For many, vacation cruises and alcoholic beverages go hand in hand. Many cruise lines sell beverage packages to vacationers, and the ships themselves often feature multiple bars serving all sorts of drinks.
But not everybody wants to get their drink on while traveling the high seas. Some people have experienced alcohol addictions and have attended inpatient alcohol treatment. They fear that being surrounded by so much alcohol and so many people drinking alcohol could trigger their cravings and lead to relapses from their hard-won sobriety.
A good alternative might be a sober cruise.
What is a sober cruise?
Sober cruises are just what their name indicates: cruises that don’t offer alcohol.
Organizations such as Sober Celebrations feature cruises to different places. Sober Celebrations founder Snow P. was in recovery and was looking for fellowship on her travels. Not finding what she was looking for, she started a cruise line to accompany travelers to interesting destinations and offer fun activities without the presence of alcohol or drugs.
Travelers who choose this line might be able to attend 12-step and Al-Anon meetings or participate in other activities that help them support their sobriety.
Other companies also aim to provide alcohol-free fun. Travel Sober offers meetings and recovery speakers during cruises and other trips. A licensed vocational nurse also works with the organization, which provides additional assurance that its voyages are fun as well as safe.
These are just two of the organizations that offer cruises and other vacations while actively supporting sober lifestyles.
What are the advantages of sober cruises?
One significant advantage of sober cruises is that they don’t feature alcohol or drugs or people who use them. Although that may sound obvious, the National Institute on Drug Abuse says: “Science has taught us that stress cues linked to the drug use (such as people, places, things, and moods), and contact with drugs are the most common triggers for relapse.”
Since cruises are sometimes synonymous with heavy partying, sober cruises offer an alternative. Instead of highlighting drinking, bars, and alcohol, their focus is on travel, sober activities, and fellowship.
Speaking of fellowship, the passengers on sober cruises are in recovery. They’ll have help finding 12-step meetings, which may even be on their ships. They won’t have to explain why they’re not drinking or face people who try to tempt them with “just one drink.”
By choosing sober cruises, travelers don’t have to struggle to stay sober alone. They can work with others to fight addiction and enjoy their time on vacation.
What do people do on sober cruises?
While they offer fellowship, meetings, speakers, and other resources that support sobriety, sober cruises are very similar to more traditional cruises in other respects.
Many sober cruise lines offer a wide range of shipboard activities that could include pools, waterslides, zip lines, dances, shows, and multiple dining options. As with other cruises, sober cruises allow passengers to disembark and explore different destinations as part of their journeys.
If people don’t find cruises appealing, they can find other sobriety-friendly trips by looking online, talking with travel agents, or contacting 12-step organizations.
You don’t need alcohol to have a good time. In fact, by taking a sober cruise or other recovery-centered vacation, you can have the time of your life.
Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.
Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.
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