I've cruised three times on my own and found that I was able to amke friends with other passengers that were at my table evry night and we ended up doing some shore excursions together and just sometimes wandering off the ship together. As the previous person said, the anytime dining might make this more difficult. I have been on shore excursions on my own and found that people still talked to me. I have also spent new year on a cruise but I had a friend with me on that occasion. That said we did end up making friends with lots of other people before the new Year party and ended up spending new year together. I have been to some other functions on board on my own and it isn't always easy to fit in with groups. However the crew are fantastic - the entertainment people watch out for people on theri own and work hard at making you feel included. Have a fantastic 50 and a great cruise
I would recommend that you go along to the special meetings held for solo travellers where you will meet others. They usually have coffee mornings and even a special drinks party. To be honest I would have recommended traditional dining where you have the same dining companions and can make some contacts. If you don't like the group you ask the restaurant manager to change you or you can just choose to go to anytime dining. At 'anytime' you will be with different people each time and probably will never see them again: it's a big ship. Shore excursions are absolutely no problem with the ship's organised tours. Some couples split up and do their own thing so there are usually other solo travellers on the excursions. The majority of cruisers are very sociable so you will always have people to talk to especially if you make the effort.
Jennie Good for you. I went to the caribean for my 50th with my husband at Easter and it was fantastic. I agree with the answer which said you may be better dining at set times as you would then sit with same people and have someone to talk to. Going for the anytime option is fine if like me you are very and I do mean very fussy with your food but you will probably be sat on your own. You could always change once on board. You will get a book telling you how many formal nights there and as you are going over new year I can't help there!!
Don't be scared of talking to people you can always move on if you don't like someone!! I hopy you have a fantastic time. One word of warning though cruising is addictive!!
4 formal nights if it is a back-to-back cruise, (returning to the leaving port in the middle of the 2 weeks)else it will have 3. beware that our USA friends don't like dressing up much, so don't expect it to be 'all-formal' nights like black-tie dinner here, many will wear jeans, polo shirts, etc. For excursions, the Caribbean is wonderful for not booking any on the ship, but just walking off ashore, saying 'no thanks, for the moment' to any offers & listening to the taxi drivers, consolidaters, etc touting their wares & suggest to a group that could you pal up with them. Most mini-buses don't leave until they are full up, with people that may never have met before that day.
Many thanks to all that have replied, Im really looking forward to my cruise. Jenni.