Forbidden Items -- On a Cruise Ship?

Posted Jul 2nd 2010 08:00 AMUpdated Sep 1st 2010 05:13 PM

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Leave the Flame Thrower at Home – and Maybe the Baby



An online uproar recently followed the announcement that Carnival Cruise Lines would not allow passengers to bring on board personal grooming appliances (hair dryers, crimpers and the like) that exceed 700 watts. Carnival spokesperson Jennifer de la Cruz characterized the new restriction as a mistake and said it was in place less than a day, but the vociferous response touched off a spate of discussions about what is and is not confiscated on cruise ships. So what are the forbidden items ? Read on to find out.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) guidelines specify that in addition to guns, illegal drugs, fireworks and ammunition, all lighters with fuel are forbidden unless they are in a DOT-approved case. You can't have realistic replicas of explosive devices, either. No matches are allowed except one packet of safety matches in carry-on luggage. Most cruise lines don't allow irons because of the danger of fire, but generally they are provided for passenger use in the laundries, where they have automatic cut-offs.

From there, the rules change line by line. Royal Caribbean International, for instance, allows walkie-talkies up to five watts and covering up to 10 miles, as do Disney and others. But Disney doesn't permit VCR/DVD players, Nintendo or other video game consoles because of compatibility issues with stateroom TVs. You can't bring metal detectors on their ships or onto their private island, Castaway Cay, because anything found would have to be returned to the owner or donated to charity. Most cruise lines don't allow knives longer than three or four inches on their ships, and they don't want baseball bats, hockey sticks, spears, cricket bats, or bows and arrows.

Royal Caribbean forbids HAM radios, bleach or surfboards, except the ones the line offers for its FlowRider. Crystal and Carnival want passengers to skip the Segways, too. Carnival passengers have to leave their throwing stars at home and Princess guests will have hookahs confiscated. And, sorry, forget the pepper spray, handcuffs, etc. Slingshots, blowguns and medical marijuana also are on the confiscation list for many lines.

Alcohol policies vary drastically, and lines like Royal do not return any alcohol confiscated on embarkation day - contrary to the wisdom of the Web, where passengers urge one another to try smuggling in the booze, since the cruise line will just hold it until the end of the sailing if they catch you. Disney allows guests to bring alcohol on board to drink in staterooms; Holland America Line allows only wine and champagne at embarkation, with a limit of two bottles of wine per stateroom, while other lines allow guests to drink what they buy in port, but not to bring alcohol on board at embarkation.

Norwegian Cruise Line doesn't allow alcohol brought on board and is popularly thought to be the strictest line in enforcing the policy. Cruise lines that include drinks in the ticket price, like Regent, Windstar, Silversea and Seabourn, will allow guests to bring their own alcohol on board and drink it in their staterooms; generally, if passengers want to bring their own bottles to the dining room, there is a corkage charge.

If you don't read the rules carefully, one item that may be prohibited on board is your child. Although a handful of lines allow children of all ages, many prohibit infants under six months or a year, and some only allow children two years old and up. If you come to the ship with an underage child, you and the child are likely to be told you cannot board -- and no compensation will be offered.

Because of the threat of fire, cruise ships are concerned about overloaded extension cords and multi-plug adapters, which many insurance companies frown on even on shore. This is a gray area, and most of the lines allow their security people license to judge whether something is dangerous. Portable fans are another bone of contention. Why do passengers bring them? Some prefer the fan to air conditioning, and others want them for the soothing white noise they generate. Some cruse lines require guests to clear their fans with a staff electrician. The cruise lines can confiscate anything they consider a threat to the safety of the ship at any time, from the initial screening before boarding, until the time passengers get off the ship. It isn't unusual for someone who has left a hair curler plugged in, while away from a stateroom, to find that it has been removed. Most confiscated items are restored at the end of the cruise - apart, of course, from explosives, etc. And the vast majority of passengers never even run into an issue. But be sure to read the cruise line policy before booking; it can save you time, money, embarrassment...and bad hair days.
Filed Under: Cruise, Tips & Tricks

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David

Sorry for the typo, I meant Holland America. Also, I should mention that it was ms Eurodam and when we took wine to the dining room, they charged us $15 to open the bottle. I understand Holland America now charges $18 per bottle for opneing. Obviously, no charge to enjoy vino in your stateroom.

