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Space Future has been on something of a hiatus of late. With the concept of Space Tourism steadily increasing in acceptance, and the advances of commercial space, much of our purpose could be said to be achieved. But this industry is still nascent, and there's much to do. this space.
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R L Haltermann, 30 November 1996, "Evolution of the Modern Cruise Trade and Its Application to Space Tourism", Space Transportation Assocation.
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Evolution of the Modern Cruise Trade and its Application to Space Tourism
Robert L Haltermann


The evolution of the cruise trade is explored for information that may be useful for development of a space tourism industry. The popularity of taking a cruise for either a vacation or adventure has experienced a boom in recent years producing a passenger annual growth rate of nearly nine percent since 1970. Key circumstances, happenings and people are examined for making cruising the current choice for millions of tourists per year. A description of a modern day cruise ship and its itinerary along with the profiles of passengers who sail them is provided. In addition, methods employed to reduce acquisition and operating costs are analyzed that allow affordable pricing to all potential cruisers as well as the marketing techniques used to bring them aboard. What was once a luxury for only those few who could afford such extravagance, is now available to all including those of modest income. The application of this information may be used for further space tourism studies.


Today's North American based cruise business consists of 35 cruise companies sailing some 120 ships accommodating nearly 4.4 million tourists with total revenues exceeding $10 billion per year and growing at a steady rate. To accommodate this robust market the cruise lines have committed five billion dollars to bring on-line, between 1996 and 1999, twenty new ships totaling 1,473,000 tons (greater than 3000 times the weight of the International Space Station) equating to 38,294 additional passenger berths. Cruising has grown into a profit making mega industry with seemingly unlimited growth. However positive the present outlook, the industry was born of a secondary consideration.


In 1839 Samuel Cunard, a Scottish Canadian, pursued a British Admiralty contract of 55,000 pounds to provide a fortnight crossing mail service between Liverpool and Boston. He won the contract, built his ships and initiated the service within a span of sixteen months. To meet the contract's requirements he had built four 1000 ton, 200 foot, three-masted, steam engine/ paddle-wheel, 450 horse powered barks. His company was known as the British and North American Royal Mail Steam-Packet Company later to be known as the Cunard Line. The ships sailed every other Wednesday out of Liverpool. On the inaugural sailing there were 63 passengers along with the mail. It was the mail contract that financed the infrastructure for the first regularly scheduled trans-North Atlantic passenger service. From these humble beginnings the world's "most dangerous ocean, stormiest, iciest and foggiest"[1], became the most traveled.

Boston harbor would seasonally freeze over and after a few years New York became the designated port for North Atlantic crossings. Cunard's fleet increased in size and number through the latter part of the nineteenth century as demand grew for regularly scheduled crossings. During this period the first iron hull liners were introduced and, by 1900, sails and paddle wheels had been replaced with screw propellers. In 1897 the perfection and successful demonstration of the steam turbine by England's Charles Parsons was a major propulsion technology advancement. In 1907 Cunard introduced a new 30,000 ton class of liner, the Lusitania and Mauretania, with this latest propulsion technology.

With the beginning of the twentieth century other European countries began building their entries to compete for the world's largest and fastest passenger ship: Germany's Hamburg American Line with the Imperator, Bismark and Vaterland and the French Line's France to name a few. England's White Star Line, founded in 1870, introduced the Olympic and Titanic; the mega ships of their day being 800 feet in length and registering 45,000 tons. These ships had speeds in access of 20 knots and could traverse the North Atlantic in five or six days.

The famed "Blue Ribband" became the property of the line who had the fastest ship. The competition was fierce and many believed it led to the iceberg collision and sinking of the Titanic in a 1912 White Star Line effort to win it from her country's rival. The Titanic remained afloat for two hours and twenty minutes, but fifteen hundred souls of the twenty-two hundred aboard were lost mostly because of lack of life boats. Before the Titanic, only sixteen life boats were required on any ship over 10,000 tons; after the Titanic, international law required a seat in a life boat for every soul on every ship. Later investigation substantiated the Titanic did not have the speed to exceed that of the Mauretania, the then record holder, but other Captains admitted maintaining speed while traversing ice fields under like visibility and calm conditions to make schedule. They had all been complacent about the danger and their luck had finally run-out.

These ships usually provided three classes of service; first class, second class and steerage. The fist class accommodated wealthy business barons, highly paid entertainers, sports personalities and the idle rich; second class, white collar working people; and steerage the relatively poor. It was during these years that the mass immigration of both rich and poor to America began and provided the bulk of the trans-North Atlantic traffic.

Early in World War I, the Lusitania carrying civilians was torpedoed and sunk by a German U-Boat. Other liners were quickly turned into troop and hospital ships. After the Germans surrendered the Imperator, Bismark, and Vaterland were awarded as prizes of war to nations that had lost ships in the conflict.

In 1920 the United States Congress passed the Immigration Limitation Act. This act greatly reduced the number of immigrants filling the steerage space on the big liners. To fill this void a brilliant marketing scheme was devised to foster American tourism abroad. A new accommodation named Tourist Third Cabin was offered. The space was enhanced with a few more amenities and service; Spartan, but adequate, with baths being available by appointment. It was aimed at the American middle and working class and college students with a flare for adventure. The traffic almost immediately became eighty percent American and remained so to the end of the year-round regularly scheduled trans-North Atlantic crossings era. Much was added to crossing accommodations and activities to keep passengers occupied and entertained while away from their familiar land facilities. To name a few: shuffleboard, deck tennis, a walking deck, inside swimming pool, skeet shooting, miniature golf, dancing space, comfortable deck chairs with blankets, kennels for dogs, costume parties, games, quizzes etc. The interior designs became elaborate with expensive murals, draperies, woods, marbles, and glass used extensively through-out the ships to promote a sense of not being at sea, but in a hotel, to help combat sea sickness. Since the expected operational life-time of a trans-Atlantic liner was thirty years, the interior of public spaces and exterior hull designs had to project future tastes to remain in style during their later years of service. In 1927 the French Line's Isle de France became the trend setter in lavish interior designs followed by Italy's Rex and Conte di Savoia. The trans-Atlantic tourist trade began to flourish during the 1920's and 30's. People in view of the docks could always see three or four superliners at their berths in New York or Southampton.

During the depression years of the early 1930's, ship building size reached its zenith with three 1,000 foot long giants in the 70,000 to 80,000 ton class. These ships, the French Line's Normandie and the combined Cunard-White Star Line's Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth, were so costly to build that government aid was required. The Normandie's hull design was a classic with its raked clipper shaped prow along with an extremely lavish interior. The two Queens were equally advanced and of unique and exotic designs. The Normandie, being the first of the three to enter service, won the Blue Ribband on her maiden voyage, but relinquished it a year later to the Queen Mary. The fortnight service initially provided by Cunard's four barks had been cut to a weekly service by the two Queens with four to five day crossings. During World War II, these liners were converted to troop and hospital ships with a capacity for 17,000 passengers per crossing. The two Queens survived the war and returned to serving tourists, but the Normandie caught fire and capsized during her conversion in 1941 at New York's Pier 88 and was subsequently scrapped.

Post war years saw America's entry, the S.S. United States. It was authorized by Congress to be built with public funds under the stipulation that the design be of a light speedy ship easily converted for troop deployment. The ship was fast, but of Spartan design built of mostly Aluminum and no wood. She was capable of speeds in excess of 35 knots and, on July 4th, 1952, left New York on her maiden three and a half day crossing, slashing ten hours off the record. The world's fastest passenger ocean liner title changed hands for the last time and remains to this day a possession of the United States.

The greatly increased travel demand kept the liners busy crossing with tourists from both continents throughout the 1950's and into the 60's. The forth of the 1,000 foot giants was built by the French Line and christened the France in 1960. The France, with her unmistakable hull and classic winged funnel design, picked up where her predecessor Normandie and the two Queens left-off in both interior and exterior style. The France's life on the North Atlantic was shortened, however: the beginning of the end of sailing being the preferred method of crossing was already in progress.

