By Arnt Meyer. type of ships. Published at Tuesday, April 16th, 2019 - 14:36:45 PM.
In two short decades (1988-2009) the largest class cruise ships have grown a third longer (268 m to 360 m) almost doubled their widths (32.2 m to 60.5 m) doubled the total passengers (2744 to 5400) and tripled in weight (73000 GT to 225000 GT). Also the megaships went from a single deck with verandas to all decks with verandas. Whereas the golden age of ocean liners has faded the golden age of cruise ships may well be these recent decades and decades to come.
With the advent of large passenger jet aircraft in the 1960s intercontinental travelers switched from ships to planes sending the ocean liner trade into a terminal decline. Certain characteristics of older ocean liners made them unsuitable for cruising duties such as high fuel consumption deep draught preventing them from entering shallow ports and cabins (often windowless) designed to maximize passenger numbers rather than comfort.
Queen Elizabeth 2 also inaugurated one-class cruising where all passengers received the same quality berthing and facilities. This revitalized the market as the appeal of luxury cruising began to catch on on both sides of the Atlantic. The 1970s television series Love Boat helped to popularize the concept as a romantic opportunity for couples. Another ship to make this transition was SS Norway originally the ocean liner SS France and later converted to cruising duties as the Caribbeans first super-ship.
Some cruise lines have specialties for example Saga Cruises only allows passengers over 50 years old aboard their ships and Star Clippers and formerly Windjammer Barefoot Cruises and Windstar Cruises only operate tall ships. Regent Seven Seas Cruises operates medium-sized vessels—smaller than the megaships of Carnival and Royal Caribbean—designed such that 90% of their suites are balconies. Several specialty lines offer expedition cruising or only operate small ships visiting certain destinations such as the Arctic and Antarctica or the Galápagos Islands. John W. Brown which formerly operated as part of the United States Merchant Marine during World War II before being converted to a museum ship still gets underway several times a year for six-hour Living History Cruises that take the ship through Baltimore Harbor down the Patapsco River and into the Chesapeake Bay and she is also the largest cruise ship operating under the American flag on the United States East Coast.
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