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Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Nautical terms on a cruise ship - explained

Continuing my series of posts about top tips for first time cruisers I thought it might be useful if I put together a short guide about some of the terms that commonly get used by travel agents or cruise lines whilst talking about cruises and ships in general. A lot of them you could probably figure out but some of them can be a bit confusing, hopefully this guide will help.

Aft - Towards the back of the ship

Berth - 1. A space needed to move a ship around
            2. the dock or pier
            3. Your cabin

Bow - The front of the ship

Bridge - The command centre of the ship. Located at the front of the ship, this is where the ship is piloted from. The Captains cabins will always be situated just behind here.

Bulkhead - A wall/walls dividing the ship into sections that can be sealed shut in the event of fire/flooding.

Course - The direction your cruise ship is heading in.

Disembark - To leave the ship

Draft - How far down in the water the cruise ship sits once it's taken on all it's supplies and passengers

Embark - To get onto the ship

Fathom - This is a measurement of the depth of water. 1 fathom = 6ft

Forward - The front part of the ship

Galley - A kitchen, where all the food is prepared

Gangway - A ramp that allows passengers to enter and leave this ship

Hull - The outside of the ship

Itinerary - A list of destinations you will visit on your cruise.

Knot - 1 Knot = 1.5 land miles or 1 nautical mile, (not sure why a nautical mile is longer than a land mile)

List - A sudden tilt to one side as in a storm  - "The ship was listing quite badly"

Mast - The pole that supports the sails and all the rigging. That doesn't really apply to most modern cruise ships although for the old fashioned amongst you check out my cruise deals for a company called Star Clippers.

Midships - The central part of the ship

OBC - On Board Credit - Money given by the cruise line that can only be spent onboard. See this guide here for more information on it.

Obstructed view - An outside or balcony cabin with a lifeboat hanging outside your cabin. Click here for more details

Onboard - Anything that is/will happen on your cruise ship

Pitch - The way the ship moves up and down in the water

Port - The left side of the ship

Pilot - The Captain of the ship

Stabilizers - These come out from the side of the ship and limit the rocking of the ship in rough weather. Almost all big cruise ships come with these nowadays

Starboard - The right side of the ship

Stern - The very back of the ship

Tender - A small boat used to ferry passengers to and from a port when the port in question is too small to hold a large cruise ship.

I think that about covers it but if anyone can think of any terms I've missed or you want to ask me the definition of a term feel free to post them below.

Happy cruising.

1 comment:

  1. Port/Starboard are only left/right when facing the bow. If you're facing aft, the directions are reversed.