Nothing against our friends getting married and popping out babies -- respect -- but we feel like we have to take care of some unfinished business. We're not talking about going on a booze cruise and unabashedly "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. OK, maybe we're not opposed to an innocent fling.
If your idea of commitment is getting your flirt on abroad (while knocking some fun adventures off your list), here are the best cruises for singles in their 20s.
Photo: Sebastian Siebert/Shutterstock.com
Idea of fun: Drinking by the pool all day, and dancing the night away
Soulmate: Short cruises on Norwegian
One of the beauties of being in your 20s is you can still get away with partying like you're on spring break -- even if your uni days are long gone. Short cruises on Norwegian ships make it easy to let loose with other young singles thanks to the ships' carefree vibes and affordable prices (especially on Caribbean and Mexican Riviera itineraries). It only takes one pina colada to find the guts to ask that cute guy or girl at the pool bar if he or she wants to go dancing that night. Three to five days not long enough? Weeklong cruises on Norwegian are just as much fun -- and still budget-friendly.
Photo: Carnival Cruise Line
Idea of fun: Having fun in the sun, and staying active around the clock
Budget: £ - ££
Soulmate: Royal Caribbean cruises in the Caribbean
Royal Caribbean cruises to the Caribbean 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 him or her 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 the line's Oasis- and Quantum-class ships. Although Royal Caribbean isn't big on nightclubs, these classes of ships up the ante with a sexy Miami Beach-style "pop up" venue that takes over the Solarium once per cruise.
Photo: Cruise Critic
Idea of fun: Mixology classes or a wine tasting, followed by dinner and a movie
Budget: £ - ££
Soulmate: Celebrity cruises
If you consider your taste to be sophisticated but you don't want to sacrifice all the fun and activities that come with a big ship, consider a Caribbean cruise with Celebrity. The line touts itself as "modern luxury," and with that comes top-notch restaurants and bars, fun activities like cooking and martini-making classes, and chic features that range from a backyard-style sun deck (with real grass) for picnics and live music to a cosy outdoor cinema. Talk about a recipe for romance. While you're bound to strike up conversations over activities, we suggest bringing your best pickup lines to the dance parties held at night on the pool deck. In particular, Celebrity Silhouette's onboard ambiance and curated wine tastings in partnership with The Wine Show make the ship an ideal place to meet trendy young singles.
Photo: Celebrity Cruises
Idea of fun: Relishing your inner fan-child with like-minded people
Budget: £ - ££
Soulmate: Theme cruises
Are you a die-hard fan of "The Walking Dead" or 90s music? 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 favorite TV or movie stars, while others are merely concerts at sea. If your biological clock is ticking up a storm, consider a dedicated singles cruise. Basically Match.com on a cruise ship, these special-interest sailings cater for people who are serious about dating and looking for love.
Photo: Brittany Chrusciel, Associate Editor
You might expect loud noises, close quarters and crazy manoeuvres in the dance club onboard your cruise ship -- but not in your cabin. Even if you don't plan to spend much time there, it should be a restful and private place so you can maintain that much-needed holiday stamina. To help you do so, we've compiled a list of cabins you'll want to avoid booking if closet-like dimensions or scraping chair sounds overhead aren't appealing to you. Heed our advice, and you might be feeling a bit less claustrophobic and a tad more refreshed come disembarkation.