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Will COVID-19 sink the cruise industry?

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From The Economist:

The coronavirus may sink the cruise-ship business

“Once sold as the safe and easy way to see the world, cruise ships have come to be seen as diseased-infested prison hulks that trap holidaymakers at sea. Even more than airlines, which have almost completely shut down across the world as demand for air travel collapses, the cruise business may have most to lose from the pandemic.


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The 'Traveling with Bruce' blog just made a great case for using cruise ships as hospitals. When compared to NY's temporary hospitals set up in parks and convention centers, ships make a lot of sense.

 Now that Trump says 100,000 dead will be the best case scenario, the  number of beds needed could top 1 million. How will you feed all these people? Cruise ships feed thousands every day, and could be converted very quickly. 500 cruise ships world wide are sitting empty.


They would love to make some money and charter their ships to the government , not just in the US , but world wide. This could generate some much needed good will for the cruise industry.


Another point he made was about the Navy ship Comfort. Its over 40 years old , started life as an oil tanker and needed tugs to dock. Maybe its time for a purpose built , LNG clean burning, modern hospital ship.


I feel that we were wholly unprepared for this virus. We were warned! We have to learn to listen to experts. Every Disaster Movie starts with everyone ignoring the scientist . 

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Jimdalva, you are right about ignoring the experts and not being prepared! 

Cruise ship as hospitals could work, especially if they were used for non-coronavirus patients which is safer, and would open up more room in traditional hospitals for coronavirus patients. Remember, during wars (including the Falklands) cruise ships were used by the military for transport. So why not for basic hospital rooms now.

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20 hours ago, AmericanGoldfinch said:

An article triggered, in part, by Carnival's Form 10-K filing late last week.  It remains to be seen whether Carnival's historical resilience will continue through the current, unprecedented events. 


Carnival’s struggle to survive the coronavirus as outbreak wipes out the cruise industry

A very interesting story that raises a number of issues for anyone with a current booking, or contemplating making one for the post-COVID-19 period. If holding a future booking, should we wait it out in the hopes that the cruise will take place or the cruise line holding our reservation will be financially strong enough to refund our money? And, if thinking about making a future booking, how long should we wait before making it to avoid losing our money should some or most cruise lines go insolvent?

A related question is which cruise lines are the most likely to survive, and which ones are in the weakest financial position to survive going forward. Any views out there?


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