The world cruise market is estimated at $ 39. According to Cruise Market Watch cruise market forecasts, 6 billion this year. The cruise lines carried more than 22 million passengers in 2015 and the majority – 58.6% – will come from North America (Canada, United States and Mexico), followed by Europe (25.9%). ), Asia (8.5%) and Australia (4.3%). The most popular destinations? The Caribbean and Bahamas accounted for 37.3% of world routes in 2014, followed by the Mediterranean (18.9%), Europe (excluding the Mediterranean, 11.1%) and Australia / New Zealand / Pacific (5.9%). ).
Cruises make a popular holiday because the details of the trip are already established; you can travel to many places (without having to unpack in each place); the service and the food are generally excellent; and cruises are generally considered good value (see 3 Tips for cruise ships saving money). While many cruising gear is geared to the youngest (think of water parks and SpongeBob SquarePants), the crowd of over 50s represents almost half of the passengers. Seniors are more likely to travel with multi generational family groups or travel alone. So they tend to look for ships that have a lot of options, plus enrichment programs on board and choices of out-of-the-ordinary routes (after all, many retirees have already traveled a lot).
Are you newly retired and thinking about going on a cruise? Since you can find Disney cruises on your own if you’re traveling with kids, here are five adult-oriented choices, each offering many opportunities for active exploration and relaxation in a lounge chair.
1- Lindblad-National Geographic Expeditions
Lindblad travels to some of the most exotic and least visited destinations in the world. The fleet is made up of 10 “intimately proportioned” shipping vessels that are small enough to go where large cruise ships can not, which means proximity experiences in wild and remote places. Each trip has a team of experts, including naturalists, guest speakers, staff members and photographers from National Geographic, cultural experts, historians, as well as underwater specialists and dive-masters. You will have the opportunity to immerse yourself in many practical experiences, while traveling in style and luxury.
2- Oceania Cruises
Founded in 2002, Oceania Cruises is the largest luxury cruise line for adults. The company was voted “Best for Foodies” (Best Cruise of Fodor’s World Cruises, 2015); “Best Contemporary Cruise Line” (Virtuoso Supplier Awards, 2015); and “Gold for Best Premium Line” and “Gold for Best Premium Cabins” (Bon Voyage magazine, 2014) .The fleet consists of six ships offering several gourmet restaurants with open seating, Canyon Ranch SpaClubs, as well as cultural opportunities such as as seminars, classes, concerts and wine tastings. If you are looking for a unique experience, Oceania offers a 180 day cruise around the world.
3- Princess Cruises
Accolades for Princess include “The Best Rewards in the World: The Top Five High Speed Cruise Lines” (Travel + Leisure, 2013, 2014, 2015); “The best cruises for food lovers” (Food & Wine magazine, 2014); and “Best Cruise Line for Money” (US News & World Report, 2015). The Princess ScholarShip @ Sea program offers up to 40 courses for each trip, including lectures, cooking demonstrations, wine tastings and computer workshops. Princess offers a wide variety of trips, from several days to the three-month global cruise, serving nearly 40 destinations in more than two dozen countries.
4- Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Regent Seven Seas Cruises is owned by Prestige Cruise Holdings, a leader in the Upper Premium and Luxury segments of the cruise industry. The fleet includes two vessels of only 700 guests – Seven Seas Voyager and Seven Seas Mariner – as well as the Seven Seas Navigator balcony, with balconies and balconies. Awards include “Best Cruise Ship” (Baxter Travel Media Agents Choice Award, 2015, 2014, 2013); and “Best shore excursions in the cruise category” (TravelAge West WAVE Awards, 2015). Onboard activities include spa and fitness classes; evening entertainment; and enrichment programs, including the Smithsonian Collection of Smithsonian Journeys, led by a wide range of experts.
5- Cruises on the Viking River
Viking River Cruises, the largest river cruise company in the world, has won the Cruise Editor’s Choice Award for the “Best River Cruise” (2011-2014) four times in a row. . 1 River Cruise Line “on Travel + Leisure 2013 and 2015 best list in the world, routes allow more time in the harbor than other cruise lines, and include late-night stays and overnight stays in some ports to enjoy Nightlife and Entertainment Excursions include land excursions guided by local guides, regional food and in-depth exploration of destinations, and Viking Culture Curriculum offers lectures, language courses,
The Bottom Line
More than 22 million people made a cruise in 2015. While many cruise ships are aimed at young adults and young families, there are plenty of options for more than 50 people interested in multigenerational activities, enrichment on board and itineraries off the beaten track. Another interesting option is the Road Scholar program, a non-profit organization that offers educational tours for seniors. In addition to its many land travels, Road Scholar offers a variety of “Afloat Adventures” on small boats, river boats and liners.
To learn more about choosing a cruise, check out most cruise destinations for seniors. And even if you do not have any health problems, it’s never hard to make sure that the ship that you choose is well equipped for emergencies – see Shipboard Health Check: What to Know Before Sailing .