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I took my first cruise alone and did these 7 things to make solo cruising more fun and less lonely

14 Dec 2023

When it came to taking my first solo cruise, I was definitely nervous and unsure what to expect. 

Calista solo on Enchantment of the Seas

When first I realized I would have the opportunity to travel to the Mediterranean—but I would have to do it alone—I wasn't sure if that would be a good fit for me.

In the end, I knew that some opportunities are worth taking, even if you have to do it alone.

I packed up and traveled the 18 hours to begin a cruise on Enchantment of the Seas, sailing from Athens, Greece, to Barcelona, Spain.

The 7-night cruise was an amazing experience and a chance to see part of the world I’d never experienced before. 

However, cruising alone was a challenge. Not only did I have to be hyper-aware of safety, but it was also a lonely task to travel alone for such a long period of time.

If you’re planning on taking a cruise alone, don’t fear! I developed 7 strategies to make my solo cruise more fun and less lonely. These tips can help you conquer your nerves and make a solo trip even more worth it.

1. Attend cruise ship activities

Royal Caribbean ships offer a variety of events to help cruisers meet each other and have fun. 

Self-guided groups are available on every Royal Caribbean ship for cruisers with every possible interest to meet up. The most common ones I’ve seen are for singles and solo travelers, members of the LGBTQ+ community, members of Alcoholics Anonymous, and groups for various religions. If you keep an eye on the ship’s schedule, you’ll see there’s something for everyone!

These groups are a great opportunity to people and make friends with common interests as you.

Schooner Bar on Enchantment of the Seas

However, I will place a warning here: the self-guided groups are usually more sparsely attended. On my cruise, I attended the groups for solo travelers and members of the LGBTQ community but found that they weren’t always full of other people.

My advice is to go frequently, and if you don’t make friends at first, keep trying! There are many available groups, and often they are offered on multiple days over the cruise. 

2. Purchase WiFi for connectivity

Enchantment of the Seas

This tip may not be for everyone, but it helped me!

Buying WiFi on a cruise is optional, and it also comes with an extra charge. Personally, I did not end up purchasing WiFi for the entire length of the cruise, so I paid about $30 per day on the days I chose to buy it.

Although having WFi can take your attention away from the natural wonders, the ship’s amenities, and many activities onboard, it helped me stay connected on my solo cruise.

Centrum on Enchantment of the Seas

Solo traveling has the potential to make you very lonely, as you’re cruising out alone and in a strange place. Staying connected through technology is a great way to alleviate that loneliness.

I was able to use social media, text friends and family, and make phone calls when I was feeling extra lonely.

When used sparingly, and mostly on sea days, it was a great way to stay in touch with my loved ones.

Additionally, having WiFi helps provide entertainment for the boring moments of traveling alone. 

3. Make conversation with crew members

Royal Caribbean’s crew members are there to ensure you have the best possible experience on board, and their kindness can extend beyond a simple “hello.”

I found so much social fulfillment in making conversation with crew members at the dining venues, pool areas, and events. 

Not only did I get the chance to spark up conversation on board, but the crew members I met hailed from all parts of the world and had different journeys to get to the ship. I even got to practice with Indonesian with some staff!

If you take the time to chat with crew members around you, you’ll find that they have advice, stories, and a fascinating perspective into the cruising world. It’s the perfect way to fend off loneliness and have an enriching conversation with a kind stranger.

Read more: 7 most important crew members to meet on your cruise ship

4. Stay busy with activities

Another method I used to keep my mind off my solo status was staying busy and taking advantage of all the activities around me. After all, solo traveling is done for a purpose, and what better way to keep yourself cheerful than reminding yourself why it’s worth it?

Onboard, there are many activities you can attend daily, from trivia games to poolside dance parties, to special casino deals. I would often wander around onboard and find an activity to join in on whenever the need arose.

Making the most of all the fun opportunities around you ensures that you’ll feel fulfilled on a solo trip and remind yourself why it’s all worth it.

5. Plan ahead by bringing entertainment

Bringing entertainment along with you is another great way to amuse yourself and stave off loneliness.

