I am a Spanish citizen, and next summer I will go on a cruise trip from Spain to France (only stopping in those countries). The organising company seems to be oriented to a USA public so they require the passport for the reservation/registration of the travel as well as the embarkation.

I asked them if I really needed the passport, given that my National ID lets me travel through all EU countries, and they replied that I do need to show my passport when I embark the ship.

Why do they require me to bring the passport?

UPDATE: after contacting the company a second time, they answered that the cruise line requires that I have my passport with me although this company is aware of my IDs grants

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    Because that's the company's policy. We could speculate about why that's the company's policy but, it would be just that: speculation. – David Richerby Nov 7 '16 at 9:55
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    @J.Constantine It's not an answer: it's a statement that the question is unanswerable. It is, literally, a comment on the question, so I posted it as one. – David Richerby Nov 7 '16 at 11:05
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    Traveling within the Schengen zone, you would not need to show your passport or ID card, the company might want to be secure in case you make an extra stop outside the Schengen zone, which could be outside the Schengen zone, but even in most of those cases your ID card should do. I fear the company has someone in the office who does not know the laws involved and is inflexible. – Willeke Nov 7 '16 at 12:40
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    @DavidRicherby this company's policy could be unlawful – Mario Trucco Nov 7 '16 at 13:55
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    Would it not more likely be a requirement International Maritime Law (Admiralty Law)? – Giorgio Nov 7 '16 at 14:55

Because it's easier for them to require passports than to create a special policy for EU citizens. I wouldn't be surprised if non-EU citizens are also asked to prove they're legally allowed to stay within the Schengen area, even though they don't have to check that for intra-EU journeys.

So the answer is: because the company is too lazy to have a reasonable policy.

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    @pnuts we have plenty of similar questions, although mentioning the exact company could be helpful. No sources, just like there's no source for why Ryanair checks visas on Schengen flights - they don't tell the public and the rest is speculation. – JonathanReez Nov 7 '16 at 16:25

Look at it from the cruise line's point of view. There are two policies they could adopt:

  1. Accept all the credentials appropriate for every ports they visit and every country their passengers might hail from, which would entail researching the relevant laws, consulting with legal experts, training crew members in the rules, and dealing with complaints from customers who don't understand the final policy. And Heaven help them if a mechanical or logistical problem forces them to dock in a unplanned port and half the passengers don't have have the proper paperwork to go ashore.
  2. Require passports of everyone.

So (2) is the obvious choice.

And you can say they ought to make an exception for such a common case, an EU citizen traveling between EU ports -- and I am sure they have thought about doing so, but have decided against it.

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    I have unassailable evidence! The cruise-line executives, who do nothing but think about these things all day long, have decided not to put such a policy in place. 23 million people a year take a cruise. If they thought they could bump that to 23.1 million for only a few million dollars invested, they would – Malvolio Nov 7 '16 at 16:54

While traveling from a Schengen port to a Schengen port, without planned stops, you should not even need to show your passport of ID card. But when traveling on a sea, unforseen things can happen and your cruise ship might need to call in at a port which is outside the area where your ID is valid.

And there is the possibility of an emergency evacuation, which might land you in a country that does not accept EU ID cards.

But it can also be a case of 'we set the rules, we stick to it.' Without good reasoning.

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    @pnuts -- the question is not who these people are, but getting them home. An EU ID is not going to get you on a plane in Mohammed V International Airport. Each and every person would have be issued valid travel documents by their own consulate; they couldn't even stay at a hotel without special consideration. I have no idea how frequently cruise ships are forced into unplanned docking, but apparently... it's often enough. – Malvolio Nov 7 '16 at 22:36
  • @Malvolio "An EU ID is not going to get you on a plane in Mohammed V International Airport" Actually it used to, provided you were on an organized tour – Crazydre Nov 19 '16 at 1:08

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