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Steamer Trains to Time - What to Know About Ocean Travel - 1924

Topics covered on this page include: Steamer Trains, Steamer Travel in Europe, Steward's Department, Stenographer and Typist, Sunday Services, Swimming Pools on Deck, Taxes, Taxicabs, Tea, Telegrams, Tenders, Time.


(See "Railroads").


Regular lines of steamers connect ports on the Irish Sea, the English Channel, the North Sea, time Baltic and the Mediterranean. The large rivers and lakes also have steamer services.

Principal Irish Sea routes: Cork, Dublin and Belfast to Bristol, Holyhead. Liverpool and Glasgow. There is also a short sea route between Stranraer and Larhe, for Belfast.

Cross Channel routes: Southampton to Havre, Southampton to Channel Islands, New Haven to Dieppe, Folkstone to Boulogne and Flushing, Dover to Calais, London to Antwerp and Rotterdam, Harwich to Antwerp and Hook of Holland, Harwich to Zeebrugge.

North sea routes connect London, Grimsby, Hull, Newcastle, Leith and Aberdeen with ports in Belgium, Holland, Germany, Denmark, Russia, and Scandinavian countries.

Principal Mediterranean routes: Marseilles to Algiers and North African ports; Naples, Genoa, Venice and Brindisi to Alexandria, Port Said and eastern Mediterranean.


On ocean liners the rooms and tables are in charge of the chief steward's staff. The chief steward is housekeeper of the ship, and has direct care of his passengers' comfort. Seats at table are assigned by the second steward, who will also arrange private dinner parties, or order special dishes, on request.

Your table steward waits on you regularly, from the second meal of a voyage (except in restaurant service). Your room steward is like a personal attendant, and like the table steward can do much to contribute to the pleasure of your trip.

Lounge stewards, smoking room stewards and deck stewards also have frequent contact with passengers. On the larger ships there are special stewards for library, gymnasium and swimming bath service. (See also " Purser ")


A stenographer and typist is carried on the larger liners, whose services may be employed at fixed rates.


Divine service is held every Sunday forenoon, usually in the lounge. The usual form is that of the Church of England, a ship's officer conducting the service. Complete altar equipment is provided for the celebration of the Holy Mass by Roman Catholic priests who may travel on company ships.


Panama Pacific Line ships are equipped with swimming pools on deck for the use of passengers in all classes. (See also "Baths").


Taxes paid by ocean travelers:

There is a stamp tax on tickets issued in the United States of

  • $1.00 on tickets costing from $10.00 to $30.00;
  • $3.00 on tickets from $30.00 to $60.00 and
  • $5.00 on those over $60.00.

Canada assesses a similar tax of

  • $1.00 on tickets costing from $10.00 to $40.00;
  • $3.00 on those from $40.00 to $65.00; and
  • $5.00 on all over $65.00.

A Head Tax of $8.00 is assessed on aliens entering the United States, payable when a ticket is purchased. This can be recovered if notice is given the United States Immigration Inspector at port of entry of intention to leave the country within 60 days. Transit Certificate Form 514 is issued to the passenger by an inspector, which if presented to the purser on any steamer leaving within 60 days of traveler's arrival will be exchanged for refund.


(See "Cabs").


(See "Meals ").


(See "Letters," etc.).


Tenders are employed at some European ports to land and embark passengers. These are large steamers with cabins. (See also "Landing Arrangements").


On eastbound ships the clocks are put forward half an hour or more every night at midnight, the amount of change being indicated on a bulletin board. On westbound ships the clocks are set back.

Time at Sea is divided into watches marked by bells every half hour, for eight hours. One bell is 12.30 A. M., two bells 1 o'clock, 3 bells 1.30, four bells 2.00, five bells 2.3Q, six bells 3.00, seven bells 3.30 and eight bells 4 o'clock, and repeat around the clock.

Difference in time between New York and London is exactly five hours, it being 5 o'clock P. M. in London when 12 noon in New York. Time varies three hours on the American Continent from coast to coast.

In summer daylight lasts longer in northern Europe than in the United States and Canada, while winter days are shorter. Official tailway time on the Continent is based on a 24-hour day, commencing at midnight.

On time tables 8 o'clock means 8 A. M., 8 P. M. is shown as 20 o'clock. Arrivals between midnight and 1 A. M. are shown as 24.35; train departures as 0.35. In conversation one refers to the usual markings of the clock, as 2 P. M. instead of 14 o'clock.


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