Before my cruise, I downloaded movies and TV shows onto my phone, fun games that I could play even off WiFi, and a number of books onto my Kindle. 

That way, I had all my favorites downloaded for days that I chose not to buy WiFi, or needed some extra activity. 

Planning ahead by bringing entertainment meant that I was never bored, even while sitting alone on many occasions. Having familiar forms of media—whether it’s your favorite songs or an old movie—with you can also be a comforting touch to a lonely cruise.

If you’re someone who’s afraid of sitting alone in public, such as at the dinner table, don’t worry!

On my solo cruise, all I had to do was pull out a book or put in some headphones, and the rest of the world would fade away. I could enjoy a meal or pool chair alone, and no one bothered me or looked at me strangely.

6. Take group tours

I was very grateful that I chose to purchase Royal Caribbean shore excursions on my cruise.

These organized group tours got me face time with other cruisers and brought together a community of travelers interested in one common goal.

I’ve always enjoyed getting to know tour guides on my cruises, so a solo cruise is also a great opportunity to have more time with them!

Other than that, I noticed that other cruisers would make conversation with me as we toured and explored. It was a lovely reminder that I was not completely alone and a fun opportunity to share the sights and sounds with others.

Traveling sometimes is better when you have someone to share it with.

7. Embrace the alone time

Most of all, it’s important to remember that a solo cruise is just that: solo. Instead of spending the majority of your trip fighting off feelings of loneliness and distracting yourself, don’t forget to embrace the time alone.

While it was a challenging cruise, I really enjoyed the peace of solo travel. You can move at your own pace, always have a quiet moment, and do whatever you’re in the mood for. Plus, I loved having hotel rooms and cruise staterooms all to myself!

Ultimately, solo travel is a great way to get to know yourself and spend some peaceful time on a vacation in a new location.

Take advantage of the trip, and embrace it! Set personal goals, try to meditate and journal, and relish in doing some challenging but exciting. 

Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast Episode - What solo cruisers should know before they cruise

26 Apr 2023

Listen to the Show

Taking a cruise by yourself? Here are important tips anyone cruising solo should know before they go.

Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...

On this episode:
Running time:

5 things that surprised me about going on my first solo cruise, from enjoying my own stateroom to conversing with others

17 Jan 2023

I recently went on my first solo cruise during a 7-night Eastern Caribbean sailing on the Symphony of the Seas, and it was nothing like I expected it to be.


When you embark a cruise ship, you’ll see families in matching t-shirts, eager to kickstart their vacation and spend time together.

Parents will drag their children to Adventure Ocean to get them properly registered before setting sail, while the teens might be nose first into their phones trying to soak in the last bit of cell service.

For older groups of adults, you might find them hopping from bar to bar to figure out which bartender is their favorite as early on as possible.

Symphony of the Seas zip line view

Cruises are a great vacation for small and large families alike because there’s something for everyone.

Before my first solo cruise, the extent of my independent travel was limited to airports and planes. I was nervous, excited, and everything in between!

Here are five things that surprised me about going on my first solo cruise.

I enjoyed having a stateroom to myself


Initially, I was nervous to be in an interior cabin alone for one week. Prior to this sailing, I had only ever stayed in balcony cabins, and even then I often slept in and nearly missed breakfast.

However, I found coming back to my own stateroom each evening after being around masses of people to be relaxing.

I never had to ask anyone if they wanted to shower first or share closet space; there was no bumping into or bickering with family members while trying to rush to get ready for dinner.


Having an interior cabin to myself made it feel larger, too. I was able to keep everything pretty neat throughout the week, so it never felt cluttered. While I would’ve enjoyed a balcony, I think it would have almost felt like too much space for one person.

Plus, it forced me to get out and mingle on the top deck, rather than stay secluded on my own private terrace.

I will say that I did keep the television channel with the cruise map on all week, and I think having constant music playing in the background helped the room feel more cozy and less lonely!

I prefer exploring ports on my own, rather than going on cruise line sponsored shore excursions


This one truly surprised me, as I made it a plan to only go off with the cruise line due to safety concerns. I don’t have an international cellular plan, so I didn’t want to be wandering in a relatively unfamiliar place without the ability to contact anyone.

