Monday, March 28, 2016

more about traveling without worrying about security and safety

NOTE:     This blog has no ads and I'm not beholden tocruise line, tour companies or airlines, and that's why I can offer to my readers the truth about travel destinations & the many ways to enjoy traveling.

The question of security and safety is paramount in everyone's mind.  

Those who have read my December 16, 2015 post about "safe travel destinations versus bargain destinations - travel predictions for 2016" know that I accurately predicted the problems Europe now faces.  And sadly the spate of bombings and terror threats in Europe is not what I would have wanted to happen, but it did.

I also did suggest a number  of destinations that would give travelers the security and safety they want to create their best travel memories—and just recently, I came upon the American owned and based American Queen Steamboat Company that advertises "Uniquely American River Cruises.  

These river cruises do offer a safe and secure vacation in an area of the country that is too sparsely populated to interest those who want to terrorize and create fear.  However, of particular interest to me is the question of cruise line registry.  This USA river cruise company is American owned and subject to the laws of the United States because this company cruises rivers located in the United States, which means that a ship's cruising contract fully safeguards the traveler insofar as liability for accidents or worse, which is not so for travel outside the US even if the vessel is American owned—see my 2014 posts about the treaty signed by all cruise lines that limits liability and does not allow class action suits (not recognized by Congress) but neither did Congress legislate against it.  

Additionally, I refer my readers to The New York Times article published Jan. 18, 2012 by John Schwartz which reported on the Costa Concordia's tragic accident that took place in Italy and cost many American their lives and gave then injuries that still plague them:  

"Anyone trying to sue Costa Concodia’s corporate parent, Carnival Cruise Lines, though, will find that the company is stoutly protected by international law and by a carefully worded contract that passengers accept when they buy their tickets..." 

and John Schwartz also noted:

"Costa’s contract states that the line will pay no more in cases of death, personal injury and property loss than about $71,000 per passenger. It allows no recovery for mental anguish or psychological damages. It bars class-action suits."

The New YorkTimes writer referred to an Admiralty lawyer based in Pensacola, FL  who said:

“If you read this cruise line ticket, and it doesn’t make your stomach turn, it should,” Mr. McGill said.

Currently, this American owned American river cruise line advertises up to $800 savings per stateroom on select 2016 voyages—these river cruises are in a unique area of the United States, the Pacific Northwest, which offers river cruising on the Columbia and Snake Rivers.  The cruise is 9 days and it is possible to extend the stay with post cruise packages and also "hop on - hop off" premium excursions offered by the cruise company.  For those who prefer to make their own reservations for a post cruise stop or return to stay at a picturesque mountain lodge, this may or may not be a less cost.  And I suggest comparing the cruise company's offerings to making an individual post cruise extended stay.

Another interest to me as a single traveler is the reasonably priced single outside stateroom with veranda balcony that looks more than roomy for a single traveler who would normally have to pay a single supplement which would greatly increase the cruise price.

Although there are Steamboat cruises in the south, those cruises are in areas of "soft targets" that could interest a terrorist.

Sadly, today, travel everywhere in the global world is no longer possible without a terror hazard.

My politically incorrect analysis about considerations for travelers to ponder in 2016 is this:  

for travelers who still want the lure of international travel, there should be the consideration of changing planes and leaving the secure areas of the airport: Australia and New Zealand have strictly controlled immigration & the limited cultural differences in these countries avoids what seems to separate and alienate a generation that has no connection to the country they were born in and where their parents came to find a better life; Singapore has a tight grasp on the population and offers an interesting place to vacation without worry about safety/security once you get there.