Before the employment of the jet airliner, it took a boring, monotonous fourteen hours to fly across the ocean. After the jet was placed in trans-Atlantic service the time was halved. The wide bodied airliners with comfortable seats, good meals and drink, sound and movie entertainment made the time pass quickly. Business people and tourists found the time saved was of greater value at their ultimate destinations than waiting for a ship to complete its four day crossing. By the early 1970's most of the trans-Atlantic ships were gone.

In 1969, only seventeen years old, the United States was taken out of service and moth-balled. The Queen Mary was dispatched to Long Beach, California and became a dockside hotel and land tourist attraction. The Queen Elizabeth was sold and resold by various business interests, but burned and sank in Hong Kong harbor. In 1974, the France could no longer be economically operated and was tied-up idle at her berth in Le Havre establishing the end of the French Line's service to America. Cunard's Queen Elizabeth 2, christened in 1967, still provides this service, but only for a limited number of crossings per year. It and scores of other ships built since have found new and exciting places to sail, filled with eager tourists of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds.


World and exotic area cruising had been available to those few who could afford long sailings and touring exotic places since the 1930's. Just as the Immigration Limitation Act of 1920 had changed the nature and clientele of the trans-Atlantic traffic, the coming of the jet airliner changed the nature and clientele of the exclusive world and exotic area cruise markets.

When the majority of the trans-Atlantic passengers became tourists, the crossings became more festive for the enjoyment and entertainment of passengers. Ships became more like floating resort hotels than mere containers to transport people from shore to shore. The object still remained to cross, but the theme was to enjoy it. This same theme was even more prevalent on world and exotic area cruises. When the decline of the trans-Atlantic ship crossing market had arrived, there was already a model for expanding the cruise market.

Knute Kloster, a Norwegian, was one of the first to recognize this fact and established Norwegian Caribbean Line (NCL), later renamed Norwegian Cruise Line. Kloster's first ships where relatively small, less than 20,000 tons, were powered by diesel engines and accommodated fewer than 1,000 passengers. However, these ships did not have to contend with the rough and stormy North Atlantic and had no reason to break a speed record. So they were designed with plenty of open deck space and outside swimming pools for leisurely fair weather cruises from America's East Coast ports to Bermuda, the warm Bahamas and islands of the Caribbean Sea. This new market started to develop in the 1960's and Kloster's initiative was quickly followed by a host of others including Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Holland-America Line, Princess Line and Carnival Cruise Line.

As the market grew so did the size of the ships. In 1979, Kloster bought the France, idled and tied-up at Le Havre since 1974, and converted it into the NCL flagship Norway for cruising the Caribbean. At 70,000 tons and able to accommodate more than 2,000 passengers, the ship remained the world's largest cruise ship until last year when Princess Line christened their 76,000 ton Sun Princess. Later this year Carnival Cruise Line will have the distinction of the first 100,000 ton cruise ship Destiny, only to be topped in 1997 by Princess Line's 104,000 ton Grand Princess. These mega ships will accommodate approximately 2,600 passengers and offer more stateroom and public room space then ever before.

The number of lines and ships grew until they out-stripped the port capacity of Miami, allowing Fort Lauderdale to develop as a sister cruise embarkation port. Southern Caribbean and Panama Canal cruises now operate from San Juan, Puerto Rico. Today it's not uncommon to see as many as eight or nine ships in Nassau, Bahamas at any one time.

World cruising and cruises to Alaska, Hawaii, the South Pacific, Europe, and the Orient expanded rapidly along with the Caribbean. Several lines were already providing cruises to these areas of the globe when the transition of North Atlantic traffic began. Cunard and Holland America were providing regularly scheduled world cruises in the 1960's and were beginning to develop certain regional areas for seasonal trade, for instance, Alaska. Cunard's Queen Elizabeth 2, and Holland America's Rotterdam V christened in 1965, sail popular annual world cruises with a faithful clientele often repeating this three month voyage again and again. One does not have to sail the entire itinerary, but may sail only preferred segments meeting the ship at the desired choice of embarkation. The Rotterdam V was the fist ship built for crossing the North Atlantic and for cruising. Until this time, ships were built to provide different classes of service and great pains were taken to keep the classes of passengers separate. The Rotterdam's decks were laid out so they could be easily modified for single class cruise service. Only the Queen Elizabeth 2 currently retains this distinct class of service. Today several cruise lines have their fleets deployed seasonally in both hemispheres to provide annual fair weather cruises in all global tourist regions.


Today there is a cruise for everyone. No matter what a person's tastes are or what part of the socio-economic spectrum he or she fits into, there is a variety of cruises to choose from. Whether it be for pleasure (being pampered) or adventure (roughing it) there is a cruise for you. For a description of a modern cruise ship I have chosen one of Holland America Line's Statendam class ships.

Holland America Line is a 125 year old company steeped in great tradition with roots to early American exploration, colonization and trade between America and Europe. It has always prided itself in offering its passengers the greatest of care and service. Holland America is classified as a premium cruise line, up-scale in service, luxurious in some respects; it is somewhat formal and caters to the experienced cruiser who is accustomed to the highest of standards. Holland America Line is a division of the Carnival Corporation and its president is A. Kirk Lanterman.

The Statendam Class consists of four recently built Holland America ships, the Statendam, Maasdam, Ryndam, and christened this year, the Veendam. These ships, as all the Line's ships, are named after dams on Holland's waterways. They are considered to be middle sized in terms of today's new builds with gross tonnage of 55,000 and 720 feet long and 101 foot beam. Each ship has the same hull and general lay-out of decks, public rooms and staterooms; but each has its own interior decor theme sprinkled with traditional art works and artifacts worth millions of dollars. Each has a passenger capacity of 1,266 and a crew of 602.

The following description of public rooms for this class of ship uses the names of those of the Maasdam. Upon boarding the Maasdam, you are met by a steward who will escort you to your stateroom. Your stateroom could be the luxurious penthouse suite of which there is but one with 946 square feet plus a 180 square foot veranda; one of 28 suites with 385 square feet plus a 180 square foot veranda; one or more 120 deluxe state rooms (16 connecting) with 230 square feet plus a 54 square foot veranda; one or more of 336 standard outside staterooms (36 connecting) with 196 square feet; or one of 148 standard inside staterooms with 186 square feet. Pricing is based on the location, size and accommodations of your stateroom; all other standard ship services and accommodations are inclusive in the price. Optional services (i.e., massage, hair salon, drinks, shore tours, etc.) cost the same to anyone regardless of purchased stateroom accommodations.

Your stateroom becomes your own personal space for the cruise. Unless you are in the penthouse or suites it may not match in size what you are used to at home, but it is more than adequate for the time you will spend there. Each comes with its' own private bath and plenty of closet and drawer space. After unpacking one can usually store the suitcases under the bed(s). In each room the Queen size bed is convertible to two singles. Each of the suites and deluxe staterooms comes with a VCR, whirlpool bath and mini-bar. All staterooms are equipped with sofas, hair dryers, individually controlled air conditioning, telephone with computerized wake-up service, multi channel music system and closed circuit television. Your own personal room steward will explain how everything works, make sure your baggage has arrived and see that your punched card room keys, charge card/boarding passes, and embarkation day schedule are in your stateroom together with a good supply of bath linen and fresh fruit. You may not see your room steward again unless you have a specific request; otherwise he is out of sight providing you with all your needs.

You should try to familiarize yourself with the ship before it sets sail. The ship has 10 passenger decks with duty free shops with most public rooms conveniently located on Promenade and Upper Promenade decks. The public rooms are large and feature high quality furnishings and understated elegance.

Chances are your stateroom is not too far from the three deck high Grand Atrium where the many shops and purser's desk are located. This would be a good time to "run" your credit card with the purser and select and purchase your shore tours. Payment on board is "cashless" and all shore tours, shop purchases and drinks are charged to your shipboard account with a final accounting presented to you on the morning of debarkation.

