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Cruise Passenger Assistance

Compensation for Cruise Line Cancellation; Death or Injury during Voyage

FMC requires cruise lines to have a bond or other financial surety available to refund passenger deposits in the event of nonperformance or for death or injury on a voyage. This requirement applies to cruise lines that embark from a U.S. port and have at least 50 berth accommodations.

The company that issues the bond or other financial surety processes claims made for cruise nonperformance or death or injury. For more information on the FMC’s financial responsibility requirements or to obtain information on filing a claim please contact the Bureau of Licensing and Certification.

Cruise Service Disputes

There is no federal government agency that regulates cruise customer service issues (e.g. itinerary changes, passenger cancellations, cabin concerns, etc.). The Commission’s Office of Consumer Affairs & Dispute Resolution Services (CADRS), however, assists consumers and cruise lines by offering free alternative dispute resolution services. To request assistance, please contact CADRS.

Additional Resources

Cruise Vacations: Know Before You Go Brochure

There are multiple government agencies that have jurisdiction over cruise safety and security concerns:

Guidance for Cruise Passengers (Department of Transportation)

Cruise Line Incident Reporting Statistics (Department of Transportation)

Travel Documentation (Department of Homeland Security)

Cruise Ship Passengers (Department of State)

Obtaining a Passport (Department of State)

Visa Requirements (Department of State)

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) regulates health and sanitary conditions onboard cruise vessels:

Sanitary Conditions and Preventing Illness Onboard Cruise Vessels

Outbreak Updates for International Cruise Ships

Cruise Vessel Inspection Scores

The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) maintains information on safety regulations.

Cruise Ship National Center of Expertise

Related News


Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) has advised the Federal Maritime Commission that it intends to offer some compensation to passengers who were on board the NORWEGIAN BREAKAWAY when that vessel encountered severe weather on a voyage returning to New York on January 5, 2018. For details and restrictions on the offer… Read More »