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Article written by Maya Vukovska

Never been on a gay cruise before, but wonder what it will be like? Well, my friend, you’ll hear a lot of warnings coming from the experienced ones, but you shouldn’t take every word for granted. Of all the things they’ll be telling you, though, one thing will be true - all-gay cruises are normally more expensive than those for bored pensioners and mainstream families with kids. It’s understandable that you’re feeling curious-slash-nervous before your first time. But you must be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged, and get your nice ass out there!

Here is what you should know before you lose your gay-cruise virginity.

It’s not all about debauchery

The brochures tempt many gay men by promising crazy partying and wild nights, because, as we all know, sex can sell you anything - from a loan moaner to a sea cruise in the Caribbean. Yet, if you prefer to sunbathe, drink cocktails, and just make eyes at the cute crew members, it’s totally OK. One of the biggest myths about gay cruises is that it’s not worth going if you’re not ready to have sex day and night with other guys who are crazy with lust. Actually, the biggest cruise companies do not allow sex in the public areas. If one wants to get naughty, there are many cabins onboard that one is free to use for sexual purposes. Of course, a dick or two (or more!) will be flashed in your face during frivolous pool games, but really, nobody expects you to be horny and chase people around with an erected penis 24/7.

Pack light!

Unless you’re sailing along the west coast of Norway in early spring, there’s no need to overpack. The dress code on gay cruises is usually very relaxed and mostly includes shorts, speedos, and a six-pack. The only clothes you need are the ones you walk onto and out of the ship.

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It’s like a regular gay bar

You don’t have to worry whether you’ll be the only one onboard who’s too old, or too skinny, or too whatever. You will meet literally everybody aboard: from 20-somethings with 5 percent body fat in sequin shorts to mischievous octogenarians in sleeveless T-shirts with the inscription “I’m Your Beach Mama”. People would be eyeing you, that’s for sure, but after the fourth Negroni, nobody will be giving a damn if you’re black, white, Asian, or pink, a hot circuit boy, or a choir boy, a flashy queen, or a heavy bear.

Stop watching what you eat

And just eat! Do not feel any remorse about it! With all the dancing that’s going on, the last thing you should worry about is the calorie intake. There will be food in the main dining room(s), but if you find it boring, you may gorge yourself on saltimbocca, pepperoni pizza, or the chicken tenders Popeyes-style at the ship’s fine-dining restaurants. After all, you’re on vacation, remember?

Couples vs. Singles

Gay cruises can be fun for both types. If you’re single and book a gay cruise with the sole intention to find your true love there, you’d better stay at home. It’s not a dating app, you know, and there will be very few people onboard who are on the same mission as you are. Our advice: Stop worrying that you’re not coupled, and just enjoy your vacation. Only when relaxed and in peace with yourself, you may eventually find what you’ve been looking for.
If you are making this trip together with your partner, we recommend that you set the rules for onboard behavior in advance. Living the life of a gay cruise ship can be a treacherous adventure, which can put any seemingly solid relationship on a harsh trial.

If you like it, then you shoulda put a ring on it!

For those of you who are very much in love and ready to commit to their SOs, some companies offer onboard marriage ceremonies. So, boys, don’t hesitate and book your fairy-tale-with-a-happy-ending cruise.

Non-party activities are fun, too

Do not limit yourself to dance and pool activities only. Some companies offer cutting-edge entertainment, which you may want to inform yourself about in advance. And we’re not talking about bingo and casinos. Zip-lining, skydiving, surf simulators - yes, there are many other things (beside sex with strangers in thongs!) that can lift up your levels of adrenaline.

Explore the ports

That one is a really big plus of not only gay cruises, but all cruises. Leaving the ship and sinking into the local culture of the coastal towns or the islands can be a lifetime adventure. You don’t necessarily have to partake in the guided shore excursions. Explore the ports by yourself, talk to the locals, track down an unpretentious see-food restaurant, go snorkeling, or why not even hook up with some fisherman’s son...

So, whether you’re as single as a pringle or in a serious relationship, you can bet that everyone on your first ever gay cruise will welcome you with open arms. Literally!

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