I have just returned from a cruise on the Independence of the Seas. Before I set off I checked the booking conditions on what could be taken on board. In particular I was interested it what it said about penknives. I had two brochures, the one I booked with and the latest one. The paragraph that covers this is 2.2. In the older version the only reference to a knife was a Dive Knife but both versions state "Please ensure that any sharp items (followed by a list of items but no mention of knives) are packed in your check in luggage". Despite all this I thought it best to check with Security at Southampton whether I could bring my multi tool onboard. The multi tool in question when folded measures 6.5cm and contains screwdrivers etc including a folding blade of 3.5cm. When I showed it to the Security person he took it to his supervisor who said there was no problem taking it onboard. Jump forward in time to day 6 of the holiday by which time we had been on & off the ship at least 7 times. This time Security found a small penknife (folded 5.5cm with a blade of 3cm), in a front pocket of a waist bag. This knife has been all over the northern hemisphere with my wife on several different liners, including visiting the USA and Canada. They confiscated it, and when I complained that I was allowed to come on board with a larger one at Southampton, they were soon at my cabin door to confiscate that. I made a complaint to the Customer Relations and they supported their Security. When I found that their gift shop was selling a corkscrew with a folding blade of 5cm I asked them why I could have that in my cabin but not my smaller one and was told because that was authorised, along with the very sharp steak knife with which I ate my steak. I then asked that my complaint be escalated to Head Office, I was told that it had been. On my return to the UK I phoned Customer Relations at Head Office but they had no record of my complaint. I then repeated my complaint to them and they promised to get back to me. Their reply when it arrived was as follows:
"In line with the security policy adopted by airlines, no sharp objects are allowed to be carried on board our ships. These include All Knives, regardless of blade length, including disguised knives such as belt buckles, walking canes, pens, et cetera."
If my wife's tiny knife is so dangerous why did Security fail to detect it for at least 6 times? Also if all knives are banned, why not state this in the brochure?
You have been warned! The small print is liable to change at any time to suit them.