Dividends and the Cruise Ship Industry

Prior to the Coronavirus the fastest growing part of the tourism industry was cruise ships. The cruise ship industry dominated by 3 companies which control 80% of the industry are Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Norwegian Cruise Lines. In a segment by Hassan Minhaj of the Netflix show Patriot Act, he examined the cruise industry in the amusing way he does it. The cruise ship industry has developed to super convenient and advertised as non stop fun. The companies advertise from $1500 from a person for a 7 day cruise to higher end prices. The cruise industry has themed the weeks to whatever your interest is from Disney – Star War’s to Marvel to whatever there is an convention there is a theme cruise week. In a normal week, 30 million people take a cruise and more are considering going on a cruise.

Mr. Minhaj also looked at the negative side of the cruise industry – non of the cruise ships pay tax in the US because of ship registration – think tax haven countries; the industry has a whole has paid $100 million in fines for polluting the oceans; the ships use a great deal of energy (not fuel efficient); the tickets allow the cruise to enter and search your cabin; the labor regulations are not the greatest.

On the other hand, going on a cruise when the weather is wonderful can be a great vacation.

Linking to dividend paying stocks, until the virus, the cruise industry was a growing aspect of the vacation market and millions of people from all income groups went on the cruise. If you have never been on a cruise, you are not likely to be on one in the next 3 months. If you have taken a cruise would you go again? what would entice you to go again? If you would go again, then the industry might still have legs; if you would not go again, then stay away from the stocks.

There are more questions than answers, till the next time – to raising questions.

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