Are you a potential solo cruiser looking for an adventure of a lifetime? Consider going on a solo cruise. Cruising alone might seem daunting, but it might be one of the most liberating experiences you will ever have.
You get to explore new cultures and destinations on your terms without worrying about pleasing someone else’s expectations or tastes. Taking a solo cruise is also a great way to meet like-minded people and make connections that last long after your journey ends.
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Solo travel is a fast-growing trend worldwide. Recent British research by Norwegian Cruise Line found that more than one in three travelers prefer to travel alone, with 31% having already booked a solo vacation in 2023.
The reasons for solo travel were that people just wanted to have a break, treat themselves, or rediscover themselves after a breakup. And some just wanted to do what THEY wanted to do and avoid the drama of traveling with other people! 19% of those who responded to the survey favored a cruise ship vacation.
So, let’s talk about planning your first cruise as a solo traveler!
One thing to be aware of is that many cruises will charge a single supplement, which could make your holiday more expensive than expected. Most cruise lines base their pricing on double occupancy, which means that the cost of a cabin is usually calculated per person based on two people sharing.
Solo travelers who want a cabin to themselves are often required to pay a single supplement, essentially a charge that covers the cost of a double occupancy stateroom.
The good news is that more and more new ships are providing dedicated solo cabins. These special cabins come in various sizes and styles, from basic rooms to luxurious suites with an ocean view, whatever your preference may be. But these cabins are great for single cruisers because you don’t need to pay extra for them.
If you can find a cruise with studio cabins, going alone is more economical than other forms of travel. Plus, if you’re looking for some company during your trip, there will usually be fellow single travelers around who would love to meet someone new!
The terms might sound the same, but there’s a difference! A solo traveler travels alone but is not necessarily single or looking for a relationship.
A single traveler might not be traveling alone (cruising with a travel partner, family member, or a group) but are single and potentially looking for companionship. Of course, you might be both – so a single solo traveler!
You can travel with any cruise line that takes your fancy if you’re happy to pay the single supplement. But why pay a 200% cruise fare for a stateroom just because you want to have a solo cruise vacation?
Norwegian Cruise Line was one of the first to offer single cabins and a range of options for solo travelers, and it’s still known as one of the best cruise lines for those traveling alone. Norwegian has plenty of great options, including Norwegian Epic, Norwegian Breakaway, and Norwegian Getaway, all with 100-square-foot rooms called studios.
They have Solo Lounges on select ships where passengers can meet fellow solo cruisers worldwide. The lounge provides entertainment such as music, trivia games, karaoke nights, or happy hours. It’s a great place to make friends and find camaraderie among other solo passengers in a relaxed atmosphere.
Holland America Line, Royal Caribbean, and Cunard Line are just a few other major cruise lines today that offer dedicated single staterooms. You need to book quite far ahead to get the best rates – think 12-18 months before you travel.
Celebrity Cruises ship Celebrity Edge offers solo cabins, and Cunard ships, including Queen Elizabeth, Queen Victoria, and Queen Mary, all have great rooms and amenities for the solo traveler.
Sunset Chasers can help you discover special offers for those looking for single cruising options. If you want to meet someone special, try Princess Cruises, as they do some significant events for single people, such as singles-only nights.
Additionally, look into how much onboard entertainment is offered and whether there’s an opportunity to make new friends during your voyage. Many people find that small ships, such as those that offer river cruises, tend to be more personable when traveling alone. Larger vessels may provide more anonymity but fewer opportunities to meet others.
|Cunard||Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria||9|
|Cunard||Queen Mary 2||15|
|Holland America Cruises||Koningsdam, Nieuw Statendam & Rotterdam,||12|
|Norwegian Cruise Line||Epic||128|
|Norwegian Cruise Line||Breakaway & Getaway||59|
|Norwegian Cruise Line||Bliss, Joy, & Encore||82|
|Norwegian Cruise Line||Pride of America||4|
|Royal Caribbean||Quantum of the Seas, Spectrum of the Seas, Ovation of the Seas, |
Anthem of the Seas & Odyssey of the Seas,
|Royal Caribbean||Harmony of the Seas & Symphony of the Seas||15|
|Virgin Voyages||Scarlet Lady, Valiant Lady, & Resilliant Lady||46|
Single supplements are few and far between. These cabins tend to fill up quickly because most cruise ships have few single staterooms. If you are ready for your solo adventure, book your vacation as soon as possible. Most cruise lines open their itineraries between 12-24 months before travel.
Different websites like Cruise Critics forums or a Cruising Facebook group will form online communities so everyone on board can get to know each other. From these boards, you can get to know other solo cruisers or cruise passengers looking to make friends.
Many times, these groups will host a meet and greet, bar crawls, and Casino slot pulls to help those traveling Solo to converse with other guests.
