9 Best Cruise Lines for Solo Travelers

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A woman standing on the top deck of a cruise ship leaning on the railing off the coast of Tahiti with a tropical island in the background

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Traveling solo on a cruise can be a liberating and exciting adventure.

Some of the best cruise lines for solo travelers provide solo cabins, reduced single supplements, and social activities for you to connect with fellow adventurers on the high seas.

These cruise lines create a welcoming environment where you can be independent or social as you wish.

Best Cruise Lines for Solo Travelers

Photo of a blond woman on the best cruise lines for solo travelers leaning on a raling looking at the ship’s wake and the sunsetPin
(Photo Credit: Marcello De Lio/High Seas Cruising)

Below, you’ll find the nine best cruise lines for solo travelers. We’ve chosen the best cruise lines based on the number of single cabins, solo supplement pricing, social atmosphere onboard, and the number of onboard group activities.

1. Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Bliss cruise ship, docked in San Diego, CaliforniaPin

Norwegian Cruise Line pioneered accommodations for solo travelers. The cruise line recognized the growing trend of individuals seeking to explore the world on their own terms and created the perfect experience for solo cruisers.

The cruise line debuted 128 studio cabins for solo travelers when Norwegian Epic launched in 2010.

Here’s what you can expect:

  • Perfected Solo Accommodations: Your Studio stateroom offers all the amenities you need for your solo cruise vacation.
  • Exclusive Access: As a solo traveler, you gain access to the Studio Lounge, a shared social space where you can mingle and meet other solo cruisers.
  • No Single Supplement: Norwegian Cruise Line’s solo cabins don’t have a single supplement fee, which is a burden for solo cruisers on other lines.
A studio cabin on the Norwegian Bliss cruise shipPin
(Photo Credit: Norwegian Cruise Line)

NCL’s Studio staterooms are tailored for your single cruising experience. The 100-square-foot cabins seem small, but with so much to do on Norwegian cruise ships, you won’t spend much time in your stateroom.

Despite the small cabin size, I found plenty of storage space for my clothes and travel gear.

Norwegian Cruise Line Studio Lounge on the Getaway ShipPin

The biggest perk of booking Norwegian Cruise Line’s single rooms is access to the exclusive Studio Complex and Lounge. The shared social space features a bar, TV, and an area for single passengers to mingle and meet other solo travelers.

A big caveat is that these single cabins are so popular in Norwegian that they book full, well in advance of other cabin categories. If you have your heart set on one of the studio cabins, book early to secure your spot.

2. Holland America Line

ROTTERDAM of Holland America Line in the Geirangerfjord NorwayPin

Holland America Line should be on your radar when you’re cruising solo. This premium cruise line caters to your needs with a welcoming atmosphere and attentive service.

Holland America caters to an older demographic. And they’re well-suited for single seniors, offering programs and amenities that make solo travel enjoyable and comfortable.

  • Single Partners Program: Holland America’s Single Partners Program organizes events for those traveling alone, allowing you to meet fellow solo cruisers.
  • Dining Options: You’ll have plenty of dining options that cater to individual preferences, and you can enjoy meals at communal tables if you wish to socialize.
  • Share a Cabin: The Single’s Partners Program matches guests who wish to share a cabin with another solo traveler.
Solo cabin on Holland America Line's Nieuw StatendamPin
(Photo Credit: Holland America Line)

Although Holland America doesn’t offer solo cabins like some lines, they have low single supplements to make cruising affordable for solo vacationers. The benefit is that you’ll receive a full-sized stateroom compared to the 100-square-foot studio cabins on other cruise lines.

One of HAL’s most popular promotions is their Single Partner’s Program, which is available on most voyages.

holland america line koningsdam docked in Vancouver, CanadaPin

The Single Partner’s Program offers events for solo travelers, like a cocktail reception, mixers, games, and more. The cruise line offers over 40 onboard activities to meet other solo cruisers, including exercise classes, lectures (select departures), line dance classes, wine tasting, cooking demonstrations, Team Trivia contests, and the daily quiz.

The Single Partner’s Program allows solo cruise guests to share a cabin with another passenger. Guests who agree to be matched with a roommate are matched with a same-sex, non-smoking solo traveler.

Moreover, they guarantee a double occupancy rate, even when they can’t find you a partner.

3. Royal Caribbean International

The aft of Royal Caribbean Icon of the Seas cruise ship docked at Miami Cruise PortPin

Royal Caribbean is a standout option for many when embarking on a solo cruise adventure.

