Cruise ship travel is a great vacation option for senior citizens of all ability levels. Safe and secure, cruise ships are able to offer a wide variety of activities, budget-conscious options, on-board medical facilities and a contained environment that’s ideal for many seniors.
Keep reading to learn about senior-specific cruise options, how to get the most out of a cruise when you’re a senior and some tips for traveling that are just for seniors.
Most cruise lines offer either cruises with age limit restrictions or actual senior-specific cruises.
Age limit cruises will typically restrict boarding to either unmarried individuals over the age of 25 or married individuals over 21. Meanwhile, senior specific cruises are targeted directly toward seniors or travelers 55 years of age and over.
Senior-specific cruises are more likely to offer a wide range of activities including low-impact shore excursions like bird-watching or town tours or more active distractions like on-board golf, tennis or sea-kayaking.
Active Senior Cruises
For a more active vacation, look for a ship that’s geared toward an active lifestyle, but also includes an age-restricted sailing. You’ll get the benefits of access to amenities like rock-climbing walls and full gym facilities without having to wait in line with teenagers.
Always Ask for the Senior’s Discounts
The majority of cruise lines will offer a senior’s discount for its older passengers, saving you anywhere from 10-50%. That said, always check the senior’s rate against the best advertised regular rate to see if you’re really saving.
Many cruise lines will also offer a discounted rate for veterans and their families or spouses. If you or your spouse served, don’t hesitate to ask about a veterans’ specific discount. Remember, you may be required to show proof of your veteran status before booking or boarding.
Prepare for Your Medical Requirements
Purchase an extensive travel health insurance plan that is specifically targeted toward cruise travel. You want a plan that can deal with the legal intricacies of international waters and on and off-board emergencies.
Remember to pack all of your medications, along with spares in case some are lost or an emergency arises. Also, always leave a full itinerary and contact information with a close friend or family member. Finally, almost all cruise ships have an on-board health clinic with either a doctor or an attending nurse or health professional. If you’re concerned, opt for a ship with more extensive health care facilities.