I bought a ticket through Royal Caribbean for the Pelican Peak Zip Line in St. Maarten. I had been zip lining in Jamaica before, and all parties were laughing and cheering on each other by the end of the excursion. I had similar hopes and expectations for this tour. 

My group consisted of one family of four, one couple, a brother and sister duo, and another solo guest. Everyone kept to themselves during the ride to Pelican Peak, and the guide was speaking so much that there weren’t any opportunities for participants to mingle.

At the end of the 1,500 foot zip line, all parties dispersed. I thought people would talk about their experiences while waiting for the shuttle back to the cruse terminal, but I found that I was the only person who waited. And after about thirty minutes of waiting, I opted to walk the fifteen minutes back on my own. 

While docked in St. Thomas, I went off on my own to explore Water Island, a quiet and secluded island off the coast that's the smallest of the four U.S. Virgin Islands.

Honeymoon Beach Water Island

The plan I thought I had went to shambles pretty quickly, but I enjoyed my day talking with locals and other visitors. It made for a more unique experience, and I know that if I ever return, it won’t be quite the same!

It was easy to strike up conversations with other guests


On my first afternoon onboard, I grabbed a strawberry blonde to take back to my stateroom to work on an article about the first look at Royal Caribbean’s new main dining room menus.

In the elevator on the way there, I was asked about the drink by another couple, and we had a full-blown conversation about our favorite cruise drinks before I got off.

That same evening, I went to the first Hyperlink event of the cruise (the Hyperlink program is for guests between the ages of 18 and 25 and aims to bridge cruise ship activities following the teen club to more common adult offerings).

While I was there, I found everyone to be more social and welcoming than I anticipated, and I met two individuals whose family “adopted” me for the week, allowing me to join them at dinner and other activities, including Perfect Day at CocoCay’s Thrill Waterpark.

It was so great to have a buddy that was willing to tag along to the Hyperlink events with me throughout the rest of the week, especially since a few of them were after 11:00pm. 

Seeing how willing people were to jump into conversations at the Hyperlink event made conversing with others a breeze, like when I met a nice couple in Water Island who offered to give me a ride on their golf cart, and I didn’t feel as lonely as I thought I would the rest of the trip.

Dining alone in the Main Dining Room can be a little awkward

When I first moved to New York City, I had immense anxiety about eating alone. Now, I do it at least once per week, albeit in a more fast casual way. Regardless, I had reason to believe that I would have similar experiences solo dining onboard a cruise ship.

In reality, I found it to be much more uncomfortable than I expected, and I felt the loneliest on this trip when I did eat alone.

On the first night, I was tucked into a dark corner seated at a table for two on deck three, and my wait staff was confused at the concept of me sailing alone. I was checked up on at least three or four times asking if anyone was going to be joining me.

Main dining room table

Even if I saw other guests hanging out alone during the day, dinner brought travel parties back together.

I’m grateful for the family who let me dine with them each night, as it made my solo cruising experience much more enjoyable!

I’m looking forward to my next solo cruise where I can skip the Main Dining Room, eat in the Windjammer, or dine with others at Izumi’s Teppanyaki!

I didn’t have to prioritize what I wanted to see and do


Since my first solo cruise was also my first work trip, I had to manage experiencing what the ship had to offer, as well as getting all of my assignments done.

That being said, balancing work with cruising felt like a family trip, minus the family.

On those kinds of trips, there’s rarely enough time for everyone to get to do everything that they want to do, so there have to be some compromises made.

The same concept applied to my solo trip, but I got to pick exactly what I wanted to do in my free time, whether that was lounging in the Solarium during the day or watching a show at night.

I didn’t get to zip line, try out the FlowRider, or ride down the Ultimate Abyss, but those are all activities I have done in the past; I was more focused on using my leisure time to relax and enjoy some entertainment!

Overall thoughts on solo cruising


While I enjoyed my trip and am thankful for the new friendships I made, cruising is a whole lot more fun when you're sharing the experience when your loved ones! I often felt myself reminiscing on trips I've taken with my dad and sister and wishing that they were with me. 

