Cats and water don’t usually mix but your feline companion will be perfectly safe and dry on this trip.
Cat owners in Singapore can now take their beloved pets on a luxury sunset cruise.
130 humans and 15 feline companions can board the Royal Albatross tall ship on each sailing. Owners can enjoy a four or seven-course meal while their cats lounge around, enjoy the sights and socialise.
“The cats get their own little spacious cabanas - cat-banas, we call it, like a cabana, where they can lounge in there just to enjoy the sea breeze and the sunset,” says Sylvia Lee, partnership sales manager at Tall Ship Adventures.
After sailing alongside the resort island of Sentosa with views of Singapore’s skyline, the experience ends with a short fireworks display.
“I think they're doing very well... they're enjoying the view and I guess the perceived freedom that they get," says Marissa Ng, a 28-year-old human resources professional who took her five-year-old ragdoll cats Coco and Bobo on the cruise.
Is the cruise safe for cats?
Tall Ship Adventures, the company that runs the cruises, says it consulted with experts and cat welfare organisations such as the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to ensure a safe experience on board.
When they get on the ship, pets need to be in a carrier. While onboard, the cats have to be securely harnessed and leashed at all times. They also need to be vaccinated and spayed or neutered to take part in the luxury experience.
“Harnesses and leads are supposed to be on all the time - it's compulsory,” says Lee.
“We make that compulsory and then we advise them to bring portable fans, some ice packs, and their own little water bottles so that it's all their own little comfortable things that they use.”
Mahmud, a four-month-old shorthair kitten, stayed calm snoozing beside his family despite it being his first time in a harness.
"This is a good time to spend the day as a family, since we just got Mahmud," says Aziana Aziz, a 41-year-old teacher sailing with her son and husband.
"He's enjoying it... he's curious, he's looking around, so yeah, happy cat, I guess."
Can you take other pets on a cruise?
The cat cruises are just the latest offering from Tall Ship Adventures but the company has been welcoming dogs since 2021. Around 2,000 have set sail with their owners so far.
There are a few differences in the experience with dogs and cats sailing on separate days. Dogs are offered a three-course meal onboard but cats are less likely to eat in an unfamiliar environment so get to take their food home with them.
But the feline ticket sales are quickly catching up to their canine counterparts. More than 200 human passengers have already booked at a cost of S$225 (€153) each.
Watch the video above to see cats and their owners take a luxury cruise.