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  #1 (permalink)  
Old October 6th, 2007, 11:45 PM
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Default SINGLE GROUP CRUISE THROUGH THIS SOLO'S EYES

I am back. Having followed the advice of my naysayers on this board and given the Single Group Criuse a shot, I am back with my opinion.

It is late and I will do a full review in a few days but for now here is a breakdown of my VTG Singles Cruise aboard the Carnival Glory.

The passengers were older than I would have expected with the men mostly in their 50's and 60's and the women decidedly older than that.

This "group" cruise for me was more isolating than any solo cruise I have ever taken for reasons that I will go into in detail at a later date.

The staff of VTG did an excellent job. The activities were fun and full of energy with most not costing anything more than your time and participation. There were several events scheduled on the ship which included "open bar".

This singles cruise was very much a "meet up and hook up" type endeavor. A majority of the people on this cruise had one agenda. That agenda being finding someone (anyone) to hook up with. From what I gathered after talking to a few people who have cruised with VTG singles before, this is how it is on every one of the singles cruises. It is unfortunate because it would be a great thing if people were not so pressed. By the end of the cruise there were several men who were ready to jump off the ship to get away from their newfound "sweetie for the week". Oh but the drama that went on. . . . Like some sort of twisted soap opera.

The funny thing about it was that the younger, more attractive women did not participate in this "immediate hook up" type thing. Instead these women just seemed to stay foot loose and fancy free and enjoyed their cruise keeping a distance while the older women (55+) were the ones more intent on "looking for Mr. Goodbar."

I made comments that I had a pre-conceived notion that these singles cruises were simply "meat markets". I was very wrong. This particular cruise was much much worse.

Those of us who did not participate in the mating call, dubbed it "The Running of the Bulls"

Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!

Will I go again???? Not even for free!!!

P.S. This is not open to debate. It is my take on my single cruise experience.
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Old October 7th, 2007, 01:03 AM
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You've just described what I had witnessed on our HAL Oosterdam cruise. By the 3rd day, the men were extricating themselves from the predicaments they had found themselves in.

My gal pal and I were just laughing up a storm watching them dart around corners to avoid the people they had hooked up with on the first day. Of course there was that one woman on board that we ALL darted around corners to avoid
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Old October 10th, 2007, 07:32 PM
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All in all I had a great time. The single group cruise is not my thing but I can understand that it would serve a good purpose for a large number of "singular" cruisers who may or may not have a good family/friend base upon which to find co-cruisers.

Would I recommend a single group cruise? Maybe.

Did I enjoy myself? Fabulously, but it was not much different than if I had cruised solo. The great bonding experience with lots of open comraderie and plenty of ready made people to socialize with was not present.

It may also be one of the few ways for a singular person to find a cabinmate. Most forum boards, travel agencies and cruiselines no longer offer any type of matching service.

In short, there is a distinct difference between cruising with a singles group and cruising solo. Solo cruising is only workable for the extreme extrovert and outgoing.

For hard core soloists like myself, it does not offer much.
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Old October 10th, 2007, 10:33 PM
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IB -- thanks for your feedback. My Dec 1 VTG is my first solo, so I'm keeping an open mind. However, I'm certainly hoping it's not a "meat market" sort of atmosphere ... although it usually does provide some good people watching!

This will also be my first cruise on HAL, and NOT with Carnival. My previous 7-8 were all on the CCL ships -- with my 21 year old daughter -- so it was a party atmosphere. And she is as cute as cute can be (is she really mine?) so we always seemed to get the best service no matter where we went!

I'm looking forward to this just because I need some time to myself .. I'm expecting to have fun at the same time!

cindy
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Old October 10th, 2007, 10:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvSunnyDays
IB -- thanks for your feedback. My Dec 1 VTG is my first solo, so I'm keeping an open mind. However, I'm certainly hoping it's not a "meat market" sort of atmosphere ... although it usually does provide some good people watching!

This will also be my first cruise on HAL, and NOT with Carnival. My previous 7-8 were all on the CCL ships -- with my 21 year old daughter -- so it was a party atmosphere. And she is as cute as cute can be (is she really mine?) so we always seemed to get the best service no matter where we went!

I'm looking forward to this just because I need some time to myself .. I'm expecting to have fun at the same time!

cindy
One suggestion. . . . If you find the singles group is not to your taste, go to the dining room and ask the maitre d if there are any "solo" tables onboard. I don't know if HAL does it but on Carnival all solo cruisers are put together in the dining room. If HAL does this and there is a solo table (or tables), see if you can have your dining assignment changed to one of the solo tables. This way you can get to meet non-VTG cruisers and maybe broaden your cruise experience a bit.

