If you’ve ever been on a cruise and looked at the schedule of activities and events, you may have noticed one that evoked curiosity. What is Friends of Bill W. and what can they be meeting about on a cruise?
Unless you’re in the know, you may have assumed that there was a friend’s group cruise onboard, and Bill W. was organizing a fun get together.
However, there’s more behind Friends of Bill W. meetings on a cruise, and it’s very important to some cruise travelers.
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What is Friends of Bill W. on a Cruise Ship?
On a cruise ship, “Friends of Bill W.” is a code for Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. Bill W. refers to Bill Wilson, one of the founders of A.A. During a cruise ship sailing, there will be meetings for A.A members who struggle with alcohol use and addiction.
The goal of alcoholic anonymous meetings is to help recovering alcoholics remain sober. Since many A.A members attend local meetings, it’s important for them to attend meetings while they’re on vacation as well.
When and Where Are Friends of Bill W. Meetings?
Friends of Bill W. meetings typically occur in the cruise ship library or another discreet location. These are open meetings where any cruise passenger can join.
On the cruise line app or the cruise line daily planner (ie. Cruise Compass), you’ll find an event called “Friends of Bill W. Meeting.” This is a subtle way for the cruise lines to organize A.A meetings without having random cruise passengers stumble in.
Generally, there is at least one A.A meeting per day, and it is complimentary. The meeting will either take place in the morning or in the afternoon, depending on the itinerary.
The amount of a.a members onboard depends on the sailing, but there are typically at least 4-8 other members.
Tip: If you can’t find the Friends Of Bill W. Meeting, go to guest services and ask. They’ll be happy to assist.
Why Is Friends of Bill W. on a Cruise Ship?
Friends of Bill W. members join one another on board the cruise ship to support each other in their mission to abstain from drinking alcohol. For many Alcoholics Anonymous members, a cruise is a challenging place to remain sober.
However, the support from the Friends of Bill W. community helps A.A members remain sober throughout their cruise vacation. It is also a safe space and supportive environment for cruise passengers seeking sobriety and recovery through the principles of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).
Does Royal Caribbean Have friends of Bill W. Meetings?
Yes, you’ll find Friends Of Bill W. meetings offered daily on a Royal Caribbean cruise. Depending on the itinerary, A.A meetings will either take place in the morning or around 4:00 PM. Check your Cruise Compass or app for actual meeting times.
On Royal Caribbean, the meetings are complimentary, and they are held in a quiet place to avoid crowds of people.
Does Norwegian Cruise Line Have Friends Of Bill W. Meetings?
Yes, Norwegian Cruise Line has Friends Of Bill W. meetings. Check the daily planner to see the time and location of the Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.
Does Carnival Cruise Line Have Friends Of Bill W. Meetings?
Carnival Cruise Line has friends of Bill W. Meetings on all of their cruise ships. Check the Fun Times to see the location and time of the meetings.
Does Princess Cruises Have Friends Of Bill W. Meetings?
Yes, Princess Cruises has Friends of Bill W. Meetings on their cruise ships. Refer to the daily newsletter or the Princess Medallion App to view the location and time of the meetings.
Does Holland America Cruise Line Have Friends Of Bill W. Meetings?
Holland America has Friends of Bill W. Meetings on their cruise ships. The meetings take place in a discreet and quiet location. Check the daily schedule or Navigator App to see the time and location of the A.A meeting.
Does Celebrity Cruise Line Have Friends of Bill W. Meetings?
Celebrity Cruises has Friends Of Bill W. meetings on all of their cruise ships. Check the cruise line app for the date, time, and location of the meetings.
Does MSC Have Friends Of Bill W. Meetings?
Yes, MSC has Friends of Dr. Bob and Bill W. meetings on their cruise ships. The meetings take place around 6:30 PM, and the location varies depending on the cruise ship.
Dr. Bob Smith was the co-founder of A.A, which is why the meetings are called Friends of Dr. Bob and Bill W. on MSC cruises.
Does Virgin Voyages Have Friends Of Bill W. Meetings?
Virgin Voyages has Friends of Bill W. Meetings on their cruise ships. The A.A meetings usually take place at 8:00 AM and the location varies depending on the sailing.
Check out your cruise line app to confirm the date, time and location of the Friends of Bill W. meetings.
What Is Friends of Dorothy?
The term “Friends of Dorothy” is a euphemism for those who identify as gay or LGBTQ+. For many years, cruise lines would use this term for LGBTQ+ meetups and events. In recent times, most major cruise lines use clear language since there is more openness around sexuality.
Typically, most cruise lines will have daily meetups for members of the LGBTQ community. These events will occur in a bar or commonplace so passengers can mingle and have a good time.
You can find where and when these meetups are taking place by checking out your cruise line app or compass.
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Final Thoughts on What Is Friends Of Bill W. On a Cruise?
Whether you’re in recovery or just curious about what Friends Of Bill W. means on a cruise, everyone can agree that it’s great that all cruise lines offer these meetings.
A cruise can be a tough environment for those who have a drinking problem. However, Alcoholic Anonymous is a support group that really helps those who are trying to achieve sobriety.
If you have questions or experiences to share, please leave a comment below.
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Author Bio: Ethan Schattauer writes about men’s 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.