Depending on the ship, the Atrium's centerpiece may be a spectacular glass or marble sculpture extending from the floor of the Lower Promenade deck up to the Upper promenade deck. For the Maasdam a monumental colored glass sculpture "Totem" has been created. Elevators, escalators and spiral stairs take you between decks. Aside the glass sculpture on the floor of the Grand Atrium is a "Baby Grand" piano for anyone inclined to sit and play a favorite song or two. Just off the Grand Atrium on the Upper Promenade deck is the world map which electronically displays your cruise track. You may also "pull-up" on the display any cruise on the ship's itinerary for the year and the tracks of voyages by famous navigators, i.e., Ericson, Columbus, Magellan etc.

Located on the Promenade and Upper Promenade, the Rotterdam Dining Room seats 657 on two levels connected by a pair of grand curved staircases. A music balcony on the Upper Promenade, overlooking the main floor, provides a venue for a string quartet to serenade during the dinner hour. Windows on three sides provide sweeping views of the sea. The ceiling is covered with a thousand blown glass morning glories of Murano glass. Adjacent to the upper dining room are two private dining areas, the King's Room and the Queen's Room. In the main dinning areas there are tables for eight, six, four and a few intimate tables for two.

At the opposite end of the ship, the two deck, 600 seat, Rembrandt Show Lounge features Broadway-style entertainment. The show room, named for the 17th Century Dutch master artist, has a Delft tile motif throughout, represented in light fixtures, wall panels, lamps and carpeting.

The Show Lounge is further accented by computerized fiber optic lighting and a state-of-the-art sound system.

The 249 seat Wajang Theater, located on the Promenade deck, is used for lectures, meetings and religious services as well as the showing of current films. Two other rooms, the Half Moon and the Hudson Room seating a total of 150, adjoin the Theater and also may be used for meetings, private parties and other scheduled activities. Complete audio-visual facilities and other meeting aids are available. Complementing this group of rooms is the 37 seat Java Cafe, offering expresso and cappucino for informal coffee breaks.

On Upper Promenade Deck, the adjoining Card Room, Puzzle Corner and Leyden Library accommodate quieter activities. If you are looking for a chess or bridge partner, leave your name and stateroom number on the clipboard in the Card Room.

On the Lido Deck is the 403 seat Lido Restaurant which features an extensive buffet for casual dining at breakfast and lunch. It is adjacent to the Lido swimming pool with its bronze sculpture of five leaping dolphins situated beneath a retractable glass dome. Take time out of your ships tour to sample the buffet which is now open for boarding passengers or have a hotdog or hamburger outside around the pool. Also on the Lido Deck is the fully equipped, ocean view Ocean Spa fitness center, which includes the beauty salon/barber shop; massage, sauna and steam rooms; and juice bar.

A second swimming pool is located one deck below the Lido Deck on the Navigation Deck aft; above the Lido Deck on the Sports Deck, two deck tennis courts are located.

The Maasdam features five lounges: the Rembrandt two deck show room; the Ocean Bar popular drink and dance; the Piano Bar for close in schmoozing; the Explorer's Lounge for easy listening to the classical Rosario Strings; and the Crow's Nest, a combined observation lounge and nightclub on the Sports Deck overlooking the bow.

The casino, offering blackjack, Caribbean poker, roulette, dice and 97 slot machines, also features an adjacent bar.

The on board shops offer passengers an opportunity to purchase sundries, sports apparel, evening wear, jewelry, etc. The shops and casino are open during appropriate hours when the ship is at sea.

A wide teak deck encircles the Lower Promenade Deck, affording space for the ship's comfortable wooden deck chairs, as well as ample room for strolling or walking.

It is now close to sailing time and passengers are selecting their spot for best observing this exciting event. Most have in hand a special drink concocted especially for the occasion. There is a band on the open Lido Deck playing festive tunes as the last lines are cast-off and the gap between the ship and the pier slowly begins to widen from the propulsive force of the bow and stern, side thrusters. As the ship clears the pier and gains way down the channel toward the sea, people from shore lined high rises and individual homes join those left at dockside to celebrate and say "bon voyage" to those on our departing ship. As we approach the end of the channel the Sun Princess is about to cast-off. Three long loud blasts by the Maasdam's whistle salutes the Sun Princess it is about to overtake. Three likewise blasts by the Sun Princess returns the Maasdam's salute. As to punctuate with a period the Maasdam gives one very short blast followed by the same from the Sun Princess. The passengers lining the rails on the starboard and port sides of each ship cheer their fellow cohorts and lift their glasses as each begins its respective cruise.

The cruise director now announces that the mandatory life boat drill is about to begin, and for everyone to assemble at their life boat stations on the Lower Promenade Deck with life jackets obtained from their staterooms. Maritime law requires this drill at the beginning of every cruise so that all know what to do in the event of an emergency that may require debarking the ship at sea. Seven short blasts followed by one long blast signifies an emergency, and for everyone to proceed to his or her assigned station. Your station is posted on your stateroom's inside door. Arrows with numbers lead you to your station. An assigned boat captain will brief you on the procedures.

There are two dinner sittings: first, usually 6:30 and second, 8:30. You may request which sitting and table size you prefer when you book your cruise and chances are your requests will be granted. Since it is the first night, and most passengers have experienced a long travel day, the dress code is casual. If time permits you may wish to visit the Ocean Club for a cocktail, hot hors d'oeuvres and a dance or two. Dinner will be personally announced by a roving crew member playing portable vibes. As you traverse the glass dinning room doors the maitre d' and assistants will escort you to your table where you will meet your waiter. Your waiter will seat you and provide you a menu. The menu will carry a six course dinner with three to six selections for each course. You may order as many of each as you please. The wine steward will soon appear will his menu listing the very best of wines and champagnes.

Unlike most lines, Holland America has a tipping not required policy; this is left to the discretion of the passenger. However most do tip their room steward and waiter, the wine steward if utilized and a special person such as a lounge waiter who always remembers your favorite drink. Tips are usually given on the last night of the cruise.

After dinner there is a show in the Rembrandt Show Lounge which will feature a Welcome Aboard Icebreaker Party with the Cruise Director introducing his or her staff and providing you with information on all the ships facilities, passenger participation programs and a sample of the entertainment planned for the cruise.

After the show you may wish to try your luck in the casino, go for a night stroll on the open deck, visit one of the lounges for late night dancing, catch the mid-night buffet or simply go to bed.

Your first full day is one at sea. As you are getting dressed, scan "The day at a glance" activity sheet.

7:00 am - 7:00 pm The Swimming Pools are open. Take a refreshing swim.
7:30 am Walk-a-mile with our Fitness Advisor. Lower Promenade Deck aft.
8:15 am Low Impact Aerobic Exercises in the Ocean Spa
9:00 am - 10:00 pm On board shops open
9:00 am Entertainment Quiz is available in the reading room (Leyden Library).
9:00 am - 5:00 pm Books, playing cards and indoor games are available in the Leyden Library on the Upper Promenade Deck.
10:00 am - 10:30 am Morning Coffee is served in the Explorer's Lounge.
10:15 am Mixed Shuffleboard Tournament on the Sports Deck.
10:30 am - 11:30 am Hot cider is available on the Lower Promenade Deck, aft.
10:00 am Assemble in the Explorer's Lounge for the ship's Art Tour.
11:00 am Dominoes Tournament in the Explorers Lounge.
12:00 noon Assemble in the Rembrandt Show Room for the ship's bridge tour.
12:00 noon Casino opens with full staff.
2:00 pm Get together for a bridge game in the Explorer's Lounge.
2:00 pm See today's featured movie in the Wajang theater. Popcorn available.
2:30 pm Assemble in the Ocean Bar for the ships's main galley tour.
3:30 pm - 4:00 pm Hot Chocolate is available on the Lower Promenade deck aft.
3:30 pm - 4:00 pm Afternoon Tea is served in the Explorers Lounge.
3:45 pm Backgammon Tournament in the Ocean Bar.
4:00 pm - 4:30 pm Walk-a-mile with our Fitness Advisor. Lower Promenade Deck aft.
4:30 pm Captain announces winner of today's nautical mile pool.
4:45 pm Stretch and Relaxation Class with Fitness advisor Half Moon room.
5:00 pm "Happy Hour" in the Casino. Drinks half price for players.

