24 Jan FAQ: HALACHOS RELATED TO GOING ON A CRUISE
Q: Can I eat from
the sealed Kosher
meals that were
heated for me on
A: It is prohibited to
explicitly ask a non-Jew to heat food for
you on shabbos. If a non-Jew on their
own heated solid foods without liquid,
they may be eaten. If the non-Jew heated
liquids, they should only be consumed
once they have cooled significantly and
the benefit of having been heated is gone.
Q: Can I eat a baked potato that was
double wrapped in silver foil and brought
to me as such?
A: A raw potato is obviously kosher. It
can be cooked in a non-kosher oven by
double wrapping it in silver foil. Since
bishul akum is a concern, you should
arrange to put the potato in the oven
Q: Can I eat a piece of salmon that was
double wrapped in silver foil? What
about other fish?
A: It is only permissible to eat fish when
you have seen the fins and scales and
confirm its kosher status. A clean knife
should be used to fillet the fish on clean
paper. Salmon is the only fish that is
kosher even once filleted since it is
distinguished by its color. The fish
should be double wrapped in silver foil,
and you must place it in the oven to avoid
Q: Can I eat hard boiled eggs that were
prepared in a non-kosher pot?
A: The taste from the non-kosher pot is
transferred and the eggs are not kosher.
Q: Can I eat cold cereal and milk in a
non-Kosher bowl with a non-kosher
A: Yes, but care should be taken to
confirm that the cutlery and utensils are
Q: Can I eat freshly cut up fruit and/or
A: Yes, with exception of onions and
radishes. Please be aware that some
vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower
require inspection to make sure there are
Q: When the cruise is complete, is
birchas ha’gomel recited?
A: Yes, preferably within three days
Q: Does it make a difference what day
of the week the cruise begins?
A: There is no concern with a cruise
that begins on Sunday – Wednesday.
Due to the potential for sea sickness,
combined with the possibility of Shabbos
violation, Chazal decreed that it is
forbidden to set sail within three days of
Shabbos. While a minority opinion
suggests that today large ships are stable
and eliminate the necessity to adjust,
most opinions require us to observe the
original decree. Therefore, you should
not book a cruise that sets sail Thursday
Q: If the cruise docks on Shabbos,
can I disembark?
A: There is no prohibition in
disembarking on Shabbos, but there
are a few halachic considerations you
must be careful about. Since there is
no eruv binding the ship to the dock
and its adjacent area, carrying is
forbidden. You must check your
pockets, etc. before disembarking.
Furthermore, there is a limitation in
how far you can travel on shabbos
outside of a residential area. The
techum (boundary) begins at the dock
and extends approximately 7/10 of a
mile. Care must be taken not to walk
too far and many believe out of
caution, one shouldn’t disembark
from a ship that docked on Shabbos.
Q: The ship has a metal detector,
can I pass through it when re-boarding
the ship on Shabbos?
A: You may pass through the
detector assuming you are not
carrying or wearing anything that
may set it off.
Q: My cabin has an electronic door
lock, what should I do on shabbos?
A: You must leave your key at the front
desk or with security and let them know
that you will be asking them over shabbos
to open your door for you.
Q: The doors throughout the ship are
electronic and open based on a sensor.
What should I do?
A: If there are manual doors available,
it is preferable to use them.
If not, wait for a non-Jew to trigger the
sensor and open the door and follow
closely behind them.
Q: Can I carry on the ship; does it need
an eruv or eruv chatzeiros?
A: Carrying on the ship is permissible
as it is an inherently closed space. No
eruv chatzeiros is necessary.
Q: Where should I light Shabbos
candles? Can I use electric lights?
A: It is preferable to light candles in the
dining room within proximity to where
the Shabbos meals will take place. If that
is not possible, they can be lit in the cabin
where you will sleep. In most cases,
candles are not allowed on the ship, so
the mitzvah should be fulfilled by turning
on an incandescent light bulb or
flashlight; a beracha should be recited.
Q: I don’t have kosher grape juice or
kosher wine, how do I make Kiddush?
A: If there is no kosher grape juice or
wine, Kiddush should be recited over
Q: I didn’t bring a havdallah set, what
should I do?
A: Beer or juice can be used in place of
wine. Any spice that has a fragrance can
be used as besamim.Two candles held
together can be used as the havdallah
candle. If only one candle is available,
the beracha may be recited. If candles are
not permitted on the ship, one may use an
electric incandescent light in place of a