Nothing against our friends getting married and popping out babies -- respect -- but we still want to keep travelling for fun. We're not necessarily talking about going on a booze cruise and "Tindering" our way through the ship. We just want to set sail with our closest wingwoman or wingman, expand our dating horizons and toast to our perishable freedom. And OK, maybe we're not opposed to an innocent fling afloat.
Here are the best cruises for singles in their 20s.
- Your idea of fun: Drinking by the pool all day and dancing the night away
- Your idea of fun: Staying active in the sun
- Your idea of fun: Mixology classes or wine tasting, followed by dinner and a movie
- Your idea of fun: Indulging your inner fan-child with like-minded people
- Your idea of fun: Exploring Europe in style -- without going near a bus or a train
Your idea of fun: Drinking by the pool all day and dancing the night away
One of the beauties of youth is that you can still get away with partying like it's New Year's Eve every night. Weekend "cruises to nowhere" from Sydney spend one, two or three nights at sea, with no ports of call. This leaves you with lots of time to relax, sunbathe, drink, dance and flop. You can dine in a different restaurant every night (for free), do a bar crawl, sing at karaoke, dress up for theme parties (on Carnival and P&O), and let loose til late in the ship's nightclub. Look out for fully themed cruises too: food and wine, music, comedy and sports events are a great option.
If you’re after something a little longer, giving you a chance to really connect with the people onboard, 8-12 night South Pacific cruises may tantalise you, especially with the stunning scenery of the islands visited along the way. If your budget stretches to an overseas trip, the party scene is even better on Caribbean and Mexican Riviera itineraries departing from American cities such as Miami. Check out Carnival, MSC and Norwegian Cruise Line in the U.S.
Your idea of fun: Staying active in the sun
Budget: $ - $$
Soulmate: Royal Caribbean
Royal Caribbean ships are playgrounds for active singles who get their fair share of exercise during the day, then rejuvenate over casual drinks by night. Nothing breaks the ice more than seeing that cutie you made eye contact with earlier face-plant on the FlowRider surf simulator. Or impress them with your prowess on the rock climbing wall, the basketball court, the treadmill or in a yoga class. Royal Caribbean's widest variety of nightlife can be found on Ovation of the Seas, Explorer of the Seas and Voyager of the Seas, and in the U.S on Oasis of the Seas, Allure of the Seas or Harmony of the Seas. Royal Caribbean isn't so big on clubbing, but these ships have lots of bars and entertainment.
Your idea of fun: Mixology classes or wine tasting, followed by dinner and a movie
Budget: $ - $$
Soulmate: Celebrity Cruises
If you consider your taste to be sophisticated, Celebrity may be best for you. The line touts itself as "modern luxury" and with that comes top-notch restaurants and cocktail bars, interactive activities like cooking and martini-making classes, and chic features that range from a backyard-style sun deck for picnics to a cosy outdoor movie theatre. Cabanas with butler service can also be hired if you really want to live large. Talk about a recipe for romance. The Sydney-based Celebrity Solstice explores Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific so you’re likely to have something to talk about.
Your idea of fun: Indulging your inner fan-child with like-minded people
Budget: $ - $$
Soulmate: Theme cruises
Are you a die-hard fan of dance music, photography or tennis? Theme cruises are a perfect opportunity to meet and mingle with like-minded people. Some themed sailings might offer up a chance to schmooze with your favourite TV or movie stars, while others are merely concerts at sea. If meeting someone is your priority, consider a dedicated singles cruise. Basically Tinder on a cruise ship, these special interest sailings cater to people who are serious about dating and looking for love, but you'll have to fly to the U.S for full-on singles cruises.
Your idea of fun: Exploring Europe in style -- without going near a bus or a train
Budget: $$ - $$$
Soulmate: U By Uniworld
Setting sail in 2018, U by Uniworld is the first cruise line in the world to design dedicated river cruises for people aged 21-45. The two all-black ships have contemporary decor, free Wi-fi, rooftop yoga, international DJs, silent discos, creative menus and classes such as 'paint and wine'. The daily routine is less structured, breakfast is served late, and you're encouraged to do your own thing in each European city. With cycling tours, day and evening excursions also on offer, it's deal for singles who are ready to have the holiday of a lifetime.