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Saga Sapphire (Photo: Saga Cruises)

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Saga Cruises Cruise Highlights

Why Go?

Impressive cuisine, with all specialty dining included in the cruise fare.

Traditional English tea served every afternoon.

Experienced crew with a genuine interest in serving mature passengers, many of whom travel alone.

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Saga Cruises Overview

Saga bills itself as a cruise, tour and resort company "for today's over 50s." Its ships sail mainly in Europe from the line's homeport of Dover, England, with some fly-cruises and a couple of long-haul voyages. Everything onboard, from the entertainment to the menus, is geared to British tastes.

Who goes on Saga cruise ships?

Saga firmly targets over-50 cruisers, although a companion can travel if they're over 40. In reality, most passengers are retired and over 65 and almost all are British, with a smattering of North Americans and Australians who enjoy the vibe of a ship geared to British tastes. Saga is especially friendly to solo travelers, with around 20 percent of accommodations dedicated to singles. Expect fellow travelers to be relatively well-heeled (this is a high-end cruise) and to have a sense of curiosity and an interest in good food, culture and the arts.

Do I have to dress up on a Saga cruise?

Yes. There are one to two formal nights on every seven-night voyage, and dressing for dinner on these is one of the reasons people book. Expect long dresses and lots of sparkle for ladies and tuxedo with bow tie for men -- although a dark suit with tie is acceptable. On other nights, the dress code is elegant casual, with no jacket and tie required but an expectation that people will make an effort in the evenings.

What are Saga Cruises' most popular activities?

Daytimes on a Saga cruise are spent by the Lido pool, or curled up with a book in the library, which has more than 3,500 volumes. There's also a popular arts and crafts room, and lectures, musical recitals and dance classes in the Britannia Lounge always draw a crowd. In the evenings, cruisers enjoy live music all around the ship and ballroom dancing in the Britannia Lounge, with gentleman dance hosts to escort single ladies.

An extensive range of excursions is offered at reasonable prices, and when the ship is in port, you'll find most passengers partaking in these.

Is everything free on Saga Cruises?

No, but a lot is. Crew tips, all specialty dining, Wi-Fi, a selection of wines with meals, a chauffeur service to the port, classes in the gym, specialty coffee and shuttle buses in port are included.

What you will pay extra for are bar drinks, shore excursions, spa treatments and retail shop purchases.