“Talking Sailing” by Richard Crockett – issue 45:
Do you need some time away but can’t find anyone to go with you? Don’t let this stop you from taking a vacation. Traveling by yourself doesn’t have to be boring or lonely. Taking a cruise by yourself can be the answer to a peaceful and exciting vacation. Here are some tips for setting sail by yourself.
Cruises are relaxing and everyone on the boat tends to be friendly and talkative. Sailing by yourself can be as isolated or as social as you want it to be. There are many opportunities to meet people. You’ll be assigned a dinner table so you’ll be dining with the same group of people each evening. If you’re younger and enjoy clubs, there are several nightlife options on the ship.
First off, you need to determine where you want to go and what kind of activities you want. Pick a destination that will keep your interest level high since you’ll be sailing solo. Warm weather destinations with sun and sand include the Caribbean, Mexico and the Mediterranean. In summer there are also cruises on the coasts of Canada, through the glaciers in Alaska, and through the fjords in Scandinavia. These focus on the sights from the ship and add some exploration to your vacation.
Determine how long you’d like to be on the cruise. There are cruises that range in length from three days to several weeks. The shorter ones are popular with young people who want to enjoy the nightlife on the boat. Weeklong cruises are the most popular; they offer enough time for you to adjust to the boat and enjoy all of the amenities. Unless you really want some alone time, anything longer than a week may get lonely if you’re traveling on your own.
Anticipate the added cost of traveling by yourself. Most cruise companies and travel agencies advertise prices based on double occupancy. Having a cabin to yourself will increase the cost by at least 25 percent. Some cruise companies offer a service to help you find a same-sex roommate to help share costs. If you’re set on having your own cabin then do some research; the extra cost for a single room on an expensive cruise can be less than a cheaper cruise.
Take the time and do some research before you decide on a cruise. The internet is a great resource for researching destinations, itineraries and cruise lines. Most cruise line companies have details of their ships on their website including amenities, occupancy levels and maps of their boats. You can also use a travel agent to help you find the right cruise. They have loads of brochures and many of them have first hand experience with cruises so they can make recommendations to fit your budget.
Taking a vacation by yourself doesn’t have to be boring or lonely. It may cost a bit more but taking a cruise can be the ideal solo vacation.
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