A survey of the occurrence of motion sickness amongst passengers at sea

Aviat Space Environ Med. 1988 May;59(5):399-406.


A questionnaire survey of motion sickness occurrence on board passenger ferries has been conducted. Data were collected from 20,029 passengers on 114 voyages on 9 vessels: 6 ships, 2 hovercraft, and 1 jetfoil. Information was obtained about feelings of illness, the occurrence of vomiting, the taking of anti-seasickness tablets, the consumption of alcoholic drinks, regularity of travel by sea, age, and sex. Overall, 7% of passengers reported vomiting at some time during the journey, 21% said they felt "slightly unwell," 4% felt "quite ill," and a further 4% felt "absolutely dreadful." Both vomiting incidence and illness rating were greater in females than in males, and there was a slight decrease in sickness occurrence with increasing age. The incidence of vomiting was related to the taking of tablets and the drinking of alcohol; there were also some interaction effects with other variables. Anecdotal information from passengers is reported and consideration is given to the effects of environmental variables.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Alcohol Drinking
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motion Sickness / drug therapy
  • Motion Sickness / epidemiology*
  • Motion Sickness / etiology
  • Sex Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vomiting / epidemiology
  • Vomiting / etiology
  • Weather