Do you love the idea of a high seas holiday, but are unsure about cruising by yourself? Well fear not as there is a growing number of people who want to, or have to, cruise on their own. But as those in the know will tell you, cruising can be an ideal holiday for older singles. More cruise lines are welcoming solo cruisers with social activities such as special receptions, single activities, and ‘gentlemen’ hosts for dancing, so here’s our pick of the best cruise lines to consider.
Holland America Line
This line is famous for attracting solo cruisers, with programs which don’t require partners to participate and activities providing a great way to meeting others, such as cooking classes. Holland America’s Single Partners Program is also available on most cruises, featuring special events for those travelling alone.
On Cunard, singles are often assigned to tables for dinner with other singles and gentleman hosts are available for dancing. There is also a wide variety of other activities from enrichment lectures and workshops, which don’t require a partner to attend. Another bonus is single staterooms; Queen Elizabeth, for example, has nine, including eight outside and one inside.
P&O World Cruises
P&O is increasing its single staterooms; Arcadia, which is an adults-only ship, has a range including two with balconies introduced in a recent refurbishment – a first for the line. Also the new Britannia, which debuts next year, will have 27 single staterooms of various types.
Norwegian Cruise Line
Norwegian Epic was the first NCL ship to feature 128 inside studio staterooms for singles, and access to an exclusive social space, Studio Lounge. Both of its recent new-builds, Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway, have 59 studios each, and when Norwegian Escape launches next year, she will have 82.
This luxury cruise line is popular among solo cruisers, thanks to a wide range of activities on its two ships, special parties for solo cruisers, and gentleman hosts. Crystal is also the only cruise line at this end of scale which still offers fixed seating dining, while the ‘Table for 8’ program allows solo cruisers to dine at specialty restaurants with other singles.
The boutique ships in Seabourn’s Odyssey class are intimate enough for people to get to know other cruisers easily. Also, and a nice touch, the ship’s officers and entertainers host tables for dinner every night, with special consideration given to anyone travelling alone.
The line’s new ship, Quantum of the Seas, which launches in November, and Anthem of the Seas, which debuts next year, will both have dedicated staterooms for solo cruisers; a total of 28 each. Twelve have balconies, while the 16 interiors will feature industry first ‘virtual balconies’ – floor-to-ceiling LED display screens projecting live images of the ocean and ports.
To find out more about cruising or to find the cruise of your dreams within your budget, visit CruiseGuide.com.au.