Cruise Ship Law, International Maritime

What is the Biggest Cruise Port in the World?

Michael A. Winkleman

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Michael A. Winkleman is one of the nation’s top maritime lawyers. An active trial and appellate attorney, Mr. Winkleman is also a frequent contributing expert on maritime and cruise ship law. He has made more than 100 national television appearances regarding cruise ship law.

For most people, setting out on a cruise is an exciting and long-anticipated experience. We understand. After all, a vacation aboard a cruise ship is full of so much to see and do. From the onboard activities to the shore excursions, there is never a reason to be bored. However, you have all the right in the world to want to simply sit back and enjoy your experience! We would not blame you one bit.

While you are preparing to kick up your feet under the blue skies for a few days, you may be wondering about the kinds of ports that you will visit on your journey. After all, a key aspect of any cruise vacation is docking in ports–you’ll do so at the beginning of your trip when you embark, at the end of your trip as you return home, and perhaps multiple times along the way! So have you been wondering, “What is the biggest port in the world?” If so, you have come to the right place.

Florida is Home to the Largest Cruise Ports

Although there are many large ports in the world, the largest happens to be the Port of Miami, often referred to as Port Miami. This port is home to several major cruise lines, and sees almost five million passengers each year!

In fact, it is also the global headquarters for Carnival Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, and Royal Caribbean International. These are arguably the heavyweights of the industry, with countless voyages planned every year. Another 18 lines use the port, contributing to its high volume of passengers every year. This is no surprise, given its access to the Caribbean, the Bahamas, Central, and South America.

However, Port Miami is not the only major port in the world. Port Everglades, in Fort Lauderdale, and Port Canaveral, in Orlando, also boast a bustling cruise port scene. Unsurprisingly, all of the world’s largest ports are located in Florida.

As Americans make up a large quantity of cruise ship passengers every year, and given Florida’s close proximity to the Caribbean, Mexico, the Bahamas, and more, it seems only logical that the world’s largest ports would be located there.

So, whether you are embarking on a cruise in the future, or have done so in the past, it is good to remember that any departures or arrivals involving these major cruise ports will likely be on the larger end of the scale. But what does this mean for your safety?

Is Bigger Always Better?

With so much activity at this port, you may be wondering just how safe it is? While we understand your concern, it is important to remember that there are positives and negatives to traveling from a high volume port. Although you may feel that it is somewhat more crowded and less intimate than a smaller port, it is likely that you may also find it better equipped and able to offer you better itineraries to your ideal destinations. Therefore, it may be more likely to suit your needs.

Regardless of the size of the port out of which you depart, it is important to remember that accidents and injuries can happen when you least expect it. As a result, you will need to remain mindful of your surroundings from the moment you set off on your vacation, until you arrive back home.

How This Impacts You

Maritime lawyerJason Margulies explains that since Florida is home to the world’s largest cruise ports, it is also home to the headquarters of the world’s largest cruise lines.  “Most of the world’s largest cruise lines: Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, and Norwegian Cruise Lines have their headquarters located in Miami, Florida.  Consequently, they also insert enforceable clauses into their passenger tickets requiring passengers to bring claims against them in courts located in South Florida – and, in most cases, in the Federal Courts located in the Southern District of Florida.  Also, the cruise lines require, in most cases, that a lawsuit be filed within one year of the date of the incident which caused the injury – and that the cruise line receives written notice of the claim within six months from the date of the incident.  As such, an injured cruise passenger must act quickly and prudently to preserve their rights! If you file a lawsuit against a cruise line in a court other than the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida; or after one year from the date of incident – in most cases, you will be unable to pursue your claim against a cruise line headquartered in Miami,” warns Mr. Margulies!

Oftentimes, passengers and crew members become the victims of accidents or injuries due to conditions and situations that are out of their control. If you have suffered due to what you believe to be cruise line negligence, you can rest assured that a maritime lawyer on our team is here to help.

So before your situation becomes too much to bear, do not hesitate to contact us.

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