Dress Code for this evening is Formal

5:30 pm for the First Sitting and 7:30 pm for the Second Sitting. You are cordially invited to the Captain's Formal Champagne Party in the Rembrandt Lounge.

8:45 pm for the First Sitting and 10:15 pm for the Second Sitting. A lavish "Sea Follies" show accompanied by the Maasdam's full orchestra is presented for your pleasure in the Rembrandt Show Lounge.

After the show enjoy music for your dancing pleasure in the Ocean Club or Crow's Nest Lounge or listen to your favorite tunes in the Piano Bar or classical by the Rosario Strings in the Explorers Lounge.

Dining Hours

Lido Restaurant, Lido Deck

Early Coffee 7:00 am
Breakfast 7:30 am - 9:30 am
Brunch at Sea 10:15 am - 1:30 pm
Ice Cream Parlor 11:30 am - 1:30 pm
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
11:30 pm - 1:30 am
Late Buffet 11:30 pm - 1:30 am

Lido Deck, Poolside

Hamburgers/Hot Dogs 11:30 am - 5:30 pm
Taco Bar 11:30 am - 3:00 pm

Rotterdam Dining Room

Breakfast (open sitting) 8:00 am - 9:30 am
Lunch (open sitting) 12:30 am - 1:30 pm
Captain's Welcome Dinner
    First Sitting 6:15 pm
    Second Sitting8:15 pm

During the Captain's party, the Captain will introduce the ship's senior officers and crew members. The officers are Dutch and the crew is from Indonesia and the Philippines. The crew is trained in a special Holland America Lines school. One night during the cruise, the crew will present their own show of native plays, songs and dances; a real cultural experience.

The Captains Welcome Dinner is a gala event as men in tuxedos and women in gowns take part in an extravagant culinary feast. Eating is a good part of a cruise and Holland America presents a gourmet menu with a varied selection. Tonight's entree selection consists of Lobster Thermidore, Fresh Grouper Cajun Style, Beef Wellington and Rock Cornish Game Hen.

After looking at all one can do and experience in a day at sea, I'm sure you will agree that it will not be a boring one. Quite the contrary, some people suffer anxiety attacks from not being able to do it all; but not to worry for you have a whole week to plan. Of course you may opt to do nothing and relax by one of the two pools or hide away with a good book in one of many of the ship's secluded areas. The Maasdam has a high public space to passenger ratio, so you won't have that claustrophobic feeling of constantly being around others should you wish some time to yourself.

Sea Sickness is a common fear of people who have not cruised before. But today's ships, equipped with state-of-the-art stabilizers and sailing in seasonal fair weather, mitigate the ship's motion to where being at sea is hardly noticeable most of the time. During the few times when rough weather is anticipated, the ship's doctor is always available should one be needed.

After two days at sea, you arrive at your first port-of-call, Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, one of the U.S. Virgin Islands. This port is noted for it shops and "good buys" as well as its beautiful harbor dotted with scores of sailing and motor yachts. You may purchase the Island tour and see Black Beards Castle or go to Coral World, a natural under water aquarium. You may also just hire a cab and direct the driver to go wherever you wish. There are many nice beaches at neighboring St. Johns where one can swim and snorkel or just sun bathe. Usually the day before reaching port, your tour director will give a talk on the different places to go and where the best values can be found. Upon returning to the ship tired from sightseeing and laden with goods, it is nice to know that a good shower, drink and dinner are waiting for you aboard the ship. One of the best features of taking a cruise is the fact that you always know where you will eat and sleep every night. There is no packing/hauling around bags/unpacking except at the beginning and end.

As the days pass, a comradeship begins to form among the passengers that will result in the making of many new friends resulting in several lasting relationships..... And so between sailing and being in port, the cruise approaches its end with all wishing for a few more days to prolong this grand experience.


A Statendam class ship is built around a two year schedule; one year to build and assemble the hull and another year to fit the ship. But long before the first steel is cut, the ship's design must be developed. To assure the ship is built and conforms to rigorous safety regulations, a surveyor assigned by Lloyd's Registry of Ships, will reside in the yard during this period. Books of specifications are written and tens of thousands of computerized drawings are made. Models of ship hulls are tested in huge wave making tanks and wind tunnels to ensure the ship will provide a comfortable ride and adequate sheltered deck space for cruise activities under various sea and wind conditions.

Ship building technology has advanced at a rapid pace since the days of the great North Atlantic ships. The hulls are now seam welded instead of riveted making a lighter, stronger hull resulting in lower fuel costs. Ships are no longer built from the keel-up, but in modular sections weighing as much as 400 tons. The Maasdam's hull consists of about thirty separate sections that are made in different facilities of the yard and then transported to the building dock by cranes and assembled to each other. Engine parts cushioned by rubber, isoplastic floors with sound insulation and rock wool, and new designed engine mount and shaft bearings have mitigated sound and vibration to the point where sounds that were once not detectable have to be addressed. Installed together with the Diesel engine/ electric generator/electric motor/shaft power trains, are the ships twin stabilizers that project outward from the hull to eliminate 85% of the ship's roll. Also the mechanical systems including waste treatment and air conditioning are housed within sections of the hull. Installed on the outside of the hull are the ship's variable pitch twin screws that enable the ship to change rapidly from full forward to full reverse. Side thrusters are installed in tunnels cut below the water-line across the bow and stern sections of the hull. They are used to maneuver the ship in and out of port making the hiring of tugs no longer necessary. When the hull is complete it floats out of its building dry-dock to another location where the remaining outside upper deck and interior work will be completed.

The ship's state rooms arrive and are hoisted on board in a folded configuration. They are put in place and erected by unfolding their walls and ceilings. Life-boats arrive along with all other outside components. Swarms of craftsman and artisans now take over the ship and bring with them the finest of marbles, wood, glass, metals and carpets to begin the fitting of the ship. All the appliances for the public rooms, the galley and lounges are now aboard along with the furniture that goes in them. Fiber-optic lighting is installed where practical for safety and to accent the exquisite decor of the ship's public spaces. The ship begins to take on its own persona once the tapestries, artwork and artifacts are brought on board.

Finally the ship's bridge control equipment is connected to the engineering spaces, fuel is loaded and the crew arrives to take the ship out for "owner's trials". The ship is put through its paces and tested at a level so extreme that it is unlikely it will ever experience stress like this after entering service. The ship's main propulsion power plants generate a combined twin shaft horse power of 32,600 to produce a maximum speed of 22 knots. These plants and others will be fully tested for being able to supply the 33.6 mega-Watt total electric power to propel the ship and light and operate all the ships electrical systems.

The Maasdam utilizes the latest state-of-the-art navigation systems. Using the satellite Global Positioning System (GPS),the ship can fix its position within a few feet. The ship uses a computer to plot the most economical and safe course between ports. With inputs from the forecasted weather, prevailing winds, ocean currents, ocean depths, underwater hazards and land obstacles, a speed and time interval will be calculated for each course segment and loaded into the auto-pilot. These will be continually up-dated with inputs from the GPS to put the ship into the next port at precisely the scheduled time. These data and the ship's track are available in your stateroom on the "bridge t.v. channel".

With satellite communications, you can call anywhere in the world at any time of the day, from the comfort of your state room.

Cruise lines have become very efficient in maximizing their cruise days by minimizing turn-around-time between cruises and time in dry-dock for repairs and maintenance. A ship comes into its operating port and approximately twelve hours later sails out fully serviced, supplied and fueled with a new complement of passengers. Passenger check-in is performed in a few short minutes and baggage is brought to your state room shortly after boarding.

Just one of the many category of items transferred on board is the food for the next week. The following is a partial list:

Beef5,338 lbs
Veal207 lbs
Pork2,122 lbs
Lamb360 lbs
Chicken/poultry3,158 lbs
Caviar20 lbs
Fish/Seafood3,385 lbs
Eggs19,140 lbs
Cheese575 lbs
Milk & other dairy products1,486 gal
Ice Cream382 gal
Fresh vegetables20,115 lbs
Fresh fruit18,095 lbs
Rice2,926 lbs
Beer & Sodas7,968 btl
Wine & Champagnes1,939 btl

Taking on fresh water is not required; the Maasdam makes 1,100 tons of fresh water a day from sea water through its evaporators, more than adequate for the 700 ton per day average consumption.

