Recently, I've been watching a lot of in-depth video tours of these objectively gigantic modern cruise ships, which are all more or less the same. Basically, they are like floating cities, but everything is tracked and you can of course not exit the cruise ship as you please, since it travels around on the seas.
Even though I have a general personal interest in large ships, because they fascinate me by merely existing, I'm at the same time having a very hard time understanding what the general public sees in these things and why they are willing to pay so much money to go on a cruise with one of them.
I'm gonna be blunt: most of the areas look horribly "tacky" and tasteless, and seems to be be made for a generic mix of "consumer-mindset" people, and even though I would genuinely be fascinated initially walking around there, I would quickly feel trapped there as I realize that virtually everything is designed to extract further money from me, even though I already paid the hefty price for a ticket and cabin, and everything is just so "industrial-sized" and impersonal.
Growing up, I used to go on these much smaller ferries, which themselves seemed huge to me, to visit our cousins. That trip was necessary; it wasn't possible (or practical, or economical) to fly there. Also, there were lots of genuinely exciting and unique things on the ships, with one highlight being the one-armed bandits of the electro-mechanical kind. These days, those no longer exist, and what's left of such gambling machines and the video arcade is something which turns me off more than anything.
I want to point out that, if I could design an entire such cruise ship with unlimited budget, I could make it extremely interesting (at least to me), but this is obviously not the case with the existing cruise ships to which I can book a ticket right now if I had the money. So it's not that I don't like the cruise ships as a concept; I only wonder why, in their existing form, people want to go on there.
Since there is no practical reason to go on them (flying is quicker and cheaper, and they aren't even designed to "transport people from point A to point B", but rather to "allow them to be on the sea for X number of days/weeks"), and they cannot be said to feature anything unique (everything you can find on board has a far superior on-land alternative), what is so appealing about these modern monsters of the sea?
For me, it's also a matter of having no privacy. I don't want a stupid wrist band registering every move I make, or face scanning to board the ship, or any of that stuff. However, this seems to be a lost cause and nobody else cares about privacy anymore, so it's just a minor additional complaint compared to the main ponder.
It's like, you imagine this floating paradise, away from any city or country, like a space ship floating through space, away from everyone, but in reality, it seems to be just another place where a bunch of people are packed together and they barely even notice that they are at sea at all. It seems like a big waste of money for them to create all this stuff on a cruise ship instead of just making a theme park on an island somewhere or something.
I'm basically confused about what is so good about these things. I couldn't imagine being comfortable on there, with all the people, noise, tasteless design, generic food/machines/entertainment centres, etc.
Maybe I'm missing something fundamental about them. Maybe it's an unwritten rule, which everyone except I understand, that these cruise ships are just a "front" for their true purpose: some sort of hidden/unadvertised deck/area where adults can gain access and which is basically a large-scale brothel or something. And that's where all the parents go while the kids play around above. But I doubt it. I think what you see in those videos are what you get. And I simply don't get it.