November 14, 2013 Updated November 15, 2013
Cruise Critic reached out to several cruise lines to find out what is being done for crewmembers and how passengers can help. Here's what they're doing and how you can help:
The Cruise Industry Charitable Foundation The CICF is providing a $100,000 donation to the American Red Cross for its Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts in the Philippines. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone affected by the devastating and tragic storm in the Philippines, which is the home country of so many cruise line crew members," CLIA CEO Christine Duffy said.
Norwegian Cruise Line
"Everyone at Norwegian Cruise Line is truly saddened to hear of the devastation in the Philippines … our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of our crewmembers from the Philippines who have been impacted," Norwegian spokeswoman Vanessa Lane told Cruise Critic.
"Through our partners in the area, we have been in touch with hundreds of our crewmembers, and while many have suffered damage to their homes, they are safe.
"Crewmembers on board are being supported to help make contact with their families and we are making arrangements for those who need to return home to do so." Norwegian cruisers who wish to contribute to Norwegian's Support Fund for its Filipino crewmembers may send a check payable to Norwegian Cruise Line to:
Norwegian Cruise Line
Attention: Typhoon Haiyan Relief Fund
7665 Corporate Center Drive
Miami, FL 33126
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.'s chairman and chief executive Richard Fain said: "Our hearts go out to everyone affected by the storm. More than 12,800 of our employees call the Philippines home. We want to do everything we can to help them, their families, and their neighbors heal from this terrible tragedy.”
Since the storm, Royal Caribbean has helped crew members attempt to communicate with relatives in the Philippines. It has also deployed an emergency team to the hardest-hit areas in the Philippines.
Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and Azamara passengers can contribute online at worldvision.org/royalcaribbean and www.worldvision.org/azamaraclubcruises. The company said its efforts to help the people of the Philippines would total $1 million.
Carnival Cruise Lines
Carnival Cruise Lines is providing its Filipino crewmembers with free phone calls and Internet, and is providing personalized logistical support and assistance for those with specific needs.
Additionally, Carnival Corp. has linked up with the Miami Heat basketball team and pledged at least $1 million to support relief efforts in the Philippines.
Carnival chairman and Miami Heat owner Micky Arison said: "The typhoon in the Philippines has caused massive destruction, and is having a tragic impact on people and families, including those members of our extended Carnival family who reside in the region. We are in the process of evaluating a variety of worthy organizations who are doing fantastic work in the Philippines.”
P&O Cruises Australia, which is part of Carnival Corp. also donated $50,000 to Save the Children for their relief efforts in the region.
Princess is donating $50,000 to International Medical Corps, $50,000 to the Red Cross and $10,000 to the Homer Foundation in the Philippines.
On Crystal Cruises ship crew have been able to call home and e-mail free of charge.
"As of the weekend, there were just a few crew who were having trouble reaching some people – but communications are difficult," a spokeswoman for the cruise line said. "Our local agency in the Philippines is also assisting crew reach family members. We have asked crew to keep us posted regarding who might need special assistance, and we have asked our agency for more information on how we can help. We expect to have more information today."
Costa Cruises also is providing free Internet and phone calls to Filipino crewmembers so they can contact their friends and family at home. Additionally, the line announced it is donating $100,000 to a crew fund.
Fred.Olsen Cruise Lines
Another line providing support to its Filipino crewmembers is Fred.Olsen. "The majority of Fred.Olsen's crew aboard its four cruise ships are from the Philippines. Many have family and friends who have been affected by the recent flooding and devastation caused by 'Super Typhoon Haiyan' ... and have seen their homes and belongings destroyed, and many families left homeless and some, sadly, feared lost."
The line is helping several crewmembers from the most devastated areas get home and is sending a sizeable donation to its crewing agent in the region to distribute to families in urgent need of help.
Fred.Olsen passengers who wish to help may send checks made out to Fred.Olsen Cruise Lines to:
Deborah Moore, Accounts Department
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines
Fred. Olsen House, White House Road
Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1 5LL, United Kingdom.
News outlets are reporting Haiyan might have been the strongest tropical cyclone in recorded history, with wind gusts of up to 155 mph and storm surges that reached 16 feet high.
--by Dori Saltzman, News Editor