Owned and operated with sincere passion to help people enjoy their lives!

Creating travel opportunities with RN Support and caregiver respite!
Certified Special Needs Travel Agency • Alzheimer's State Champion

As a nurse, safety is my #1 priority for all travelers. I am passionate about creating travel experiences, but first and foremost, I am a nurse, and I am 100% staying on top of the current situation to ensure that future cruises are safe for all guests. I am happy to answer any questions you may have regarding precautions our cruise line partners are taking, booking refundable cruises and airfare, or anything else you can think of!


Kathy Speer Shoaf

Elite Cruise & Vacations

Kathy Shoaf

Kathy Shoaf

Franchise Owner

Travel Accessibility Logo
To Request Information Click Here Instagram  Instagram Facebook  LinkedIn

Sincere Passion to Help People Enjoy Their Lives

'Elite Cruises and Vacations, LLC / Cruise Planners, American Express Travel is a full-service travel agency with clientele nationwide. The agency specializes in: multi-generational adventures & accessibility travel. Group travel includes corporate, club, topical, and faith-based projects. Additionally, we produce educational /CEU Cruise Events that provide educational credits and tax advantages. Our luxury travel focuses on worldwide adventures, romance and family escapes.

Click Here to See Some of Our Previous Cruise Events

Click Here for Detailed Event Information:

Mexico - Sea of Cortez
Caregiver Respite/Dementia Friendly Cruise
April 15 - 27, 2020

Alaskan Adventure
Caregiver Respite/Dementia Friendly Cruise & Symposium
May 24 - 31, 2020

Canada and East Coast Independence Celebration
Caregiver Respite/Dementia Friendly Cruise
June 29 – July 6, 2020

The Caregiver Alaskan Adventure
August 23 - 30, 2020

Dementia Friendly Adventure Canada to Alaska
September 13 - 20, 2020

Brain Health on the High Seas
Caregiver Respite/Dementia Friendly Cruise
October 18 - 25, 2020

The Dementia Friendly Caregiver Retreat to the Panama Canal
October 28 - November 7, 2020

Elite Supported Travel offers quality care and guarantees joyful moments!

Group Information:

  • This is a multi-generational cruise event, with families, caregivers and clients invited to travel together. However, individual clients who live independently at home, often join us!
  • Group sizes vary between 50 and 120 people total.
  • All groups have RN Support available 24/7.
  • Staff to client staffing ratio is 1:4; averaging 1:2 during respite sessions.
  • Travel insurance that covers medical illness, accidents, emergency evacuation, and pre-existing conditions is required

Travel Accommodations:

  • Accompanied flights and/or airport pick up is available upon request.
  • Our staff will be available to assist with managing baggage check, security, and check-in procedures
  • The group hotel, arranged for the night prior to the cruise, will be a full-service hotel with bell-service and full meal opportunities within the premises.
  • Transportation will be arranged from the hotel for our group to travel to the cruise port together.
  • Clients that live in the local vicinity of the cruise port will join us the day of the cruise. Our staff will meet them at the curb level and assist with baggage check, security, and check-in.
  • Mobility and medical devices can be rented/obtained for the duration of the cruise. Devices such as scooters, power wheelchairs, transport chairs, elevated toilet seats, shower chairs, detachable shower-heads, room and/or portable oxygen concentrators.

On-Board Activities:

  • Numerous custom group events will be a part of our programming. A detailed schedule of events, including the opening “get to know you party” will be emailed to you prior to leaving for the cruise
  • Group dinner seating is an amazing opportunity to enjoy a wonderful meal without judgment or questions. We are All in the Same Boat!
  • Conference programming focuses on music therapy, caring for the caregiver, and hands-on ways to encourage and stimulate Neuroplasticity with sensory-immersive activities using all 5 senses.
  • Two hours of caregiver respite daily. Additional private duty assistance is available at a minimal hourly fee - for additional rest and relaxation, to enjoy a production show or simply some very significantly needed ME time.
  • Health status or cognitive ability does not prevent participation in our groups.
  • The new relationships established and amazing friendships often become lifelong relationships.



Elite Cruises And Vacations- As Seen In

LA Times Logo Inside Indiana Business Logo The Times Logo Chicago tribune
North Shore

Dementia Podcast

Cruise Critic Logo Dementia Connections
TravelAbility Logo

I am honored to be chosen as a speaker for the Travel Ability Summit, San Francisco, November 11-13, 2019.
- Kathy Shoaf, Owner

Kathy's Interview with Inside Indiana Business

Podcast Carol Howell "Let's Talk Dementia"

Kathy's Interview with Dementia Connections

Kathy's Interview with Inside Indiana Business

Kathy's Article in The Times

Kathy's Interview with Cruise Critic

Kathy's Article in NorthShore

Podcast Gary Barg Today's Caregiver, Caregiver.com


TravelAbility Summit was the first national summit that explored ways the travel industry can better serve the disability community. Disabilities that encompassed mobility, sight, hearing, and cognitive issues were addressed.

