When you think of cruise ships docking in ports around the Mediterranean, the image of the passengers disembarking for their day isn’t usually one of youthful vigour. Cruises have long been thought of as the holidays of choice for the over-60s. And why not? When all you have to do is get yourself to the port at the start of the cruise, they’re a great way of seeing a handful of different countries in one go, with minimal effort on your part.
However, things are changing. Cruisers have either discovered exceptional skincare regimes that roll back the ageing process and are fooling us all. Or, more likely, the people who choose to holiday this way are turning up before they’re eligible to collect their pension. So what’s going on? Ad-Rank digs deeper.
According to research carried out by Cruise Lines International Association:
'younger generations…are embracing cruise travel, rating it as a better vacation type than land-based vacations, all-inclusive resorts, tours, vacation house rentals, or camping.'
By choosing a cruise, holidaymakers are able to see and experience more of the world, the people, places and cultures that otherwise wouldn’t normally be easily accessible. And with our greater desire to travel, it makes sense that younger generations discover the benefits of choosing cruise-based holidays over land-based ones. With a cruise, you’re no longer limited to one location – you can travel far and wide while you sleep and enjoy a new place each day.
Two years ago, the BBC reported that more under-45s were choosing cruise holidays. They found that a cruise from Rome had people in their late 20s, family groups with young children, a 40th birthday party gathering, and even groups celebrating hen parties. It seems that what was once a holiday option reserved for an older generation who’d made their money and now had time to sit back, relax, and enjoy it onboard a cruise, is now a choice for much younger holidaymakers, too. And an article by The Maritime Executive found that the average age of a cruise ship passenger in 2018 was 47 years old – considerably younger than you might expect.
These days, cruise ships resemble floating mini-cities. Swimming pools, spas, shops, a different restaurant for every day of the week, climbing walls, gyms, running tracks, cafes, computer hubs, kids’ games rooms, casinos – the list goes on. And with so much to do onboard, it’s little wonder that younger generations are wising up to this method of holiday travel.
One of the benefits of taking a cruise holiday is how they can cater to each and every family member on the holiday. For the very young, there are the kids’ clubs that entertain them when parents are flagging. For the teenagers, there are games hubs, climbing walls, and cinemas. For the parents longing to see a bit more of the world, there’s a new port most days – and tons of relaxation facilities onboard. And for older folk, there are lavish restaurants, stylish sun decks, and West-End-style shows in the evening.
Cruising also offers a way for those who suffer from aerophobia – or fear of flying – to get out and see the world. Aerophobia affects around one in four people. And while these sufferers may want to see the world, often their fear of boarding a plane is so high that it stops them from travelling. Choosing a cruise that sets sail from the country you reside in is a way round this problem.
With the experience on board cruise ships ever improving, and with people looking for new ways to travel and see the world, we believe the average age of cruisers will only continue to fall.