With some massive cruise ships holding over 7,000 passengers at any given time, there are bound to be a few who don’t want to follow the rules.

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When something crazy happens on a cruise ship, it usually gets a lot more attention from news outlets than land-based activities. Something about the intrigue of the sea, I suppose.

Well, we gathered up 6 of the most interesting cruise stories of passengers getting banned for life.

1. Cruise Ship Jumper Ends Up in Hot Water

In a daring, and not-so-bright, move, a 27-year-old man from Vancouver achieved brief internet fame, when he jumped off a cruise ship while it was docked in the Bahamas.

He posted a video of himself taking a the leap from the 11th deck of Royal Caribbean’s largest cruise ship at the time, the Symphony of the Seas.

The video showed Nick Naydev standing on the railing while his friends laughed in the background, even while Naydev plummeted into the ocean below.

Unfortunately for him, this feat came with a lifetime ban from the cruise line, and the potential for legal consequences.

In the comments of the video which was posted on Instagram, Naydev said he was still drunk from the night before, and when he woke up he just decided to jump.

While he said the jump made him feel very much alive it was not without its own consequences.

“I could barely walk for 3 days lol”, he commented.  And neither could he walk onto a Royal Caribbean cruise ship ever again.

This is definitely one thing you should never do from your cruise cabin or anywhere else on the ship.

2. Couple Banned for Fishing from Balcony

Forget the all-you-can-eat shrimp and endless seafood buffets – one daring (or perhaps foolish) passenger on a Carnival cruise in the Bahamas decided to test their luck with a different kind of catch.

A man opted to dangle a line off his balcony, hoping to snag a fresh fish and check off a bucket list item.

He did in fact end up catching a fish.   And being so high off the water it took a little time to reel it in.

The whole ordeal became a short-lived TikTok sensation before being deleted.   A fellow passenger filmed the incident and urged the man to avoid swinging the fish into balconies below as he tried to haul in his catch.

Unfortunately for the “reel” culprit, the internet never forgets. Copies of the video circulated online, catching the attention of Carnival.

In a swift response, Carnival confirmed that fishing from their ships is a big no-no.

They identified the passengers and promptly issued a lifetime ban from the cruise line.

3. Woman Banned for CBD Gummies in Luggage

Photo Credit: Cruise Fever

Last summer a Texas woman was banned for life from Carnival Cruise Line after trying to board Carnival Horizon in PortMiami

Before even getting on the ship, Melinda Van Veldhuizen was pulled from her priority boarding line when security found CBD gummies in her backpack. 

She said she bought them legally online and that the sleep aid gummies were to help her sleep when traveling.

During an interview with news outlets, the woman said she was asked several questions by the staff.

“The captain asked me several times if I had a marijuana card or if I had a diagnosis, if I needed it,” Van-Veldhuizen said. “I said, ‘It’s CBD; that doesn’t exist. It’s just not a thing.’”

All major cruise lines have a ban on CBD and state that they follow federal law on the topic of controlled substances.  The woman’s gummies in this case had less than .1% THC.                                                                                       

Veldhuizen eventually received a letter from the company stating she would,

“… not be permitted to sail onboard any Carnival Cruise Line vessel in the future.  This decision was based on your actions on the current cruise, which were a violation of the ship rules.”    The letter went on to say, “Your attempt to book a future cruise will result in a cancellation and a possible loss of deposit monies.

The story highlights the importance of knowing what cruise lines prohibit on their ships even if it’s something that is allowed elsewhere.

Check out our article on banned items you should leave at home.

4. On Board Altercation Leads to Termination

Fighting on a cruise ship often leads to a fine, but it can also lead to a lifetime ban, even if you are not the one who started the incident.

Back in September of last year a video went viral on TikTok as a woman explained what happened to her mother on a Carnival cruise ship.

In the video the woman says that there were two intoxicated passengers.  One of them shoved her mother and assaulted her, leading to an altercation.  Security guards ended up intervening to break up the fight. 

The next day the ship’s staff confirmed that the mother was not at fault, but then they dropped the bombshell. 

She would still be banned for life because of the cruise line’s policy on fighting.  In addition, she was fined $500. 

5. Climb Over the Rail, End Up as Epic Fail

Photo Credit: Cruise Fever

This happens way more often than it should.  We regularly find videos of cruise passengers either sitting on the balcony railing or even climbing over it.

NoteThis is NEVER a good idea.  Don’t even think about it or get close to trying it. 

In one instance, a woman was on Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas when she climbed over her balcony railing.   Her reason?  To snap an amazing selfie in her blue bathing suit.

Another passenger saw what happened and alerted the crew.  By the way, there are cameras all along the side of the ship so there’s plenty of video of evidence when people decide to hop over the railing. 

When Allure of the Seas docked in Jamaica the woman was removed from the ship and was banned from ever walking onto a Royal Caribbean ship ever again. 

The cruise line’s policy states,

“Sitting, standing, laying or climbing on, over or across any exterior or interior railings or other protective barriers, or tampering with ship’s equipment, facilities or systems designed for guest safety is not permitted.”

6. From Trapped to Banned: An Elevator Story

This story has a strange twist.  Five years ago, six cruise passengers on Carnival Inspiration were trapped in an elevator.    

When they were eventually able to get out, they all found out they were banned by the cruise line for damage that had apparently occurred inside the cruise ship elevator.

One of the passengers inside the elevator posted a video of the incident and claimed that the elevator line had snapped.

The group can be heard talking with the crew as they attempted to open the door.  At one point one of the crew could be heard saying the group would not die if they had to be in there a little bit longer.

It took 45 minutes to get them out, during which time it was reported that one of the passengers fainted. 

A letter from Carnival to the members of the group read,

“This letter will confirm your discussion with Carnival Cruise Line (‘Carnival Inspiration’) personnel where you were informed that you will be disembarked from the vessel and not permitted to sail on board any Carnival Cruise Line vessel in the future.

This decision was based on your actions on the current cruise, which were a violation of the ship rules.  Interfered with the safety and/or enjoyment of other guests on the ship of caused harm to Carnival.

Your attempt to book a future cruise will result in cancellation and a possible loss of deposit monies.”

While you might be thinking this was an unfair judgement, it’s important to know there are two sides to the story.  The cruise line told Sun Online Travel that the work to free the passengers was made worse by the damage to the doors and cabling caused by the group.

Final Thoughts

Cruise ships offer incredible vacations at excellent value.  Don’t get banned.  It’s just not worth missing out on what could be the best getaway of your life. 

Of course, we’re a little biased.  We started Cruise Fever because we had — well, “Cruise Fever”.   

Use this list of real stories as inspiration to follow the rules and use some common sense.  It’s not a how-to-guide on getting kicked off a ship.

Related more on cruising: 10 things cruisers most often ask from their cabin stewards

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