Travelling alone can be a very rewarding experience. Without additional parties to satisfy, solo travel allows you to focus entirely on your priorities while you explore. It is also an excellent way to unwind away from all of your worries, and reflect on all of the enriching aspects of your journey.
Finding a single rate is just one of the challenges facing those who are interested in sailing alone, but with these five tips for cruising solo you can find and experience the joys of single travel.
- Be Flexible – As I mentioned the biggest challenge is finding a single rate. The cruise industry prices all of its accommodations based on double occupancy. Prices are selected using a mixture of current demand and historical data. Once the company decides they may have unsold rooms on an itinerary, they start offering a supplement. These “Single Supplements” most often become available within 120 to 90 days of a ship’s departure, and reduce the rate for solo cruisers.
- Have a backup – Part of being flexible requires you to have your eye on a few destinations, in case the one you want the most doesn’t become available to single cruisers. This way you have your eye on multiple itineraries or even brands to maximize your opportunities to find a solo supplement.
- Know your Brands – Certain brands like Ponant, Winstar, and Azamara maintain lists of solo rates as far in advance as a year in many cases. It pays to know who offers these rates more often to help you start your search.
- Be Prepared – Once you find your itinerary and make your booking, make sure you plan precisely where you are going to be visiting on your shore excursions. I recommend booking tours and excursions offered by the cruise line if you are new to traveling alone. It will ensure you are always surrounded by vetted staff and cruisers from your voyage.
If you are seeking more adventure and prefer to blaze your own trail on shore, protect your belongings, stay with groups if you can, and leave a copy of your itinerary with someone back home for added security. Make no mistake cruising alone is safe, but all travel comes with an element of risk the more you prepare and know in advance the more comfortable you should feel.
- Use your Resources – The best resource for planning your first solo cruise is a well-initiated travel advisor. Luxury Cruise Connections keeps a running list of available single supplements currently being offered by cruise lines. This is an excellent resource to narrow down your options.
While onboard, use the ship’s staff to your advantage. Onboard concierge services can help you plan activities onboard and even steer you toward other single cruisers or interesting social opportunities.
Don’t let the infrequency of single rates discourage you from booking a cruise. If you have the option of sailing with a companion, great, things will be easy. If not, let your Travel Agent fill that void during your planning phase. As mentioned, Luxury Cruise Connections keeps a list of the current single offers available and we have the knowledge and relationships with all of your favorite brands to better assist you.