Five Faves: Best Senior Perks

Porthole’s Five Faves

Best Senior Perks

If wisdom comes with age, then perhaps no one needs this article less than the older cruisers we celebrate today

Today is International Day of Older Persons, so let us be the first to extend our heartfelt appreciation to all elders who have contributed positively to the world we love — not to mention those who continue to enrich that world. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the United Nations designating such a celebratory day, with the 2015 theme being “Sustainability and Age Inclusiveness in the Urban Environment.”

The cruise industry can be commended for its efforts to accommodate and invite older persons to environments all over the world, and the lines that best cater to older people all take pride in making those memories possible. And while it may seem like the luxury-minded lines offer the best enticements for senior citizens, all cruise lines by nature of operating at sea offer inalienable benefits. Here are just five of those perks.


RetroStar5The World Comes to You

Being mobile is a luxury that not all older persons still have. To be able to conveniently see so many natural wonders — be it calving Alaskan glaciers from the top deck or European river majesties from a suite balcony — makes the cruising experience second to none.


RetroStar1Vacations the Family Will Actually Love

Many grandparents live over the river and through the woods, but that home needn’t always be the final destination for the family vacation. Cruise ships pride themselves on offering something for all age ranges, so no matter how the matriarch and patriarch are finding fun on board, they can rest assured the extended members are following likewise pursuits. And if years of listening to elders lie has taught us anything, it’s that they only want what’s best for everyone else. On ships, they can get that cake, eat it too — and ask for seconds.


RetroStar3 Nostalgia Is Always on Tap

There will always be a romanticism that’s uniquely and naturally attached to traveling by ship. Fortunately, even with cruise lines forever seeking new avenues to cater to, the sophistication and grandeur of cruising doesn’t fall by the wayside. And unlike many travel industries, the modern demands aren’t tainting what longtime cruise fans love. Celebrity chefs, for instance, may be given ship-space to peddle this month’s flavors and provide vogue sizzle, but solid, destination-based cuisine — presented to you and your fellowship of camaraderie-seeking tablemates by a passionate, knowledgeable staff — provides a culinary foundation that not only supports those ventures, but that veteran cruisers know they can rely on for years and cruises to come. And entertainment tastes are no different, with enrichment programs and jazz pianists providing the necessary yin to the yang of steel-drum-fueled belly-flop contests. It’s not just filler catered to fuddy-duddies. Perhaps the charm in that ol’ reliable entertainer is just how reliably charming the entertainer is.


RetroStar2Huge AARP Savings, Of Course

AARP partners with many cruise lines to give above-and-beyond incentives. Depending on the line, AARP members can get cruise discounts including instant onboard credits, savings on future sailings, free upgrades and amenities, and much more.


RetroStar4Expanded Bucket Lists

Nothing has been a boon to the Bucket List industry more than cruising and all of the global gotta-do-this doors that cruising opens up. The cruise lines renowned for their premium senior services happen to be the ones knocking on more of those doors, too, with longer itineraries to more exotic locales. But as great as a long-beloved destination is, you don’t have to be a seasoned world citizen to know how much more valuable the journey is to get there.


— Rico Bronte


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Now in its 25th year, Porthole Cruise and Travel Magazine is published bi-monthly and available worldwide through digital subscription. It offers the latest news in cruise and travel, with in-depth features on voyages, new ships, the best destinations, readers' picks, onboard cuisine, entertainment, and more!