Either way, I want to hear all the good details about your cruise. I believe you deserve it and I truly hope it is all that you dream it to be.
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Old October 11th, 2007, 02:12 AM
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Hi Cindy, Haven't you gone to the vtg message board yet? There are 300 or more singles cruising. It is going to be a lot of fun. I can hardly wait.
Call your vtg agent so you can participate in the vtg message board.
You are missing out if you are not there yet. Angelgal/Luci
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Old October 11th, 2007, 08:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvSunnyDays
IB -- thanks for your feedback. My Dec 1 VTG is my first solo, so I'm keeping an open mind. However, I'm certainly hoping it's not a "meat market" sort of atmosphere ... although it usually does provide some good people watching!

This will also be my first cruise on HAL, and NOT with Carnival. My previous 7-8 were all on the CCL ships -- with my 21 year old daughter -- so it was a party atmosphere. And she is as cute as cute can be (is she really mine?) so we always seemed to get the best service no matter where we went!

I'm looking forward to this just because I need some time to myself .. I'm expecting to have fun at the same time!

cindy
I thought about going on that cruise, but found someone who wanted to share a cabin on the same ship but in November.

Indycoltfan on here is going and I think there's a thread in here about that cruise. Have fun! Let us know how it is, cause I may consider a singles cruise for next time (unless I'm not single anymore lol).

Oh yeah, my cabin mate told me that HAL will sit you with other solo cruisers if you ask, just in case you're not thrilled with your tablemates like IBC said. I'm planning on doing that on my cruise in November.
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Old October 11th, 2007, 12:42 PM
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IBC:

Never known HAL to have "solo" tables, but sometimes solos do create their own on HAL. Might take a walkabout in the dining room to see how the tables are seated?

MM:

Ask, or just get up and migrate, as some Canadian gals did to our table last fall. 8)


"Oh yeah, my cabin mate told me that HAL will sit you with other solo cruisers if you ask, just in case you're not thrilled with your tablemates like IBC said. I'm planning on doing that on my cruise in November."
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Old October 11th, 2007, 02:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Divemaster
IBC:

Never known HAL to have "solo" tables, but sometimes solos do create their own on HAL. Might take a walkabout in the dining room to see how the tables are seated?



Quote:
Originally Posted by IBCRUZIN'
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvSunnyDays
IB -- thanks for your feedback. My Dec 1 VTG is my first solo, so I'm keeping an open mind. However, I'm certainly hoping it's not a "meat market" sort of atmosphere ... although it usually does provide some good people watching!

This will also be my first cruise on HAL, and NOT with Carnival. My previous 7-8 were all on the CCL ships -- with my 21 year old daughter -- so it was a party atmosphere. And she is as cute as cute can be (is she really mine?) so we always seemed to get the best service no matter where we went!

I'm looking forward to this just because I need some time to myself .. I'm expecting to have fun at the same time!

cindy
One suggestion. . . . If you find the singles group is not to your taste, go to the dining room and ask the maitre d if there are any "solo" tables onboard. I don't know if HAL does it but on Carnival all solo cruisers are put together in the dining room. If HAL does this and there is a solo table (or tables), see if you can have your dining assignment changed to one of the solo tables. This way you can get to meet non-VTG cruisers and maybe broaden your cruise experience a bit.

Either way, I want to hear all the good details about your cruise. I believe you deserve it and I truly hope it is all that you dream it to be.
I don't know. HAL sees a good number of solo passengers. Are they usually just scattered among the tables of families and couples?
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Old October 11th, 2007, 05:01 PM
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From my experience, SOLOs are scattered. That said, HAL has always seated me among people who shared common interests.

BTW, you can tell HAL your desired table size at reservation time - I typically request large table, first seating.

TIP: if a HAL SOLO looking for fellow night owl SOLOs tell HAL you want the second seating. 8)

Quote:
Originally Posted by IBCRUZIN'
Quote:
Originally Posted by Divemaster
IBC:

Never known HAL to have "solo" tables, but sometimes solos do create their own on HAL. Might take a walkabout in the dining room to see how the tables are seated?


Quote:
Originally Posted by IBCRUZIN'
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuvSunnyDays
IB -- thanks for your feedback. My Dec 1 VTG is my first solo, so I'm keeping an open mind. However, I'm certainly hoping it's not a "meat market" sort of atmosphere ... although it usually does provide some good people watching!

This will also be my first cruise on HAL, and NOT with Carnival. My previous 7-8 were all on the CCL ships -- with my 21 year old daughter -- so it was a party atmosphere. And she is as cute as cute can be (is she really mine?) so we always seemed to get the best service no matter where we went!