In the future, I won't immediately cross a solo cruise off the list, especially now that I know what to expect. To me, a solo cruise equates more with work than for leisure! 

What I learned from my first solo cruise

29 Jan 2022

Wondering what it is like to go on a cruise by yourself? I recently had my first solo cruise experience with a 4-night sailing on Independence of the Seas and a 7-night sailing on Harmony of the Seas.

Before my cruises, I was feeling nervous about what it would be like to go on a cruise alone. 

While I have done travel days alone here and there, I had never done a full vacation solo. In the end, though, I had a wonderful experience and came back with a few tips and tricks that can really enhance a solo cruise experience.

Initial Concerns

I am an extrovert and get a lot of energy from being around and experiencing things with other people. Feeling lonely was my main concern going into my solo cruises. Would I not talk to anyone for 7 days? Would I be doing everything alone? Will I dislike not having someone there with whom I could share my experience?

Another concern I had was with dining. I don’t normally eat alone at restaurants at home, so I was not sure what my dining experience would be like onboard. Going into my cruises, I planned to eat most meals at the buffet and spend my days in port or at sea exploring solo.

In the end, my solo cruise experiences could not have been more different than I initially imagined. I ended the two cruises with new friends and memories made throughout the Caribbean. Most importantly, though, I learned a few key lessons that may help alleviate a few concerns if you are planning a solo cruise vacation.

Meeting other passengers is easy

As soon as I boarded Independence of the Seas for my first solo cruise, I quickly realized that you are never truly alone on a cruise ship. There are thousands of passengers and crew members all around you, so it’s never too hard to strike up a conversation.

During my time on Independence of the Seas, I would go to events onboard that skewed more social, such as trivia, and also chat with the bartenders and crew throughout the ship. 

After my cruise on Independence, I felt extra confident as a solo cruiser for my next sailing on Harmony of the Seas. My solo cruise on Harmony ended up not being very “solo” at all!

As soon as I got onboard, I met two guests, Zach and Collin, at the embarkation day lunch with The Key. We ended up spending a lot of time together throughout the cruise, whether at the Windjammer, Aquatheater, or Solarium.

As the week went on, we slowly introduced more people into our “cruise squad”. One place that proved to be a fantastic social environment onboard were the hot tubs! Hanging out in the hot tub always led to interesting conversations with fellow passengers, several of which I connected with throughout the rest of the cruise.

By the end of the week I had a group of five other passengers to hang out with onboard. From evenings in the Promenade to sunny afternoons on the pool deck, it was a blast. I certainly did not expect to meet such a fun group of people so easily as a solo cruiser.

On the last night we shared a dinner at Jamie’s Italian and it was a wonderful way to close out a “solo” cruise experience that ended up being one of my most social cruises yet.

Dining “alone” can be fun!

Dining is one of the biggest concerns for solo cruisers, but on my cruise I learned that dining alone does not have to seem so intimidating. I found that if I was eating alone, crew members would often stop by my table to get to know me. One morning at breakfast in the Main Dining Room, I was seated at a table next to another solo cruiser and we ended up chatting for around an hour! I rarely had a completely “solo” meal.

The best decision I made, though, was booking dinner at Izumi Hibachi on Independence of the Seas. Izumi Hibachi tables seat eight people. If your group is not a party of 8, multiple parties will be seated together at the same table.

My hibachi table had four separate parties and, as usual, the hibachi experience created an environment of conversation and laughter with plenty of mouth-watering food. I think Izumi Hibachi is the best choice for a solo cruiser looking to enjoy a more social dining experience onboard.

Time in port is really flexible when you’re solo

I thoroughly enjoyed my solo days in port, too. One benefit of cruising solo is that you can choose to do whatever you want while in port. You don’t have to plan around anyone else’s preferences, interests, and schedule. 

I spent my days solo exploring Nassau, cycling around St. Maarten, and chilling out at Perfect Day at CocoCay and had an amazing time, even if I did not share the experience with anyone else.

