8 Useful Tips For Your Singles Cruise

Single woman on a singles cruise staring at the ocean from the cruise ship deck
A singles cruise can be a truly enlightening experience. | Author: ben o'bro

Cruising is quite simply a wonderful experience and for many reasons. The ability to wake up refreshed and in the comfort of your own bed in a different part of the world gives you a great sense of adventure. Not only that, it is a simple and convenient way to spend a holiday, there will be plenty of entertainment, you’ll meet new friends and have a relaxing break away.

If you are single or widowed, however, it can feel as though this is a type of holiday that is closed off to you. Most cruises are geared up to support couples and if you go on your own then more often than not you will effectively have to pay the same cost as two people.

Thankfully, there are options out there to ensure that you have the cruise experience you are looking for without having to break the bank. There is the potential to have a great time on a regular cruise and there are also suppliers offering cruises that will have specific events and benefits for its single clients.

Singles cruises can be a truly refreshing experience once you take the following tips into consideration.

1. Understand the single supplement for your cruise

If you are planning on a vacation you will most likely see the price for a hotel room listed at a per person rate. Companies tend to show this figure on the presumption that there are going to be two or more passengers on a vacation, and the same applies to a cruise line. If they advertise a room at $500 per person, then they expect to receive $1,000 from the sale of that room.

For many travel agents though, if they advertise a room at $500 per person on a room and you want to travel alone, then they will expect you to contribute to the money that they feel they are missing out on.

It is fairly standard in the travel industry but can vary from one company to the next, with some expecting you to pay for the full room charge. It’s always important to check the terms conditions and any other relevant information to ensure you are not going to be paying too much.

A cruise ship from the side with a view of the different cruise cabins
To avoid the single supplement charge, you can choose a specific cruise line with solo cabins. | Author: Rabenspiegel

How to avoid the single supplement charge

The bad news is that with some of the large established companies, there is not a lot you are going to be able to do if you wanted to sleep on your own as you’d have to book a double room. With singles cruises, it’s important to look out for the companies that are going to be offering deals for single travelers and a tour operator that is supplement free.

If there was a specific company that you wanted to travel with or a specific type of cruise that you wanted to have, then one option is to share your room with a friend. You will often find there is someone who is in the same position or it could well be that it’s simply a friend who would be happy to spend the time away with you.

If this is something that you are going to be comfortable with then it is a great way to be able to avoid paying the extra cost. There is also another method, which may put some people off but it is a great way of meeting new friends, and that is to put yourself up for a passenger matching service.

A few companies offer this and they will be able to place you in a room with someone of the same sex and you would be able to share the space for the majority of the cruise. While some may be apprehensive about this, it’s worth noting that the vast majority of your awake time on a singles cruise will be spent outside your room.

If this option is not available to you or it is something that you simply don’t want to do, then there are other options out there. Some companies will offer a reduced rate on the single supplement and the cost will only be fractionally more than the normal per person charge. This will make it a lot more affordable for a single person.

More companies are also making single cabins which means that you can completely bypass the cost of the single supplement and enjoy your holiday at the same rate that everyone else is going to pay. Unfortunately, this is only limited to a small number of cruise companies which means that there’s not a lot of choice out there.

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2. Assess your options for singles cruises

If you are looking into these types of singles cruise packages then you will most likely be interested for one of two reasons. You are either going to be looking to go on a holiday with like-minded singles or you could well be looking for the solitude of being able to get away on your own.

If you simply want the solitude then there is little for you to worry about as you will be able to go around at your leisure and enjoy what the cruise has to offer. If you are looking for like-minded singles, however, then it’s a great idea to look for a cruise that is going to be able to offer events that you will be able to enjoy.

Many companies offer these types of services and they help to give singles only cruises a very welcoming feel. Being on such a big ship on your own can be an overwhelming experience for some, especially if the vast majority of the guests are couples.

3. Explore the singles-only events on singles-only cruises

One aspect that can be more daunting than others on a singles cruise is the dining experience and looking for specialty restaurants. The idea of trying to eat at a restaurant in a room full of couples can be unpleasant for some but having a singles-orientated dining experience will make it a lot more appealing.

As well as dining, there are other experiences on singles cruises you will be able to enjoy which are set-up specifically for solo travelers such as show reservations and parties. Depending on the company and the itinerary of the cruise, there can be plenty of other activities to enjoy too.

These can be such things as dance lessons, wine tasting, sporting events, pub crawls, ladies spa days and many more. It’s always a good idea to check before you book to ensure that they have the type of events that are going to appeal to you.

There can also be such features on cruises for solo cruisers such as singles tours and offshore meetups to let you have some company when you decide to get off the ship and explore the new place that you have docked in. With these types of cruises, you will never be short of things to do without feeling like the odd one out.