I'm looking forward to this just because I need some time to myself .. I'm expecting to have fun at the same time!

cindy
One suggestion. . . . If you find the singles group is not to your taste, go to the dining room and ask the maitre d if there are any "solo" tables onboard. I don't know if HAL does it but on Carnival all solo cruisers are put together in the dining room. If HAL does this and there is a solo table (or tables), see if you can have your dining assignment changed to one of the solo tables. This way you can get to meet non-VTG cruisers and maybe broaden your cruise experience a bit.

Either way, I want to hear all the good details about your cruise. I believe you deserve it and I truly hope it is all that you dream it to be.
I don't know. HAL sees a good number of solo passengers. Are they usually just scattered among the tables of families and couples?
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Old October 11th, 2007, 07:09 PM
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I've done 4 solo cruises on HAL, and have never been seated at a table with other solos. It was always a mixture of solos and couples or friends traveling together. I'm not complaining about this...just telling you my experience.

I was on a Carnival group cruise this past April, and I was put at a table with 3 couples from our group. The other 3 solos in our group were at another table. I don't know why they didn't put all 4 of us at one table.

Shelby
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Old October 11th, 2007, 08:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shelby
I've done 4 solo cruises on HAL, and have never been seated at a table with other solos. It was always a mixture of solos and couples or friends traveling together. I'm not complaining about this...just telling you my experience.

I was on a Carnival group cruise this past April, and I was put at a table with 3 couples from our group. The other 3 solos in our group were at another table. I don't know why they didn't put all 4 of us at one table.

Shelby
I have only solo-ed on Carnival (and once on NCL) and each and every time I have been put at a table with other solos. I hope I am not jinxing myself but so far I have been lucky like that. However, on my Destiny cruise, only one man at my solo table ever showed up for dinner and he was decidedly creepy (in a Jeffry Dahmer kind of way) and made me a little nervous. I had my table changed to one that was a 4 seater with a grandma, daughter in law and granddaugher. I partied into the night with the d-i-l and granddaughter and enjoyed the shows and casinos with Grandma.

I meet most people on Lido Deck, then become a bit more familiar in the Casino. The piano bar and Karaoke club are pretty happy places where people tend to be open, friendly and inviting. Generally conversation on Lido starts when someone asks who I am on the ship with (because I may be sitting alone) and I reply no one. That general peaks their interest and we go to talking from there. Most people are quite warm and inviting. When they find out you are solo, people have a tendency to "adopt" you and take on the mission that you are to enjoy your cruise and have as much company as you like. That is where the "come eat dinner with us", "come with us on our excursion", "are you going to the show, good then look for me, I will save you a seat" comes in at. Needless to say, if you behave like a ravenous single person on the make, none of the above invitations will be forthcoming.

On the Liberty, I befriended Debra. She was basically on the ship solo. She is a red-head white woman from Florida. Well because she is so friendly, she ended up getting "adopted" by a large family of about 50 African Americans who were on the ship for a reunion. She attended most of their private functions and soon became Grandpa's favorite grandchild!!! They renamed her Red and made her an honorary family member. And so it goes as a friendly but benign solo cruiser. Benign is the keyword.

Go, be open to meeting interesting new people and have a good time. If there are no solo tables, request a mother/adult daughter table. Usually the daughter is looking for someone to pal around because mom is making her crazy . There are also single parents onboard who have been abandoned by their children for Kiddie Camp or the "teen scene". They too are looking for a ship buddy. Most couples are not trying to spend all of the cruise "just us two" and welcome a third conversationalist. The possibilities are unlimited.

If you are relatively friendly, I guaranty you will not be solo for long.
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Old October 11th, 2007, 09:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angelgal
Hi Cindy, Haven't you gone to the vtg message board yet? There are 300 or more singles cruising. It is going to be a lot of fun. I can hardly wait.
Call your vtg agent so you can participate in the vtg message board.
You are missing out if you are not there yet. Angelgal/Luci
Luci -- hey, nice hearing from you. I did finally get on the vtg board;it took a while to get approved. There are a lot of people there, but that's my first exposure to the yahoo group forums and I don't find the whole format very user-friendly. Plus I was about 800 messages behind and didn't want to read all of them. I did promise I would get back on there to post some pics. I actually shouted out to you on there, but I'm sure it got lost in the 800+ messages!

I'm really looking forward to this cruise, and I do realize that everything in life is exactly what you make it. I will make this first solo cruise a positive experience!

You should have seen exactly how positive it was when I told my daughter that I was going, and she wasn't!!!

cindy
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Old October 11th, 2007, 09:30 PM
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IBC:

If you are friendly and nonthreatening you will make friends aboard ship and have plenty of folks to talk to. Still, you will be a "solo", because you came aboard without the hidden agenda of the "single". Perhaps it is being a "solo" that makes you nonthreatening? You are just aboard to have fun, do some people watching and enjoy the adventure?