Cruising alone can be a great way to make new friends. With fellow passengers from all over the world, you’ll never run out of people to talk to (if that’s what you want to do – some people prefer to cruise alone for the solitude!)
When you first board the ship, it may seem like everyone is in friends, family groups, or couples. And the majority probably will be.
But cruises always tend to have a sense of camaraderie as everyone is on the same boat for the same seven days, so people tend to be friendly. Plus, if you’re on a ship with single cabins, there will also be plenty of other solo travelers.
On board, each cruise ship has plenty of activities to help break the ice if you’re willing to participate. From dance classes to live music shows, there’s something for everyone onboard.
Try participating in games or sports tournaments, as they can easily lead to conversations about life experiences and shared interests. These opportunities also allow you to learn more about other cultures through stories and conversations with guests.
When venturing on a singles cruise, dining alone can be daunting. Few people are used to eating alone in a restaurant, and seeing everyone at tables in couples or groups can be uncomfortable.
You can request to sit at the same table in the main dining room with fellow solo cruisers, which is a great way to meet people. If you want a different dining experience than eating with others, you can choose to do anytime dining on many of the cruise ships.
If all else fails, there’s always room for service! Dining as a single cruiser may initially feel overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. You may even enjoy the experience once you get used to it.
If you’re going on your first solo cruise, you must choose the right ship for your needs. Fortunately, plenty of options are available depending on the amenities you’d like access to while cruising.
The Norwegian Epic is one great option for solo travelers. It has dedicated areas specifically designed with singles in mind and provides an environment conducive to connecting with other passengers.
Quantum of the Seas, Anthem of the Seas, and Ovation of the Seas are more ships that offer excellent solo amenities. These feature single cabins and also provide programs specifically tailored to those on a solo cruise experience.
On these vessels, there are plenty of opportunities to make friends at onboard gatherings such as cocktail mixers or game nights, join group excursions, participate in fun activities like wine tastings or cooking classes, or relax in the spa or pool area.
Different types of ships can offer a different experience for someone who is cruising alone. Small ships (such as river cruise lines) are far more intimate than large ones on ocean cruises, allowing you to get to know fellow passengers quickly. With fewer people onboard, they tend to dock in smaller ports that larger ships cannot access.
On the other hand, large ships like the Norwegian Epic or Queen Mary offer plenty of amenities such as movie theaters, rock climbing walls, and numerous dining options.
They also provide great entertainment for singles who want to dance at nightclubs or show their singing skills in karaoke bars. Ultimately, the choice is yours.
Many of the newer large ships are becoming better equipped with cabins, amenities, and group activities for single travelers, so either option should suit someone going on a cruise alone.
For safety reasons, it’s often better for someone traveling alone to go on the ship’s organized excursions rather than alone in a new city or port. If you get lost and return late, the ship will sail away with you!
Plus, it’s more fun to explore new places with other people and is an excellent way to get to know some other passengers.
If you are traveling in a foreign country that uses a different currency than you typically have with you, make sure that you grab a few bills in that currency. Many cruise ships will have ATMs on board, but just be aware of fees.
If you would like to know how much money you need on a cruise ship, find out here!
An excellent way to make sure that you stay safe on your cruise alone is to let your family and friends know your itinerary and what excursions you are going on! You can share this information with them before the cruise and hop on the ship’s wifi if anything changes.
Another good way for your loved ones to know where you are is by sharing your location with them.
Some people love to spend time alone and relish getting away from people. Only some people are traveling alone by choice; even though people on vacation surround you, it’s possible to feel lonely.
It’s always a good idea to put yourself out there and try to meet as many different people as possible by participating in many activities. There are always so many things organized on a ship. There is little time to feel lonely if you choose to get involved.
For times you spend alone (maybe relaxing on the pool deck), bring a book or two and headphones to listen to some music or favorite podcasts to keep you entertained.
Just because you’re on vacation doesn’t mean you can’t keep in contact with friends and family members at home, so check in with them regularly to let them know you’re okay. Emotional connections with people we love will help to keep the sense of belonging and security alive, even when far away.
A solo trip can be an incredibly rewarding and wonderful experience. Yes, it will probably require a step out of your comfort zone, but you will enjoy the freedom of exploring new lands, meeting new people, and taking part in onboard activities tailored for single travelers.
Whether you choose a small ship or a large one, there’s something out there for everyone who wants to journey alone. If you stay safe and practice basic precautions while traveling, your cruise alone will surely be memorable.
Make sure you research your destination thoroughly before embarking on your voyage so that you know what type of amenities will be available. This way, you’ll be able to maximize your time and have the most enjoyable experience possible.
Schedule a FREE 30- minute consultation with us today. Our personalized approach will help us understand your desires and create a tailor-made itinerary that exceeds your expectations.