Cruising is often promoted as a couples’ activity. Cruise fares are usually based on two people in each stateroom, with a surcharge applied to singles. Single cruisers are sometimes skeptical about traveling without a partner, concerned that they will spend the week alone. In fact, virtually every cruise throughout the world carries single passengers of all ages, all eager to connect with others.
1. Cruise with friends or relatives
Cruise with friends or relatives. If you are naturally shy, traveling with a like-minded friend or relative can help you break the ice with strangers while avoiding the single supplement by placing two or more people in the same cabin. If no one is available to travel with you, some cruise lines offer roommate matching services.
2. Choose the right cruise at the right time
Choose the right cruise at the right time. If you are college age, consider cruising on a budget line during spring break, when the ship will be filled with singles your age. If you are retired, cruise on an upscale line or while schools are in session. Passenger ages typically skew younger in the Caribbean and higher in Europe, although this is by no means universal.
3. Join a roll call for your cruise
Join a roll call for your cruise. Many cruiser forums maintain active discussion groups, known as roll calls, for those who will participate in the same sailing. Although not all those you meet online will be single, they may be cruising with someone who is.
4. Attend singles’ meetings on board
Attend singles’ meetings on board. Far from a collection of people desperate for a date, cruise line singles’ meetings attract a wide range of people looking for others to spend time with during the cruise. Meetings are advertised in the daily shipboard paper that is delivered to every cabin each evening. Try to attend the first get-together of the cruise; attendance sometimes drops off as people meet and form groups.
5. Participate in activities
Participate in activities. Every cruise line offers shipboard diversions ranging from dance lessons to foreign language classes. Cruise staff members are adept at getting participants to mingle. Over time, you will see the same people at numerous activities, which will make it easy to start a conversation.
6. Maintain reasonable expectations
Maintain reasonable expectations. Shipboard romances do occur and occasionally turn into long-term loves. In general, however, most people will return to their real lives at the end of the cruise. Look for a few new friends rather than searching for “the one.”
Remember that the crew is off-limits. All major cruise lines have strict regulations that prevent crew members from socializing with guests.
Although most people on a cruise ship are just interested in meeting others and having fun, always use common sense. Avoid being alone with someone you do not know, particularly late at night when most passengers are asleep. Keep an eye on your valuables, and never accept an open drink from someone you just met.