Single cruisers: What are the options?

This question came in today from Tonya Clark:

“I’m looking for advice on how to get the best deal on cruises when you don’t have a cruisemate to share occupancy, paying double doesn’t seem right. Any suggestions?”

For years, cruising’s odious single supplements have been a problem for single cruisers but I suspect things are a bit better right now with many cruise lines practically giving their cabins away. Here are some strategies to consider:

1. Look for cruise lines that offer single cabins. In the US-Caribbean market, these are almost non-existent but in Europe there are still some lines that have single occupancy cabins.

2. Search for “no single supplement” special deals. I am seeing more and more of these offers. Hook up with a good travel agent and let he or she know that you are serious about cruising if they can find a good deal for you. But be sure to be loyal and book through that person and refer them to others. A good travel agent is a treasure.

3. Make them an offer. If your time is flexible, contact the cruise lines directly a month or so before the cruise and let them know that you are willing to book a cruise if they will waive the single supplement.

4. Book a cheap inside cabin and pay the single supplement.

5. If you really don’t want to travel alone, then sign up for a singles cruise…they get great group rates and offer activities that you can participate in … or not. But they will get you a good cabin rate and find you a cabinmate if you want one. Check out www.singlescruise.com and similar sites.

6. In general, younger cruises should stick to three- or four-day cruises. If you are a single parent, you want to cruise with a line that has a strong children’s program. If you are older, then stick to the more upscale lines for a better single cruising experience.

About Cynthia Boal Janssens

Cynthia Boal Janssens is the editor and chief blogger for AllThingsCruise.com. She is a former national president of the Society of American Travel Writers (SATW). She has sailed on over 40 cruises all over the world.
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