Several Royal Caribbean cruise ships, such as those in the Quantum Ultra class, offer solo cabins.

Royal Caribbean is famous for its innovative activities and amenities. You’ll find cutting-edge entertainment and activities to meet new people, relax, and have fun.

Studio Ocean View Stateroom with Balcony Cat. SBPin

The Studio Cabins are perfect for solo travelers. Royal Caribbean’s solo cabins eliminate the single supplement fee, making your stay comfortable and cost-effective.

Royal Caribbean doesn’t skimp on the social aspect, either.

Check the Royal Caribbean app to find out when your ship hosts a solo get-together to mix and mingle with other solo travelers. Solo travelers will have plenty of opportunities to socialize and mingle with fellow passengers.

Royal Caribbean cruises offer various onboard group activities, such as:

  • Group fitness classes
  • Cooking classes
  • Wine tastings
  • Live game shows
  • Bingo
  • Silent Disco
  • Pool parties
  • The fan-favorite belly flop competition

Solo cruising is so popular that the cruise line adds solo staterooms to their older vessels.

Navigator of the Seas introduced Virtual Balcony staterooms providing expansive, real-time views of the ocean and destinations the ship visitsPin
A virtual balcony studio cabin on Royal Caribbean’s Anthem of the Seas (Photo Credit: Royal Caribbean International)

One innovative feature is the choice of a balcony stateroom or a virtual balcony cabin. The virtual balconies are actually interior cabins with a digital screen projecting a real-time view of the outside. It sounds tacky, but you’ll save money on your cruise fare, and the effect works surprisingly well.

4. Virgin Voyages

Virgin Voyages Scarlet Lady docked at Bimini BahamasPin

When considering a solo cruise, Virgin Voyages should be on your radar. Richard Branson’s Virgin Group backs the cruise line. So you know they throw an incredible party at sea.

Why Choose Virgin Voyages:

  • Adults-Only: An atmosphere tailored for grown-ups, providing a relaxing escape.
  • Social Scene: One of the best cruise lines for parties with a vibrant nightlife and opportunities to meet new people.
  • Inclusive Cruise Fare: Virgin Voyages has inclusive cruise fares that bundle gratuities, WiFi, and dining.
Solo Sea View Cabin on Virgin Voyages Cruise shipPin
Solo Sea View Cabin (Photo Credit: Virgin Voyages)

Their vessels boast 46 cabins specifically designed for passengers traveling solo. The cruise line offers solo insider and solo sea-view staterooms.

The solo cabins feature a sleek design with full-sized beds and large, flat-screen TVs.

The bed from the solo insider cabin on valiant ladyPin
Solo Insider Cabin on Scarlet Lady (Photo Credit: Virgin Voyages)

Virgin’s solo cabins are slightly larger compared to other cruise lines, but their location at the front of the vessel isn’t ideal.

Seasoned cruisers know that cabins located at the front of the ship can result in a bumpier ride. If avoiding seasickness on your cruise is a priority, you might want to avoid choosing a single cabin and opt for one in the vessel’s center.

Cabin specifics aside, Virgin Voyages allows passengers to socialize and make new friends. From group yoga to late-night parties with live DJs and the first tattoo parlor at sea, their ships provide plenty of spaces to socialize or indulge.

5. Cunard Line

Front view of the Cunard Line MS Queen Victoria Sailing in North Sea Canal to Amsterdam. Windmill farm in the backgroundPin

Cunard Line is a long-time favorite among solo cruisers. The cruise line offers an inviting atmosphere catering to your independent spirit.

Solo travelers particularly love the cruise line’s focus on traditional cruising and the social onboard atmosphere. Cunard Line places solo travelers at dinner tables with other solo cruisers, making it easy to mingle and make friends.

Cunard Line's Queen Mary 2 the world's fastest cruise ship anchoring off the coast of Saint LuciaPin

You’ll find plenty of group activities to mingle and meet with fellow guests. Cunard Line offers group workshops, sports competitions, seminars, and activities to meet other solo passengers.

Cunard Line is an upscale cruise line with excellent service. You can expect attentive crew members and attention to detail.

Since 2014, the cruise line has added single cabins to their cruise ships, accommodating the growing solo travel market.

6. MSC Cruises

MSC Euribia departing Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in francePin

MSC Cruises welcomes solo travelers with open arms, providing solo accommodations and opportunities to meet with solo travelers.

You will find cozy interior and balcony cabins designed specifically for single cruisers on their Meraviglia-class ships, such as the MSC Meraviglia, Bellissima, Grandiosa, and Virtuosa.

