Cruise lines have tightened security since
9/11 but still can do a better job making their ships safer for
passengers, based on results gathered from "How secure? An In-Depth
Look at the Security of Hotels, Airlines, Cruise Lines and
Convention Centers," a study sponsored by Travel Weekly Research.
After 9/11, 72% of
cruise lines said they made at least moderate changes to security
procedures. Cruise lines recently had to change procedures in
response to new International Ship and Port Facility Security
regulations. Because of these new ISPS regulations, 50% of those
polled said they made major changes.
percent said their investment in security has increased. One cruise
line executive said, "We now have extra onboard security, no more
open bridge, limited guest access, prebooking documentation and
It does not come as
a surprise, therefore, to learn that 83% said their passengers are
Still, there are
some areas that might require attention. For example, although all
cruise lines surveyed conduct background checks on crew members and
80% conduct similar checks on officers, only 20% check the
background of contractors working on each ship. Also, only 40% said
they always require photo IDs when passengers and crew reboard
following shore excursions.
As for cruise
terminal inspections, 40% of respondents said they do not use metal
detectors, and 60% do not use X-ray machines for inspecting
passengers and crew members.
Research for the
cruise line section of the study was conducted between May 5 and
24. Information about obtaining the full report is available at www.ntmresearch.com.
Art Pfenning is
the research director for Northstar Travel Media, Travel Weekly's
parent company. Send e-mail to [email protected].