6 Things You Need to Know About Cruising Alone

by John Roberts

6 Things You Need to Know About Cruising Alone

by John Roberts

A solitary sail is a wonderful way to see the world on your own without actually being alone. You can choose to spend your days any way you wish, from immersing yourself in solitude with a few good books, to meeting and making new friends in the lounges and restaurants, to really throwing yourself into new activities and classes. Here's what you should know about cruising alone.

6
Relaxing on Grand Princess / Princess Cruises
Veendam's Large Interior Stateroom
1 of 6
1. It can be expensive.

If you sail alone, you will usually pay more for your cabin — as much as the full double-occupancy rate. So shop smart. This so-called “single supplement” may be reduced (up to 50 percent) during periodic promotions from cruise lines, or might be waived altogether under special offers. You can also find big savings if you're willing to share a cabin. Travel agencies that specialize in solo travel will connect cruisers who want to share a stateroom, and cruise lines can hook you up, too. Holland America's Single Partners Program matches up same-sex, nonsmoking singles, and the two of you each pay the per-person, double-occupancy rate. If they can't find a suitable match, you get the cabin for yourself at the lower rate.

It's not just ocean going ships that accommodate single travelers. River line Uniworld waives or reduces single supplements for their cruises, and the all-inclusive rates cover group walking tours or biking excursions where you can mingle with fellow passengers.

If you sail alone, you will usually pay more for your cabin — as much as the full double-occupancy rate. So shop smart. This so-called “single supplement” may be reduced (up to 50 percent) during periodic promotions from cruise lines, or might be waived altogether under special offers. You can also find big savings if you're willing to share a cabin. Travel agencies that specialize in solo travel will connect cruisers who want to share a stateroom, and cruise lines can hook you up, too. Holland America's Single Partners Program matches up same-sex, nonsmoking singles, and the two of you each pay the per-person, double-occupancy rate. If they can't find a suitable match, you get the cabin for yourself at the lower rate.

It's not just ocean going ships that accommodate single travelers. River line Uniworld waives or reduces single supplements for their cruises, and the all-inclusive rates cover group walking tours or biking excursions where you can mingle with fellow passengers.

Pride of America's Studio Stateroom
2 of 6
2. There are more solo cabins than ever.

Several ships have been designed with solo cruisers in mind, where you don't pay the single supplement but still get a room to yourself. Norwegian Epic, Norwegian Escape, Norwegian Breakaway, and Norwegian Getaway each have a large number of single studios, while Norwegian’s Pride of America has four such cabins. Plus, all cruisers who book this class of cabin get access to a studio lounge — a great place to grab coffee during the day and mingle with fellow solo travelers during a predinner gathering. Royal Caribbean's Anthem of the Seas and Quantum of the Seas offer studio staterooms (some with balconies), and Holland America's new Koningsdam features 12 single cabins.

Several ships have been designed with solo cruisers in mind, where you don't pay the single supplement but still get a room to yourself. Norwegian Epic, Norwegian Escape, Norwegian Breakaway, and Norwegian Getaway each have a large number of single studios, while Norwegian’s Pride of America has four such cabins. Plus, all cruisers who book this class of cabin get access to a studio lounge — a great place to grab coffee during the day and mingle with fellow solo travelers during a predinner gathering. Royal Caribbean's Anthem of the Seas and Quantum of the Seas offer studio staterooms (some with balconies), and Holland America's new Koningsdam features 12 single cabins.

Royal Princess' Sabatani's
3 of 6
3. You can eat alone — or not.

If you truly prefer dining alone, ask for a table for yourself at a set dining time. Otherwise, you can meet new people by choosing a flexible dining option, like Norwegian's Freestyle Dining or Princess Cruises' Anytime Dining, and you'll be seated with new tablemates each night. Some cruise lines make a special effort to seat singletons with other solo travelers. Chances are you'll hit it off with some of your fellow diners. If you find it hard to strike up conversation with strangers, some host and hostess programs offer dining mates.

If you truly prefer dining alone, ask for a table for yourself at a set dining time. Otherwise, you can meet new people by choosing a flexible dining option, like Norwegian's Freestyle Dining or Princess Cruises' Anytime Dining, and you'll be seated with new tablemates each night. Some cruise lines make a special effort to seat singletons with other solo travelers. Chances are you'll hit it off with some of your fellow diners. If you find it hard to strike up conversation with strangers, some host and hostess programs offer dining mates.

Queen's Room dancing on Queen Mary 2
4 of 6
4. Your dance card won't be empty.

Just because you’re traveling alone doesn’t mean you have to dance by yourself. A host and hostess program on Crystal Cruises provides dance partners for solo cruisers. Cunard, Holland America, and Silversea also have gentlemen host programs with dancers who are proficient in several styles. Note: For those seeking romance, we're sorry to tell you that rules strictly forbid relationships beyond the dance floor. 

Just because you’re traveling alone doesn’t mean you have to dance by yourself. A host and hostess program on Crystal Cruises provides dance partners for solo cruisers. Cunard, Holland America, and Silversea also have gentlemen host programs with dancers who are proficient in several styles. Note: For those seeking romance, we're sorry to tell you that rules strictly forbid relationships beyond the dance floor. 

21 Club on Holland America
5 of 6
5. The lines will plan parties for you.

Cruise lines often organize get-togethers or welcome receptions specifically for solo travelers. Holland America's Single Partners Program, for example, hosts cocktail parties and games. The nightclubs and casinos on cruise ships are also a great place for single cruisers to connect.

Cruise lines often organize get-togethers or welcome receptions specifically for solo travelers. Holland America's Single Partners Program, for example, hosts cocktail parties and games. The nightclubs and casinos on cruise ships are also a great place for single cruisers to connect.

Princess' Seaview Bar
6 of 6
6. You won't really be alone.

Even if you're fairly shy, you'll find most of your fellow passengers will be unfailingly polite and welcoming. So jump in and join a team during a trivia contest or a pool volleyball tournament. Take an open seat at a table for lunch or dinner. We bet you find new friends for life.

Even if you're fairly shy, you'll find most of your fellow passengers will be unfailingly polite and welcoming. So jump in and join a team during a trivia contest or a pool volleyball tournament. Take an open seat at a table for lunch or dinner. We bet you find new friends for life.

Up next...

10 Best Ports for Fun Fall Activities

Koblenz, Germany
Go Back
Find The Best Cruises
Find a cruise

Find the best deals!

Click on multiple sites to get the lowest prices

Click on multiple sites to get the lowest prices