10 Ways to Make Friends Fast on Your Cruise

You are traveling on a seven night cruise. You’ve seen those folks whose idea of a great time is avoiding people and reading a book. That’s not you. You would like to meet some like minded people wanting to have a good time. Where do you start?

  1. The balcony cabin next to you. You have an outside cabin with a balcony. So do hundreds of other people. The weather is perfect. So is the scenery. Maybe you are enjoying morning coffee admiring the view. So is your neighbor. Lean over and introduce yourself.
  2. The lifeboat drill. Ships take these seriously. Although it’s a chore, the bottom line is hundreds of people are carrying their life vests to a designated area on the first day of their vacation. Everyone is happy. Talk to the people near you.
  3. Your dining room table. We always go for a big table with lots of people. Get to know them. Let them do the talking. Once you hit it off with another couple, suggest lunch or going on the shore excursion together. There’s always meeting for drinks before dinner.
  4. Do something you love. There are dozens of shipboard activities. Golf for golf lovers. The gym for fitness buffs. The kitchen tour for foodies. Wine tastings for oenophiles. Join the activity. You will meet like minded people.
  5. Attend the singles events. This assumes you are single! Ships have lots of them. Show up. Meet the other singles. You should be able to find some like minded individuals.
  6. Request a big table at breakfast. Breakfast in the dining room is often open seating. Skip the buffet elsewhere and head there. The maître d’ will ask your seating preference. Tell them a large table is fine. You’ve made their job easier. Now you have met several people who are on the same sleep cycle as you.
  7. Walk the outside decks, paying attention to people’s reading material. You are an Agatha Christie fan. You see someone stretched out on a steamer chair, reading one. The seat nearby is empty. Pull out your book. Start reading. One of you will likely start a conversation with the other.
  8. Show up for the pub quiz. This is my favorite. It’s easy to get onto a team regardless of the day you show up. Everyone knows something, but no one knows everything. It’s a great leveling factor. You can meetup beforehand to chat with your teammates or stay around after the quiz is over.
  9. Watch the sporting event on the big tv. This is something we don’t do, but plenty of other passengers do. There will be a big sporting event somewhere. It’s important to certain nationalities of guests. A crowd develops. The shout and scream as points are scored. Obviously, there’s a shared interest there. If it’s yours, that’s great.
  10. Cocktail receptions. There are lounges near the dining rooms. The ship has big ones like the Captain’s welcome cocktail party. Here, you are hoping luck plays a part. Once inside the room, find open seats at an already occupied table. Now you have a chance to make conversation.

Ships provide an accelerated timeline for developing relationships. It seems everyone is OK with that. It’s easy to make friends fast.

Cover photo: Queen Victoria Royal Court Theater, credit Bryce Sanders

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