It always amazes me when I hear people complain about being surrounded by so many people during their cruise. They’re unhappy waiting in lines onboard, they’re upset at having to share the ship pool and/or hot tubs, and they demand a private table when eating in the Main Dining Room.
Did they expect a private yacht? Sorry – that’s not what you booked. You CAN control how many people you’ll be rubbing elbows with by sailing on a smaller cruise ship – or consider a River Cruise where there are generally no more than 125 people onboard. But short of that, you’re going to have the opportunity to meet lots of new friends on that cruise ship!
And it IS an opportunity! Standing in line for Guest Services, the Excursion Desk, or waiting to be seated in the Main Dining Room, even eating at the buffet – these are all great opportunities to meet new people! Relaxing in the hot tub or cooling off in the pool is also a golden opportunity to chat with others. And Dan and I have met so many wonderful new friends in the Main Dining Room simply by asking for a “share” table. We get seated at a different table every day for breakfast and lunch – which increases the number of new friends we make – and are assigned a table throughout the cruise for dinner – which lets us really get to know our new friends.
We’ve met new friends from all over the United States and the world, and love hearing stories about their hometowns, their families, jobs and adventures. It’s like a living story book! We have never had a “bad” experience and quite often, we end up exchanging contact information so we don’t lose touch after the cruise! We have Canadian friends we met YEARS ago with whom we still stay in touch and we love hearing about their kids’ marriages, new babies, etc.
The next time you cruise (or travel by any means, actually), make it a point to reach out and meet new people! You might be surprised at how much you have in common, or how much you can learn from your new friends. You’ll come home not only with memories of the beautiful new states or countries you got to visit, but with memories of some amazing new friends you met.
When I think about traveling around the world, it’s not just the new countries I’ll be exploring … it’s also the new people I will be blessed to meet and get to know. That’s an additional gift that costs me nothing but leaves me truly enriched.
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