Senior Citizen River Cruises

One of the perks about being retired is having the free time to travel. Without the constraints of work and children, seniors are free to travel wherever the please, whenever they please. This freedom can take them on a plane, train, or boat.

When it comes to boat travel, river cruises are a fun and exciting travel choice. Unlike cruises of the ocean, river cruises are much smaller, which appeals to many senior travelers. Instead of thousands of passengers aboard a major cruise line, river cruises typically have less than 200 passengers, with many accepting far less. This makes for shorter boarding lines and less crowded dining options.

Benefits of River Cruises for Seniors

Besides the smaller crowd size, river cruises also have other benefits for seniors.

Easy Access to Cities

When you’re on a river cruise, you typically dock in close proximity to beautiful cities and towns. No need to walk far or look for other transportation. The cruise boat will take you very close to where you want to sight see.

Calmer Waters

If you get seasick, a river cruise may be a better choice than a large cruise ship. When you’re on a river cruise, there are no waves or rough waters. You are also always in sight of the shore which can be calming if you suffer from motion sickness on a boat.

Excursions are Typically Included

Unlike ocean cruises, excursions are typically included in the cost of a river cruise. Many cruise lines offer at least one tour a day, but usually more. Some require more walking than others, but river cruise owners take into consideration that some passengers may not be able to walk far and thus make tours more accessible to everyone.

Be Casual and Relax

While it can be fun to get dressed up for a big meal on a big cruise ship, it’s also nice to dress casually and relax while you’re away. That’s what river cruises are all about. You’ll still enjoy fabulous food, and plenty of it. The only difference is that you’ll be dressed comfortably as you enjoy your meals.

Neighborhood Community

For seniors traveling alone, river cruises offer a more intimate setting and give passengers the chance to get to know one another better. You can meet new friends as you explore new places together.

Packed Itineraries

If you’re someone who likes to be on-the-go and see a lot of new places in a short amount of time, a river cruise is for you. You will typically visit a new destination every day, usually more than one a day. A river cruise is a great opportunity to cover a lot of ground in a short amount of time.

Things to Know Before Taking a River Cruise

Before booking a river cruise, there are some things you should know so that you don’t waste money and so that you get the most out of your experience.

  • Don’t splurge on a balcony – While you may think that you’ll want to enjoy the view, a balcony isn’t necessary. River cruise boats are not nearly as big as ocean cruise lines, so a balcony will actually take space out of your room. Save your money and enjoy having more space in your room.
  • Don’t expect a pool or a gym – A river cruise is smaller and just doesn’t have room for either of those amenities. Plus, you’ll be docking often for excursions and tours, so you really won’t have much time for either. Take advantage and take time off from the gym so that you can enjoy your vacation!
  • Don’t expect intimate dining – With river cruises, you’ll usually be seated with other guests for dinner. This is a great opportunity to make new friends. But, if you were looking for quiet, romantic dinners, this may not be the setting for you.
  • Look into travel insurance – Just as you would during any other trip, you’ll want to look into travel insurance when you’re on a river cruise. This usually covers trip cancellation due to illness as well as medical coverage while you’re traveling. You’ll want to do your research into different plans so you find the right one for your travel needs.
  • Don’t book online unless you’re certain – While you can get some good deals online, you may want to go to a travel agent to help plan your river cruise, especially if it’s your first time. A travel agent can tell you about the most popular cruises and the ones that are the best out there. They can also work to get you a good deal. When you book online, it may be more difficult to trouble shoot should a problem arise when you’re away. If you book through a travel agent, you can call at any time to get help.

River cruises make great trips for seniors who want to see new places and get the experience of being on a small ship. As with any trip, make sure you are in good health and take along the correct supply of any medications you may need. Look into various options and ask for help if you need it. Most importantly, remember to have fun!

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