MSC’s solo cabin accommodations are surprisingly spacious with plenty of storage. The bed converts into a sofa during the day to increase your cabin’s floor space.

MSC Cruises offers a variety of social opportunities and activities tailored to solo travelers. You’ll find plenty of opportunities to meet new people and engage in fun activities.

7. Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Beyond cruise ship tendered off the coast of a mediterranean cruise portPin

Celebrity Cruises offers an upscale and modern experience for solo cruisers. Your comfort and enjoyment are prioritized, with options tailored for solo travelers.

Celebrity Cruises offers single staterooms that give you a private space without a single supplement.

The new Family Infinite Balcony on Icon of the Seas welcomes families of up to sixPin

Celebrity Cruises’ Edge-class vessels provide an incredible experience with the Edge Single Infinite Veranda. The floor-to-ceiling window offers unparalleled ocean views that take your room to the water’s edge. Pressing a button opens the top half of the window, creating a balcony experience. Despite the small footprint, these staterooms provide a modern feel and plenty of storage space.

The cruise line provides many planned activities to join in and meet others. Whether you like sports, shows, or just hanging out, there’s something for everyone.

8. Silversea Cruises

Sea trials of the Silver Dawn.Pin
(Photo Credit: Silversea Cruises)

Silversea Cruises offers a unique and luxurious solo cruising experience. The luxury cruise line provides a welcoming atmosphere for solo travelers.

Silversea’s ships are smaller than mainstream cruise lines.

The smaller vessels offer an intimate atmosphere, providing highly personal service and easier opportunities to connect with fellow travelers. This smaller scale creates an intimate and welcoming environment where you can make new friends or relax alone.

Although Silversea Cruises doesn’t offer specific single cabins, they have low single supplements. Sliverseas single supplements start as low as 10% on selected voyages, making it more affordable for solo travelers to enjoy the luxury and comfort of their own private space. That means you get a full-sized cabin at a low fare.

Silversea Cruises also offers several activities for solo travelers:

  • Welcome Reception: Begin your journey with a Champagne Welcome Reception, a perfect opportunity to meet and mingle with other guests. This elegant start sets the tone for discovery and social interaction.
  • Companion Hosts: On certain voyages, Silversea provides hosts to accompany solo travelers for dining or dancing. This thoughtful touch ensures you always have company and can fully enjoy the ship’s social life, feeling included and valued as a guest.

9. Tauck

Tauck isn’t a household name when it comes to cruise lines. But Tauck offers a welcoming atmosphere catering primarily to adventurers like yourself.

On a Tauck River cruise, your experience as a solo traveler is given special attention, ensuring you feel secure and supported from arrival to departure.

  • Personalized Service: Tauck Directors provide exceptional service. They focus on the needs of each guest, making you feel well looked after throughout your trip.
  • Single Supplement Waiver: Tauck is one of the few cruise lines that eliminates single supplements on select sailings. This makes River cruising more accessible for you if you’re traveling alone.

Tauck is a high-end tour operator that offers river cruises around the world.

If you’re traveling solo, you should consider a river cruise. The small river cruise ships, intimate atmosphere, and unique destinations create a perfect cruise environment for mingling and making new friends.

How We Chose The Best Cruise Lines

We looked at several key factors when considering the best cruise lines for solo travelers. Here’s what you should look for when choosing a cruise line for solo travel:

Accommodations for Solo Travelers

First, we looked for cruise lines offering staterooms explicitly designed for solo travelers. Studio cabins or single staterooms come without single supplement charges.

Cruise lines with solo accommodations were given preference as they are more cost-effective.

Norwegian Cruise Line was the only brand offering a dedicated lounge for solo travelers. The lounge provides an excellent opportunity for solo cruisers to mix and mingle. It also shows the cruise lines’ dedication to solo passengers.

Single Supplement

We also looked at the cruise line’s policy regarding single supplements. Single supplements are an additional fee charged to solo cruisers.

We looked to select cruise lines with zero or low single supplements.

Some cruise lines like Silversea Cruises don’t offer solo cabins but nearly eliminate the single supplement, making them an attractive choice for cruisers.

Other Amenities

We also considered the availability of social gatherings and activities tailored to solo travelers. Cruise lines like Cunard Line and Holland America host events that make meeting and connecting with other solo travelers easy.

The Overall Experience

Lastly, it’s about the overall experience. We considered the quality of service, onboard amenities, food, activities, entertainment choices, and variety of itineraries.

Article by

Marcello De Lio

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