While he was initially reluctant, it didn't take long for a former pilot to become a keen cruiser.

Lynda Murdoch, 60, a former Air New Zealand cabin crew member, went on her first cruise to gain some expertise after retraining as a travel agent and selling several Holland America Alaska cruises.

However, her 66-year-old husband Rod Murdoch, a retired Boeing 777 captain, initially wasn't that interested in taking to the seas.

"At this point Rod wasn't overly keen on a cruise, but decided to come anyway," she says. "His entire career had been flying and his interest in cruising was zero. A lot of this had come from the usual comments that it is for old people."


While they weren't happy to be staying in an interior cabin at first, the couple soon discovered they wouldn't spend much time in their room anyway — and as it turned out, Rod took to cruising "like a duck to water".

"Our first stop was the Bay of islands and Rod stayed on board whilst I tendered in to check out the markets. Upon my return, I kid you not, Rod had gone from disinterested to actively looking online for our next cruise."

Lynda and Rod went on to do a Celebrity Mediterranean cruise and a Celebrity Caribbean cruise, before embarking on an epic 106-day world cruise on Sea Princess last year.

"We were in the Baltic last year and from Denmark to Sweden to Russia and in between we would go to bed and wake up in a different country."

The couple have another world cruise booked for next year and six months after that, a 79-day South American cruise.

Murdoch said she loves cruising because "every day brings something different" and advises others to "be as lazy or as active as you want".

Despite cruising's reputation as an excursion for the older generation, she urges others not to leave it too late.

"So many people think it's for the oldies but believe me, the younger and fitter you are the more enjoyable the cruise will be.

"And most important, never use the lift but always the stairs ... you can then eat and drink as much as you like without having to buy a new wardrobe on your return."