Less than a year after a Supreme Court decision legalized same-sex marriage in Bermuda, the government of the British Overseas Territory has outlawed it, a reversal that is poised to roil the waters of the cruise industry and potentially threaten travel to the island.
The country where a ship is registered influences how cruise lines conduct marriages at sea. Cruise Lines International Association, a trade group comprised most of the industry’s cruise lines, said that about 10 percent of its members’ ships are registered in Bermuda, accounting for about 13 percent of passenger capacity.
Subsequent to the reversal, cruise ships registered in Bermuda that offered same-sex weddings have determined they can no longer do so.
When same-sex marriage was legalized in Bermuda last May, Cunard, which registers its fleet in Bermuda, announced it would extend its wedding-at-sea packages to same-sex couples, with marriage licenses issued in Bermuda. Cunard held its first shipboard same-sex marriage in January.
Given the repeal, another couple, who had planned to marry next fall on a ship, has decided to wed before the sailing, according to a company spokeswoman.