Where Can You Find the Most Interesting Cruise Facts?


Sure thing! Cruises can be the perfect vacation for many folks. They’re like little towns on water, where you get everything you need—like a hotel, meals, and all that jazz—in one spot. But, there’s a bunch of hidden stuff about cruises! Whether you’re a cruise pro or a newbie, it’s smart to know these secrets before you set sail. There are cool things you might not know about, like special stuff on the ship and things the crew knows but doesn’t spill to passengers. These facts will totally change how you see the whole cruise thing!

A Morgue Lurks Within Every Cruise Ship

Cruises promise fun but sometimes reveal a hidden truth. With an older crowd, it’s not unusual for a few passengers to pass away monthly. Life’s unpredictability can sneak aboard even the most leisurely journeys.

That’s why every cruise ship must have an onboard morgue, inaccessible to passengers, typically accommodating three to six bodies.

The Creepy Hidden Pools of Cruise Ships

Seen those packed cruise ship pool pics? They’re magnets for people. But here’s the twist: ships have hidden pools just for staff, less crowded and exclusive. Guests might snag an invite, though.

Earning a spot at the secret pool requires impressing the crew, harder than it sounds due to onboard rules.

Crew Members Speak in Code to Keep Guests in the Dark

Safety’s top priority for the crew. They use codes to act fast without causing panic during emergencies. Codes cover spills, medical issues, fires, and even someone going overboard. “Oscar” often means the latter.

It’s logical, as the goal is to avoid alarming passengers or causing panic that might hinder quick responses to any situation.

Gambling Rules on Board Aren’t as Legal as You Think

Cruise ships host casinos in international waters, legal but not tied to specific gambling laws. Rules can shift based on nearby locations—your winning odds might change drastically at sea.

Cruise ships might vary the decks for games like blackjack. Bottom line: their game rules aren’t fixed, they tend to fluctuate.

Even Cruise Ships Are Vulnerable to Mysterious Accidents

The captain’s word rules on a boat, usually for the best in emergencies. But even captains err, and that can spell disaster for a ship and its passengers.

Rare but headline-worthy: A handful of cruise ships have sunk near ports due to captain decisions.

You Can Hire Someone to Follow You Around Like a Butler

Cruise lines offer “genies”—your personal wait staff. It’s top-tier and pricey, but they fulfill almost any request, from room service to exclusive event tickets.

Given their cost, lots of folks use genies as their concierge, requesting everything from morning coffee to evening dinner reservations.

Sometimes Passengers Vanish at Sea and Go Missing

Out at sea, odd occurrences include disappearances. Between 1995 and 2011, about 165 individuals reportedly went missing on cruises. It’s a puzzling figure, not just from falls overboard but cases where people vanished without a trace, never to be found again.

Besides falling overboard, potential causes include abduction, suicides, and the unsettling chance of one passenger throwing another overboard.

Cruise Ships Struggle in Rough Waters Because of Their Size

Despite serene commercials, cruise ships aren’t immune to rough seas. Their size doesn’t shield them—they’re top-heavy and susceptible to rocking in storms, making for an uncomfortable ride.

Without your sea legs, expect spending ample time in the bathroom, waiting for the waves to settle.

There’s a Risk of Pirates Coming Onboard

Pirate attacks on cruise ships are rare but not unheard of. In 2005, a cruise ship faced such an attack and the crew successfully used an acoustic weapon to fend off the pirates, ensuring everyone could continue enjoying their vacation.

Every crew member undergoes anti-piracy training as a precaution, but the specifics are kept confidential for security reasons.

Crew Members and Their Forbidden Desires for Each Other

Crew members often form bonds during long trips at sea, leading to unwritten rules for workplace romances, including mutual expectations about the duration of relationships.

Former cruise ship workers have compared the culture of workplace romances to be as intense, if not more so, than that of college dorms.

Don’t Get Thrown Into Cruise Ship Jail

You’ve probably heard of the brig—it’s the ship’s jail for lawbreakers or troublemakers who threaten safety. No judges at sea, so if you end up there, your vacation could be spent behind bars.

Until the ship docks and hands you over to authorities, which might not be in the country you departed from.

Some Ships Have Hidden Armed Guards on Board

Ships use brigs more than expected. High-profile crimes are rare, mostly petty. Cameras cover ships, crews trained for all crimes. Some ships hide armed guards too.

Cruise incidents range from bomb threats to assaults and instances of missing individuals, hinting at potential foul play occurring more than once.

Rescuing Passengers Who Went Overboard Isn’t Simple

Passengers overboard in rough seas is serious. Crew or passengers might toss items to mark their location. Remembering the spot? Extremely tough.

The ocean lacks landmarks, making it tough for the brain to pinpoint an overboard passenger from a towering cruise ship.

Even Crew Members Are Drinking All Day on Cruises

Happy crew? Maybe they enjoyed discounted drinks. Cruise lines test for on-duty drinking, but former crew members suggest it’s more common than admitted.

Former crew members reveal drinking among crew is far more widespread than cruise companies imply to passengers.

You’re Being Watched All of the Time

Just like the eagle-eyed security in casinos, cruise ships maintain tight surveillance—almost everywhere except your room. It’s for passenger safety, whether it’s a crime or a fall overboard. Plus, it’s a backup to analyze footage post-emergency for learning from mishaps.

Picture all that security as the ship’s equivalent of an airplane’s black box. It’s there to prevent mishaps and troubleshoot if anything goes wrong.

The Crew Often Isn’t Paid Well

Living and working non-stop on a cruise might suggest good pay, but crew members often earn less. International waters mean cruise ships aren’t bound by strict employment laws, impacting wages.

