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Knowing your rights on board a cruise

The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) announced that all members will have to adhere to an International Bill of Rights, aimed at ensuring passenger safety, care and satisfaction are not compromised on board.

CLIA is the world's largest cruise industry trade association, with representation in North America, South America, Europe, Asia and Australasia – with 97% of cruise lines in America being a CLIA member. They represent the interests of cruise lines, travel agents and passengers and bring in legislative policies to ensure everyone gets the highest level of enjoyment whilst on holiday.

The cruise industry trade association's Board of Directors approved the adoption of this bill in May 2013, but all passengers familiar with what they are entitled should something go amiss?  Below is the definitive list of the International Cruise Line Passenger Bill of Rights:

  1. The right to disembark a docked ship if essential provisions such as food, water, restroom facilities and access to medical care cannot adequately be provided onboard, subject only to the Master's concern for passenger safety and security and customs and immigration requirements of the port.
  2. The right to a full refund for a trip that is cancelled due to mechanical failures or a partial refund for voyages that are terminated early due to those failures.
  3. The right to have available on board ships operating beyond rivers or coastal waters full-time, professional emergency medical attention, as needed until shore side medical care becomes available.
  4. The right to timely information updates as to any adjustments in the itinerary of the ship in the event of a mechanical failure or emergency, as well as timely updates of the status of efforts to address mechanical failures.
  5. The right to a ship crew that is properly trained in emergency and evacuation procedures.
  6. The right to an emergency power source in the case of a main generator failure.
  7. The right to transportation to the ship's scheduled port of disembarkation or the passenger's home city in the event a cruise is terminated early due to mechanical failures.
  8. The right to lodging if disembarkation and an overnight stay in an unscheduled port are required when a cruise is terminated early due to mechanical failures.
  9. The right to have included on each cruise line's website a toll-free phone line that can be used for questions or information concerning any aspect of shipboard operations.
  10. The right to have this Cruise Line Passenger Bill of Rights published on each line's website.

These rights allow CLIA members to provide their passengers with a consistent level of care, satisfaction and insurance; but they also maintain a level of transparency between cruise line operators and customers. 

As a GoCruise Franchisee, it is important for your customers to know they are booking in confidence with a CLIA member. Having the Bill of Rights to hand will help with outlining exactly what protection they are getting with the Cruise Lines International Association. In addition to ABTA and ATOL protection, customers can rest assured they are travelling via arguably the safest mode of holiday transport on board a cruise.  

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