I took my first solo cruise aboard MSC Magnifica in 2013. I was quite nervous, especially as I was embarking in a foreign port, but it all went without a hitch and now, when it comes to jumping on a ship on my own, I don’t even think twice about it – I just go!
Cruising solo is a chance to get out there and see the world from a different perspective, a chance to explore completely independently, and I have to admit that it is incredibly fulfilling.
I am a pretty laid back person and will engage in conversation with just about anyone, I think that is why cruising solo works for me, because I am never entirely on my own for long. I boarded MSC Opera for a cruise, also in 2013, and before the ship even left Southampton I had made friends with two girls, around about the same age as me, and we went on to spend a good majority of our time together when on-board the ship.
I have taken the majority of my solo voyages with P&O Cruises and I think if I were recommending a solo cruise to someone for the first time then P&O would be the cruise line I would suggest. I am forever in my comfort zone when cruising with them, both on-board and ashore, everything feels right and I love it. They offer get-togethers on-board for those travelling on their own and they are an ideal chance to mix and mingle with other like-minded solo travellers. I also think they are perfect for people that are confident enough to cruise alone, but maybe not so much to explore ashore alone as they give the chance to find others to explore with – should it be desired. I am quite happy to wander off on my own, always sensibly, of course, but it is nice to make friends and share some port days together.
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines would be another that I would recommend for first time solo cruisers, the atmosphere on-board is warm and inviting, and when I cruised on Braemar in June 2014, I was actually 1 of 4 people picked up from my coach stop and we were all on the cruise alone. Once on-board I actually met a lot of other people who were taking the solo plunge and I don’t recall any bad reviews!
If I am entirely honest, I would cruise solo with any cruise line, I am about to go it alone on Britannia in just a few days and then I have a 3-night Cunard voyage in November, which again I am doing on my own – if I am aboard a ship, I am happy. Simple.
If I could offer any advice to someone thinking about taking a solo cruise for the first time, that advice would be to stop thinking about it and just do it. I would be shocked if you didn’t return from your experience with the undying need to do it all over again. I appreciate for some people it can be daunting, but you have nothing to concern yourself with other than having a wonderful time.
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Images sourced via Flickr Creative Commons. Credits: Yanxin Wang