Overview of Smoking Policies by Cruise Line (Part 2)

| May 18, 2009

Hardly any single topic in our cruise forums attracts more interest than one entitled "Smoking policies on Cruise Ships."

Cunard Lines Smoking is permitted in the cabins and on balconies, and in designated areas of most bars and lounges. Smoking is allowed in the casino as well.

Smoking is not permitted in the libraries on either of the line's two ships, nor in the Planetarium on the Queen Mary 2.

Cigar and pipe smokers are free to light up in the Churchill's Cigar Lounge only.

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Disney Cruise Line Disney, as the most family-oriented cruise line, prohibits smoking in all indoor venues, including passenger cabins.

Smoking is allowed on the starboard side of the open decks, including pool areas, with the exception of the area around Mickey's Pool (the pool used by very young children). Smoking is permitted on private balconies.

Holland America Holland America is in the midst of conducting an onboard "smoking survey," which has been going on now since about the beginning of 2008. Every disembarking passenger receives an "addendum" to their cruise evaluation form asking about three questions regarding their feelings about smoking; i.e., would you cruise Holland America if the fleet were entirely smoke-free, would you cruise the line if smoking were greatly restricted, and other questions of that nature.

Since the survey process started, smoking has become more and more restricted onboard, so it is obvious that a majority of the survey respondents favor tighter controls over the practice.

However, Holland America still allows smoking in cabins and on balconies as of early 2009. Smoking is also permitted in the casino and the casino bar. Half of the Crow's Nest Lounge allows smoking.

There is no smoking allowed in the Explorer's Lounge nor in the Piano Bar on some ships. Some Holland America ships also now prohibit smoking entirely in the Ocean Bar, though that is not a fleetwide policy as of early 2009.

There are designated areas on the outside decks where smoking is permitted, as well as on the aft deck pool area. There is no longer any smoking permitted anywhere under the magradome on the outdoor Lido deck. Some Holland America ships are experimenting with alternating smoking and smoke-free nights in the casino, but the initial results are not impressive based on my personal experience.

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MSC Cruises As the main competitor to Costa Cruises for the European audience, MSC has a reputation for fairly smoky ships, but they are tightening up their policies. Designated cigar lounges are provided. At least one lounge on each ship is open to smokers, while the rest are smoke-free. Smoking is also permitted in the casinos.

Outside decks have designated smoking areas on one side.

Smoking is prohibited in all passenger cabins, as well as on balconies.

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) NCL has a cigar bar available to its smoking passengers on most ships and smoking is permitted in the casinos, as well as on most open decks. All other indoor public spaces are smoke-free for the most part. Smoking is allowed in the passenger cabins and on balconies.

Oceania Cruises If you're an avid smoker, you probably want to avoid this cruise line because they have one of the most restrictive smoking policies in the entire industry. This was also the case when Renaissance owned their fleet of ships.

Smoking is only permitted in two designated public areas onboard Oceania ships -- the aft and port-side area of the outdoor eating venue Horizons, and on the outdoor pool deck -- forward section starboard side.

That's it. No smoking is allowed in the cabins, on balconies nor in any indoor public venues onboard the ship.

Princess Cruises Princess allows smoking in the cabins and on balconies. Smoking is also permitted in designated areas on the open decks. Most of the bars and lounges also have designated smoking areas.

For cigar and pipe smokers, Churchill's Lounge, available on most ships, offers accommodation. The only other public venue for cigar and pipe smokers is the open decks around the ships.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises Regent tightened up their onboard smoking policies about two years ago and smoking is now prohibited in all suites and on balconies.

Smoking is allowed in designated smoking areas in the lounges, and also on the open decks, including at the outdoor pool bars. Smokers can also light up in the casinos, and at the "Connoisseur Club," which is also open to pipe and cigar smokers as well.

Royal Caribbean International Royal Caribbean is unique in that their smoking policy prohibits smoking in cabins, but allows it on private balconies. Smoking is also allowed on the starboard side of the open decks around the ship. There are also designated smoking areas provided in some of the public rooms, such as the selected bars and lounges.

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