Maritime tourism and terrorism: Customer perceptions of the potential terrorist threat to cruise shipping

C. Bowen, P. Fidgeon, S.J. Page

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


Maritime terrorism is a neglected area of research in tourism, particularly the use of scenario planning to understand potential threats to the cruise industry. Since the events of 9/11, terrorism, and the threat of terrorism, has become a major concern within the tourism industry. This article analyses tourist perception of perceived terrorist threats given that many ships are American owned. Using the scenario analysis presented by Greenberg, Chalk, Willis, Khilko, and Ortiz, this study suggests that an attack on a cruise ship is a distinct possibility. Indeed, 44% of respondents questioned perceived the possibility of a terrorist attack on a cruise ship to be likely despite the fact that safety and security is seen by the industry as a 'hallmark' of cruising. Differences in attitude among potential passengers revealed a high level of confidence in the cruise ship companies. This finding is particularly marked among more experienced cruise ship passengers. However, this did not necessarily preclude the possibility of security measures being improved. All passengers appeared generally resigned to the fact that risk is associated with travel in the twenty-first century and welcomed any efforts by cruise shipping companies to improve safety and security. © 2012 © 2012 Taylor & Francis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)610-639
Number of pages30
JournalCurrent Issues in Tourism
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2013


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