8 Best Cruises for Young Adults – By a Young Adult

Best cruises for young adults

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Are you under 30 and looking for the best cruises for young adults? Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. As a young adult who’s been cruising for years, I know first hand which cruise lines cater towards our demographic.

Choosing a cruise as a young person isn’t one size fits all. We all look for different things when we’re on vacation. Whether it’s partying, relaxing, seeing new places or even having a romantic cruise with our significant other, there is a perfect cruise for you!

With that being said, here are the 8 best cruise lines for young adults.

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8 Best Cruises for Young Adults

1. Royal Caribbean Cruises

Royal Caribbean cruise ships at CocoCay

If you’re a young adult, you’ll love a Royal Caribbean cruise. Whether you’re cruising with friends or planning the ultimate family vacation, there is something for everyone!

Royal Caribbean cruise ships are amazing for young people. There is nonstop fun, endless activities and amazing drinks! This is true whether you take 3-5 day short cruises, or a longer cruise of 7-8 days.

Onboard a Royal Caribbean ship, you’ll find great things to do including zip lines, rock climbing, water parks, basketball courts, mini golf, pools and hot tubs.

The nightlife on Royal Caribbean is also super fun. Whether you want to go to the club, listen to live music, watch game shows or stand-up comedy, you won’t be bored on these cruise ships!

On Royal Caribbean, there is always something going on, even as it gets late. The various entertainment venues are busy and the nightclub is a blast.

Royal Caribbean really caters towards young people, so it’s a great place to make new friends. Recently, I was on the Oasis of the Seas and I met some really cool friends who I’m still in contact with.

The brand new Royal Caribbean cruise ship Icon of the Seas is the ultimate paradise for young adults. With a mix of fun activities, onboard attractions, and evening entertainment venues, it is one of the best cruise ships for younger cruisers.

Cruising out of PortMiami, Icon of the Seas is a great option for younger cruisers.

Wondering about the activities on Royal Caribbean? Check out the Cruise Compass daily planners from our recent cruise.

Perfect Day at CocoCay

If you’re looking into a cruise vacation with Royal Caribbean, I’d recommend booking an itinerary that stops at Perfect Day at CocoCay. Perfect Day at CocoCay is Royal Caribbean’s private island, which is incredibly fun for young adults.

There is a huge water park, gorgeous beaches, zip-lining, jet skiing, a hot air balloon and Oasis Lagoon, a massive pool. If you like pool parties, then you’re going to love the Oasis Lagoon because it has that crazy fun spring break vibe.

Perfect Day at CocoCay Oasis Lagoon

Tip: If you want to cruise with younger people, book larger and newer cruise ships, and shorter cruise trips, as these tend to attract a younger demographic.

Royal Caribbean Cruises for Young Adults:

  • Icon of the Seas
  • Utopia of the Seas
  • Oasis of the Seas
  • Symphony of the Seas
  • Navigator of the Seas
  • Quantum of the Seas
  • Wonder of the Seas

Related: What to Pack for a Royal Caribbean Cruise

2. Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Liberty cruise ship

Carnival cruises are a great option for younger adults who are looking for that party vibe. If you’re looking for a great cruise on a budget, Carnival is your best bet.

The clientele on Carnival tends to be young, or at least young at heart!

On a Carnival cruise ship you will be partying, drinking and there are endless amounts of onboard activities. You will find basketball courts, ropes courses, pools, hot tubs, water slides and even a roller coaster on some cruise ships!

There are some great things on Carnival, such as 24-hour pizza, Guy’s Burger Joint and amazing drinks.

Booking shorter cruises on Carnival will be more affordable which tends to attract a younger demographic.

Last summer, I sailed on the Carnival Venezia, and there were many young adults. There is food, entertainment, and a party atmosphere catered to young adults.

The affordable price and fun atmosphere make Carnival an ideal cruise line for younger cruisers.

