I just got off a cruise last week and asked your questions. Your looking at it from the wrong view. Yes it does cost around 200 to 250 bucks a person...but the crew laid it out for me. Philip is correct is in the 1200 tons of fuel burned for a ship around 120,000 tons of displacement...such as Royal or Carnival ships. On my particular cruise of 2600 passengers, and 5 day per day fuel charge for a 7 day cruise thats $35 per person X 2,600 passengers = $91,000 the cruise gets towards fuel...it wont cover all of it.

Ships hold more then they burn for a whole cruise, but for simplification purposes we will just talk about what they use. Fuel is bought in contracts for about a year....they pay spot prices if they use more then contract allows..but at the last Royal cruise it was about $600 a ton for fuel. $600 per ton of fuel X 1200 tons = $720,000 per fill up

So now lets talk about what customers pay to get on the ship. This is more estimated then the ther figures. The cheapest rooms were about 650, but I was told the average of all the rooms, is around $800 a person.

$800 per person X 2600 people = $2,080,000 per cruise....each week

$2,080,000 in customer payments
+ $91,000 fuel surcharges
- $720,000 in fuel costs
$1,451,000 before paying its employees...which isnt as much as you think...most jobs on the ship pay low becasue tips are involved...minus officer, and engineers and cooks. But lets also as to the equation the cost of your fruity drinks. $7- to $9 .....trust me they make a decent profit per cruise....easily a million..... so do not feel bad for them. They do mighty fine.....and you really are only paying $91,000 out $720,000 for fuel...thats only 12.6% so no complaints.

-J man