If you are interested, I put some of my ms Eurodam photos online. When you get there , click on Eurodam pictures. http://www.liquidatlas.com/holland_america/Eurodam/hal_ms_eurodam.html

July 22 2010 at 5:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
David

I went on Halland America and they allowed us to bring wine onboard, no mention of the two bottle limit. We brought a case for our family and friends. More info here: http://www.liquidatlas.com

July 22 2010 at 5:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
superbombastik

Kay, dear Kay, try to expand your mind and think beyond the end of your nose. What I am obviously referring to is being "sucked" into these sites/articles with "grabber" titles that then turn out to be innacurate, value-less, or just poorly written. Some of us have some standards and expectations for "journalism" that reach farther than this author (or you) can apparently concieve.
Obviously, I (we) enter these articles in the hope of learning something. And you can't really find out you've been suckered until you get there; duh! Thanks for playing - idiot. Now go back to your soap opera.

July 14 2010 at 1:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
scott smith

Kay, dear Kay, try to expand your mind and think beyond the end of your nose. What I am obviously referring to is being "sucked" into these sites/articles with "grabber" titles that then turn out to be innacurate, value-less, or just poorly written. Some of us have some standards and expectations for "journalism" that reach farther than this author (or you) can apparently concieve.
Obviously, I (we) enter these articles in the hope of learning something. And you can't really find out you've been suckered until you get there; duh! Thanks for playing - idiot. Now go back to your soap opera.

July 14 2010 at 1:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
fishin4funthenrelease

OK. Take your spouse. Bring your genitals.

July 14 2010 at 9:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sherry

If you have children book a child friendly cruise like Disney. We did last summer.
There were great kid clubs to give us our alone time and when we wanted to spend time together the shows and activities included were family friendly. Almost everyone had children, so no one minded the kids in the hot tubs or the pools. They did have adult only bars/pool/lounges and that was a nice escape too. I especially liked the beepers they gave us in case something was wrong/sick with your child in the club so you could retrieve them.
The meals were great and we got to sit together as a family and the dining rooms were just so nice and the food was great. There was even a free soda and ice cream bar on deck.
When you take your children anywhere, you should always make sure you are supervising them or they are under adult supervision at all times for safety.
I can't even imagine letting my children (yes, I have a teenager) run wild on a ship full of
thousands of people. Its just plain irresponsible.

July 14 2010 at 12:36 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Sherry's comment
Martha

We did a Disney cruise in April. It was a nice trip with many families. There were children (kids are goats BTW) who were well supervised by parents. However, teenagers seemed to be running and making noise at all hours. Crew members were out and about during the entire cruise. During excursions crew members went along to make sure everything was being done to Disney standards. Our only complaint was our balcony cabin was obstructed by a solid covering. The cruise information states some are this way but I do think Disney should tell guests that they have chosen a balcony cabin that is obstructed. It spoils being able to sit out and watch the world go by.

July 14 2010 at 12:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Digi

Hey editors, howabout some proof reading. I found a few errors but here's a freebie.

'Some cruse lines require guests to clear their fans with a staff electrician'

I coulda swore cruise is spelled with an i. You know if you guys cant keep up with the typos IM more than willing to offer my proof reading skills for a job :-D

July 14 2010 at 12:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
brad

I hurt my back, nothing to do with this article but I love AOL for IM and been homebound and reading/ internet alot , but why , why the spammers? How do they hack into the system? They start with the first part of the article then I'm rich and single....blah blah, the computer is my friend right now and I like reader comments. Thankfully AOL is free with broadband but still using them for a browser is subject to ads, which is okay. Not the comment boards.

July 14 2010 at 12:12 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Rob

Another crappy article by Ms. Marilyn Green. Why dont we add some more obvious things not to bring almost anywhere like rat poison, bomb making material, biological weapons, your in-laws. Does someone really pay her to write this crap? I want to be a writer too. Let me write an article on things you shouldn't try to sneak into a prison while visiting.

July 13 2010 at 11:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dan

Is the person writing this article self serving or WHAT???? i just went to the TSA web site and in regards to cruise ships there is NO restrictions AT ALL on lighters. The quote in the article is for AIR TRAVEL not sea travel. BEFORE you pop off with all this info MAYBE you should do some REAL research.

July 13 2010 at 11:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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