Cruises are no longer what they used to be. Not only they have become accessible to most travellers but they have also become very popular with families. Parents can relax, while kids can have fun at the many kids-only facilities and group activities. Plus, the meals (and often snacks as well) and non-alcoholic beverages excluding speciality ones are included, making cruises very affordable for families.
For seniors, that’s not a particularly good news no matter how much they love kids. With hundreds of kids roaming all over the ship, it can be very difficult to relax and enjoy the cruise. The good news is that there are many cruises for seniors only as the minimum age requirement is set to 50 years or more. What is perhaps even more important, the itinerary, facilities and on-board activities are designed to meet seniors specific needs and requirements.
Seniors-only ships are often smaller in size but that doesn’t mean that they are any less enjoyable. On the contrary, the passengers enjoy access to a number of on-board facilities and amenities providing both recreation and relaxation opportunities. There are also many organised activities and programmes to enable the passengers to socialise and meet other seniors with similar interests, provide them the opportunity to have fun while learning new skills, ‘exercise’ their brain and promote health in their gold age. A lot of emphasis is typically also placed on culinary experience, allowing the passengers to enjoy meals prepared by some of the best chefs in the world.
Most cruise operators didn’t miss the fact that seniors are more likely to travel alone. In comparison to ‘regular’ cruise liners, seniors-only ships therefore pay more attention to solo passengers to help them meet new people and enjoy the cruise from the first to the last day. Unfortunately, there is usually the single supplement for senior solo travellers as well but many cruise lines offer ‘matching’ or finding a same-sex roommate which eliminates the single supplement as well as helps solo travellers meet new people and perhaps make new friends.
Seniors-only cruise lines are largely centred on active seniors but there are also some which are appropriate for seniors with disabilities as well. In addition to featuring amenities especially designed to facilitate wheelchair access, enhance safety such as grab bars, etc., they also have a highly trained staff which is qualified to assist and accommodate the needs of passengers with disabilities.