I also learned that booking excursions can also be an easy way to mingle with fellow passengers. In St. Thomas I reserved the Discover Scuba excursion, which took ten guests to an island off the coast of St. Thomas to learn the basics of scuba diving. The exploratory nature of the excursion fostered a social environment for everyone in the group, leading to a fun afternoon of conversation, diving, and snorkeling.

I spent my days relaxing solo at Perfect Day at CocoCay. If you’re looking to meet guests at Cococay, though, I’d say the best spot to meet people there is Oasis Lagoon. This always turns into a big party in the afternoon and can be a fun way to mingle with other guests (or just people watch as the party gets wild!).

Post-cruise thoughts

Cruising solo is not nearly as “scary” as I thought it would be and I actually enjoyed the independence and freedom it gave me to plan my cruise vacation. As an extrovert I did not feel lonely once, although I did enjoy having an internet package so I could still chat with friends and family back home.

Do I prefer cruising solo or with friends and family? I think I still prefer to cruise with friends or family because a huge part of traveling for me is making memories with those close to me. I feel that some things in life, whether discovering a new island or enjoying a fancy dinner, are better shared with friends and family.

However, I would definitely cruise solo again. Making friends onboard proved to be extremely easy and having a group to hang out with certainly enhanced my experience.

It’s also nice, though, that if I did not want to be social, I could have stayed to myself. There is no requirement to go on a solo cruise with the intention of making new friends or always chatting with other guests and crew. I, however, found the way that works best for me and I am already looking forward to my next solo cruise.

Planning a cruise? Check out these articles:

Solo cruises on Royal Caribbean

28 May 2020

Are you thinking of going on a Royal Caribbean cruise solo? It is not as crazy as it may sound, and a lot of people take this sort of vacation every year!

Going on a solo cruise means being able to do what you want, when you want to do it, and it has its own sets of perks (and hurdles). 

Cruising solo in a double occupancy world

There is no denying that cruise ships are traditionally configured for guests who are sailing with at least two people in each stateroom.

The cruise model is based on double occupancy, which means the profitability of a ship assumes two people per room. 

When cruising solo, you will likely become quickly familiar with the term, "single supplement fee", which means you are charged extra for cruising with just one person in a stateroom. The single supplement fee makes up for the lost revenue by not having a second person booked in the same room.

While single supplement fees are common, there are a few ways around this fee.

First and foremost, Royal Caribbean offers solo rooms on select cruise ships. Ten Royal Caribbean ships offer a limited amount of studio staterooms that are designed (and priced) for solo cruisers. These rooms do not come with a single supplement fee associated with the booking.

Another way around the fee is if you have at least 340 or more points in the Crown and Anchor Society (Royal Caribbean's customer loyalty program).  If you are that high up in the system, the single supplement cruise fare is reduced to 150% from 200%.

One other way to get around the single supplement fee is on some rare sailings, the fee may be waived in order to encourage bookings. This is typically offered on last minute cruises, where the cruise line wants to quickly increase bookings.

Money saving tip: Pretend you are not solo

One of my best tips is to price out a cruise booking as a solo cruiser, as well as making up a second person in the room to see which option is cheaper.

Royal Caribbean's system sometimes penalizes solo cruisers so much with the single supplement fee, that it is not uncommon to find a lower price by paying for a phantom second guest who never actually shows up.

Essentially, you place your name and the name of someone else on the reservation. This could be a family member or friend who has absolutely no intention of sailing. It does not really matter, since this person will not be sailing, and there is no penalty or issue if a guest does not show up for the cruise.

While you will be paying for a second person that is not going on the cruise, in many cases this is still cheaper than a booking that only has one guest on the reservation. 

It should be noted that when you show up for the cruise without that second person, you will be refunded port fees and taxes for the second person, as well as still receive double Crown and Anchor points for cruising solo.

The best part about this tip? You get an even bigger stateroom than if you booked a studio cabin!

Best cruise ships for solo travelers

While there are ten Royal Caribbean ships that offer solo rooms of one kind or another, I think a few stand out for offering the best options for a solo traveler.

The Quantum Class of ships, which include Quantum of the Seas, Ovation of the Seas, and Anthem of the Seas, offer not only standard studio staterooms, but also studio balcony rooms.

