Cruise Ship Blues: The Underside of the Cruise Ship Industry

Overview

Cruising is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. Attracting more than 12 million passengers a year, cruise ship companies are merging to become be-hemoths. And cruise ships themselves have swollen dramatically in size, now sometimes carrying more than 5,000 people on board. Not surprisingly, this growth is causing huge problems-problems that the industry would rather not acknowledge, and the potential cruiser would have a hard time discovering.

Cruise Ship Blues ...

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Overview

Cruising is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. Attracting more than 12 million passengers a year, cruise ship companies are merging to become be-hemoths. And cruise ships themselves have swollen dramatically in size, now sometimes carrying more than 5,000 people on board. Not surprisingly, this growth is causing huge problems-problems that the industry would rather not acknowledge, and the potential cruiser would have a hard time discovering.

Cruise Ship Blues reveals the dark underside of this industry. Author Ross Klein first examines the contrast between passenger expectations of luxury and romance fostered by rosy advertising, and the seedier reality of meals, accommodations, and facilities on board. He then:

explodes the myth of the cruise as an all-inclusive vacation, demonstrating that the industry's expectation is to generate an additional $200+ per day per person

examines cruise ship safety, ringing the alarm about accidents at sea, passenger security (including the incidence of sexual assault), on-board illnesses, and medical services

juxtaposes the industry's environmentally friendly image against its actual behavior and the difficulties of effective regulation

exposes the workers' experience in these "sweatshops at sea"

contrasts the industry's consumer-friendly fa├žade with its attitude that "everything would run smoothly if it were not for the passengers"

Concluding with a discussion of what can be done to make the cruise business socially and environmentally accountable, Cruise Ship Blues offers a harsh critique as well as a call to political action. It will appeal both to thoseconsidering a cruise vacation, as well as to activists and students.

Since 1992, Ross Klein has taken more than 30 cruises in all parts of the world, comprising more than 300 days. An Associate Professor of Social Work at Memorial University in St. John's, Newfoundland, he has written widely on the cruise industry.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Promising languid sunny days, romantic evenings, and a cornucopia of dining delights, vacation cruise ships enticed 12 million passengers to their decks last year. Newer cruise ships can accommodate thousands of souls, who live, sleep, eat, and play in close proximity for days or weeks, requiring social and environmental micromanagement of a scale and duration unique in the travel industry. Using the earnest and revelatory style of the expos , Klein-the veteran of 300 ship cruises-covers all facets of cruise culture and organization, elaborating on many of the industry's inherent problems. He describes how a vulnerable holiday crowd is encouraged to part with its money, recounts cases of sexual harassment or rape, and documents recurring incidences of food-borne gastrointestinal infections and environmental crises created by millions of gallons of ship bilgewater and sewage. He also provides a list of cruise cancellations resulting from mechanical and electrical failures. The cruise industry appears boorishly reluctant to accept responsibility or blame for these issues. Cruise enthusiasts may be undeterred by these revelations, but they are startling nonetheless and grippingly presented. Recommended for public libraries.-Lonnie Weatherby, McGill Univ. Lib., Montreal Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780865714625
  • Publisher: New Society Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/23/2002
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 5.68 (w) x 8.64 (h) x 0.55 (d)

Meet the Author

Ross Klein has taken more than 30 cruises in all parts of the world, comprising over 300 days. An Associate Professor of Social Work at Memorial University in St. John's, Newfoundland, he has written widely on the cruise industry and his previous book, Cruise Ship Blues, caused waves in the industry.

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Table of Contents

The Inaugural Sail: An Introduction to the Cruise Industry 1
Ch. 1 Onboard the Floating Resort 11
Ch. 2 The Myth of the All-Inclusive Vacation 27
Ch. 3 Beyond the Muster Drill 49
Ch. 4 "Save the Waves" - Sounds Good, But ... 83
Ch. 5 Below the Passenger Deck 117
Ch. 6 Everything Would Run Fine ... But Passengers Keep Getting in the Way 145
Ch. 7 What Can Be Done? 159
App. A: Mishaps at Sea 172
Endnotes 177
Index 193
About the Author 201
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