- Princess Cruises ships will allow sports betting going forward.
- The first sports bet on a ship has already been placed.
- Sports bets will only be allowed in international waters and countries that allow sports betting.
MIAMI - Princess Cruises has officially entered the sports betting business, with a guest on the Majestic Princess placing a bet on the open seas.
This is a landmark occasion for sports betting in the United States, as it marks the first time that commercial sports betting has been available on a major cruise line.
The history of gambling in the United States is tied up in ships, however, with riverboat casinos being one of the major ways that casino gambling was offered throughout the history of the country.
Now, however, sports betting has been added to the repertoire of Princess Cruises ships, which previously contained casinos. Ocean Sportsbook is the area on the ships where wagering on sporting events will take place.
Princess Cruises is a subsidiary of Carnival Cruises, which means that there is a chance for major industry adoption of sports gaming across the board.
No Bets On The Heat Or In Certain Countries
There will be one team that sports bettors cannot wager on - the Miami Heat, whose owner Mickey Arison is the owner of Carnival Cruises.
This conflict of interest - or the appearance of one - will prevent anyone from wagering on the Heat while on Princess Cruises ships or other Carnival subsidiaries.
Given that many cruise ships set sail out of Miami, this could be a legitimate loss, as people would be unable to wager on their hometown team.
Additionally, sports betting will only be permitted when docked in countries that have approved it or while sailing on international waters.
If for some reason, the cruise ship visits a country that does not permit sports betting, they will not allow it on board until reaching international waters, having the sportsbook closed.
Cruise Ship Sports Betting Industry Reactions
TravelPulse interviewed several travel advisors about the landmark occasion, and reactions have been generally positive so far.
“I love the addition of sports betting. It brings a whole new dynamic to the casino and the cruise ship experience,” said Tom Hollembaek of CruisePlanners.
“Personally, I think adding any additional forms of entertainment for cruise passengers to enjoy is a plus for the industry,” said Jeremy Hall of Cruise Vacations International.
It’s worth noting that most Princess Cruises ships already contained casino games, so the addition of sports betting should not move the needle much in terms of the cruise-going atmosphere.