These Super Studio Ocean View balcony rooms offer a private balcony that measures 55 square feet, and is a rare commodity for any solo room.

If you want to try one of Royal Caribbean's biggest ships, check out Harmony of the Seas for their Studio Interior and Studio Ocean View rooms.  Harmony is the only Oasis Class ship to offer studio rooms, so if you want to cruise on the largest ships in the world, this is the one for you.

Solo cruising tips

Being alone on the cruise does not mean a week-long adventure where you talk to no one. Cruising solo can be a very fun and social adventure, and many readers share how much they enjoy sailing by themselves.

Going solo on Royal Caribbean is a bit easier than on other cruise lines, because of the variety of activities offered. Many activities and events offered throughout the day lend themselves to being friendly to someone cruising alone.

Daily trivia competitions, escape rooms, water slides, FlowRider surf simulator and shows are just as enjoyable for someone on a cruise solo, as it is for couples and groups.

Royal Caribbean also offers cooking classes, drink seminars, and even a Chef's Table experience that are very fun activities to enjoy.

Another good tip if you are alone on a cruise is to actively strike up conversations with the crew. Start up a conversation with your waiter or bartender, seek out and introduce yourself to the Cruise Director, and get to know your stateroom attendant. Not only are the crew friendly and open to conversation, but many of them are equally interested in socializing since their friends and family are not onboard either.

Shore excursions are another great way to meet other people and not feel so alone. Nearly all shore excursions are group excursions, so you will end up with others from your ship.  In fact, you might consider an activity or experience that pits people together (scavenger hunts, demonstrations, rides, etc) as an opportunity to be a part of the team.


Another trick for making the transition of a solo cruiser easier is to book a theme cruise.  There are a ton of groups that organize cruises, and invite anyone with the same interests to join them.  These group sailings are filled with people who do not know each other, and that means many more people than usual who are interested in getting to know their fellow guests.

Lastly, try meeting your fellow cruisers before you even get onboard by connecting on Facebook. It seems like there is a Facebook group organized for each sailing, so just search on Facebook for your ship name and sail date, and see what you find.  You might strike up a conversation with others booked on the same cruise, and end up making friends before you even get onboard.

Your thoughts

Have you done a solo cruise vacation? Any additional tips? Are you thinking of cruising solo on Royal Caribbean Does a solo cruise seem like something you would enjoy, or would you miss being with your friends or family? Hearing from you is half the fun, so if you have other thoughts or questions, please share in the comments!

Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast Episode - Cruising solo on Royal Caribbean

16 May 2018

Listen to the Show

We often talk about Royal Caribbean cruises in the scope of a fantastic family vacation, but going on a Royal Caribbean cruise is just as enjoyable (if not more so) when you travel alone. Taking a solo Royal Caribbean cruise is a kind of experience that should not be shyed away from, and this week, we are talking all about going alone and how to take advantage of this sort of experience.

Share with me your thoughts, questions and comments via...

On this episode:
Running time:

Top 10 tips for going on a Royal Caribbean cruise solo

12 Jan 2018

Going on a Royal Caribbean cruise by yourself may sounds like a weird idea and feel intimidating, but in reality, it is an incredibly enjoyable experience.  If you have never taken a cruise solo before, it may seem off-putting, but if you talk to those that have done it before, it is a great decision.

If you are thinking of taking a solo Royal Caribbean cruise, here are some good tips for making the experience even better!

10. Look for solo cabins...

Did you know that Royal Caribbean offers some staterooms designed specifically for those that cruise alone?

These studio staterooms are available on select Royal Caribbean ships, and offer a private stateroom without a single supplement fee. Quite often, the single supplement fee is equivalent to double the cost of a single guest. Because the cruise lines business model depends on staterooms filled with at least two guests in them, single supplement fees have been the means of ensuring the cruise line is not taking a loss on a solo cruiser.

With single staterooms, there is no single supplement fee. When Royal Caribbean added these rooms, they designed them to be respective of the ship's business model and this means solo cruisers do not have to pay double the cost of what the cruise should be.

