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Old 12-19-2011, 04:57 AM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,951,627 times
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Unless you eat an incredible amount of food every single day, I don't see how taking a "permanent cruise" is an affordable way to retire. Even the lowest priced cabins still end up costing more than $100/night. That means more than $3000/month. Even an apartment in NYC is less expensive than that.

A few years ago there were some cruise lines that promoted the idea of having sections of the ship reserved for residents. My husband and I actually looked into this a little bit. It wasn't outrageously expensive but it wasn't inexpensive by any means. Also, it's not the same as taking a cruise because residents do not get full use of the ship. In particular, they don't get access to the buffets. Instead there are special restaurants and a "store" for the residents.

The biggest worry, IMO, is the medical care. It's nice to think that you can take care of all your medical needs once a year when the ship docks in your "home" port, but in reality you'd end up getting lots of your medical care (including surgeries) in rinky dink medical centers in whatever touristy port the ship happened to be visiting. No thanks.
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Old 12-19-2011, 07:21 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 19,017,552 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caladium View Post
Unless you eat an incredible amount of food every single day, I don't see how taking a "permanent cruise" is an affordable way to retire. Even the lowest priced cabins still end up costing more than $100/night. That means more than $3000/month. Even an apartment in NYC is less expensive than that.

A few years ago there were some cruise lines that promoted the idea of having sections of the ship reserved for residents. My husband and I actually looked into this a little bit. It wasn't outrageously expensive but it wasn't inexpensive by any means. Also, it's not the same as taking a cruise because residents do not get full use of the ship. In particular, they don't get access to the buffets. Instead there are special restaurants and a "store" for the residents.

The biggest worry, IMO, is the medical care. It's nice to think that you can take care of all your medical needs once a year when the ship docks in your "home" port, but in reality you'd end up getting lots of your medical care (including surgeries) in rinky dink medical centers in whatever touristy port the ship happened to be visiting. No thanks.
I was talking about a permanent cruise instead of "assisted living." This would not be for spry seniors well enough to live on their own. It would be the level before the nursing home. In New England, expect to pay $300 to $500 per day (that's at least $9,000 per month)for decent assisted living--and does not include medical . And it's boring. What if you paid $200 or more per day on board an assisted living cruise ship with medical staff (paid for by your regular insurance)? You'd probably be up and about and not depressed at all. As long as you could take the rocking of the ship over waves...
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Old 12-19-2011, 08:49 AM
 
28,292 posts, read 39,979,602 times
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On our first cruise (Princess Caribbean) we learned there was a woman who lived full-time on the ship. But, and there is always a but, a group of gay men had purchased the entire ship for the cruise right after ours and she had to leave the ship and stay in a hotel for the duration of that cruise.

You just never know what's going to mess with your plans...
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Old 12-19-2011, 09:02 AM
 
Location: California Mountains
1,448 posts, read 2,593,182 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caladium View Post
Even the lowest priced cabins still end up costing more than $100/night. That means more than $3000/month.
Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
In New England, expect to pay $300 to $500 per day (that's at least $9,000 per month)for decent assisted living--and does not include medical . And it's boring. What if you paid $200 or more per day on board an assisted living cruise ship with medical staff (paid for by your regular insurance)?
This is not to debate the frugality, or lack of, of cruising. This is only to clarify that while $100/night is perhaps the norm, there are many, many short cruises (up to one week, regular rate) that costs $55 - $60/night. We've been to more than half a dozen of those inexpensive ones since we moved back to the States four years ago.

A much longer cruise, such as the 75-day RT freighter voyage that we took in 2006 from Spain to Chile, ended up at $55/night per person, and we had the owner's cabin -- a two-room suite -- second in size only to the captain's. The only other passengers on that ship aside from us were a German couple, and they paid $65/pp/night for OW from Germany to Chile.

The elderly I mentioned paid a discount rate at $60/night. She used all the amenities the ships offer, just as other regular passengers -- free entertainment, paid bingo, paid casino, free formal nights, free buffet, free sit-down restaurants, free room service, free gym, free group exercise (yoga, tai chi, water aerobic.) She also did not stay on one ship, but transferred her stay back and forth between all the ships within the same cruise line.

Last edited by Ol' Wanderer; 12-19-2011 at 09:29 AM..
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Old 12-19-2011, 12:18 PM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 26,951,627 times
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Which cruise line had the 75-day cruise that had a 2-room cabin for $55/day? Sign me up, I'd love to take a cruise like that.

The idea of an assisted living cruise ship sounds tempting, but I still think it would end up being so much more expensive than regular assisted living. For one thing, they'd have to hire additional medical staff and provide substantially better medical facilities on the ship. Assisted living offers residents ongoing supervision and medical care that is beyond the level of an ordinary cruise ship.

