An interesting fact.

For $4300, you can spend 26 nights and 26 days traveling from Florida to Europe on a luxury cruise liner. You can get a suite with a balcony for little over $5200. On the way you will get to enjoy to sights and sounds of Gibraltar, United Kingdom, Spain, France, Italy, Monte Carlo, Turkey, Greece and more. You will be served three delicious meals a day – many of which are all you can eat. You will get to enjoy live entertainment, swimming pools, outdoor entertainment and more – all inclusive.

When I called the cruise line to inquire about medical services, I was told that each boat has a doctor and nurse available to help with your needs 24 hours a day.

When I asked how these services were billed, I was told that American insurance is not billed if you are out of American Waters, and sometimes the services are billed per service. If you need the care, you may not be charged anything or a small flat fee per service.


$4300 – $5300 for 78 meals, room and board, entertainment and the opportunity to see the world. People with disabilities are welcome as most ships are ADA accessible and handicap rooms are available.

Please compare to the cost of a Virginia assisted living facility, where by statute, no physician has to be on staff and only 1 nurse is required to be on site 24 hours a day to provide care to all residents.

A website I visited this morning said that a Virginia Assisted Living facility can range anywhere from $1800 to $4000 a month for all services.

Interesting, again.

And Cruise ship companies, like most assisted living facilities, are for profit. At the end of the day they hope to provide a service, and make money off of you.

Now I know you think this is a bogus comparison because assisted living facilities are HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS, and CRUISES are not. But that is actually not correct. Assisted Living Facilities are by definition, not health care providers. They are run and administered by the same state agency who oversees child support and day care.

So the question remains, why is a cruise so cheap, and or, an assisted living facility so expensive?

Where does all that money go at an assisted living facility?

Housekeeping? Maybe
Meals? I doubt it
Activities? I doubt it
Nursing Care? Maybe

Just something to think about. It costs the same to take someone on a cruise for 26 days, as it does to stay in an assisted living facility.

Please note I didn’t compare the cost to nursing homes because by statute in Virginia (the VAC), Assisted living facilities are for folks who need help with less than 2 activities of daily living – walking, eating, etc. Someone in need of a nursing home is by definition, too sick to be on a cruise, yet someone can very easily enjoy a 4 week cruise who cannot walk, is incontinent, etc.

No conclusions in today’s post – just observations.

About the author

Lauren Ellerman

In 2011, Lauren Ellerman was named "Young Lawyer of the Year" by the Roanoke Bar Association for her work in the community. To speak with Lauren about your personal injury case, contact her at

Back to top