Cruise Options for Seniors

Cruises are among the most desirable vacations for aging adults. For most, the idea of sailing to an exotic destination, having all meals planned, and having plenty of activities in a single location are the features that draw people to cruise vacations. But, some cruise lines and some ships are geared more toward families with children or young singles. Older adults should consider the market each cruise is designed to attract when determining how to choose the best cruises for seniors. Below are some helpful hints in finding the right cruises for older adults.


– Interesting Itineraries

Many seniors have traveled extensively. So, finding itineraries of cruises that offer new destinations and places to see may be important. For others, climate and places of special interest may be critical details in selecting cruises with the most desirable itineraries. There are cruise lines that specialize in taking passengers to exotic places, like the tip of Australia, Asia, the Galapagos Islands, or the Antarctic. Other cruise lines focus on Nostalgia and bringing back memories of youth, such as the first journey on a steamer or taking people to destinations of military service.

– Activities to Keep Seniors Engaged

Some cruises are designed to offer activities from dawn until well after dusk, with many of the geared toward senior passengers. If side excursions in ports of call are less important, aging adults will want to consider the list of activities available on the ship each day of sailing. Ballroom dancing, shuffleboard, casino, pool, spa, salon, exercise facilities, and game nights are some of the activities popular among senior passengers. The types of live entertainment on board may also be important factors in choosing the right cruises.

For others seniors, excursion cruises may provide a greater sense of adventure, without all the physical engagement. Excursion Cruises can be those that offer the sights of Alaska, with some opportunities to get off the ship and see nature up close.

There are plenty of river cruises throughout North America, Europe, and Asia that offer destinations of great historical value or special places of interest, such as castles or historical architecture. Many river cruises offer day trips or excursions every day, so passengers will not have to find activities throughout the day. Much of the sailing will be done overnight. River cruises are quickly becoming popular for travelers of all ages, due to the interesting stops and activities planned throughout the entire trip. Ships used for river cruising may be smaller, but many provide top notch amenities and comfortable cabins for guests, as well as a range of evening and night time activities.

Some cruise lines now offer interesting courses for passengers, focused on the arts, learning a language, cooking or special skills, like glass blowing. For seniors who are never too old to learn something new, these cruises may be worth considering. They are also suitable for travel parties of different generations, such as aging parents and their middle-aged children or young adult grandchildren.

– Medical Services Available and Accessibility

For those who have health concerns, it is a good idea to consider the medical facilities available on a ship, when choosing suitable cruises. Wheelchair accessibility may also be important, so if in doubt about what is available, it may be worthwhile to call the cruise line and ask about accessibility. This can be important for getting to the cabin, as well as getting on and off the ship at interesting ports of call. It may also be a good idea to make a checklist of medical needs, then select a cruise based on the ability to meet those needs.

– Cruises for Multi-generational Families

Today, it is not uncommon for multiple generations to travel together, or for grandparents and grandchildren to take vacations. While it may be more challenging, finding activities to suit the needs of many generations is the best approach for multiple generations within the family planning on taking a vacation together. Pools attract children and adults alike. But, special activities for small children are often difficult to find on traditional cruises. Some cruise lines specialize in activities for children but do not adequately address the needs of older adults. Others do an excellent job of providing entertainment for all age groups.

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