Even if you're an avid cruiser, chances are you don't know everything about these massive ships. From superstitions to pirate encounters, here are 9 facts about cruises that will blow you away.

Safety First

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Partly due to Titanic, cruise personnel report that many guests are afraid that the ship will sink. However, among all forms of transport, traveling the ocean on a cruise is one of the safest ways to go.

You run a far greater risk every day when driving off in your car. You can rest assured, all registered cruises have to comply with strict security measures.

Getting Hitched

If you decide to get married on board, a captain can perform a civil ceremony with legal validity. Some companies will even have a priest or rabbi on board. Gay marriage is also performed if the ship is considered to be in a country where same-sex marriages are recognized by law.

Money Talks

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The most luxurious cruise in the world is the Seven Seas Explorer of the Regent Seven Seas company. It costs approximately $10,000 per day.

It’s on the smaller size for cruises, as it only carries up to 750 passengers. Some of the special features that its guests can enjoy are unlimited access to a luxurious spa, a personal butler, access to a personal car on the visited sites and infinity pools.

Living On Board

There’s a residential cruise ship called The World on which people can buy an apartment and permanently travel. It gives you the possibility to wake up in different destinations every week. Rooms can’t be rented; they’re bought for a steep price. There’s also a pretty substantial vetting process for all prospective buyers.

Media Matters

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The all-inclusive cruise vacation that we know today didn’t become popular until after the The Love Boat began airing in 1977. Since then, the industry has soared, with themed cruises and an array of destinations.

However, cruise vacations began in 1839, when packet boats, those used to carry mail and packages, began to sell tickets for those who wanted to travel by this industrial transport. Slowly but surely, they started attracting popularity.

While cruises were much smaller back in the day, what has remained the same is that the process of designing the vessel still takes more time than actually building it.

Girl Power

Captains are overwhelmingly male in the cruise industry. It was Karin Stahre-Janson who became the first female captain for a large line. She became Royal Caribbean’s Monarch of the Seas captain in 2007.

Very Superstitious

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Many boats don’t have a 13th floor, because of the common myth that this number carries bad luck. That's why you'll see that the numbers "jump" from 12 to 14 on elevators.

Pirates Ahoy!

It might feel like pirates are something of the past. However, there have been cases of modern-day pirates targeting cruise ships. In 2009, the MSC Melody was attacked by Somali pirates just north of the Seychelles. The passengers and crew used tables and deck chairs to keep the attacking pirates from jumping onto the cruise ship. Luckily, not one of the 2,000 people on the cruise got hurt.

Miniature Cities

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There are a number of features that cruise ships can have to make them feel more like mini-cities than actual ships. For example, by law, any ship with more than 50 passengers is required to have a registered physician on board. Some ships have a morgue in case of any fatality too. If you’re caught committing a crime while on the cruise, there are also detention centers, quite similar to jails, inside most major cruise ships.