How Cruising With Wrinkles Came To Be

YEARS AGO – Let’s say, too many to mention – I was the Cruise Editor of a travel trade publication. Back then, cruising was magical! I  hopped from cruise ship to cruise ship, sampling every line and experiencing every itinerary. Cruising was fun! As time passed, the publication closed its doors and I went on to lead a productive life in the travel industry.

FIVE YEARS AGO – I’m still cruising, but it’s definitely lost its luster.  My husband and I take a cruise or two annually, usually 3-5 days in duration. We don’t go to the shows. (Boring….been there; seen it; done that.) We have never jumped into an onboard pool or hot tub. (The former crowded with kids; the latter crowded with drunks.) Using the onboard fitness center was out of the question. (Quite honestly, it’s very intimidating being the oldest  –  and most out of shape person – on the treadmill. Days at sea were spent sleeping –  and sleeping – and sleeping.

We dressed for formal nights and dined with people we probably wouldn’t talk to on land.  We nixed breakfast in the dining room because there is nothing worse than being at a table with ten people you don’t know and don’t care about yakking incessantly about where they came from and how many cruises they’ve been on. Our habit was to grab some food on deck and take it to the cabin.  Ports were blah. I mean, how many times can you visit Nassau?

FAST FORWARD TO THE PRESENT – So on our bucket list was a cruise through the Panama Canal. This was to be 15 nights – our longest cruise to date. While we looked forward to the itinerary, we dreaded the time we would spend onboard.

So we boarded the NCL Jewel at the Port of Los Angeles and were directed to wait on deck while our cabin was being readied. As we entered the Garden Café, I recall saying to my husband, “Oh my goodness! These people are so OLD!”  As the words came out of my mouth, I glanced at a mirror and added, “…And I’m one of them!”

I found the secret to great cruising experiences – cruise with your own kind. These were my peeps.

Sleep was in short supply on this cruise. (No time!) We visited the fitness center twice a day. (No one looked any better or worse than we looked.) We used the pool, the hot tub and even the slide.  (Yes…we wore swimsuits)!  We dined at a table for two in the main dining room for dinner and yes…even for breakfast ending the communal dining experience. I don’t think we ever missed an evening show, all geared to our age group with the music of our generation.

Cruising was magical again!

So I gave this a lot of thought. Here are my conclusions: I have definitely been taking the wrong cruises. On a longer voyage, folks are older so cruising is geared to their interests and tastes. To get the gray haired cruise experience, I believe a cruise has to be at least seven days in duration.

So Cruising With Wrinkles was born. With this blog, I hope to share information that you can use to plan and enjoy your cruise more than you ever thought possible.  If you are over 50 and thinking about cruising this is for you. If you don’t have wrinkles, well, you are luckier than most of us or you have a good cosmetic surgeon. My most recent cruise offered Botox, so if you have them, you can be temporarily relieved of them and still enjoy your time onboard.

I hope you will join me on this journey. Check back often, ask questions and enjoy the ride, ‘er …cruise.  And please, pass this link to your friends. They will thank you for it!

The Island Princess
The Island Princess



7 thoughts on “How Cruising With Wrinkles Came To Be”

  1. Great idea. My wife and I have been looking for a way to differentiate our age group, 55-65, from the flip-flop crowd. I think we’ve found something here. Look forward to reading your posts.

    1. Thank you for reading my blog, Edward! Finding the right cruise for our age group is as important as wearing the right sized shoes – if they don’t fit, you are miserable!

  2. I love this blog. I knew there was a reason I started to hate cruises but I thought it was just me! I used to just love them. There you go, I got too old for the Carnival!
    It is probably so true, the short cruises would attract the younger people who have to be back at work or with the kids. I guess we need to go on slightly longer ones, or cruises that are more adventurous or exotic!
    Which ones would you suggest? Any at the moment?

    1. I believe you are correct…More exotic cruises and the length of a cruise determines who will cruise. Let’s face it, younger folks, people with kids and those who can’t afford to take anything longer than a four night cruise because of time constraints due to work, are more likely to be under the age of 50. I don’t know that Carnival is the problem per se. I think it is more the length of the cruise and the itinerary that’s problematic. I will let you know if that’s true…I just booked a 15 night transatlantic cruise on Carnival!

  3. I’m of the same cruising philosophy as Deb. No balcony, no cruise. But on one trip, I was to be cruising with my two teenaged daughters and my parents. We wanted adjacent cabins so we could open the panel and share one balcony. All they had left to accommodate us were aft cabins. We were skeptical, but the desire to share a ‘double balcony’ trumped our disappointment of having aft cabins. Boy, were we pleasantly surprised!!!! You can go anywhere on a ship to gaze out at one view of the sea. But an aft cabin balcony not only provides a panoramic view of where you’ve been, but the added mesmerizing vantage of the trail the ship has left in its wake. It truly is one of the best views on the ship.

  4. Jan and I have found that the NCL cruise experience meets our needs. Not having to be back onboard early to get ready for dinner is so relaxing. The other passingers were our age or older for the most part. If I want to cruise with kids, I will do Disney. We have only done 7 to 11 day cruises, loved eastern & southern Caribbean. Love your site, will be checking back.

    1. I have to say, NCL certainly restored my confidence in cruising. Not having to rush to do anything is very relaxing and really, isn’t that the purpose of cruising?

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