The 2010 World Cup soccer tournament kicked off today in South Africa, and cruisers will be watching from the decks of ships around the world.

Italian line MSC Cruises will show televised matches on all their ships. The three brands of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, and Azamara Club Cruises) will also be showing the games on all ships, a nod to the company’s increasingly international clientele. In addition, passengers on Cunard Line's Queen Mary 2 and Queen Victoria will get to see all 64 matches of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

On MSC, games will be broadcast in public areas like some bars, but dedicated areas will be decorated with pennants and teams colors. There will activities such as sports-related trivia challenges, and bars will serve cocktails for each nation, such as the England cocktail with Pimm’s gin and ginger ale and the Italy cocktail with Campari, Martini Rosso vermouth and soda water.

The RCCL ships will have special onboard programming, including themed activities, food and beverages and onboard tournaments and workshops.

Costa Cruises will show the matches on all its ships in Europe; Princess Cruises will show certain games on ten of its ships, including all games from the second round and on; Norwegian Cruise Line will show Cup matches for ceratin teams on three ships (Norwegian Jade, Gem and Epic) and will show all games after the second round; Holland America Line will show games on the Eurodam and the Nieuw Amsterdam; Silversea ships will show the World Cup games on its ships sailing in Europe, but the Silver Shadow in Alaska and the Prince Albert II in the Arctic will not. Crystal Cruises has also decided it would also show the World Cup matches on its ships.

JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI