Bad Economy Good for Solo Travelers?

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#1
627 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
We've noticed some solo-friendly trends of late, from cruise lines adding cabins for one on new or refurbished ships to no-supplement promotions.

Bad Economy Good for Solo Travelers?

Have you experienced increased goodwill from the cruise lines? Or are you still trying to find ways around the dreaded supplement that really never disappears for long? Let us know -- we're curious to hear your opinions.



Erica Silverstein
Cruise Critic Associate Editor
#2
Moon Township, Pa
23,166 Posts
Joined Oct 2000
I've noticed that a few sailings on Celebrity are basically two for ones. AND, this is a big one, some itineraries on Celebrity are offering great bargains for those age 55 and older. I noticed on Celebrity Summit, a 14 day Panama Canal cruise, they reduced the price for a 55+ solo by nearly $3000 for a Sky Suite.
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Darcie
#3
Silver Spring, MD
3,414 Posts
Joined Jul 2006
From what I've seen, the higher end cruiselines are dropping or lowering the single supplement, but the price is still higher than what I would pay on the mainstream lines with a supplement. The best bet is/was the Carnival 1A's with a window or porthole, but unfortunately Carnival has now upgraded most of these to OV status/price.

Whenever I'm pricing a new cruise, I check all of the cruiselines that have my itinerary for my dates to see what my best price will be. So far it's been either Princess or Carnival every time.
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#4
BC, Canada
839 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
A couple of weeks ago I booked a solo for the January 30 departure on Galaxy. The single supplement was about 30% which is unusually low for Celebrity. Let's hope that trend continues!
#5
Jacksonville, FL USA
48,293 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by cheffip
A couple of weeks ago I booked a solo for the January 30 departure on Galaxy. The single supplement was about 30% which is unusually low for Celebrity. Let's hope that trend continues!
30%....are you sure?...THIRTY?...the lowest they have
offered is 125% (that I have ever seen)...30 percent??
#6
Jacksonville, FL USA
48,293 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
I booked GALAXY for January 9th, 10 nights out of San Juan.
I book directly with Celebrity and my price kept coming
down.....and down...and down again
I ended up being able to move from an inside to a window
AND even had credit coming back to me
10 nights total=918.00 for a solo..and since they have
stopped the fuel fees I will be getting an onboard credit
once I get on the ship
It ends up being 91.80 per night......how good is that
for a single!!!!
#7
BC, Canada
839 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by Lois R
30%....are you sure?...THIRTY?...the lowest they have
offered is 125% (that I have ever seen)...30 percent??
Hi Lois...terminology issue...I meant 30 per cent more than the double rate...in other words 130%. And like you I will be getting the fuel supplement returned as OBC. And today I got a great deal through Priceline on the Sheraton OSJ... $70 for my pre-cruise night!
#8
North Wales, PA
188 Posts
Joined Aug 2005
Yesterday I jumped on a 30 day RCI Mariner of the Seas, Port Canavarel to Valpariso, Chile, Jan 4 to Feb3 for $2400. I have a feeling they will be running a sale on this again before sailing.
#9
Petal, MS USA
5,719 Posts
Joined Apr 2004
For 2009 I have two cruises with Carnival lined up. Both times I was assigned a cat-1A (U-212 on Holiday, and 6226 on Triumph). each has upper and lower beds where the upper folds up out of the way. I get the feeling that the line peddles these to single/solo travelers.
While they could be adjusted for two, these might in fact be the line's de facto single cabins?
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#10
Jacksonville, FL USA
48,293 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by cheffip
Hi Lois...terminology issue...I meant 30 per cent more than the double rate...in other words 130%. And like you I will be getting the fuel supplement returned as OBC. And today I got a great deal through Priceline on the Sheraton OSJ... $70 for my pre-cruise night!
Thank you for the clarification...I was thinking maybe
that is what you meant but of course I didn't want to
think I was going crazy either.
I stayed at the Sheraton last March and its in a great location
#11
Nottingham, UK
7,003 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
I wish Carnival UK's brands would drop or suspend single supplements! I've spent about £3,000 just in supplements in the last 4 years. When you work out you could have had another two cruises for that price it all of a sudden adds up.

