Frequent Questions

How is the drinking water aboard cruise ships regulated?

Cruise ships operating under the American flag using domestic waters must comply with federal drinking water regulations and, if pertinent, state drinking water regulations. These vessels are considered interstate carrier conveyances comparable to airlines or railroads.

Cruise ships that sail in international waters are under the purview of the CDC's Vessel Sanitation Program. Information about the Vessel Sanitation Program is available at

Have more questions? Submit a request