US Security Checks To Impinge on Cruisers

December 10, 2014

If you’ve ever travelled to the US via plane before then you’re bound to be familiar with the hassle of airport security, which is why many holidaymakers opt for a more hassle-free experience…. such as going on a cruise.

For frequent cruisers however the rules could be set to change because following a consultation with the Transportation Security Administration, the US Coast Guard is considering new airport-style security measures on cruise ships.

This would include a series of pre-boarding screening requirements for passengers, crew members and visitors; with all luggage being screened for illegal or dangerous substances or devices.

Although many cruise ships already have various security procedures in place, the new rules would adopt a standardised screening approach that provides a “consistent layer of security at terminals throughout the United States”.

However, it’s widely known to travellers that US security is, shall we say….. strict? With many foreign travellers, including Brits, facing long and arduous security checks upon entering the country.

We’ve our fingers crossed that such difficulties don’t arise for passengers going through security on cruise ships – should the proposed rules be set in place. It won’t exactly be the greatest way to start or finish a cruise!

Speaking to the Federal Register, the Coast Guard has offered assurances that the prohibited items list will be less restrictive than that of its American counterpart because they pose less of a danger to the public than on a plane – where they “can be used as a missile”.

“The goal of the prohibited items list is not to completely eliminate all possible risks,” the agency continued.

“Items such as steak knives or ice axes could be used to create a transportation security incident, but they are readily available to cruise ship passengers for recreational and other purposes and thus it would be ineffective to prohibit them upon boarding.”

At present, talk of the new measures is only applicable to the US. In the meantime catching a cruise from the UK may sounds like a much more hassle free option to us, with many sailing to various exotic destinations around the world.

However, before the proposed rules go ahead, the public does have ninety days to leave their feedback.

Would you be in favour of new security procedures for boarding cruise ships?