Ways for Cruising Singles to Connect

By JeniLynn Knopp

 


 

cruise

Cruising as a single is a slightly different experience than that of the "partnered." Due to the lack of built-in company, the single can maneuver through the trip with a blank slate and without responsibility to others.  This can be a good thing. Freedom unencumbered by the agendas of other people is a gift, but it can also be lonely at times. It's helpful to connect with others even if they didn't accompany you on embarkation day. To help find that balance between serenity and solitude, I've gathered a few suggestions from cruisers that regularly go it alone.

MAKE FRIENDS QUICKLY

Most likely you will not want to spend your entire cruise in solitary confinement. Isolation can bring a sense of peace in moderation, but in excess it can bring less desirable things. It is a good idea to make a few friends with whom you can join for occasional activities throughout your excursion. You have only a few days to find people that you would enjoy being around and then actually be around them. Therefore, it's not in your interest to be shy. You are short on time. Don't waste it.

An easy place to start is to make friends with the adult club host and cruise staff. After all, they are at the center of the activities that appeal to you, and they have been hand-picked to make sure that you are having fun doing them. Being around them means that you have placed yourself in the most likely spot for a good time, and don't be surprised if being with the staff helps you connect with other cruisers that are "in your boat."

PARTICIPATE IN GROUP ACTIVITIES

Check your Navigator daily. There are numerous adult-themed activities throughout the day and night. Many of them will combine you with others and make for an entertaining time. Some of them are specifically designed for singles (such as the 18-21 club activities and Singles Lunch).

Be willing to try something new. Trivia events are usually a good choice due to their highly interactive nature, but there is certainly more beyond that. Each evening the adult-only area has several activities from which to choose (often based on a nightly theme). The activities range from line-dancing and karaoke to game shows and talent acts. The main idea, though, is to do these things early in your cruise so that you'll have more time later to hang out with the people you meet.

PAY TO PLAY

There are some activities that cost a fee. However, if the activity is of interest, it will probably also have a nice return in friendship as well as recreation. One single friend of mine that cruises regularly schooled me on the benefits of a mixology class she took during one of her cruises. Hanging back during her port day in Nassau, she took a class that taught everyone how to make specific signature drinks from scratch. The class size was only twelve, so she had the opportunity to get to know her classmates in what she described as an "intimate class setting." All of them held this common interest and shared their failures and successes of the mixology lesson. It ended up being an experience worth skipping her day at port.

MAKE A FRIENDLY GESTURE

It is quite common for people to take a cruise in celebration of an event. Graduations, birthdays, and successful career moves are all occasions that bring people onboard. You may find a few people that are celebrating these things, and joining their celebration is a great way to connect.

A really great example was brought to my attention by a single cruiser who ventured out beyond her comfort zone and attended the craft classes offered on her cruise. The thought was initially silly to her; however, she found it to be very productive in the end when she used it to make homemade birthday cards for two staff members celebrating birthdays that week. She admits that the cards weren't spectacular, but the Cast Members were so shocked and grateful that any thought was given to them during her vacation. She credits this as one of the moments that made her Disney cruise special.

JUST BE

It's completely possible that you might catch someone's eye and be approached. I made the mistake of writing that possibility off before I stepped on my ship. And because I was not mentally prepared, I created a very embarrassing scene for myself when a pool deck attendant tried to hand me a drink that he insisted was mine. I extensively debated with the Cast Member over the drink's ownership for fear I was accepting someone else's drink. The whole time I was oblivious to the fact that a man had bought the drink for me and was watching the dramatic and embarrassing scene from a distance. When he finally approached, I was so flustered that I accidentally spilt his drink across the pool deck...not my most graceful moment.

The lesson to be learned here is that even if you aren't trying to connect, someone may be trying to connect with you. I'm certain that if it can happen to a single mother with three children, it can happen to anyone. Be open to the possibility and let the moment unfold if it does.

 



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