Cruise ship

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**History and Evolution of Cruise Ships:**
– P&O introduced luxury cruises in 1844
– Notable ships like SS Ravenna and SS Valetta
– Introduction of luxury liners like Prinzessin Victoria Luise
– Decline of ocean liners with the rise of jet aircraft in the 1960s
– Conversion of liners like Rotterdam and France into mega-cruise ships
– Popularization of cruising through the Love Boat series in the 1970s
– Emergence of megaships like Sovereign of the Seas by Royal Caribbean

**Global Cruise Industry Overview:**
– 323 cruise ships operated globally in December 2021
– Combined capacity of 581,200 passengers
– Market size of $29.4 billion per year in 2011
– Carrying over 19 million passengers annually as of 2011
– Rapid growth until the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020

**Design and Amenities of Modern Cruise Ships:**
– Introduction of amenities for tourists on modern cruise ships
– Description of recent vessels as balcony-laden floating condominiums
– Focus on leisure with various onboard activities
– Offering shore excursions at ports of call
– Innovations like multi-story lobbies, glass elevators, and cabins with balconies

**Cruise Lines and Organizational Structure:**
– Operators known as cruise lines with a dual character of transportation and leisure entertainment
– Volatile business due to high operating costs
– Acquisition of many cruise lines by larger holding companies in the 1990s
– Specializations like age restrictions or operating only small ships
– Organization of cruise ships as floating hotels with a hospitality staff

**Dining and Amenities on Cruise Ships:**
– Dining options typically included in the price
– Trend towards flexible dining schedules
– Class tradition of ocean liners maintained by some cruise lines
– Maximizing amenities like balconies on new cruise ships
– Largest ships with split atrium structures, outdoor areas, and verandas on all decks.

Cruise ship (Wikipedia)

Cruise ships are large passenger ships used mainly for vacationing. Unlike ocean liners, which are used for transport, cruise ships typically embark on round-trip voyages to various ports of call, where passengers may go on tours known as "shore excursions". On "cruises to nowhere" or "nowhere voyages", some cruise ships make two- to three-night round trips without visiting any ports of call.

Wonder of the Seas is one of the largest cruise ships in service.
Icon of the Seas
Cruiseferry MS Galaxy at the port of Mariehamn, Åland, in February 2016

Modern cruise ships tend to have less hull strength, speed, and agility compared to ocean liners. However, they have added amenities to cater to water tourists, with recent vessels being described as "balcony-laden floating condominiums".

Cruise ships MSC Poesia, Vision of the Seas, and Mein Schiff Herz at Tallinn Passenger Port in Estonia

As of December 2021, there were 323 cruise ships operating worldwide, with a combined capacity of 581,200 passengers. Cruising has become a major part of the tourism industry, with an estimated market of $29.4 billion per year, and over 19 million passengers carried worldwide annually as of 2011. The industry's rapid growth saw nine or more newly built ships catering to a North American clientele added every year since 2001, as well as others servicing European clientele until the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 saw the entire industry all but shut down.

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