Breaking the law, through the smuggling of contraband, theft or murder, are of course all actions that would cause you and your group to be forcibly disembarked from a cruise liner, but Cruise Arabia & Africa has also listed five things below that you may not have realised will get you forcibly removed from your cruise vacation at the next port of call, without any refund for the cruise or travel expenses.
These are common sense rules to follow while on-board the ship in much the same way as if you were staying at a hotel on land. Similarly, when going through security screening before boarding, the same common sense rules apply as they would in an airport (cooperate with security officials, have the right paperwork and travel documents with you and don’t make inappropriate jokes about bombs or terrorism).
Skip Muster Drill
Following the Costa Concordia tragedy, all major cruise lines have become even more serious about the safety drill conducted before the ship leaves port (which is similar to a pre-flight safety demonstration aboard airliners). It is a legal obligation for all passengers to attend the muster drill, so even if you have been on many cruises and know all the different emergency signals and meeting points, don’t assume you can skip it. Cruise line’s reserve the right to disembark passengers who fail to attend, as was the case in May last year when an elderly couple were removed from the luxury cruise liner Seabourn Sojourn. Seabourn aren’t alone in their tough stance, in February, Holland America Line disembarked a passenger for ‘non-compliance’ with the safety drill.
How to choose your cruise cabin
Back in the late 1990s one of Cruise Arabia’s staff was aboard the classic ocean liner turned cruise ship MSC Symphony (sadly now decommissioned and broken up) when a passenger became ill with malaria on an Indian Ocean Cruise. The ship’s medical staff worked round the clock to keep him alive while the ship steamed for Durban, South Africa. The only reason MSC Cruises didn’t have him airlifted off was because of the rough weather in the Mozambique Channel. While all ocean-going cruise ships have a medical facility (QE2 even had a fully-fledged operating theatre), cruise line’s prefer to disembark passengers requiring immediate emergency medical help, if such help is near-at-hand.
Engage in Disorderly conduct
A cruise vacation is one of the most pleasant and relaxing holiday experiences. But often the combination of being treated like royalty and plied with alcohol can create a nasty reaction if things go wrong or a passenger doesn’t get their own way. Lose your temper and create a sense that disturbs other passengers and you’re at risk of being confined to your cabin and disembarked at the next port. This is especially the case if you physically assault another passenger or damage cruise line property (such as a deck chair thrown overboard). All cruise lines have Codes of Conduct, which applies to all passengers, from children and teens to adults.
The future of cabin cleanliness?
Organise your own tours
Most major cruise networking and review website such as Cruise Critic and Cruise Mates have dedicated roll-call sections where passengers travelling on the same cruise can meet online and arrange social events onboard. Naturally, some passengers also then plan independent excursions for their small group in port, but if you take this a step to far and start soliciting money from fellow passengers to join your excursion rather than the cruise line’s official tour, you may be disembarked without warning.
Abuse the captain or crew
The captain and his crew are responsible for the safe running and navigation of the ship, they’re not there to get you another towel on the sundeck or bring you a fresh beverage in the main lounge. Disobeying the captain or a ship’s officer can get you removed from the cruise, as can any verbal or physical abuse of the ship’s staff (cruise hosts, housekeeping staff etc).