Best cruises for young adults who like to party
These cruise lines were made for 20-30 year old millennials.
Cruising has come a long way since the days when empty nesters and retirees filled the decks on long journeys across the ocean. These days you can find everything from themed cruises to off-the-beaten-track expeditions.
Cruises for 20-somethings are no exception. On top of featuring your standard cruise deck chairs, these also include activities such as clubbing, concerts and risque performances onboard, as well as hiking, kayaking and pub crawling onshore.
Want to cruise a party boat without the families and oldies? These are some of the best cruise lines for 20-30 year olds that are geared more toward the younger crowd.
Best cruises for young adults
1. MSC Cruises via CruiseAway
Cash in on your youth with MSC Cruises. It offers discounts for 18-29 year olds. No joke.
If you thought that your youth discounts stopped when you turned 18, think again. MSC Cruises encourages young passengers by offering them discounts per cabin for couples and groups. Better get the gang together.
- Young adult activities: Bars, spa, fitness centre, shopping, live music and theatre shows.
- Adults-only sundeck? Called the Top 18, this is located on the 18th deck of the Fantasia-class ships and features spa services, bar and relaxation pods.
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2. P&O Cruises via CruiseAway
P&O breaks up its cruises into six categories – Sea Australia, Sea Asia, Main Events, Islands, Sea Breaks and Explorer – to help you find that perfect sailing.
The secret to picking the young adult-skewed cruise is in the itinerary. You’ll generally find young adult workers on shorter and more adventurous trips, so hit up the Main Events, Sea Breaks or Explorer cruises for sailors of similar ages.
- Young adult activities: Adults-only comedy club, bars and nightclubs, casino and adults-only ocean bar.
- Adults-only sundeck? Called The Oasis, this 18+ sundeck is a child-free area with a pool, hanging chairs and cushioned cabanas. It’s available on the Pacific Aria and Pacific Eden.
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3. Carnival Cruise Lines
Carnival has developed a reputation for itself for being a “fun” cruise line with a lively feel at a good price.
Sure, there will be kids onboard as Carnival has one of the best activity playgrounds on the ocean, but if you don’t want to join them on the rope walks and water slides, there are adults-only sunning areas to hide in.
- Young adult activities: Clubs, bars, casinos and nightclubbing.
- Adults-only sundeck? The adults-only sundeck Serenity can be found fleet-wide apart from on Carnival Conquest and Carnival Triumph. You need to be 18 years or older to access it on sailings from Australia. It features loungers, hammocks and umbrellas.
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4. Celebrity Cruises
This premium cruise line has a premium lineup of activities to keep you relaxed and entertained throughout your sailing.
If you’re the kind who’d rather unwind in the lap of luxury rather than stay up all night dancing under the stars, Celebrity Cruises will primp and prime you. Its Solstice Class is a more sophisticated ship that draws a good 20-30-something crowd.
- Young adult activities: Spa, health and beauty seminars, fitness classes, martini bar, casino, partner dance classes, nightclub and mixology classes.
- Adults-only sundeck? The Solarium is where to go to get away from the youngsters. It’s the onboard adults-only pool area.
Go to Celebrity Cruises website
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5. Norwegian Cruise Line
When it comes to ideal entertainment for young adults, Norwegian Cruise Line is on point.
From music-themed cruises that feature chart-toppers to casinos on the ocean, your journey will fly by with all the activities this line has prepared for millennials. Those travelling on their own can even book a single room.
- Young adult activities: Live music, casinos, clubs, bars, spa, White Hot Party and ice bars on some ships.
- Adults-only sundeck? Norwegian Epic, Breakaway, Getaway and Escape all have adults-only sanctuaries that have hot tubs, loungers and a water feature. In the evenings on Epic, Breakaway and Getaway the area becomes an open-air nightclub.
Go to Norwegian Cruise Line website
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6. Royal Caribbean via CruiseAway
Famed for owning the world’s largest cruise ships, the party scene is hot on a Royal Caribbean cruise.
Day or night you’ll feel the buzz of excitement on your Royal Caribbean ship. The fleet features some of the most innovative activities on the ocean including a skydive simulator on the Quantum-class ships, the ice rinks on the Voyager-class.
- Young adult activities: Rock climbing, casino, live music, skydive and surfing simulators, bars and clubbing.
- Adults-only sundeck? The Solarium is Royal Caribbean's adults-only retreat and pool area. In the evenings it transforms into a fine dining destination. At certain hours, it may be used by under-16 year olds with parental supervision.
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7. G Adventures’ sailing trips
With tours for the budget conscious, G Adventures calls to like-minded and aged travellers from around the world with its marine adventures.
Naturally, the destinations this company cruises to are just as adventurous as the folk who embark on its ships. G Adventures’ marine tours include sailings in the Galapagos Islands, Greek Isles, Cuban Coast, Antarctica and the Arctic.
- Young adult activities: Snorkelling, sailing, hiking and kayaking.
- Adults-only sundeck? No. However, independent travellers must be at least 18 years old. On non-family tours, children over 12 are permitted with an accompanying adult.
Go to G Adventures’ sailing trips website
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Top cruise deals and flights
$1 deposits + up to 45% off fares
Valid on select South Pacific cruises.
Up to 80% off top cruise lines
Enjoy up to 80% off top cruise lines with Norweigian Cruise Line, Costa, Royal Caribbean cruises and more at Cruise Direct. Conditions apply
20% off sailing adventures
Valid on departures between 1 April - 10 May. Destinations include Thai islands in Asia, Greece and Croatia in Europe.
3 for Free Sale: Upgrades, Drinks & Credit
Cruise on selected voyages and you can enjoy a free stateroom location upgrade, plus free onboard spending money, plus a free Wine and Dine package T&Cs apply. See site for details.
Up to 30% off + onboard credit on Royal Caribbean Cruises
Valid on sailings departing before 22 April and also includes 50% off deposits when you book select cruises in Australia, New Zealand, South Pacific, Transpacific and Asia repositioning cruises and more at CruiseAway. T&Cs apply.
Save up to $4,620 on select cabins and departures in Norway, Iceland, Greenland and Canada
Save up to $4,620 on select cabins and departures in Norway, Iceland, Greenland and Canada. Valid for select 2018 departures, for travel between June and September 2018. Conditions apply.
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Get up to $600 free onboard spending money per stateroom. Plus book a Balcony, Mini-Suite or Suite and receive free specialty dining. T&Cs apply.
Up to $8,300 off select Antarctic voyages
Get up to $8,300 off select Antarctic voyages departing in the 2017-2018 season at Peregrine Adventures. T&Cs apply.
Up to 30% off select river cruises
Valid on select river cruises departing before 31 July in the Amazon, Ganges, Mekong and in Burgundy.
Fred. Olsen's Cruise Sale + freebies and more
Enjoy big savings, freebies and more when you book a cruise during Fred. Olsen's Cruise Sale.
10% off Croatia adventure cruises
Valid on Croatia Coastal Cruising Adventure only, all available cabin types, Dubrovnik to Sibenik or reverse, all 2017 departures: Discount excludes Private Groups. Discount applies to new bookings made and deposited between 9 Dec 2016 and 27 Feb 2017.
$1 deposits with P&O + free drinks package
Valid on cruises departing between 1 March 2017 and 31 January 2018. Cruises longer than seven nights will get a free premium beverage package. Cruises less than seven nights will get a free soft drinks package.
50% off second passenger on Azamara + free internet
Book outside cabins or higher on select Azamara cruises departing 12 June 2017 until 26 April 2018 and the second passenger sails for free, plus get free unlimited internet.
10% off adventure cruises
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Feature image: P&O Cruises