Posted November 7th, 2012, 11:17 AM
I'm also a solo female traveler in my mid-thirties. I've done one solo Eastern Med (Italy, Greece, Turkey, Israel) on Costa and I have another Eastern Med (Italy, Turkey, Crete, Cypress, Israel) planned next month with NCL.
Costa was interesting as a solo English speaking passenger. Their target audience is European, so the majority of guests were not native English speakers (I think there were about 200 of 3,500 on my trip). This was never a problem - all the staff spoke English, I was seated at a dinner table of English speakers, and all announcements are in multiple languages. The only thing that can be difficult is shore excursions - several were cancelled because there weren't enough English speaking passengers to support the tour. All others I took were dual-language (either english/spanish or english/german); where the tour guide does everything in two languages. There weren't any specific activities for solo travelers on Costa, but there were plenty of other activities you could join in (trivia, crafts, dance lessons, etc.).
I’ve also traveled on MSC (not solo) and would say the solo experience would be similar to what I experienced on Costa.
If you are interested, I will let you know how my NCL experience is different. Since it is not considered a ‘budget’ cruise line and caters to more American’s I suspect there will be more opportunity to interact and share experiences than what I have experienced in the past.
I would suggest you choose the itinerary that interests you the most and go for it. The experience will be as good as you make it!
Regal Princess 7/15
Norwegian Jade 3/15
Norwegian Spirit 1/14
Norwegian Jade 12/12
Costa Pacifica 4/12
MSC Muscia 11/11
Island Princess 9/05