The Maasdam's fuel capacity is 2,800 tons and is consumed at approximately 100 tons a day at a cruise speed of about 19 knots or 0.22 tons per nautical mile. A typical one week's cruise of 2,000 nautical miles will consume 440 tons of fuel.

Food and dry goods are taken aboard in eight 40 foot long containers. Altogether, about 3,000 tons of food, dry goods and fuel are taken aboard at a major re-supply port. Fresh food such as vegetables and milk are bought from local vendors at various ports of call.

Fully supplied with food and fuel and with a full passenger list, the Maasdam can stay out at sea for twenty days before having to visit a port.

The ship has two waste management systems. One handles all the water from the galley appliances, wash basins and shower/baths. This water is treated for removal of harmful chemicals, and chlorinated before being released to ocean waters. The other system fully treats all human waste collected from the efficient vacuum operated toilets, discharges pure water to the ocean and compresses the residual matter to be burned in the ship's incinerator along with all other paper, cardboard and pulverized garbage waste products. The remaining ash is bagged and off-loaded at a port for disposal. All recyclables are bailed and sold to local port processors. Nothing other than pure or treated water is discharged to the oceans or seas.

The ship spends one week in a drydock every two years for inspections, maintenance and repairs that cannot be performed with the ship in water, i.e., open every sea valve, internally inspect oil fired boilers, clean and repaint the hull etc. On alternate years a "wetdock" video inspection is performed on the hull by divers. The props and side thrusters are checked every few months and polished under water twice a year. Most (85%) of the ships repairs are performed on board. Carpet layers, upholsterers, carpenters, plumbers, electricians live on board. Service engineers visit the ship for specialized type work when scheduled or required. With little out of service time the ship is producing revenue almost all of the year.


A specific ship class is several ships with identical or near identical basic designs. This provides an economy of scale that saves hundreds of millions of dollars. Traditionally the first ship built takes the name of the class and all the ships that follow have the same design. Thus in a series of four there is but one design and one set of drawings. Contracts are let, steel is cut, and vendor buys are made in fours. A continuous unbroken production plan is followed to produce the ships at intervals, making the most efficient use of the yard's facilities and crews in an optimum period of time.

The Veendam, last of the Statendam class, cost $225 million[5] to build. The Carnival Destiny, the first of a new 100,000 ton class ship, will cost $400 million[5] to build.

A ship's life is nominally 30 years. Owner's are able to depreciate the cost of a liner over this period.

Ship's operating costs are all those direct costs including crew, fuel, food/drink, port tariffs/tolls/ docking fees, maintenance, satellite navigation/communication fees etc. and an assigned share of indirect costs or the corporate overhead to include marketing and sales, depreciation and amortization and other administrative functions. The annual operating cost of a ship the size of the Statendam Class is approximately $60 million.


One needs only to turn on the t.v. to appreciate how cruises are advertised to the mass market. It might be Cathy Lee Gifford enjoying all the activities on a Carnival Cruise Line ship or the sophisticated voice of a well known movie actress describing the great life aboard a Royal Caribbean Cruise Line ship. The lines are spending big money to get their message to the general public. For example the Carnival Corporation spent $98 million[5] in 1995 to advertise all its products. In addition, the daily newspapers and a separate Sunday Travel Section are always full of special discounts for all classes of cruises. There are several travel magazines with wide distributions advertising the total spectrum of cruises, with feature articles about all the aspects of cruising. Scores of videos produced by each line for every itinerary sailed are available at travel agencies; they provide valuable information about the ship and the ports it will visit. Movies and t.v. series have on occasion featured cruising; t.v.'s "Love Boat", a series about a Princess Cruise ship greatly enhanced the cruise trade in the 1970's. The Internet will be the newest source of information about the cruise trade with each line having its own home page.

Marketing at the local level is through the travel agent. The "Yellow Pages" is the best local marketing tool. Ads and by-columns in local newspapers, community papers, local directories and mailed flyers are all effective. Renting a booth or table space at a local happening (fair, Octoberfest etc.) or holding a cruise night presentation at a community center, church facility or a customer's home, with videos and other cruise line provided marketing hand-outs, bring in both individual and group sales.


Professional Associations help the industry and its sales agents accomplish their goals to promote and expand the tourism and cruise trade.

The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) is one association devoted exclusively to the cruise trade. From CLIA's mission statement, "CLIA's primary reason for existence is to help the over 22,000 affiliated agencies become more successful at capitalizing on the booming and profitable cruise market. The opportunity is immense. Nearly 71 million adults in North America dream of taking a cruise. The challenge is to convert their dreams into near-term action." CLIA has 27 member lines who represent virtually 100% of the cruise industry. Over 95% of their business is generated by travel agents. Its focus is strictly supporting the agency community and market expansion. CLIA is an organization that operates under the by-laws of the Federal Maritime Commission. Any travel agency that is actively engaged in the business of selling cruise travel, can be a CLIA-affiliated agency by meeting certain criteria.[6]

The American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) is an organization representing all forms of travel and tourism. "ASTA's mission is to enhance the professionalism and profitability of member agents through effective representation in industry and government affairs, education and training, and by identifying and meeting the needs of the traveling public." Today ASTA is the largest and most influential travel trade organization with over 25,000 members in 130 countries. It is committed to upholding the professionalism of the travel agent community and promoting ethical business practices. The society continues to provide new services and programs to assist members in conducting their business with integrity and competency.[7]

The Travel Industry Association of America (TIA) is a national membership association that serves the common concerns of all components of the U.S. travel industry. Its membership represents more than 2,000 travel related businesses, associations, and local, regional and state travel promotion agencies. TIA is oriented to the promotion of travel, and to the protection of the industry from government initiatives that would impede travel by discriminating against the traveler or the travel industry. TIA seeks to enlarge an understanding of tourism as an industry comprised of major components, which by working together in unity enhance travel opportunities and effectively demonstrate the immense importance of tourism to the economic and cultural life of the United States.[8]


The travel agent is responsible for nearly all of today's cruise sales. There are some agencies that sell only cruises, but most are full service agencies. These are the people that must know all there is to know about taking a cruise. They will be "face to face" with the general public listening to their desires and requirements. Today there is a cruise for everyone. The spectrum ranges from luxury, premium, mass market, budget, adventure and niche. The agent must be able to fit each individual or group to the right cruise line and ship. A good agent will be able to tailor her or his persona to that of the prospective client's, after asking and listening to the answers of a few well placed questions. The agent has at her or his disposal printed cruise literature with itineraries and prices to hand out and videos to loan for home viewing. The best method to sell a cruise is to relate to your prospective client from actual experience. Cruise lines offer low price "fam trips" to agents for familiarizing the agent with the product. When people know they are talking with someone who is an experienced cruiser, closing a sale becomes only a formality.

The best advertising a travel agent can have is a satisfied cruiser. Sea tales, shore excursion experiences, photos and videos brought home for the telling and showing to friends, relatives and acquaintances bring more new customers than any other form of marketing. The word of mouth of a satisfied customer reaches more people than any other advertising tool.


The following is a brief synopsis of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) studies[9] that identifies the profiles, segments and dynamics of the cruise market. The results of the studies identified six segments: Restless Boomers, Enthusiastic Boomers, Consummate Shoppers, Luxury Seekers, Explorers, and Ship Buffs; and other interesting findings.

The Restless Boomer comprises 33% of cruisers, 17% of total cruising days and 59% are first timers. These people have enjoyed their last cruise experience and likely would cruise again, but are interested in experiencing different types of vacations. In seeking a vacation they are not interested in luxury, but want a family planned, fun filled vacation that provides relaxation away from the home and work place. They travel mostly in the mass cruise market. They range in age from 25 to 50 and their median income is $58,000.

