Before the advent of commercial transatlantic flights in the early 1950s, the only way to travel between continents was by sea. In the golden age of ocean liners, between the late nineteenth century and the Second World War, shipping companies ensured their vessels were a home away from home, providing entertainment, dining, sleeping quarters and smoking lounges to accommodate passengers of all ages and budgets, for voyages that could last as long as three months. Secrets of the Great Ocean Liners leads the reader through each of the stages - and secrets - of ocean liner travel, from booking a ticket and choosing a cabin to shore excursions, dining, on-board games, social events, romances, and disembarking on arrival.
Additional chapters disclose wartime voyages and disasters at sea. The shipping companies produced glamorous brochures, sailing schedules, voyage logs, passenger lists, postcards and menus, all of which help us to savour the challenges, etiquette and luxury of ocean liner travel. Diaries, letters and journals written on board also reveal a host of behind-the-scenes secrets and fascinating insights into the experience of travelling by sea.
This book dives into a vast, unique collection to reveal the scandals, glamour, challenges and tragedies of ocean liner travel.