Elite Cruises and Vacations, LLC Owner and CEO Kathryn M Speer Shoaf RN BSN ATP, had the privilege of presenting our Caregiver Retreat/ Dementia Friendly Cruises with this response.

Top Takeaways from TravelAbility Summit:

• **Family and Caregivers Need Vacations
• Age-related diseases like dementia and Alzheimer's are stressful for the caretakers.
• Leaving a cognitively challenged elder at home is not an option.
• Vacation options that provide solutions are in demand.
• Retreat/rest opportunities for the caregivers while their loved one has a safe adult daycare session is amazing.

Elite Cruises And Vacations, LLC is meeting this need by providing RN support 24/7, Accompanied excursions, Interactive educational conference topics, and Daily adult daycare sessions. They make Travel a continuing Realistic Possibility.

Kathy is honored to be an Advisory Board Member of the TravelAbility Summit.

Our Mission: Create Travel Adventures and Opportunities…
” To Enjoy Every day that God Gives Us.”

Founded in ownership of the Cruise Planners/ American Express Travel franchise. American Express provides many unique options, opportunities, and financial advantages when booking Travel.

(888) 826-6836

About Us

Imagine looking up at the mesmerizing architecture of the Eiffel Tower or standing where great men stood thousands of years before you. Elite Cruises and Vacations makes those dreams a reality by offering cruises and tours to amazing locations around the world.

For more than 10 years, our travel agents have worked with individuals, couples, families, and groups to create memorable, life-changing trips. We are members of the Cruise Lines International Association and provide personal inspection of all ships to ensure your safety and satisfaction.

Talk to us to start planning your next big adventure!

Follow Us On Facebook Icon LinkedIn Icon


"Kathy Shoaf and her dedicated and experienced team of RNs, Certified Caregivers, Counselors and assistants have again exceeded expectations on the latest dementia-friendly Alaska cruise. It's time that other care partners and Loved Ones with Alzheimer's and Dementia in its early to moderate stage experience the supported travel offered no where else! Travel with safety, support and comfort with supervised respite time, valuable and informative sessions that directly impact this devastating journey - before it's too late for either affected to enjoy. It’s also a great experience even for a Care Partner like myself whose wife is no longer able to accompany him from a Memory Care Community to learn more, recharge and benefit with sharing personal knowledge with others." —Dennis Dulniak, Care Partner

" I am a caregiver. We had a wonderful and informative cruise, it was good to have respite care in the afternoons for a break and it was a great group to travel with!" —Lynne Bloomberg, (Orange County, CA)

"Having dementia does Not have to mean the end of travel. These Dementia-friendly cruises provide excellent opportunities for respite, networking, support, and adventure." —Dennis Dulniak, FL

"WE HAD A WONDERFUL TIME. I enjoyed talking with other caregivers. The leaders (Kathy. Barbara. Dr. Fran, Lesli) kept everyone busy & engaged. It was especially nice to have 2 hrs. free time to do whatever or to talk with the counselors who were trained professionals. I fell down the steps on board and was immediately helped by Kathy & Barbara. My husband also had a problem and was cared for immediately. We all enjoyed singing and even dancing. The information given to us was very helpful. I believe everyone had a good time." —Nancy Von Alten

"Fantastic voyage from meals to excursions. No finer cruise line on the high seas and no finer way to book it than with Kathy Shoaf, 888-826-6836. My name is Bob Barrows and I will be happy to elaborate on my time cruising with Elite Cruises and Vacations Travel . com. Kathy Shoaf created this company because she has a heart for caregivers. She invites caregivers to come aboard each month and sail with her to various destinations and be relieved to rejuvenate while your loved one is cared for on the cruise by her professional staff. Kathy is also a premier travel agent in business for over 10 years. She cares and is engaged to ensure you have the best travel experience of your life." 

