An retired couple had been at sea for around 500 days, having booked 51 cruises because it’s cheaper than living in a nursing home.Image.. www.asiaone.com
You won't find Marty and Jess Ansen in a nursing home anytime soon. The couple already spent nearly 500 days on a cruise ship. And that's not all because the couple has a taste for it. "This is more economical than staying in a retirement home," reasoned the retired Australians. And so they have become the stars of the sea.
The couple set sail for their first cruise on June 16, 2022, after two grueling corona years with lockdowns, they explain in a report by the Australian TV program A Current Affair. "Eventually I said to my travel agent: look, whatever happens, just book it," Marty explains. And so it happened.
Since then, they have sailed on the Coral Princess - a 2,000-passenger ship - for more than 450 days and plan to stay on board for a total of even two years. That's much longer than most crew members, including captains.
The couple claims it is cheaper to travel around the world for two years than to pay for a retirement home. "It's our lifestyle," Jess says. Marty and Jess also enjoyed multiple cruises before retirement before they eventually made it their full-time time commitment.
One of the benefits of this lifestyle is that there is always something to do on board, from dancing to eating, it sounds. And that there is staff to clean your room, the couple sums up. "Now we don't have to wash dishes or make the bed," says an enthusiastic Marty.
They usually start their day by playing ping-pong. They like to enjoy the view from their balcony with a few beers. And so their wonderful day ripples on to the rhythm of the waves. The couple and crew seem like one big family. "Everyone knows them on the ship, they are actually celebrities on board," says Ren van Rooyen, the Coral Princess' hotel manager, during the report. They see their own families when they dock in a nearby port. Not for eight months will they disembark again.
But that certainly doesn't mean the end of their world travels. The couple is still full of plans. For example, Marty and Jess want to spend another year traveling with the Crown Princess, an even bigger cruise ship. "It's a great life," Marty concluded.
A few years ago, a British newspaper calculated that a major cruise line charged "only" 11,500 euros converted for a 104-day world cruise. The cost of long-term care at that time turned out to be 3,500 euros a month for an average British care facility. 'Count on your local care facility not offering casinos or midnight buffets, but your average cruise ship does offer 24/7 service and a fully equipped medical center with a doctor on board! The choice is yours," they concluded.
Experts say the "sailing pension" is not available everywhere, but certain cruise lines do offer annual packages. "But if you look at the day-to-day costs, in some cases they are comparable to the cost of living in Canada," said one Canadian expert. In general, most experts in the U.S. and Canada suggest that retirees in those countries will need about 70 percent of their current annual income to live comfortably during their retirement years.