A single woman on a cruise sitting on a single table during dinner with a glass of red wine in her hand
Besides singles-orientated dining options, there are many others great activities for solo travelers onboard. | Author: Elina Sazonova

4. Be open to meeting other like-minded solo cruisers

Another great option for those wanting a singles cruise experience is to look for a themed cruise. These will have themes such as a specific type of music, dancing or arts etc. This means you are guaranteed to find someone who has similar interests to you.

On these types of cruises you will still be able to do all the activities of a regular cruise, however, the entertainment, dining and parties will be more directed to the specific theme of the cruise. This not only allows you to meet other singles who have the same interests but it could well increase your overall enjoyment of the cruise experience.

5. Plan your activities before boarding your singles cruise

If you’ve never been on a cruise ship before then you are soon to be in awe of the experience. The biggest cruise liners are incredible feats of engineering and at times it really does feel like you are in a city on the water. A lot of the time you can simply forget that you are on a ship at all.

Due to that size though, there are many things that can pass you by and you can end up missing out on something that you might have loved just because you didn’t know it was there. Also, you want to make meeting people on board as easy as possible in order for you to feel right at home.

It’s always a great idea to plan what you are going to be doing before you even set foot on the ship. It can be great fun planning your trip both onboard and also when you step back onto dry land too. All the key information will be available to you and a cruise director can give your ideas and point you in the right direction.

6. Make the most of your time on the cruise ship

One of the first choices you need to make when looking for cruises for singles is what type of ship you want to travel on. If you are a single wanting to meet other singles then you might think that it’s going to be a good idea to get on a ship that has as many people as possible.

On a large ship though you may feel that there is going to be a lack of intimacy and being in a crowd with 1,000’s of other people might not be your thing. Being on a smaller cruise liner might give you a better idea of how to plan your trip and you might find it a little easier to get around.

It’s never been easier to connect with different people and many cruise liners will have specific Facebook groups, message boards and forums. These channels will give you an opportunity to speak to fellow passengers before your trip and you might well find yourself making friends before your singles cruise vacation has even started.

Once on board, the dining experience will be a big aspect of your overall enjoyment. As we mentioned before, many companies will look to sit singles together but there is also the aspect of whether you want assigned seating or the freedom to sit wherever you want.

The advantage of assigned seating is that you will be seated each night with the same people and therefore will have more of an opportunity to develop friendships. The potential disadvantage there is, of course, if you don’t like the people you are sat with you may feel stuck. You can ask though to change seats should you ever have a problem.

Whoever you decide to have your singles cruise experience, it’s important to get involved as much as you can. You will quickly be able to meet new people, find new friends and instantly become comfortable on your solo adventure.

There will be plenty of activities and entertainment onboard, and there will also be a lot of shore excursions that you will be able to get involved with. They can give you an amazing experience and you will get to enjoy them with fellow passengers, with some excursions to amazing ports and destinations being tailored for single clients.

Four single woman doing a shore excursion together during a singles cruise
Not only the onboard activities, but also shore excursions will lead to meeting new people and new friends. | Author: sk

7. Age is just a number on a singles cruise

If you are going on a singles cruise you could well be wondering what the age range will be and whether or not you are going to fit in. They are naturally a type of vacation that is associated with older people but that doesn’t mean that you’re going to be the odd one out if you are 30-50.

On cruises that are dedicated to single travelers, you will find that there are always going to be people of a similar age to you whether you are 30, 40, 50 or beyond. The average age for cruises might be lower than a lot of people expect as there is always a diverse age range.

Many cruises will also include young families, including children. A vast number of cruises, or certain cruise liners, will operate a no child policy and that is something that might be of interest to you if you are looking to meet like-minded singles and enjoy a more relaxing experience.

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8. Enjoy yourself and your time as a single traveler

And finally, the most important aspect of singles only cruises is going to be for you to let yourself go and enjoy the experience. All these tips will help you to have a more fulfilling time onboard and get out of your cruising adventure exactly what you wanted to, whether that is getting a beverage package and dancing the night away or something more relaxing.

There are many people who will go on a cruise for the first time and they can never see themselves doing any other types of vacation ever again. It’s very easy to fall in love with the experience of having a home away from home and waking up in a new setting each day.

You don’t want to have to pay exorbitant fees to have that experience though and avoiding the single supplement is important in that, whether you are choosing a singles cabin, sharing a room or choosing companies who have reduced charges.

Whether you are going on a Caribbean cruise out of Fort Lauderdale, a river cruise or any other type of trip, once you have booked, then you can let yourself go and enjoy an experience like no other.

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