them). We set detailed meet-up plans on shore, with contingencies. Occasionally we have a miscommunication, but we are all independent units of humanity and can function singly as well as in a group.

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Every cruise ship that I am aware of charges a FORTUNE for cell service and Wifi.

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As suggested by moondrake, cabin to cabin calling works pretty well. There are also phones available around the ships (at least on Royal Caribbean) if you want to call a cabin or leave a message. I know it's not that immediate response we're so used to anymore, we've gotten downright spoiled, but it's not as inconvenient as you might think, either. It's sort of nostalgic, in a way:

"Remember when we used to call people's houses and didn't know who'd answer?"

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For Verizon customers with Cmdta enabled phones, sending a text is 50 cents and receiving is 5 cents on Bahama bound, RCI ships. On-ship calls are 2.49 per minute and, I think, 1.99 on shore in the Bahamas. I realize staying in contact maybe less important for some than others. For my family, cruises would not be an option without frequent contact. Call your phone company and see what they offer.