Quote:
Originally Posted by "IBCRUZIN
If you are relatively friendly, I guaranty you will not be solo for long.
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Old October 12th, 2007, 01:02 PM
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I was on the singles' cruise as well and had a great time, even though I didn't do many of the VTG activities. But the people I met from the group were friendly and we all had a lot of fun.

Honestly, it's so easy to meet people on a cruise you never have to worry about having someone to hang out with. Just keep a smile on your face and people will be drawn to you.

The Glory was full of single women letting off steam, just like everyone else. It was a wild week and totally wore me out, but I've got lots of great stories and memories from an unforgettable week.
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Old October 12th, 2007, 01:30 PM
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Hi Cindy, I don't read all of the messages since there are too many of them. I did see your name mentioned somewhere on the board.

This is what I do..... I click on the (individual messages) and then (GROUP TOPIC) shows up and I click on group topic. Then I am able to read by TOPIC.
I was able to find me a roomie on the topic of HOTELS. I may be roomies with a lady named Stacy from Calif. I will be staying with her on the Sheraton Yankee Clipper Hotel. If not... I will look for another hotel.

See you on the vtg message board. Luci
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Old October 12th, 2007, 02:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evo_501
I was on the singles' cruise as well and had a great time, even though I didn't do many of the VTG activities. But the people I met from the group were friendly and we all had a lot of fun.

Honestly, it's so easy to meet people on a cruise you never have to worry about having someone to hang out with. Just keep a smile on your face and people will be drawn to you.

The Glory was full of single women letting off steam, just like everyone else. It was a wild week and totally wore me out, but I've got lots of great stories and memories from an unforgettable week.
Have you cruised before? did you find the Glory a bit more of a party ship than other 7 day cruises? Just curious as to comparison.

I found the passengers just a wee bit younger than the Liberty or perhaps the Destiny. What do you think?
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Old October 14th, 2007, 01:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IBCRUZIN'
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evo_501
I was on the singles' cruise as well and had a great time, even though I didn't do many of the VTG activities. But the people I met from the group were friendly and we all had a lot of fun.

Honestly, it's so easy to meet people on a cruise you never have to worry about having someone to hang out with. Just keep a smile on your face and people will be drawn to you.

The Glory was full of single women letting off steam, just like everyone else. It was a wild week and totally wore me out, but I've got lots of great stories and memories from an unforgettable week.
Have you cruised before? did you find the Glory a bit more of a party ship than other 7 day cruises? Just curious as to comparison.

I found the passengers just a wee bit younger than the Liberty or perhaps the Destiny. What do you think?
This was my third cruise, all on Carnival. They do seem very party-oriented, but you know that going it. I can't keep up that pace for a whole week, nor would I want to. But it does put everyone it a really good mood for the week and makes it a great choice for singles. It's up to each individual how hard they wanna go at it.

I found the average age to be a little older than past cruises, but that may have had more to do with the time of year.
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Old October 21st, 2007, 01:03 AM
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Thanks for the feedback on the organized singles cruise. from time to time I have considered an organized singles cruise, but have wondered if it was " hook up" for boyfriends/girlfriends. I don't go on vacation with that in mind.
The potential merits would be that none would need to hang out by themselves. Sometimes it is easy to find someone with whom to dance, sometimes not. Since I'm not a very good dancer anyway...I guess it doesn't matter. Especially in a dark disco, I can dance by myself & look awkward that the worst anyone would think was perhaps I had a little too much to drink.
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Old October 21st, 2007, 05:25 PM
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I still feel that an organized singles cruise is the best vacation a single or solo traveler can have. Those who think it's all about "hooking up" with the opposite sex maybe feel that way because it is their agenda. The majority of people I have met on my too-many-to-count organized singles cruises were there to have a good time and make new friends. If romance happened. Fine. If not, they didn't care.

I love organized singles cruises!

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Old October 21st, 2007, 07:30 PM
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I'm sure you do. Myself, I love organized dive trips. That said, both events seem to revolve around chasing the fish in the sea.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Hagan Singles Editor
I love organized singles cruises!

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Cruisemates Singles Editor
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Old October 23rd, 2007, 09:13 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Hagan Singles Editor
I still feel that an organized singles cruise is the best vacation a single or solo traveler can have. Those who think it's all about "hooking up" with the opposite sex maybe feel that way because it is their agenda. The majority of people I have met on my too-many-to-count organized singles cruises were there to have a good time and make new friends. If romance happened. Fine. If not, they didn't care.

I love organized singles cruises!

Pat Hagan
Cruisemates Singles Editor
Well said Pat. 8)
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