Tip: Cruising during summer break, winter break or spring break are all seasons that attract young cruisers.

Carnival Cruises for Young Adults:

  • Carnival Mardi Gras
  • Carnival Celebration
  • Carnival Jubilee
  • Carnival Vista

Related: What’s Included on a Carnival Cruise – Everything You Need to Know

3. Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Getaway Cruise Ship

Norwegian Cruise Line has great cruises for a younger crowd. Norwegian cruise ships definitely have a fun party vibe, perfect for anyone from college students to young couples.

Out of the cruise lines I’ve sailed, Norwegian definitely attracts the most young adults who are looking to have a good time. If you want to spend your cruise drinking, partying and having fun, you will love Norwegian Cruise Lines!

There are plenty of activities onboard a Norwegian cruise ship that cater towards older kids, teenagers and young adults. There are so many fun things to do on NCL, especially on sea days!

You’ll find water slides, rock climbing, mini golf, bowling and even a race car track on some of Norwegian’s newer cruise ships. Of course, there are pools and hot tubs as well.

One of the nice things about Norwegian is it’s Freestyle dress code, which makes packing for your cruise easier.

When booking your Norwegian cruise, you can also book with the Free at Sea promotion, which has extra perks like free wifi, shore excursions, a beverage package and dining package.

Solo Cruisers

Norwegian is also known as being a really good cruise line for solo cruisers. If you’re a solo traveler, there are studio staterooms designed for specifically for those who are traveling on their own.

Additionally, Norwegian has the Studio Lounge which is an area for solo travellers to meet and mingle.

Norwegian Cruises for Young Adults:

  • Norwegian Getaway
  • Norwegian Epic
  • Norwegian Escape
  • Norwegian Prima
  • Norwegian Viva
  • Norwegian Aqua

Related: Norwegian Cruise Line’s Free at Sea Perks Explained

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4. Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises Celebrity Edge

If you’re looking for a modern luxury vacation experience, Celebrity Cruises is your best bet. If you like to relax and take it easy on vacation, you will love Celebrity Cruises.

The food and service on Celebrity is top notch and the age group of clients tends to be a bit older. However this can be perfect for a couples cruise. The nightlife on Celebrity is quiet, so if you’re looking for a party ship, Celebrity won’t be for you.

Celebrity does an amazing job at keeping a relaxing environment, where you truly feel like you’re on vacation.

Visiting new destination can be tiring. After a long day of exploring, Celebrity has the best cruise ships to come back to. On your way back onto the ship, you will be offered citrus water and cold towels which feel amazing!

Celebrity is a great cruise line for young couples who want to relax, eat good and explore the world together. Furthermore, their cruise ships are stunning, making them ideal for taking pictures to post on social media.

Celebrity Cruises for Young Adults:

  • Celebrity Edge
  • Celebrity Beyond
  • Celebrity Ascent
  • Celebrity Summit
  • Celebrity Equinox
  • Celebrity Apex

Related: What to Wear on a Celebrity Cruise

5. Princess Cruises

Regal Princess cruise ship

Princess Cruises doesn’t tend to attract many young travellers. However, I think it is really good cruise line for young adults. As someone who has cruised with Princess a lot, they have great food, great service and the night life is still really fun.

Plus, the Ocean Medallion and MedallionNet wifi is pretty awesome!

Recently, I did a New Year’s Cruise on a Princess ship and there were a ton of people my age. I made so many friends, partied every night, ate well and had the best time.

Princess offers an upscale cruising experience, which many younger cruisers can appreciate. You’ll enjoy a Princess cruise if you prefer a relaxing and luxurious vibe over a spring break party vibe.

Whether you’re planning a couple’s getaway, a trip with your friends, or a family vacation, a Princess cruise is an amazing travel experience.

If you want to meet others your age, here are some tips:

  • Princess cruises that are 7 nights or less will have a younger crowd
  • Cruise during the summer, holidays and school breaks for a more diverse age group and younger demographic
  • If you’re planning a couples cruise, Princess is a good option.

