Top 10 Cruise Ships for Solo Cruisers
Many people may find the idea of going solo on a cruise daunting but the truth is that millions of passengers enjoy cruising solo every year! Now with more cruise lines adding extra sole-occupancy cabins and offering better discounts rather than hefty surcharges for those travelling alone, it's all good news for solo travellers!
Cruising is an attractive holiday for solo travellers as there is always something to do, people to meet, and it is a safe and hassle-free way to travel. Most ships have meet-and-greet sessions for solo cruisers and some have specific tables assigned for those who may not want to eat alone, plus there is a wide range of activities and events on offer.
Here’s 10 cruise ships that are bound to make your solo cruise experience enjoyable:
1. Holland America Line
Holland America Line offers a Single Partners Program, available on most voyages, with hosted solo passenger events. A roommate-matching service links passengers of the same sex with others who want to share and the price is guaranteed if no partner can be found. The new ms Koningsdam will have 12 single ocean-view cabins.
Queen Elizabeth, Queen Victoria and Queen Mary 2 have single staterooms and offer discounted supplements. Single guests can also book a double stateroom and pay a sole occupancy rate. Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria have nine single cabins and Queen Mary 2 will have 15 new single staterooms from mid-2016. Cunard’s gentlemen host program provides dance partners.
3. Crystal Cruises
Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony are popular with many repeat solo cruisers. Solo fares are available throughout the Crystal fleet and there are singles parties, hosts and hostesses and the assigned Table for 8 program at specialty restaurants is perfect for solo cruisers who don’t want to eat alone.
Ponant’s Le Ponant, Le Boreal, L’Austral, Le Soleal and Le Lyrial all have single cabins and private suites. The fleet of five small luxury ships that cater for 64 to 264 guests has some great offers for solo cruisers with no single supplements on selected cruises, but they are quickly snapped up.
5. Norwegian Cruise Line
Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Epic was the first in the fleet to offer solo cruising with 128 dedicated single cabins, while Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway feature 59 compact studio cabins. These cabins are placed together with a communal social lounge and bar area where solos can mingle and meet other like-minded travellers. The new Norwegian Escape has 82 single cabins, and Pride of America, which cruises around Hawaii, has four.
Silversea ships, including Silver Cloud and Silver Wind, are popular with solo cruisers because of their small size. A champagne welcome reception christens every voyage, providing an opportunity for solos to meet. Most voyages of more than 10 days also have gentlemen hosts on board as dance partners and shore excursion escorts.
7. P&O Cruises
P&O caters for solo cruisers with single cabins – Britannia has 27, some with balconies, Azura and Ventura have 18, Arcadia has six, Aurora four and Oriana two. Each cabin has a king size single bed, a flat-screen television and a vanity/writing desk and drawers, plus a bathroom with a shower. Cabins are priced for one with no solo supplement.
Seabourn Cruises’ Seabourn Quest is a good size for solo cruisers and there are often reduced single supplements across the fleet at various times. The all-inclusive ships make it easy to entertain a new friend over a glass of bubbles or afternoon tea, and officers and entertainment staff host tables at dinner.
9. Lindblad Expeditions
Soft adventure cruise line Lindblad Expeditions offers solo-occupancy cabins on all ships in its fleet and a matching service with a share guarantee where solo passengers pay half of the double-occupancy rate, whether or not they manage to match them with another solo passenger of the same sex.
10. Royal Caribbean International
Royal Caribbean International’s Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas cater for solo cruisers with 28 dedicated studio cabins on each ship. Radiance of the Seas, Serenade of the Seas and Brilliance of the Seas also have some specific solo cabins with twin beds. Discounts are offered and quickly snapped up.