Don't get me wrong, it sounds like a wonderful idea, especially for the younger retirees who are still active. It's just that I once looked into the idea a little bit and discovered it was more expensive than you might think. If you know of a way to make it work, please share the details, because we'd enjoy doing something like that ourselves. We cruise quite a lot and love being on a ship even in a storm.
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Old 12-19-2011, 12:55 PM
 
Location: California Mountains
1,448 posts, read 2,593,182 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caladium View Post
Which cruise line had the 75-day cruise that had a 2-room cabin for $55/day? Sign me up, I'd love to take a cruise like that.
It's not a cruise line; it's a freighter, as I said in my post. The fee we paid was for 60 days from Bilbao (Spain) to Valparaiso (Chile) and back, but due to delays at ports, the missed appointment through Panama Canal, and a couple of detours to avoid Hurricanes Gordon and Helene, the voyage extended for another two weeks. The contract specified that extra days (no matter the reasons) were to be without charge so we received those two extra weeks free.

Travelling on freighters is for people who do not require professional entertainment, who are very flexible time-wise (note the two-week extension), and who are very adaptable (our itinerary was changed often and never with any advance notice). Depends on the ships, passengers are limited to 12 (the ship we were on allowed only four passengers). There are freighters from the States, but since we lived in Europe at the time, we booked with CCNI, a freighter line that traverses only between Europe and South America.

Last edited by Ol' Wanderer; 12-19-2011 at 01:29 PM..
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Old 12-19-2011, 01:19 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 19,017,552 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ol' Wanderer View Post
It's not a cruise line; it's a freighter, as I said in my post. The fee we paid was for 60 days from Bilbao (Spain) to Valparaiso (Chile) and back, but due to delays at ports, the missed appointment through Panama Canal, and a couple of detours to avoid Hurricanes Gordon and Helene, the voyage extended for another two weeks. The contract specified that extra days (no matter the reason) were to be without charge so we received those two extra weeks free.

Travelling on freighters is for people who do not require professional entertainment. Depends on the ships, passengers are limited to 12 (the ship we were on allowed only four passengers). There are freighters from the States, but since we lived in Europe at the time, we booked with CCNI, a freighter line that only traverses between Europe and South America.
So you rode in the cattle car and slept on hay?
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Old 12-19-2011, 01:54 PM
 
Location: California Mountains
1,448 posts, read 2,593,182 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
So you rode in the cattle car and slept on hay?

Ha! We had the owner's cabin! The living room had a sofa, coffee table, desk with leather arm chair, TV, bookcase/cabinet, microwave, and a open-able porthole. The en-suite bedroom had a double bed, night table, two wardrobes (the smaller one to store life jackets and the essential ship stuff), long shelf, and another open-able porthole. Our steward changed the German-style linen and cleaned the cabin twice a week.

We ate with the captain and officers 3X a day. We had the choice of menus, European or Burmese (the 24-member crew were all from Myanmar, the captain was from Ukraine.) We also had the option of special ordering any kind of food (presuming the ship's larder had the ingredients.)

We were allowed to go everywhere on the ship, from the engine to the wheel. The kitchen was open to us all day long (self-serve outside of meal times). At night, the cook left the door ajar in case I wished to find myself a snack. I learned to cook Burmese and speak the language from the crew. Not that I remember any of it now.

It was a great experience.

Last edited by Ol' Wanderer; 12-19-2011 at 02:24 PM..
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Old 12-24-2011, 05:40 PM
mlb
 
Location: North Monterey County
3,207 posts, read 2,871,884 times
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Just back from my first cruise. I would NEVER want to live like that in retirement. Even without the buffets.
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Old 12-25-2011, 01:14 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,702 posts, read 40,093,605 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlb View Post
Just back from my first cruise. I would NEVER want to live like that in retirement. Even without the buffets.


That makes two of us,,, Maybe a couple more in the world, but cruises are not my cup of tea (Tho I did HAVE to take one when a parent / in-law insisted on spending bundles / inheritance to have extended family cruise, it is kinda like a Pagent / spectacle for families to take 3-4 tables at the front of the dining hall and for the patriarchs to gleam with pride over their PRIDE) ick

I could not care less about the money, but going on a cruise was murder for this farm kid. (I do like sailing, and would likely enjoy freighter), BUT I do not appreciate LV style entertainment and gorging on food (realizing that much of it gets dumped at sea, while the crew (hostage slaves) get embittered.

It was very disgusting to me, but I can see where many folks enjoy being pampered.

Redeeming quality,,, Classical Music at dinner from a string quintet (very good). A talented stage band and a roaming Acapella 'Quartet'. It was a "Mary K" conference cruise too, so was very fun watching Type AAA (triple A) women, boss around their submissive mates. (They could usually be found in the dining room addressing piles of envelopes to customers, while the "Ladies" were getting all pumped up in a sales seminar). At least the guys were good for something....
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