Cruise Ship vs. Navy Ship?

Can a cruise line name a cruise ship the same name as an active US Navy Vessel? It may be in poor taste, I’ll admit, but is there some Navy or Federal law that addresses this? Thgis is an actual pending situation, and the legal minds are turning to the Teeming Millions for help.

So, is the Arleigh Burke Princess about to be launched? :D:D

I don’t see why not, especially if it’s not a proper name. There’s no trademark on common language words. I can’t think of a Navy ship that’s name would lend well to a cruise ship name, but I haven’t kept track of those names for a few years.

If I might ask, what name is in dispute?

Why would there be restrictions? Lots of Navy ships are named after cities. Would you stop someone from calling their ship “Dallas”. “Dallas” could also be the name of the owner’s dog.

I think ships are registered by their homeport, company, country etc which does allow for duplicate names.

99% of cruise ships have a port of registry outside the U.S. This is specifically to avoid American law. So while the Navy might not be happy about the name, I don’t believe there is a damn thing they can do about it.

I don’t know the line or name in question, a buddy works at the firm, and didn’t tell me. Good call on the Dallas. Just posted to see if I was thinking wrong and there WERE some rule.

I just got a call from my friend and the answer is that this cruise line CAN use a US Navy vessel’s name, and apparently they are going to. Check the news in the next days to see what she was asking about, and know that you heard it on SDMB first!

I don’t see why a civillian ship can’t bear the same name as a Naval Vessel. Aren’t they truly identified by their registration number? The Navy’s destroyer the Arliegh Burke is “DDG-51”, I’m Sure the Princess Fleet’s Arleigh Burke would have a completely different registration number.

I can’t possibly imagine this leading to any confusion, After all the Love Boat was the “Pacific Princess”. Did the “Pacific Fleet” complain?
I was thinking this was going to be one of those “Imperial Star Destroyer vs. The Enterprise D” or “The Millenium Falcon vs The Delta Flyer” threads.
Alright, maybe “hoping” not “thinking”. :slight_smile:


I guess you could call a cruise ship the Intrepid. That would work I guess. I think that type of name is the type that a cruise line might want to use.

Well, I do work with the military, and they tend to call the ships by their numbers (IE: CVN-75) instead of the name (IE: USS Harry S. Truman). There’s also the “USS” part to differentiate the two.

I wouldn’t imagine it as a problem.

Ooooo. Kathy Lee and her singing, buffet eating entourage vs: One tomahawk missle.

Royal Carribean’s sting rays vs: a squadron of F/A-18s.

I would second c_goat’s comment. The “USS” (United States Ship) is an integral part of a commissioned (U.S.) Navy ship’s name. In formal communication, both the full name and the ship designation are used:

e.g. USS Los Angeles (SSN 688)

Since the Navy tends to recycle names, using both the full name and the ship designation avoids confusion as well.

e.g. USS San Jacinto (CVL 30), USS San Jacinto (CG 56)

The Brits, or course, use “HMS” (Her Majesty’s Ship).

I think the sheer bulk of Kathy Lee’s buffet entourage could definitely defelect the blast of the Tommahawk.


Most Names of Navy Ships Fall into 3 categories:

  1. People: Arleigh Burke, Eisenhower, etc…
  2. Places: Los Angeles, Iowa, etc…
  3. Words: Prarie, Intrepid, Enterprise, etc…

For those 3 things they’d have a tough time fighting anyone from naming a ship any of those. Now if the Navy had some unique registered trade names then there might be a valid argument. I also can’t guess that there would some diplomatic confusion resulting in an ambassador being sent to greet the Princess Intredpid, expecting an Aircraft carrier, even though these new cruise ships are just about as big, if not bigger.

This has already happened. The old United States Line had a liner named America at the same time the US Navy had an aircraft carrier USS America. During the fitting out of USS America, SS America was moored at the same dock. During World War II the Cunard liner RMS Queen Elizabeth and the battleship HMS Queen Elizabeth shared the same name.