Most people think of the delights of a vacation spent at sea when a cruise ship is mentioned. These large vessels may vary in size and aesthetics but all hold one thing in common, that is, they require a substantial amount of fuel to sail the distance. There are of course many factors that will affect the overall fuel consumption of a cruise liner. These factors will undoubtedly determine how much fuel the ship will use for the entire journey. Apart from the luxuries that are offered on a cruise ship the actual cost to cover a specific distance will contribute to the required fare. Like any other form of travel the use of fuel cannot be avoided, there are ways in which the amount of fuel consumed can be lessened, however, in general larger liners tend to use a substantial volume. In short, fuel consumption is not a static figure. The examples below illustrate fuel use based on specific cruise ships.
Factors that Contribute to Fuel Consumption
There are several factors that contribute to fuel consumption as mentioned before. The main factors are as follows:
The ship’s size
Understandably the ship’s size will affect fuel use. A larger ship will necessitate more power to move it. This power is provided by the fuel which drives the engines and other mechanisms necessary for sustained motion. It is, therefore, only natural that fuel consumption will increase with the ship’s size, for the most part.
The speed at which the ship is traveling:
If the ship is moving at an accelerated speed it will likely burn more fuel? To move more quickly the engine requires more fuel to reach a specific speed. For this reason, many cruise ships do not move very fast. In fact they tend to move fairly slowly and often sustain a steady speed throughout most of the journey. This leisurely pace also offers vacationers more time to enjoy the actual cruise.
If the seas are calm then the cruise ship uses less power. If the seas are rough the ship automatically requires more speed to handle the waves better and to ensure that the ship will not be affected by the turbulence of the ocean.
Depending on how far the ship will travel fuel consumption will be greatly affected. For everyday out at sea the ship will use a specific amount of fuel. Ultimately, each additional day will increase the amount of fuel used.
The Ships Design
The ships design will contribute to the total fuel consumption. Some ships are designed with fuel consumption in mind and therefore burn less fuel.
Once all these factors are accounted for then an estimate of fuel consumption can be exacted. Cruise ships travel with a bit more fuel than is necessary to ensure that despite the variables the ship will have enough fuel to complete its journey.
Examples of Cruise Ships and Fuel Consumption
• The Queen Mary 2 uses 50 feet per gallon of fuel and is 1,132 feet long.
• Disney Wonder and Magic is 964 feet long and uses 57 feet per gallon of fuel.
• Freedom of the Seas uses 28,000 gallons of fuel per hour and is 1112 feet in length.
• The Queen Victoria uses 18 feet to the gallon which is equivalent to 293 gallons per mile.
US Ships that sail between the coasts of Hawaii use as much as $250,000 per week to fuel the ship and connected vessels including tender boats and life boats. The sizes of these ships are normally between 70,000 tonnes and 93,000 tonnes.
Bob is free lancer writer and he writes on energy saving, eco, global warming related topics and he also conducts campaign for cruise ship jobs.