"Dear Kathy, I cannot thank you enough for the kindness and support that you showed to Jack and me on the cruise. Getting to Florida the day before was an excellent idea. It enabled me to make getting to the boat on time a possibility! Thank you too for being sure that the room we had served our needs. Because I have some mobility issues, the shower without a tub was perfect. The ‘window’ allowed more light in our room so that Jack did not experience much ‘sun-downing’. During the conference, when he went to the men’s room and I foolishly did not follow him, you and your staff immediately joined me on a search. You repeatedly showed your compassion and understanding... you were there with a shoulder to lean on and support for all my needs." —Susan B. (East Windsor, NY)

"Hi Kathy, how are you? I'm so sorry that it took this long to let you know how much I enjoyed the cruise and conference. Donald n I was talking about cruise with friends today, we both really enjoyed that time, meeting other people. Thank you for all that you did to make it comfortable, enjoyable your kindness will never be forgotten. Wishing you and your family a wonderful holiday season." —Donald & Cecilia B. (Canada)

"Dear Kathy, this was the trip of a lifetime. After traveling with my husband for 30 years, I thought that I would never get to go see the world again. But, you made a way that I can, Thank you so very much. It was perfect." —Phyllis D. (Indianapolis, IN)

"Kathy, you were right even Parkinson's cannot keep me from a Cruise. when are we going again? I am ready.to go!" —Clara W. (Bloomington, IN)

"Kathy, Thank you so much for a wonderful trip!!!! I tried to post a testimonial for you. I hope it went through. If not let me know, I’ll try again. Our trip was amazing and you are amazing too. We are your biggest fans! Looking forward to our next trip!!!" —Scott D (Milwaukee, WI) Dementia - Friendly Cruise Client

"Thank you for asking me to participate in the Dementia-Friendly Cruise in November 2017! My heart is still full with the friendships that developed so quickly and deeply. Your clients can rest assured that you will bring your professionalism, compassion and fun spirit aboard all your cruises! I look forward to joining you on dementia-friendly and accessible cruises in 2018 and beyond." —Lesli Jenkins Wang President & CEO Free2Go Mobility Products

"Boston to Canada MS Maasdam Holland America. Our Nova Scotia “dementia friendly” cruise was a memorable one! We looked forward to the Zumba classes with Loretta to get us ready for the day ahead. What a great way to start the day with special movements to the familiar “oldies” tunes. We are still humming the familiar tunes. My husband really enjoyed the daily activities designed especially for people with dementia during respite time. And during that time, I was able to enjoy a show, a time to read, take a nap, or relax in the hot tub!!
Brian, our keynote speaker, had a great sense of humor and we learned so much from him as he shared his story – both the good and not so good days. We felt supported and affirmed at every moment. Our cruise director, Kathy, thought of every detail and helped create this special time for us and our daughter. We will carry these memories with us.
Holland America staff was very accommodating, the food was fabulous, the variety on the buffets was terrific, and Jim kept the ice cream place in business! We made lasting friendships and will savor golden memories. A big thanks to all the staff who made this dementia friendly cruise possible." — Mary Todd

"From our first contact, Kathryn was very professional, yet very compassionate.
Kathryn is very knowledgeable in many aspects of nursing as well as traveling with disabled individuals and their caretakers.
She arranged a cruise for us to go on, we were accompanied by her, another nurse, and an aide. Kathryn rented our medical equipment, made sure it was all in working condition, made sure our lodging was also as accessible as possible. She and the other nurse, Barbara Robert, worked very hard and perfectly, together.
Both my husband and I look forward to our next cruise together.
Kathryn has very high standards and went beyond her rolls of being a nurse and travel agent. I feel like I've known her for years, as a friend. If you book with Kathryn, you will feel comfortable knowing you made the right choice, being in very competent hands." — Miriam Jasinski (Brick, NJ)

"As a person living with Alzheimer's Disease, I first met Kathy on my first Dementia Cruise in 2017. Now, I serve as a member of her team as an Alzheimer's Advocate and Keynote Speaker.

Kathy offers a unique experience for Seniors and other individuals living with disabilities, Dementia-Related Illnesses, individuals who need a little extra assistance and their families.
Working with the cruise line, Kathy makes sure every requested accommodation is taken care of, no matter how big or small.

Kathy creates a safe atmosphere for her guests, giving them choices of various educational programs, music therapy, Zumba, group dining, as well as having a professional photographer capturing all the precious, beautiful moments.

If you're looking for travel opportunities to celebrate milestones, cross off bucket list items, or just to celebrate life, Kathy Shoaf is the person you need to call. " — Brian LeBlanc Alzheimer's Advocate (850) 637-2586 "I have Alzheimer's BUT, it doesn't have ME"

Elite Cruises& Vacations Kathy Shoaf, RN, BSN
Adaptive Technology Professional, Certified Accessible Travel Advocate
Special Needs Certified Logo Cruise Planners
American College of Healthcare Trustees Logo Kathy Shoaf, RN, BSN, ATP
Fellow at the American
College of Healthcare Trustees


Thank you for your interest. For questions or comments, please use the information listed here. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

(888) 826-6836

Please sign up for our newsletter and travel updates.

Facebook  LinkedIn