New research from a newly launched cruise website has revealed that the majority of Brits are unaware of which laws apply to them whilst on a cruise, with a quarter, 24% of those polled assuming that cruise ships were simply governed by the ‘law of the sea’.
It would appear that whilst many people abide by the law on land, just 3% of Brits know which laws apply whilst on a cruise ship.
www.bonvoyage.co.uk, the first website to offer online booking for every cruise onsite, polled 1,669 adults as part of research into cruisers and how much they know about the laws that govern them whilst on a cruise.
Respondents were initially asked if they were aware of the laws that apply to them whilst at sea on a cruise. Just 3% of those polled said ‘yes’, whilst the majority, 61% said ‘no’. The remaining 26% said that they weren’t sure.
When asked which laws they thought would apply to them whilst on a cruise, 24% said they thought the ship was governed by the ‘law of the sea’, whilst 49% thought that it was the country that the ship was closest to. 18% thought that cruise ships had their own laws that pertained to them. Just 3% of those polled were aware that the laws of the country where the cruise company is registered applied whilst at sea, but if docked in a foreign port; the laws of that country apply.
Of those polled, 7% thought that none of the laws that apply on land applied whilst at sea. However, the majority, 84% said that they ‘assumed’ that laws were the same at sea as they are on land.
When asked what they thought would happen if someone broke the law whilst on a cruise, 11% believe that the offender would be arrested when the cruise had finished, whilst 69% though that the offender would be arrested by the police force in the nearest country.
Furthermore, 13% of the respondents thought that each cruise ship had their own law enforcers on board and 6% thought that the ship’s captain and his staff were in charge of law enforcement on the ship.
Chris Brown, Managing Director of bonvoyage.co.uk, had the following to say about the study:
“It’s not all that surprising to find out that only a very small number of people know about what laws apply to them whilst on a cruise, as it’s not something that people tend to know much about. However, it is important to make sure you’re aware of the laws of any countries you are visiting, as different cultures often have different laws regarding things you might normally take for granted.”
“Whilst it’s not essential to know every single law that applies when you’re on a cruise, it is important to use your common sense. It’s never a good idea to do anything that you suspect might be against the law, particularly if you’re a long way from home! ”