Australian cruise industry resists wave of bad press

The cruise industry has played down the impact of recent negative publicity caused by a spate of gastrointestinal illness at sea and the lingering spectre of the Costa Concordia.

Just three weeks ago, Royal Caribbean’s Explorer of the Seas made headlines as more than 600 of its passengers and crew were struck by norovirus during a 10-day Caribbean cruise.

Within days, that incident was followed by another aboard Princess Cruises’ Caribbean Princess, with more than 160 of its 3,104 passengers falling ill.

Both episodes made headlines, with comparisons being drawn with last year’s infamous “poop cruise” aboard Carnival Triumph.

Australian cruise industry resists wave of bad presse Travel Weekly

300 become ill on cruise ship

Royal Caribbean is singlehandedly killing your faint remaining desire to still take a cruise after the Costa Concordia. 300 passenger and crew members were suffering from vomiting and diarrhea as the ship sailed into San Juan, Puerto Rico on Saturday. It’s the the second major health incident for the cruise line in just a month. The Center for Disease Control is investigating, and the ship is being sanitized, thankfully.

300 become ill on cruise ship CNN Travel

The battle against stomach bugs

It’s been an annus horribilus for the cruise industry.

Highly publicised mechanical problems, an onboard fire, cancellations, deaths at sea and outbreaks of sickness have followed the Costa Concordia disaster to seriously mar the reputation of the otherwise booming industry.

Images of passengers living in filthy conditions and begging to be taken off a ship drifting at sea are not exactly the makings of travel wish-lists.

Nor are reports of passengers lying in corridors or being carried off ships because they’re too sick to do anything else; it’s a public relations nightmare.

The battle against stomach bugs Stuff