Innovative Environmental Practices in the Cruise Ship Industry


As a result of environmental concerns, including air and water pollution caused by waste disposal in the sea and emissions released into the air, the cruise ship industry has utilized advanced technology to develop solutions. For instance, new waves of cleaner-running ships have been introduced. A notable example is the environmentally friendly dry cleaning system retrofitted by Carnival, which employs eco-friendly detergents as a green alternative to traditional dry cleaning methods (Horc, 2008).

Carnival has also launched the 'Carnival Spirit,' featuring a highly efficient diesel-electric propulsion system known as the 'Enviro-Engine.' This innovation is designed to nearly eliminate visible smokestack emissions. Additionally, further research in collaboration with Finnish engine-maker NSD may soon yield a diesel-electric engine that reduces unseen gases, such as carbon dioxide, a by-product of cruise ship combustion.

Efforts to mitigate airborne emissions include adopting alternative engine technology. General Electric’s gas-turbine system, adapted from jet engines like those powering Boeing 767s, is now used in Radiance class vessels for its efficiency.

With cruise liners resembling mini-cities, various career opportunities arise. Positions include the General Manager Hotel (also known as the Hotel Manager), responsible for overseeing operations in hotels, motels, resorts, or cruise ships, excluding line officers (Colbert, 2004). The Chief Engineer, also known as the Director of Engineering and Building Engineer, oversees mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection operations. Additionally, Deckhands (or Seamen) perform maintenance duties and operate equipment on ship decks, working on vessels ranging from river barges to ocean liners.

The boat pilot, also known as the canal pilot, river pilot, or harbor pilot, expertly guides ships in and out of harbors, along rivers, and through straits and other confined waterways. Another notable role is the Gentleman Host, sometimes referred to as the Dance Host or Ambassador Host, who accompanies and dances with guests aboard cruise ships.

Cruise ship industries have developed various marketing strategies, including enhancing relationships with travel agencies to better inform potential customers about their services. This approach aims to increase market awareness, as exemplified by the Royal Caribbean cruise line (The Cruise Travel Magazine, 2001).

Some cruise liners have also adopted cost-effective strategies, such as increasing advertisement frequency during the peak seasons of destinations and targeting specific ads at adults aged 25-54. These measures are designed to reach sales goals and maximize gross profit (Dowling, 2006).

Investing in quality customer service is crucial, as it ultimately pays off by promoting the image of the cruise ship and positively impacting customer satisfaction. Strong customer relations are vital, as increased customer commitment leads to greater loyalty.

Conversely, poor customer service, such as inadequate service quality, negatively influences customer satisfaction and loyalty, leading to decreased sales and profits in the cruise ship industry. Hence, subpar services result in weaker customer satisfaction, diminished brand commitment, and a reduced likelihood of repeat purchases.

Effective communication and information dissemination are crucial tools for social interaction and, more importantly, for safety at work. Ineffective communication can adversely affect the decision-making process in ship-board management (Dowling, 2006). This is especially important on ships with multinational crews from diverse cultural backgrounds and languages. Effective communication abilities are key to improving the crew’s social life, helping to reduce social isolation. Failure to address this can lead to serious consequences like suicide, depression, or addictive behaviors. Additionally, miscommunication and misunderstandings can result in slow decision-making.

The concept of control in the cruise ship industry primarily involves environmental and policy regulations. These act as the dominant form of environmental control, responding to environmental pollution concerns. Regulations require polluters to meet specific pollution reduction targets and often mandate the installation and use of specific types of equipment to reduce emissions (European Environmental Agency, 2004). From a management perspective, this approach is based on the prescription of rules and standards, along with the use of sanctions to ensure compliance.


  1. Colbert, J. (2004). Career opportunities in the Travel Industry. New York, NY: Facts on File, Inc.
  2. Dowling, R. K. (2006). Cruise Ship Tourism. Wallingford, UK: CAB International.
  3. Horc, J. (2008). Cultural and Gender diversities affecting the ship/port interface. Malmö, Sweden: Maritime Education and Training Efforts to Bridge Diversity Gaps.
  4. The Cruise Travel Magazine. (2001). Lakeside Publishing Co.