Man who’s lived on cruise ship for 23 years reveals true cost of living there full-time

  • Mario Salcedo decided to live fulltime on a cruise when he was 47
  • More than two decades on he says he’s happier out on the sea than on land
  • He’s broken down how much his unusual lifestyle actually costs

Published on Jun 05, 2024 at 11:51 AM (UTC+4)
by Claire Reid

Last updated on Jun 05, 2024 at 9:19 PM (UTC+4)
Edited by Tom Wood

A man who has spent more than two decades living on a cruise ship has shared the real cost of such a lifestyle. 

At 47 years old, Mario Salcedo decided to hand in his notice and move onto a cruise full-time. This guy is living my dream. 

Salcedo, who was given the nickname ‘Super Mario’ by the crew of the Royal Caribbean Voyager of the Seas, has to carefully budget for his unusual way of living and says one easy way of doing this is by choosing one of the cheaper options when it comes to cabins. 

READ MORE! Man who’s lived on cruise ship for 23 years has one necessary tip for doing so

With a couple of decades of cruise living under his belt – broken up only by a 15-day break per year and a 15-month gap during the Covid-19 pandemic – Salcedo says he’s happier out on the sea than on land. 

In an interview with All Things Cruise, Salcedo admitted: “I’m so used to being on ships that it feels more comfortable to me than being on land.”

And with so much experience, Salcedo is a bit of a whizz when it comes to keeping things to a tight budget – he revealed that his basic day-to-day cost was just $100, but warned that additional costs could soon add up. 

To keep costs down, Salcedo usually spends his time around the Caribbean – what a life – but says if he wanted to travel further afield he’d need to part with more cash. 

As any holidaymaker can tell you, Salcedo also shared that the time of year can greatly affect the price, but that loyalty schemes can help lower his bills.

Surely if anyone is entitled to be part of a loyalty scheme it’s this guy, right?

Taking into account higher costs, taxes, and forking out tips to staff, Salcedo said that he was actually spending around $185 per day. This is for a basic package, including a cabin, but not including any day trips or other add-ons that are common with cruise travel. 

Speaking in 2019, Salcedo said that for an inside cabin with no window, he could pay $72,093 a year. This rises to $101,258 for a cabin with a balcony – and jumps even higher to $136,000 if you fancied a junior suite.

Still not a bad price, in my opinion. 

Salcedo went on to note that the price he paid for a year was less than that of moving into an assisted-living facility. Fair enough. 

Salcedo isn’t the only person who has come up with an unusual solution to the rising cost of living – there’s a teen in Germany who pays $6,300 a year to permanently live on trains.

There are options out there if you’re willing to go looking for them.

# Tags - Cruise, Lifestyle


Claire Reid

Claire Reid is a journalist who hails from the UK but is now living in New Zealand. She began her career after graduating with a degree in Journalism from Liverpool John Moore’s University and has more than a decade of experience, writing for both local newspapers and national news sites. Across her career she's covered a wide variety of topics, including celebrity, cryptocurrency, politics, true crime and just about everything in between.