Glossary

A

aboard
onboard, or on the ship; the opposite of ashore. Used when referring to being or doing something on the ship

about
To turn the ship around

abreast
Alongside something, usually another ship or a dock

add-on
An additional charge to the cruise fare that usually refers to airfare, transfers, or land tours

aft
The back of the ship

air/sea package
A package deal that includes the cruise price, airfare, and transfers between the airport and the ship

all hands
All the crewmembers working aboard the ship

alternative restaurant
A smaller onboard restaurant where guests can choose to eat, often for a small fee

amidships
The middle section of the ship

ashore
On land; the opposite of aboard

astern
Toward the aft (back of the ship), or behind the ship

B

beam
The width of the ship at its widest point, usually right across the middle section of the ship
bearing

The compass direction the ship is sailing, expressed in degrees

berth
A bed; or the place where the ship is docked in port

bow
The front part of the ship

bridge
The location where the captain and crew controls the ship-where navigation and steering occur

bulkhead
The structural wall in the interior of the ship

buoy
A marker or float used to identify navigational landmarks or channels

C

cabin
A passenger room onboard the ship-sometimes called a stateroom

cabin steward
The person who cleans the cabin

cast off
To release the ship from her mooring

category
The price level of a cabin based on location, size, and amenities

channel
The deepest part of a river or harbor

companionway
A stairway inside the ship that connects the deck levels

course
The ship’s route from one port to the next

cruise director
Head of the ship’s entertainment staff, often emcees events

D

davit
A steel structure that hoist lifeboats over the side of the ship

debark
To go ashore

deck
Each level (floor) of the ship

disembark
To leave the ship and go ashore

dinner seating
The time a passenger is assigned to a particular dining venue on the ship

dock
A place to moor the ship

draft
The depth of water needed to sail so that the ship doesn’t touch the ocean floor (The draft is measured from the waterline to the lowest part of the ship,

usually the keel)

E

embark
To go aboard the ship

F

fantail
The rear overhang of a ship (shaped like a duck’s bill)

fathom
Measurement of water depth (One fathom equals six feet.)

first seating
The earlier of two meal servings (dinner seatings) in the ship’s main dining room-also referred to as the main seating

fleet
A number of ships under the same ownership

FlowRider
Onboard surf pool on Royal Caribbean ships

fore, forward
The area toward the bow of the ship

Freestyle Cruising
Norwegian Cruise Line’s style of cruising, featuring casual dress and no set dinner times

Fun Ships
Name for Carnival’s cruise ships

funnel
The ship’s smokestack

G

galley
The ship’s kitchen

gangway
Ramp or stairway between the ship and the shore while the ship is docked

gross registered ton (grt)
A measurement of enclosed passenger space, including the space in cabins, lounges, showrooms, and dining rooms. This does not apply to open

spaces such as decks and pool areas (unless, of course, they are enclosed)

guarantee
A cruise reservation in which one pays for a certain category cabin, but is not given a cabin number. Passengers often take this type of reservation with

the hopes of getting upgraded to a higher category

H

hand
A crewmember

head
A bathroom

helm
The ship’s steering equipment, located in the bridge

hold
The ship’s cargo area

hotel manager
Shipboard director of hotel operations such as housekeeping and passenger services

hull
The outside shell of the ship from the main deck down to the keel

I

inside cabin
A stateroom that does not have a porthole, window, or balcony

J

K

keel
The chief structure of the ship that extends lengthwise along the center of the ship’s bottom-the ship’s backbone

knot
The measurement of the ship’s speed. One knot is one nautical mile per hour

L

latitude
The distance north or south of the equator expressed in degrees

league
A unit of measurement equal to 3.45 nautical miles

leeward
The side of an island or ship that is sheltered from the wind

lines
The ropes used to tie up the ship while it is at the dock

longitude
The distance east or west of the prime meridian expressed in degrees

M

maiden voyage
The first voyage of a new ship

maiden call
The first port-of-call on the ship’s maiden voyage

master
The person who is in charge of the ship; the captain

mini-suite
The smallest, most affordable suite on a ship, often with just a curtain dividing the living and sleeping areas

moor
To hold the ship in place with lines at a berth

muster
To assemble the passengers and crew

muster station
A meeting place onboard the ship that usually refers to the area where one would go to get into the lifeboats in case of an emergency

N

nautical mile
A unit of measurement equal to one-sixtieth of a degree of the earth’s circumference; it’s measured in the U.S. as 6,080.2 feet or internationally as

6,076.1 feet

O

oceanview cabin
An outside cabin with a large porthole window or a verandah

onboard
Located on the ship; carried or used on the vessel

open seating
A dinner seating in which tables are not assigned

outside cabin
A stateroom with a porthole, window, or balcony that overlooks the ocean-also referred to as an oceanview cabin

P

passageway
A hallway inside the ship

passenger space ratio
The number of gross registered tons (grt) divided by the total passenger capacity

passenger to crew ratio
The total number of passengers divided by the total number of crewmembers

pitch
The forward and backward rise and fall of the ship as it moves

port
The left side of the ship when facing forward; also the harbor where a ship docks

porthole
A round window on a ship

port-of-call
A port at which the ship anchors or moors, and the passengers are allowed to disembark

promenade
An open deck that encircles a ship, often used for walking or jogging

purser
The officer onboard who serves as a financial or administrative manager for guest services

Q

quad
A cabin that will accommodate four passengers

R

repositioning cruise, repo cruise
A one-way itinerary that brings a ship from one region to another at the change of the cruise seasons

roll
The side-to-side movement of the ship

S

screw
The ship’s propeller

second seating
The later of two meal servings (dinner seatings) in the ship’s main dining room-also referred to as the late seating

single supplement
An extra charge solo travelers pay to have just one person in a cabin

sister ships
Ships built of the same design-sometimes referred to as ships owned and operated by the same cruise line

shore excursion
A tour or guided activity in which guests participate while ashore

stabilizer
A retractable arm located below the waterline mid-ship, which can be extended to help reduce the ship’s roll in rougher sea conditions

starboard
The right side of the ship when facing forward

stateroom
A cabin

stern
The back end of the ship

suite
The largest class of stateroom; features separate living and sleeping areas

T

tender
A small boat used to transport passengers from the ship to the shore. Tenders are used when the harbor is not deep enough for the ship to dock

transfer
Transportation from the airport or a hotel to the ship and vice versa

triple
A cabin that will accommodate three passengers

U

underway
The act of sailing

upgrade
A change in cabin assignment to a better category

upper berth
A bed similar to a bunk bed, often folded or recessed into the wall

V

verandah
A private balcony adjacent to the ship’s stateroom (cabin)

W

wake
The track left in the water at the stern created by a moving ship

windward
The side of the ship against which the wind is blowing

world cruise
A three- to four-month-long cruise that sails around the world; guests can choose to cruise the entire time or just on select one-way segments

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