It’s a grey zone, letting them bypass overtime and minimum wage rules if they want. Not all cruise lines do, but many have been recorded doing so.

Disease Outbreaks Aren’t Uncommon

Ah, the infamous outbreaks on cruise ships during the COVID-19 era stick in everyone’s memory. Tight quarters and thousands of people? It’s a breeding ground for bacteria and viruses. Yet, outbreaks on cruise ships aren’t new; a notable one hit in 2014, proving these situations aren’t just pandemic-related.

Around eight cruise ships and numerous passengers were struck by the norovirus at that time. Despite improved procedures and regulations to contain sickness during outbreaks, the risk remains a constant concern.

Crew Members Are Mostly From Outside of the USA

Cruise lines have various reasons, some listed here, for not favoring American hires. One key factor: Americans might find the demanding hours onboard—sometimes reaching 100 hours per week—challenging compared to the typical 40-hour work week in the U.S.

Combine that with distinct, less favorable overtime regulations and lower wages, and it becomes clear why the cruise industry sees fewer American workers compared to other sectors.

Medical Care Can Be Spotty

Cruise ships don’t always meet the same U.S. standards, affecting the medical care for passengers—it can be inconsistent. They often employ doctors from countries with lower medical standards and their onboard facilities might not match those on land.

Add to that the fact that cruise ship doctors are essentially immune to malpractice lawsuits, and it casts a concerning shadow over the quality of care available on many cruise ships.

Most Doors Onboard Aren’t Locked

While it might sound alarming, most doors on cruise ships, excluding cabin doors, don’t lock, and it’s intentional. It ensures accessibility during emergencies, allowing crew and passengers to reach necessary areas for evacuation or aiding others.the risk of individuals getting accidentally trapped in case of a ship sinking or a fire onboard is a significant concern.

There’s Always a Fire Risk

Since the dawn of boat-building, the fear of fires at sea has lingered. Out on the water, a fire ranks among the worst disasters. Larger boats pose a higher risk due to the array of electrically powered events, entertainment, and amenities—some even involving open flames.

Since 2005, approximately 79 fires have been reported on cruise ships. While it might not seem like a high number, any of these incidents could potentially have led to a ship sinking if left unchecked.

Cramped Quarters for the Crew

While crew quarters on cruise ships are notably smaller and often shared, they come with perks like exclusive crew events, classes, and even a designated pool. Unfortunately, with their demanding schedules, crew members rarely get to indulge in these amenities.

Contrary to the glamorous image, working on a cruise ship is quite challenging and far from glamorous. Perhaps the discounted drinks are a small perk amidst the challenges.

Cruise Ships Might Soon Be More Expensive

Cruise lines maintain affordability by leveraging tax loopholes. Similar to many shipping firms, they register their boats in foreign countries to circumvent U.S. taxes.

There’s a chance cruise prices might rise soon. Many are urging to close this loophole, which currently keeps cruise costs low.

“All You Can Eat” Has a Very Real Downside to It

It’s not secretive or sinister, but a cautionary note: Watch your consumption on a cruise. Surprisingly, most folks gain 5 to 10 pounds post-cruise. Luckily, nearly every ship has a gym to balance things out.

Most people aren’t keen on exercising while vacationing, but this might be the time when sticking to or starting a routine truly pays off.

Cruise Ships Wait For No One

It’s common knowledge, but crucial: Cruise ships won’t delay departure for tardy passengers. If you’re late returning, you’ll likely watch your ship sail away—it’s simply impractical for a ship with thousands on board to wait for a few.

Ensuring you return to the ship well in advance of its departure is crucial. Carrying your documents and passport is wise, just in case you find yourself left behind.

Crews Rely on Reviews for a Good Paycheck

Everything about a cruise ship ensures that passengers have a good time while on board. For example, even much of the crew’s pay is determined by reviews that passengers leave. If passengers leave crew members good reviews, then they receive a nice bonus to help offset their low earnings. However, if they get bad reviews, then they can kiss their bonus goodbye, and they’re just left with a meager salary.

It’s akin to how waiters depend on tips rather than a fixed salary. Yet, it also highlights that many crew members aren’t adequately compensated for their basic duties.

Some Cruise Ships Have Special Themes

The competitive nature of the cruise industry ensures uniqueness among cruises. Various companies differentiate themselves by offering distinct services like complimentary coffee or unique amenities. This drive for distinction also fuels the popularity of themed cruises, catering to diverse passenger preferences.

Researching the cruise company and specifics of your intended trip is vital since each cruise has its own strengths and weaknesses, making each experience unique.

What Happens on the Cruise Stays on the Cruise

Spending extended periods on a cruise ship at sea mirrors the experience of working away from home for an extended duration. It often leads to the creation of double lives, enabling crew members to adopt different personas than their lives back home or omit crucial aspects when interacting with colleagues.

Essentially, what unfolds on a cruise ship tends to remain within its confines, unless there’s a breach of the law or company regulations.

Crew Members Get to Party for Cheap

Rules discourage excessive partying among crew, especially with guests, but it’s common to witness them relaxing a bit. Their extensive work hours and minimal spending on drinks—usually $1 to $2 per drink—compared to passenger prices of $10 or more, explains why crew members might be the soul of the party.

Most cruise line contracts include clauses detailing crew members’ alcohol consumption limits and their level of interaction permitted with guests.

Not All Rooms Are Spacious

Opting for a lower-cost room often means a cramped cabin, less conducive especially when traveling with kids. Fortunately, cruise ships offer numerous activities, minimizing time spent in the room. Yet, during quieter hours, the limited space can be less enjoyable.

For a more comfortable experience, investing in a larger room is highly recommended to avoid feeling crowded. Everyone gets ample space to move around freely.

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