The Enthusiastic Boomer comprises 20% of cruisers, 15% of total cruising days and 46% are first timers. These people are already motivated and realize the advantages about cruising and its many activities. They look to cruises to relieve the daily stresses of their busy fast paced life styles. They also want a fun filled vacation away from their daily environs, but are primarily interested in being comfortable, having someone wait on them, fine dining, some romance, participating in sports, socializing and learning something new. They travel principally in the mass cruise market. They range in age from 25 to 50 and their median income is $55,000.

The Consummate Shopper comprises 16% of cruisers, 20% of total cruising days and 20% are first timers. These people are looking for the best cruise value and have taken an average of five cruises. They know the cruise lines and their ships, shop for the best vacation value and want fun, relaxation, pampering, comfort and fine dining. They travel principally in the mass and premium markets. Forty-seven percent are college educated, they average 55 years of age and their medium income is $60,000.

The Luxury Seeker comprises 14% of cruisers, 18% of total cruising days and 30% are first timers. These people are willing to spend whatever it takes to secure the most luxurious available accommodations and service. They are sophisticated in world travel and experiences. They travel in luxury and other class markets, but book the suites and penthouses for the highest service and accommodations in each class. They have the highest medium income of $95,000.

The Explorer comprises 11% of cruisers, 18% of total cruising days and 20% are first timers. These are intellectually motivated people who wish to satisfy their curiosity by traveling to remote places of scientific and historical interest. Cost is not a factor in their quest for adventure. They are used to Spartan accommodations and are not interested in relaxing or securing luxurious accommodations and service. They travel on specialty cruise lines and premium and mass market ships. Their average age is 64, 69% are college educated and their medium income is $81,000.

The Ship Buff comprises 6% of cruisers, 11% of total cruise days and 13% are first timers. These people are extremely knowledgeable of ship design, accommodations and service and have a special attachment to the ships they sail. They cruise more for the ship rather than its itinerary and have cruised an average of 6.3 times representing all market segments. Their average age is 68, 60% are college educated and their medium income is $78,000.

The studies[9] also uncovered several findings common to all segments:

  • Frequent travelers are frequent cruisers and a cruise represents about one of every three vacations they have taken in the past six years.

  • Cruisers possess a degree of curiosity and flare for adventure as indicated by the majority saying they like to experiment with new and different things.

  • Three of the most mentioned factors used to arrive at a decision to take a particular cruise were the itinerary's ports of call, the price of the cruise and the season of the year, followed by the cruise line or ship.

  • The five top benefits of cruising listed were: provides relaxation away from the home and office, allows one to be pampered, the opportunity to visit several places, good value for the price, and the choice of many shipboard activities.

  • Cruisers enjoyed their cruise experiences with 93% of frequent cruisers and 83% of first time cruisers reporting high levels of satisfaction.

  • Sixty-nine percent of frequent cruisers and 63% of first time cruisers rated their cruise vacation as better than other vacations.

  • Ninety-five percent of frequent cruisers and 82% of first time cruisers said they intend to cruise again.

So what is it that made 4.4 million people choose to cruise in 1995 and prompts 71 million others to dream of taking one?

  • First, it offers the best buy for the tourist's money. The all inclusive pricing plan provides a private room with bath, all meals, entertainment, and use of all public rooms and facilities. All this for a per diem rate that could not be thought of if one where to stay at a land resort and pay for each of the above separately. For example the per diem rate for Holland America ships, a premium line, is in the $300-$400 range for an outside stateroom, rack rate, high season.[10] Depending on the class and exclusivity of service this can vary from a high of $600 plus to a low of $200-$100.[10]

  • Second, you are going to visit different places and experience what they have to offer. Many cruisers simply cruise to travel to foreign places they have never been. Doing this by ship simply eliminates many of the details and headaches of planning and coordinating an extensive land tour. The only thing you must do is get back on board before the ship sails to the next port. While in port you have the choice of seeing the local sights or taking a day tour to the interior. Some people have seen the better part of the globe using this method. As previously mentioned there are no bags to drag with you and there is always a reserved dinner table and room for you back at the ship.

  • Third, there is a certain air of romance and adventure to taking a cruise. You will do things you normally would not do if you were at some land resort: walking the deck every night after dinner, standing at the rail with your mate looking out to sea or going forward under the bridge late before turning in where it is completely void of light and the stars shine like diamonds across a black velvet skyscape. You feel the isolation and distance the ship has put between you and the life you have temporarily left as those pressures, problems and accompanied stress begin to fade away.

  • Fourth, you will meet many new people leading to lasting friendships. Taking a cruise is a social experience as much as a traveling one. People on a cruise seem to be more friendly and outgoing than anywhere else. Perhaps it is a kind of comradeship of being together on the same ship, the lifting of those everyday pressures you left behind or the cordial and celebrating atmosphere set by the Captain at the Welcome Aboard Party and Dinner. For whatever the reason, you will sense this atmosphere and be wanting to join in and introduce yourselves to others.

  • Fifth, the old fears of boredom, claustrophobia and sea sickness are no longer valid. There is more activity offered concurrently aboard a cruise ship than any other comparable resort. Staterooms once extremely limited, offer much more space in the new ships and the huge public rooms and vast amounts of open space provide one with a sense of being on a large floating resort unlimited by the sea. No matter how steady the ship, a few people will be prone to sea sickness; but with today's medicines and a ship's doctor on board with a staff and fully equipped facility, any sea sickness should pass quickly.

The following is a list of items that greatly influenced or had an impact on the evolution of the cruise trade. They are a mix of politically motivated government actions, technological advancements and impacting events or happenings. Their cause and predictability are examined within the time frame in which they occurred and not from the beginning of time span covered in this paper. Some may merit further analysis for possible application to the fostering of space tourism; others are cruise trade unique. All should be analyzed as a whole for what might be expected and unexpected in the years ahead for space tourism:

  • Scheduled trans-Atlantic Mail Service - This international requirement helped finance the first regularly scheduled passenger service between America and Europe.... Government Action; an example of a government service let contract spawning a new commercial service.

  • Propellers and Iron Hulls - Paddle wheels and wooden hulls are replaced by screw propellers and iron hulls.... Developed screw and metallurgical technology provides a more efficient and sturdier propulsion system complemented with a stronger hull to withstand the increased associated forces.

  • Immigration to the New World - The flood of European immigrants required the building and sailing of enough ships to meet the demand to cross.... Political Government Action; the U.S. opens its doors to Europeans.

  • Steam Turbine - Charles Parson's perfection and demonstration of the steam turbine opens the way for wide spread application of this new technology.... Technological Advancement; application greatly increases the speed and reduces the time for large ships to cross the North Atlantic.

  • Titanic Disaster - Titanic collides with iceberg and sinks with loss of 1,500 souls. Afterward a change in regulations requires all ships to provide a seat in a lifeboat for every soul on board.... An Unexpected Event; the Titanic changed over night how safety considerations are implemented at sea and became the thought process still in use today for assuring safe designs and accommodations are implemented in other transportation modes and mediums.

  • Immigration Limitation Act - This act stemmed the tide of immigrants leaving a void in steerage class.... Political Government Action; the U.S. partially closes its doors to immigrants.

  • America/Europe Tourism and Business Travel - Travel between shores in both directions by Americans and Europeans fills void left by immigrants.... Predicted to happen; shipping companies offer Tourist Third Cabin service to lure masses to travel abroad.

  • International Competition - Competition in ship design and performance led to development of new ship technology and building practices which produced larger, faster ships with more lavish interior designs and luxurious accommodations.. .. Predicted to happen; competition pushes the state-of-the-art leading to technological developments and new architectural designs.

  • Conversion from Coal to Oil - Oil becomes the main fuel to fire the boilers. The availability of cheap bunker oil is faster to load, easier to store and much cleaner to handle and burn.... Technological Advancement; growth of petroleum industry spawns several new markets for its products.

  • Depression - Ships become too costly for private enterprise and the acquisition of new builds and their operation are aided by government backed financing and subsidies.... Foreseeable, but un-heeded event; lack of business self constraint and government controls. As a result, private financing of ship building reaches its zenith.