Solo cruisers are more likely to go on ship-organised tours rather than go it alone especially in non-american ports, probably more likely to drink more at the bar. On my flight this year I upgraded when I rang I was told I'm sorry there is only one premium seat left! Unless a couple split then this seat would have been left empty..
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#12
BC, Canada
839 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by Lois R
I booked GALAXY for January 9th, 10 nights out of San Juan.
I book directly with Celebrity and my price kept coming
down.....and down...and down again
I ended up being able to move from an inside to a window
AND even had credit coming back to me
10 nights total=918.00 for a solo..and since they have
stopped the fuel fees I will be getting an onboard credit
once I get on the ship
It ends up being 91.80 per night......how good is that
for a single!!!!
Hi Lois
I've noticed the prices on our Galaxy cruises going back up so I guessed we lucked out! Did they give you the upgrade to an outside without you asking or were you "pleasantly pushy" about it??
-Phil
#13
Jacksonville, FL USA
48,293 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Hi Phil

The change of cabins was due to the price decrease.
I had booked an inside cabin a while back. (Through the cruiseline).
I always check the website to see if the prices move. Well,
they had moved down twice and then when I looked again
and called I decided to ask about a window.
It was not a freebie from them to me in the sense you
are asking (I think its what you are asking).
The prices for insides AND windows were quite low. I asked
Customer Service what the price difference would be to move
to a window.
There was none..they didn't need more $...it was actually still very low.....enough so
that I moved and still had money coming back to me
So intsead of the pricing going up for the better cabin,
I paid less. And that was because my original price had
gone down so much.
Hope that made sense
#14
BC, Canada
839 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by Lois R
Hi Phil
So intsead of the pricing going up for the better cabin,
I paid less. And that was because my original price had
gone down so much.
Hope that made sense
Hi Lois
Yes it did and thanks for explaining that. I have an inside on Vista which was my first choice so I'm happy enough. What size table do you request when you go solo?? Do you find you have to change?? I've asked to be seated at a large table which seems like the best plan but I've only done one solo before this.
-Phil
#15
Jacksonville, FL USA
48,293 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Originally posted by cheffip
Hi Lois
Yes it did and thanks for explaining that. I have an inside on Vista which was my first choice so I'm happy enough. What size table do you request when you go solo?? Do you find you have to change?? I've asked to be seated at a large table which seems like the best plan but I've only done one solo before this.
-Phil
Hi PhilI always request a large table and it usually works
quite well. In my opinion, 8 tops are good
Yes, I have changed tables before.....not often but it has happened.
My last few cruises have had pretty good tablemates.
Just on INFINITY and sat with a friend from the roll call I was on,
along with 2 other couples who were nice.

If you feel like you don't click with your tablemates, go
see the Maitr'd after the first evening and they are usually
very accomodating.

Back in Sept I was on Mercury and ended up at a 10 top
2 folks were wonderful and we hung out in the Martini Bar
so they made it fun. The others were nice enough but not
as friendly as I have had before.
If it wasn't for Margarert and Dave I would have moved.
And 10 is just so big.....
#16
Seattle
173 Posts
Joined Apr 2001
Originally posted by kitty9
I've noticed that a few sailings on Celebrity are basically two for ones. AND, this is a big one, some itineraries on Celebrity are offering great bargains for those age 55 and older. I noticed on Celebrity Summit, a 14 day Panama Canal cruise, they reduced the price for a 55+ solo by nearly $3000 for a Sky Suite.
Did you find this rate on the Celebrity website or through a TA? Was it for a specific date? Sounds wonderful if the timing is right!!!
#17
San Diego, CA
1,394 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Hi, Phil....
I always ask for a large table...there's more chance to hit it off with at least one or more at the table. On HAL's Zaandam, they seated all solo travelers at a large table - some widows, some single, and others may be atttached, but are traveling alone. It was great! Jini
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