Cruising at Risk

Crises Management and Prevention in Cruise Industry

Research Paper (undergraduate), 2008

26 Pages, Grade: 1,7


Table Of Contents

1 Goal and approach of this Study

2 Introduction

3 Definitions
3.1 Cruise ship
3.2 Cruise
3.3 Piracy
3.4 Terrorism
3.5 Crisis

4 Risks for cruise vessels
4.1 Inside risks
4.1.1 Hygienic conditions
4.1.2 Drugs and crime
4.1.3 Fire
4.2 Outside risk
4.2.1 Natural forces
4.2.2 Piracy
4.2.3 Terrorism

5 Cruise vessels
5.1 Short History linked with media
5.2 Value as Target
5.2.1 For pirates Examples for pirate attacks on vessels
5.2.2 For terrorists Examples for terrorists acts on vessels

6 Security
6.1 Passive security
6.2 Active security
6.2.1 History
6.2.2 After 9/11

7 Management of crises prevention
7.1 Marketing security
7.1.1 Marketing mix Price Place Product Process Product People Product physical evidence Promotion

8 Final remarks

9 Future

A Appendix

1 Goal and approach of this Study

This study will show different risks on cruise vacations and within the cruise industry. The study will show past, present and future challenges for risk management and the important role of media for keeping up the boom in cruise vacations. Cruise vessels will be identified as potential targets for terroristic violence and the public prevention via media will be shown.

Is an ocean voyage safe or is there just a feeling of safety?

To approximate the topic it will be given important definitions and an overview about the historic development with historic ‚points of change’ within the cruise industry. The risk for ocean liners will be identified and categorized. It will be given an overview about historic development of safety regulations in ocean cruising and the role of media

2 Introduction

Cruising has been the fastest-growing segment of the vacation business for the last decade, beating land-based resorts, theme parks, and excursions. „Studies show that whether they are first-time or frequent cruisers, the majority of travellers (63-66%) rate cruising as better than other vacation experiences. Ninety percent of them expect to take more cruises, and nearly 60 percent dream of taking a cruise some day. “(Dickinson, Vladimir 1997 page x)

More and more people are getting on board the cruise vacation vessels. And as cruising gains visibility and popularity, it is getting more attention…within the travel industry, in the business world and in the media. „More than two decades of spectacular growth - averaging 8.4% per year - have made the cruise industry the brightest star on the vacation travel stage, not to mention one of the great success stories of any business.“ (

Cruise vacations boast the highest satisfaction ratings among all types of vacation travel. Once people try cruising, they come back again and again. „By its nature, cruising is an enterprise that links the world. Cruise ships call at ports on every continent; their passengers and crews comprise people from every part of the world; and the industry benefits hundreds of countries and their citizens. One of the traditional appeals of a cruise is the opportunity it provides to visit several destinations in one excellent vacation experience. Frequent cruisers especially applaud cruises as a way to try out a vacation area to which they might want to return. “(

Feeling save and secured is a very important part of this success especially after the big changes in travelling behaviour after 9/11.

3 Definitions

3.1 Cruise ship

A cruise ship is a ship built primarily or exclusively for cruising. The characteristics of most ships built for cruising are:

„...uniform standards of accommodation, except for some deluxe accommodation,

shallow draft, usually twenty-six feet or less,

built with warm-water cruising in mind,

extensive areas for sunning...“ (Israel, 1999 page 51)

3.2 Cruise

A Cruise is a typical package tour on a vessel. Characteristics of a package tour are accommodation, restauration and transportation, a whole bundle of travel performance. Risk assumption by the tour operator and travel guide on the spot. Under the German law there is a definition to be found in the book of civil law within the § 651a. Cruises are roundtrips and the routing and the ports of call are fixed. Exception is only possible by unexpected or unplanable events like weather or security aspects or technical problems. The passenger has to spend at least one night on board. Between the port of embarkation and the port of disembarkation must be at least one port of call.

(According to Schäfer 1998)

3.3 Piracy

The act of unlawfully attacking or seizing a ship on the high seas for financial gain.

3.4 Terrorism

“The term ‘terrorism’ means premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against non-combatant targets by sub national groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence an audience. The term ‘international terrorism’ means terrorism involving the territory or the citizens of more than one country.”


3.5 Crisis

It is derived from the Greek word “crisis” in the meaning of ‘differentiation or decision’.

Today a crisis describing a break in a continuous development. In a worse case an aggravation of the current situation. In the worst case a crisis is a dramatic and dangerous change caused by an extraordinary situation. Decisions have to be made -very often- under time pressure.

“The term ‘tourism crisis’ is now being used with increasing frequency by destinations whose economy has suffered from an immediate drop in visitor arrivals…”

(Gee/Gain 1986, p. 3)

And even more concrete “… any occurrence which can threaten the normal operations and conduct of tourism related business; damage a tourist destination’s overall reputation for safety…”

(Soenmez/Backman/Allen 1994, p. 2.2)

4 Risks for cruise vessels

4.1 Inside risks

4.1.1 Hygienic conditions

Following international accepted standards can minimize dangers for passengers and crew resulting from unhygienic conditions.

The most well-known and used high standards are the USPH (United States Public Health Standard) and HACCP (Hazard Analysis of Critical Controll Points) standards.

4.1.2 Drugs and crime

Are not really risks for cruise vessels, because these vessels are closed systems and entering and exit controls are established. Getting unseen onboard is not possible and the way from board is controlled too. The cruise industry takes any and all cases of reported crimes on-board ships seriously. Every person on-board a cruise ship, from the captain to the cleaning staff and all guests, are placed on an official manifest. Passengers and crew may embark or disembark only after passing through security.

Access is strictly limited to documented employees and fare-paying passengers. Cruise lines operate within a very strict legal framework that gives international, federal and state authorities the right to investigate crimes on-board of cruise ships.

In July 1999, ICCL executives announced an industry wide position regarding the reporting of crimes committed onboard of cruise ships. This statement of zero tolerance for any crime committed on board of ICCL vessels requires the reporting of all serious crimes involving United States citizens to the FBI for further investigation.

4.1.3 Fire

Is the most dangerous risk for a vessel. There is no escape or call for help. There is just prevention and enough water to fight against. So on board of every ship there is modern equipment for fire fighting and well trained staff.


Excerpt out of 26 pages


Cruising at Risk
Crises Management and Prevention in Cruise Industry
Stralsund University of Applied Sciences
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
ISBN (Book)
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632 KB
Cruise, Risks, Terrorism, safety, security, marketing of security
Quote paper
Maik Roemer (Author), 2008, Cruising at Risk, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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