  • Seam Welded Hull - Welding technology replaces the riveting of structural members and over lapping plates as the preferred method of hull construction....Technological Advancement; perfection of this process provides a more water tight, lighter and stronger hull.

  • Air Travel - The jet liner becomes the preferred way to travel between continents and ships must find new markets. .... Predictable event; plush accommodations and service for a few hours made the trip enjoyable for tourists with more time to be spent at destination, and intercontinental business travelers had to fly to remain competitive.

  • A Surge of Entrepreneurs - Key leaders recognize void left by shutdown of trans-Atlantic passenger trade and expand cruise operations in Caribbean and other exotic areas on the globe.... Foreseeable happening; when a void is created and there is a need for a supplier, generally a race ensues between those with the vision, will and resources to fill it.

  • Conversion to Diesel Electric - The steam turbine driven power plants are replaced with much more efficient and economical diesel electric power trains.... Technological Advancement; with speed no longer the chief performance factor, the application of diesel electric becomes the preferred method of propulsion for leisure cruising.

  • Post War Baby Boom - This generation comes of age with money for vacations and leisure travel.... Definitely Foreseeable and Predicable; the children of the baby boomers are the next big potential tourist market to be studied.

  • Mass Production of a Ship Class - Until mass cruising, with the exception of early trans-Atlantic service, ships were generally one of a kind or built in pairs.... Ships of today's classes number from four to eight. This greatly reduces the unit acquisition and operating costs through an extended economy of scale.

  • Growth in the World Economy - Although North America is by far the largest cruise market, other developed countries fuel the travel and tourism markets.... Predictable; post WW-II economy's peaks have out distanced valleys providing a general upward growth period that, on average, should continue.

  • Association/Industry ties - Combined efforts lead to successful marketing of world cruise trade.... Predictable; pooling of resources for organizations to lobby for the industries interests usually provides positive results.

  • Markets Expand - Existing markets continue to expand and new markets develop.... Predictable; surveys continue to show wide spread interest in cruise travel in many places on the globe. Asia is being targeted as the next big market to develop.

  • Next Technology Advancement - The seventh and eighth of the Carnival Cruise Line's Fantasy Class ships will employ the Azipod propulsion system. The electrical motors that drive the main propellers are contained in crew accessible pods mounted outside the hull. This design allows the elimination of drive shafts, variable pitch propellers and rudders. The direct drive motor/propeller unit is capable of rotating 180 degrees for steering and reversal of direction. The cables that transmit the current from the diesel electric generators are routed through the pod's rotatable mounting shaft.... This advanced design will increase efficiency by eliminating frictional shaft losses, produce a reduction in fuel consumption costs, eliminate component weights and further reduce ship vibrations.

In the 1970's a new cruising concept was born by the Arison family that revolutionized the cruise industry. In essence it was based on the premise that one should have fun on a cruise in an informal atmosphere. Hence Carnival Cruise Line was founded with three previously owned steam ships renamed the Carnival, Marti Gras and Festivale. The names were selected purposely to promote a party connotation and they were marketed as the "fun ships". This concept has become so popular that it has literately opened-up cruising to the masses. Carnival has propelled itself to the top of the cruise industry in just a few short years. The phenomenal success of the Line has allowed Carnival Corporation to acquire other cruise lines and expand its operations. Carnival Corporation currently has four cruise line divisions that cover the market spectrum of cruising: Carnival Cruise Line accommodating the mass or contemporary segment, Holland America accommodating the premium segment, Seabourn accommodating the luxury segment, and Windstar a market niche. Together these divisions accounted for $2 billion in revenues, accommodating 1,543,000 passengers for 9,201,000 cruise days in 1995. Micky Arison, the Chairman of The Board announced in the 1995 annual report that the corporation had achieved its fourth consecutive year of record earnings. At the end of 1995, Carnival Corporation had outstanding contracts for the construction of seven new ships at an estimated cost of $2.1 billion.[5]


Try to visualize a cruise ship sailing the oceans of space, in a different form, but with all the accommodations, services and amenities of a modern day cruise ship like the Maasdam. If this is difficult put yourself on the Columbia, one of Cunard's original barks, crossing the North Atlantic some 156 years ago. Then think how that same person would be amazed to make the same trip or take a cruise to some exotic area on one of today's new ships. Now think of the Space Shuttle as the bark of a different medium. The Space Shuttle has been around since 1981 with technology available to accommodate approximately seventy people in a cargo bay passenger cabin. For various political and cost reasons this has not been done, but the basic capability is there along with the technology to support such an endeavor. The Space Shuttle is the reference point toward the future of space tourism.

The form of this space cruise ship will be radically different from that of the Maasdam although its function will be nearly identical. The ship will be pressurized with a mixed Nitrogen-Oxygen life supporting atmosphere and may offer a floating zero gravity or a gradient from zero to some fraction or whole of Earth's gravity. The form of gravity selected will influence the different activities offered and the ensuing designs to support them. On the whole, people will be able to do and enjoy much of the same activities they do on a water based ship. Assuming some gravity will be present, there will be: swimming pools; walking decks; spas, including the zero gravity massage; all kinds of new games and sports that take advantage of zero or partial gravity; dancing; Earth and Lunar viewing and star gazing the Cosmos; and even space walking in a pressurized suit outside the confines of the ship. Passengers will enjoy a new form of gourmet dining with daily fresh vegetables from the ship's Hydroponic Greenhouse. Broadway and Vegas style shows will be choreographed and costumed on a more spectacular stage making use of the new freedom and flexibility of a provided gravity gradient. As on today's water based cruise ships there will be more than you can do and experience in the time allowed. There should be no fears or anxieties of boredom and claustrophobia and the current medicines used to combat the initial period of space sickness should be perfected by then.

A trans-Lunar space cruise has been chosen as a reference; its duration is approximately one week or the length of a typical Caribbean cruise out of Florida. We take-off in one of two shuttle craft from Florida's commercial space port to rendezvous with the spaceship in its service orbit around the Earth. Each shuttle craft carries 600 new passengers, a number of entertainers, crew members, associated baggage and supplies for the next trans-Lunar cruise. The shuttle craft achieve orbit in a manner of minutes, but take another hour to approach and dock with the spaceship. It takes about another hour to transfer all passengers to the ship and approximately six hours to completely transfer all supplies, and service and fuel the ship. Following a slightly different general process of boarding a water based ship you will assemble in the ship's showroom and lounges where you will take your assigned chairs for a safety orientation lecture, then buckle-up for departure and experience the propulsive forces as the ship leaves Earth orbit on a Lunar rendezvous trajectory. After a short period, the engines are shutdown and you are released to be free to roam the ship, familiarize yourself with the lay-out and accommodations and begin to enjoy this great voyage.

For the next two and a half days you will cruise toward the Moon and away from the Earth noticing the Earth's diminished size as the Moon becomes larger. While on this leg of your voyage you will experience your first gourmet meals in space, space games, dancing, stage productions, cosmos gazing and many more first time activities. You will be required to return to your assigned seat as we prepare to slow down and fall into Lunar orbit as you will when ever the ship's main propulsion system is activated. You experience a similar force as the ship changes velocity and enters Lunar orbit.

The ship will remain in orbit around the moon for the next twenty-four hours. During this period you will be transported to the Lunar surface for a walk on the moon and experience the same thrill and sensations the Apollo Astronauts did generations ago. The ship carries four life-craft each capable of transporting 400 souls (a total of 1,200 passengers plus 400 crew) and three of these craft are used to ferry the passengers and assigned crew to the Lunar surface and return. The life-craft you are assigned to will depend on which Lunar tour you signed up for as each will land at a different area of interest, i.e., Tranquility Base, a Lunar crater, the International Research Station, etc. Some weight conscious engineer might propose these craft should be parked and left in Lunar orbit, but remember the Titanic and you will agree the price in fuel to haul them back and forth on every cruise is far cheaper than the price for the loss of 1,600 souls. These life-craft will be capable of safely returning to low Earth orbit from any point in the voyage. After the last excursion party has returned to the ship, we again assume our assigned positions and begin our journey back to Earth. Another two and a half days will pass before returning to Earth orbit which gives you time to take advantage of those ships activities you did not have time to do on the front leg of your journey including a space walk outside the ship.