9. ...but regular cabins work too

Studio staterooms are a wonderful idea, but there are very few of them and they tend to sell out quickly.   As a solo cruiser, paying for a traditional stateroom has two distinct advantages that should not be overlooked.

First, Royal Caribbean will give you double Crown and Anchor Society points per night of your cruise if you book a traditional stateroom alone (and triple points if you book a suite by yourself).  This means you can move up the Crown and Anchor Society levels quite quickly!

Second, booking a standard stateroom provides many more choices of room types, along with a lot more living space. Studio rooms can be a good financial decision, but they are not spacious, nor do they typically offer a balcony.

In short, while paying a single supplement fee is not ideal, it is not the worst idea either.  In fact, many solo cruisers book regular rooms with an eye on getting a good deal to make it worthwhile.

8. Don't be afraid to dine alone

Just because you are cruising alone does not mean you should skip sit down meals in the fabulous restaurants on your Royal Caribbean cruise.

While you can certainly relegate yourself to dining in the Windjammer, Cafe Promenade, and other grab-and-go spots, you would be doing a disservice to yourself by skipping the other restaurants.

Most importantly, it will not be weird or awkward if you go to a specialty restaurant or main dining room alone. Most people likely will not even notice, and plenty of guests with family onboard opt to dine alone for a variety of reasons.  The bottom line is dining alone is not a bad thing, it should be embraced!

By going solo, you get to choose the restaurants you want to dine at and eat at your pace.

7. Splurge!

If you are going to cruise alone, take advantage of the fact you only have to pay for yourself and treat yo self.  After all, this is your vacation, so enjoy it!

Book a massage at the spa, or try a new shore excursion.  Pick up an unlimited alcohol package, or upgrade to a nicer stateroom and make your solo cruise your best one yet.

6. Talk to crew members

While you may not know any other guests onboard, make a special effort to talk to crew members.

Royal Caribbean crew members are friendly to all guests, so if you are cruising solo, getting a chance to talk up your waiters, stateroom attendant or bar servers is a great way to not only feel like you are talking to other people, but get to know some really fun and interesting people.

Crew members are not just a great communication outlet, they are a great resource for learning tips and tricks on shore, as well as hearing stories about past cruises.

5. Meet internet friends

If you would like to see a few friendly faces onboard your ship, make an effort prior to your cruise to meet others who will be on your sailing via the internet.  One thing the internet is fabulous at is helping connect people.

To find people on your Royal Caribbean cruise, try one these resources:

You are under no obligation to spend all cruise with these people.  However, you never know who you might meet and even if you get together to share a bus on an excursion or just a couple drinks at the bar, it can be a great opportunity to talk to other people.

4. Travel at your pace

Cruising solo means you get to do what you want, when you want it.  When you cruise with other people, almost anything you do involves ensuring they want to do it as well (unless you are inconsiderate, of course). But cruising solo is all about you.

When you cruise solo, you can be as flexible as you like, and try something you have always wanted to experience.  When you are by yourself, you can easily pivot and do things on the fly, as there is no collaborative element. Not having any plan may make you feel somewhat “naked” at first, but it is another way to have a different type of day on Royal Caribbean. Spontaneity is one of the highlights of a solo cruise.

3. Share your experience

Social media can be your lifeline to the outside world. While there is something to be said for actually experiencing what you are doing rather than sharing the supposed experience, a solo trip is somewhat different because it gives you a chance to engage with others.

Part of what makes a trip with others fun is sharing those little moments in the parks with someone else. Sharing online provides a quick and easy way to have a semblance of that, while still traveling solo. 

There are many great online groups that would not only welcome your membership, but relish in living vicariously through your adventures.  Here are a few of our favorites

Oh, and be sure to bring an external battery charger for your phone. The dullness of sitting around by yourself can dramatically increase your use of your phone, which will use a lot of battery.

2. Try lots of activities

If you are feeling lonely, or simply want to meet other guests onboard, embrace the daily activities offered on your cruise ship.  