Princess Cruises for Young Adults:

  • Sky Princess
  • Sun Princess
  • Regal Princess
  • Discovery Princess
  • Enchanted Princess
  • Emerald Princess

Related: What to Pack for a Princess Cruise

6. Virgin Voyages

Virgin Voyages Scarlet Lady

Virgin Voyages is a relatively new cruise line that is actually targeting young adults with a very cool and fun vibe. Virgin is an adult only, luxury cruise line that is line no other cruise line.

Onboard a Virgin cruise ship you won’t find waterslides and race cars, as you might on family friendly cruise lines like Royal Caribbean, Carnival or Norwegian. Instead, there are activities, entertainment and dining that are catered towards a hip adult crowd.

On a Virgin ship there are pools and hot tubs, a gym that offers classes, cruise ship balconies with hammocks and even a tattoo parlour.

The best thing about Virgin Voyages being an adult only cruise line, is that you don’t have to worry kids taking over the pools and hot tubs!

Virgin Voyages Ships For Young Adults:

  • Virgin Scarlet Lady
  • Virgin Valiant Lady
  • Virgin Resilient Lady
  • Virgin Brilliant Lady

Related: 6 Best Cruise Lines For College Students – By a Recent Graduate

8 Best Cruises for Young Adults
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7. Disney Cruise Line

disney cruise ship

Are a big Disney fan? Disney cruises can be a lot of fun for young adults and young families with kids. If you’re a Disney lover, then a Disney cruise is something you should experience once in your life.

While Disney Cruise Line is known for having Disney themed family cruises, there are actually some adult only areas on their cruise ships.

Compared to other cruise lines, Disney cruises tends to have a lot of young children, so be prepared for a more family friendly atmosphere. On a Disney ship the food is very good, the entertainment is fun and the staff is really friendly.

Onboard a Disney ship they have a big screen outside by the pool, hot tubs and water slides.

Disney Cruises for Young Adults:

  • Disney Magic
  • Disney Wonder
  • Disney Wish
  • Disney Treasure

Related: 27 Awesome Things To Do on a Cruise on Sea Days

8. MSC Cruises


If you’re looking to have a good cruise on a budget, MSC cruises is the cruise line for you. Recently, MSC has made a push to attract a younger demographic to their cruise lines.

MSC is well known for their absolutely stunning cruise ships. Many actually have real Swarovski crystal staircases!

MSC cruise ships are beautifully decorated and innovative. On the MSC Seashore, it has a New York City theme with several area’s around the ship being inspired by the big apple.

Onboard an MSC ship, you’ll find tons of activities including water slides, bowling allies, rope courses, beautiful pool areas, relaxation areas and hot tubs. Plus, they are well known for their amazing pizza!

I recently cruised with MSC, and it was such a good time! They have a great nightlife, plenty of relaxing areas, and tasty food.

As a young cruiser, I can confidently say that MSC offers the best value in the market. Their unbeatable promotions and wide range of offerings ensure that you get the most out of your cruise, without breaking the bank. You’re guaranteed a fantastic experience every time you sail with MSC.

MSC Cruises for Young Adults:

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Final Thoughts on The Best Cruises for Young Adults

Well there it is, the best cruises for young adults! As someone who has grown up cruising, I can say that a cruise vacation is the best vacation.

If you’ve never been on a cruise, be careful, because they are addictive! Once you cruise it’s hard to go back to an ordinary vacation. Whether you’re trying to relax or party, there is a cruise line for everyone.

Have you ever been on a cruise & if so, what’s your favorite? Please let me know in the comments below.


Author Bio: Ethan Schattauer writes about fashion, travel and college advice on the website WhatToWearMen.com. As a frequent cruiser, Ethan shares his unique perspective on what cruising is like for teens and young adults.

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