After the cruise ship is captured by the Earth's gravitational pull and is maneuvered into its servicing orbit, you are met by and transferred to the shuttle craft. As the shuttle craft returns to Earth, you experience mixed emotions of both joy and sadness; the joy of returning home to tell everyone of this great experience and the sadness of it being over too soon. However, you will be comforted to know that the first tourist cruise to Mars is already in the final preparation stage.


Obviously the voyage just described is where we anticipate the space tourism industry will arrive some day. A likely scenario to that point includes the following major developments:

Initially, there could be rocket planes (X-15 like capabilities) with aerodynamic characteristics, and rocket boosted ballistic capsules (a Redstone-Mercury down range type ride) accommodating a few tourists to the fringes of space. These rides would afford the adventurer a view of the Earth's curvature and dark space, and a few minutes of weightlessness. The small economy of scale would make these rides very expensive and only a small percentage of the populace would be able to afford the price of a ticket.

Orbital flights of 2 to 3 orbits lasting 3 to 4.5 hours could come next. These tours would provide the traveler with a panoramic view of the Earth's continents and oceans, spectacular sunsets and sunrises when crossing the Earth's Sun terminator, the darkness of space, clear undistorted views of the Cosmos, and the experience of weightlessness for a few hours. These trips also would be very expensive and ticket prices would still be high allowing only the relatively wealthy to go. The economy of scale would be higher (about 50 people per flight) than the non-orbital rides, but so also would be the costs.

Surveys have shown people desire a destination in space at which they would reside for at least several days; to provide such destinations, orbiting hotels and theme parks are envisioned. The lifting of materials and construction of these facilities would be costly, but a large economy of scale is possible. In time, as experience is gained and the market expands, the unit costs would be lowered to a point where relatively large numbers of people could be accommodated at a relatively affordable price. This would provide the operator, for the first time from space, a continuous revenue stream from tourism. The on-orbit facility would provide its guests with all the amenities of a terrestrial resort, plus those new activities unique to space. To complement this affordable hotel or theme park, a large scale transportation system must be in operation. Initially, this system would be capable of transporting 500 or more tourists and supplies each week to and from this orbiting space vacation resort. Once people experience the thrill of a vacation in space and see the clear image of the Moon, as if they almost could reach out and touch it, they will yearn for a Lunar space voyage.

I hope it will not take as long to advance from the Space Shuttle to the envisioned space cruise ship as it did from Cunard's barks to today's cruise ships. But, like the path that led to the development of the cruise industry, there will be several predictable and some unpredictable events along the way. Cunard had a vision in 1840, but he could not possibly have predicted the events and happenings or their sequence that took place over the years to make the cruise industry what it is today. If we could halve the time or optimistically quarter it, we might expect something like the Lunar voyage described above within the next 40 years.

Beginning now and until that day arrives a course must be set to assure the end product is eventually realized. In doing this we should keep focused on the main objective, but have our side vision directed toward related actions by the Federal government and the developments of other nations and businesses that may have an impact on the development of space tourism. History shows that some events happen by design, others by chance and others with no apparent foreseeable reason except when examined in retrospect. The course taken should be flexible enough to allow necessary alterations as events take place.

Success will depend on the support and actions of the Federal government; several technological developments by industry; the ability of entrepreneurs to raise large sums of money; and the expressed desire, financial ability and will of the general populace to travel to space.

In space, people are the ultimate payload. There are over five billion of us on our planet. We don't cost hundreds of millions to build; instead we reproduce ourselves. By sheer economy of scale we have the potential to drive the unit cost down to an acceptable level to accommodate a vibrant and robust space tourism industry, just as we did for the cruise industry. With this in mind, our efforts to develop advanced space transportation systems should be, in part, focused on developing large personnel transporters to low Earth orbit and the means to construct and outfit space ships in low Earth orbit capable of accommodating a thousand or more tourists that will eventually make space voyages to our Moon and nearest planets.

Reading this paper should inspire those who have not taken a cruise to do so as well as to impart to the reader what can be taken from the evolution of the cruise industry and applied to making space tourism happen in the foreseeable future. The cruise business continues to grow and flourish through its continued efforts to improve accommodations and services, develop and utilize new technology, and lower acquisition and operating costs. Taking a cruise is the best method to further study the developed industry being applied as the analog for the space entity it will help develop.



ma Maasdam ISS

55, 451 tons GRT 460 tons
n/a Weight on orbit 475 tons
720 ft. Length 290 ft.
101 ft. Breadth 356 ft.
184 ft. (keel to mast) Height 145 ft.
20.0 knots Service speed/Velocity 17,400 mph
13 Decks Cupola (bridge) Node 1
n/a Pressurized Volume 18 modules/46,000 cu. ft.
2 electric 16,300 hp motors Main propulsion 2[919 lb. = 662 lb.] thrust
2 variable pitch propellers/rudders Steering gimbaled, rocket engines
3 bow/stern thrusters Maneuvering 84 pitch, roll and yaw
2 Sperry stabilizers Attitude Control thrusters
Diesel oil/O2 Fuel/Oxidizer UDMH/NTO
5 GMT Sulzer Diesel engines
3 x 8cylZA40s
2 x 12cylZAL40s
Electric Generation 31,037 sq. ft. total solar array area
33.6 mega-Watts Total Power 110 kilo-Watts
radar, speed log, gyro and magnetic compasses, GPS, Loran, Satnav, and autopilot Navigation Gear star trackers, GPS
633 Staterooms n/a
1,266 Passengers n/a
302 Crew's Quarters 2 habitat modules
604 Crew 7
n/a Experiments 39 racks plus 14 exposed facilities
14 Lifeboats/craft 2
1,100/700 gal. per day H2O Production/Usage 210 gal. from Shuttle fuel cells + 552 gal. cargo, per year/6597 gal. per year*
3,000 tons of fuel, food and supplies every two weeks Logistics 18.7 tons propellant, food, H2O, O2, clothing per year
sewage treatment, treated H2O discharge, burned ash and recyclables off-loaded Waste Treatment 96% H2O recovered from hygiene and life support use, compressed solids off-loaded
Earth's oceans and seas Range +51 degrees Latitude @220 n.m. altitude

(1) one Gross Registered Ton (GRT) equals 100 cubic feet of enclosed space
(2) NASA supplied preliminary data based on post assembly complete
(3) delivered to loads, base on minimum average power at end of solar array life
(4) excluding Russian contribution
(5) assumes 6 to 7 crew
  1. John Maxtone-Graham, "The Only Way To Cross", Macmillan Publishing Co., 1972 and "Liners To The Sun", Macmillan Publishing Co.,1985; history of crossing and cruising
  2. Holland America Line, Seattle, WA; various printed materials of ships services, accommodations, menus, itineraries, keyed drawing of ms Maasdam and engineering/operations data.
  3. Ryndam III: Generations of Excellence, Holland America Line, International Voyager Media Limited Partnership, Miami FL, 1994.
  4. Technical discussion with Pieter Rijkaart, Holland America Line, September 13, 1996.
  5. 1995 Annual Report, Carnival Corporation
  6. CLIA, New York, NY; mission statement and supporting material.
  7. ASTA, Alexandria,VA; mission statement and supporting material.
  8. TIA, New York, NY; Washington, DC; mission statement and supporting material.
  9. CLIA Market Profile, Cruising Dynamics and Segmentation Studies; August, 1996.
  10. "Cruise and Vacation Views", July/August 1996; cruise per diem rates.
Special thanks to Sidney Blank, Holland America Line, for supplying various materials and names of other helpful staff.
R L Haltermann, 30 November 1996, "Evolution of the Modern Cruise Trade and Its Application to Space Tourism", Space Transportation Assocation.
Also downloadable from of the modern cruise trade and its application to space tourism.shtml

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