The cruise sector continues to defy a difficult economic climate with strong growth, new ships and innovative products. Over 22 million passengers are expected to take a cruise in 2015, and over 25 million by 2019 as new and larger vessels join the worldwide fleet.
River cruising has seen even more phenomenal growth, with over 50 vessels being added to European routes alone since 2012, and “discovery” itineraries in China and Asia providing a unique, luxury experience.
Operators are exposed to a complex legal picture, involving maritime, national, supra-national and international law. Ticket conditions, place of booking, the location of a loss or incident, or the nationality of a claimant can all affect the way a claim is handled, while international conventions and European regulation may offer limits to liability as well as protection for consumers.
Crew are recruited from all over the world, and contracts may be subject to both local law and international standards.
Davies Johnson sees cruise and travel law as a truly specialised area, requiring knowledge of all of these overlapping regimes, and how they will affect claims for compensation and damages from passengers and crew alike.
Injury to passengers and crew
Lost & damaged luggage or property
Itinerary changes, cancellation and curtailment
Service and accommodation claims
Claims arising from shore excursions
Disputes under ticket conditions
Crew injury, illness and employment claims
Recovery claims from tour operators and disputes over refund liabilities
Recovery of liabilities faced under the EU Package Travel regulations
Application of Athens, Warsaw, Montreal and other conventions to limit liability