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How to prepare for your first solo cruise

One of the most significant advantages of traveling solo is that you can make the trip you want. That means you can go off to explore the Hawaiian islands, jump on a cruise in the Caribbean, or just sip mai tais at an all-inclusive resort in Mexico.

In my last blog post, we covered tips for preparing for your first solo trip. Today, I want to talk about cruising solo. Some cruise lines are better for this experience than others. Knowing which ships will give you the best experience is one significant advantage of working with a personal travel advisor. Knowing which ship and cabins are the best for your solo trip is only the beginning...keep reading to learn about the top tricks to have the time of your life.

1. One of the first factors that need to be considered when booking a solo cruise is the costs associated with it. Cruise lines expect to fill each cabin with at least two adults and price the rooms accordingly. Many times when researching a cruise, you'll see a price that is per person. You'll notice that this price will double as you get further into the booking process, regardless of if you have one or two persons in the cabin. This is known as the single supplement, which is 100% of the cruise fare when booking a solo trip in a double cabin.

But there is good news! Some cruise lines have started introducing solo cabins. These cabins are designed to have a solo cruiser and are a much more affordable option. Virgin Voyages, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Celebrity are just a few examples of the cruise lines that have introduced these solo cabins.

The benefits of booking a solo cabin go beyond avoiding the single supplement. Solo cabins often give exclusive areas on the ship that only solo cruisers booked in these cabins can access. Escaping to your solo lounge for happy hour before dinner is a great way to unwind after a long day in port.

2. Traveling solo means that you have the opportunity to be alone as much as you want. But if we've learned anything from our time social distancing, even the most introverted person needs social activities. Making new friends on the cruise gives you the flexibility to do activities that otherwise would be boring or even awkward alone. Plus, as an added benefit, you'll have a safer group to go exploring with at your ports of calls, and you can have more fun than you otherwise would alone.

Make friends early

3. I mentioned this in my last post, but it's worth stressing again. Do Not Eat Alone, especially your first evening on the ship. When you go to the dining hall, ask to be seated with other solo cruisers. As one avid solo cruiser recalls, "the first night, I made new friends with other solo cruisers at dinner. We made plans to do port excursions, go to activities together, and we had a blast the entire cruise."

4. Another great way to meet new friends on board is to go to various meetups. These may be specific to solo cruisers or a broader group like the LGBTQ meetups. Ethier way, these are great ways to get out of your shell and talk with other cruisers who have similar interests.

5. Get active with pre-cruise groups and cruise line fan clubs on Facebook. These are an excellent way to get to know your fellow cruisers before you step foot on the ship. Facebook groups like Virgin Voyages Sailors' Pride are a great way to share your experiences with other fans and hold you over until your next cruise.

6. The last tip I'll include is: don't forget to have your alone time. You booked a solo trip because you wanted to get away from it all. Remember to take time to yourself to recharge your batteries, so when you get back to the daily grind, you're ready to rock and roll.

Ready to start planning your first (or next) solo getaway? With multiple solo cruises under my belt, I'm ready to help you plan and walk you through everything that you should expect.

Rainbow Getaways is a full-service travel agency that specializes in travel for the LGBTQ community and our allies. Schedule your complimentary consultation to start planning your next getaway; plus, all new bookings deposited in 2020 receive a special gift!


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