Cruise lines failing bar crawl test


Cruisers, I’m happy to report that the news isn’t all bad. Some cruise lines are in fact passing the bar crawl test.

According to Louise Goldsbury, blogger at The Cruisey Life Uncensored, inclusion of the social activity is on the rise.

Louise, who cruises the world writing ship reviews, has spied ship-organised bar crawls on Holland America Line and Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) ships.

Thirsty Rob hanging with the pixelators on a Mediterranean cruise bar crawl

Thirsty Rob hanging with the pixelators on a self-serve, Med cruise bar crawl

As the youngest cruise editor in the southern hemisphere (and travel writer of the year – watch her win at the NTIA Awards), she recommends signing up for the ship’s bar crawl.

“It draws all the young passengers, who you haven’t seen anywhere else for the past few days, out of the woodwork.

“It’s a great way to meet people as well as the bar tenders, and you also discover where all the hidden bars are located and which has the best ocean view.”

It’s not uncommon for passengers and new friends to organise their own bar crawls either — onboard and as self-guided shore excursions.

So would you select a cruise based on whether bar crawls were on offer?

Maybe. It does offer some insight into a cruise line’s personality.

OK, I hear you. Leave it with me then. I’ll ask the questions. Stay tuned.

Which cruise lines do bar crawls?

NCL – Yes

They call it the Pub Hop Program. For $25, you can hop around five bars for a drink at each. Lasts for around an hour, includes games and booze trivia.

Holland America Line – Yes

AIDA – No but…

They have onboard breweries offering tours and beer tastings. Go the Germans!

Cunard – Nup

Carnival – No but…

Typical activities include cocktail creation challenges, wine tastings, happy hours, karaoke parties and pub guitar.

Star cruises – No but…

They aim to excite and amuse. Think cooking competitions and eating contests.

[P.S. You can ignore this blog post headline – just a bit of click bait. Cruise lines do a wonderful job at entertaining us.]

Rob Dunlop