Your cruise director and staff pack the Cruise Compass with lots of great activities from morning to late night, and that means plenty of opportunity to meet other guests. Since all of the events involve many guests, the fact you are by yourself is irrelevant.  It is not only a great way to get involved with the fun onboard, but you get immersed with other guests and you may find yourself making new friends.

Cruising solo may allow you to get out of your usual cruise routine and try out a new activity.  Having the opportunity to see shows, participate in contests, or get together for meets is a great way to not only expand your Royal Caribbean cruise experience, but strike up conversations with others.

1. Take a class or tour

Royal Caribbean offers a number of classes and tours that are perfect for any number of guests, including solo cruisers.

Sign up for a cooking class, try out a fitness course, or take a behind-the-scenes tour of the ship.  These are just some of the fun ways to participate onboard. Moreover, these activities are intrinsically enjoyed alone, which makes them perfect for solo cruisers.

Your thoughts

Have you taken a solo Royal Caribbean cruise? Any additional tips? Are you thinking of going solo on Royal Caribbean? Does a solo trip seem like something you would enjoy, or would you miss being with your friends or family? Hearing from you is half the fun, so if you have other thoughts or questions, please share in the comments!

What you need to know about taking a solo Royal Caribbean cruise

16 Feb 2015

Here's another great post by Royal Caribbean Blog contributor Michael Poole.

Today, I come to you with some pro’s and con’s of cruising solo onboard a Royal Caribbean cruise.  I have cruised solo six times now, all within the last two years.  Let’s start out with the good stuff and go over some advantages of solo cruising. 

Rack up the Crown and Anchor points

In 2013, Royal Caribbean introduced one extra cruise point in their loyalty program, Crown & Anchor Society for all solo cruisers.  By booking a cruise just for you, Royal Caribbean will give you an extra point each night of your cruise.  

If you book a junior suite or higher you already get double points plus the extra solo point per night, equaling triple points!

These points help you gain extra perks onboard, such as drinks, coupons etc.  For more information on the Crown & Anchor Program, check out episode 34 of the Royal Caribbean Blog Podcast.

Meeting new friends

Another advantage of solo cruising is meeting so many new people; sure you can meet a lot of new people while you are with friends and family.  However, there’s just something about being alone and people will just flock to you, it seems to happen every time. 

I enjoy being social and talking to new people, so I find this as a huge advantage of cruising solo. 

Dining solo

One of the most common questions I get from someone inquiring about solo cruising is where did you eat dinner?  Surly not alone in the dinning room? 

I like to request a large table in the dinning room, so I don’t have to eat alone.  I prefer a table with 6-10 people, that way I get a chance to meet more people and not get stuck with one couple or even alone. 

Since we are on the topic of food, one con is when you are eating in the Windjammer, if you get up for seconds the table will be taken by someone else once you return.  So the trick here is to load up on the first round or leave a personal item behind. 

Getting seats at shows

Have you ever been running late to a show, and you can’t find two seats together unless they are in the last row? 

When you cruise solo there is always one good seat left and you can just slip right in.  I was once running late to the Aqua show on Oasis of The Seas, and I noticed one open seat in the front row dead center.  Same rule applies to sea days on the pool deck; I can always find a great seat by the pool.  

Going ashore

One area I haven’t really explored is doing excursions solo; I generally do my own thing or have visited the location many times before.  

That being said, I would only go with a Royal Caribbean excursion due to safety reasons traveling alone.  This does cost more than the private options that you can often find. 

Solo doesn't mean cheap

The biggest con of solo cruising is the price, Royal Caribbean charges all solo passengers 200% of the cruise fare whether you have one or two guest in the cabin.

The only way to avoid paying the full fare is Royal Caribbean will have reduced solo supplement fare to help fill cabins.  They don’t advertise these discounts, so you have to go find them, which is very time consuming. 

On the Quantum-class ships, there are special staterooms for solo cruisers that do not include a supplement fee.

Try it!

If you are thinking about solo cruising I would tell you to give it a chance and I’m certain you won’t think twice about it again. 

If I had to leave you with some advice for the first time, I’d say be open-minded and have fun with the new experience.  Feel free to post in the comments below with any questions and I’d be happy to help.  

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