Why don't Cunard go back to the old name Cunard White Star

As I'm writing this message I am looking at this envelope that contains a picture of the QE2 that I bought last year during a cruise on the QE2. On the envelope is a picture of a Cunard Ship with 4 funnels. To the right of the picture is the words Cunard and under the name Cunard is the name White Star. Above the name Cunard is the White Star Flag which is the red flag with the white star in the center of it. So I was thinking Why don't Cunard go back to the name it had after the 1934 merger with White Star and officially refer to itself as the Cunard-White Star Line? Of course they would have to put the Cunard-White Star name on all their ships QE2,QM2,Caronia and the unnamed ship that goes into service in 2005. Any opinions here?
I for one do not think there's much marketing value in the White Star name. Not to be too flippant, but it would probably have the same impact as naming a ship Titanic II.

In any case I don't believe Cunard was ever too pleased with the White Star merger, aside from the reduction in competition.

Scott R. Andrews


Despite what you might think, Cunard definitely sees some marketing value in invoking the White Star name. The following is from the QE2 section of the Cunard web site:

"...Wherever you dine you will enjoy Queen Elizabeth 2's impeccable Cunard White Star ServiceTM, as attentive waiters guide you through a tempting array of courses..."

I've seen the very same reference in their printed brochures as well.

I find it interesting that inspite of the superb reputation for service that the Cunard brand has always enjoyed, when they looked for a brandmark which would convey the proper image for their highest level of service, they dusted off the old White Star name.


Scott Andrews

Mark Baber

Cunard seems to trot out the White Star name, expressly or implicitly, every now and then. The year after Cameron's movie came out, a Cunard White Star ad or flyer or something (I forget exactly what) was very prominently displayed on the front cover of Cunard's annual brochure. The reference to Cunard White Star service that Scott referred to appeared as a pop-up on several web sites---I specifically remember The New York Times'---about a year and a half ago. And, although they seem to have changed it, until recently Cunard's web site showed Majestic II (albeit painted incorrectly in Cunard colors) in a lineup of historic Cunarders.

Maybe they're trying to draw on whatever goodwill the "White Star" name still carries. or maybe they're using the name just enought to protect their cliam to it, or maybe both.
Cunard supposedly also tried to eliminate all traces of White Star after merger by scrapping ALL remaining White Star ships except the new Britannic and Georgic (Too new to scrap and give an excuse!)They also destroyed many White Star documents and records which were left rotting till the 1960's - 70's.

Brent Holt

Cunard was very hard on the WSL side of the merger. They retired 70% of the WSL fleet within 2 years after the merger. Several of the retirements, especially Olympic's, were very much questionable.
But long term Cunard got a great deal-they absorbed and eliminated the primary competition. Combine that with the massive liner losses of WWII, and it is not surprising the Cunard ruled the Atlantic for much of the post war period.


Yes, Cunard has decided to advertise the fact that they have "White Star Service". The following was taken directly from Cunard's website:

"Crew members trained at Cunard’s elite White Star Academy attend to every detail. The long British traditions of Cunard’s White Star Service sets the standard by which all others are judged."

If you ever get the chance to be onboard a Cunard ship, you would notice that all of the crew are required to wear a "White Star Service" pin, and some carry around cards that show some of the principles of good "White Star Service".

Also, during the cocktail parties onboard, the Captain would talk briefly about the merge between the two companies and how the service enjoyed by those on the original White Star liners lives on. If I recall correctly, Captain Rynd enjoyed discussing this point the most.

Tom Roesser

Kyle Johnstone

hmmmm... was something lacking in Cunard's service before the merger...? ;)

Cunard's "Legendary White Star Service" is recent marketing exploitation resulting from some movie I've heard something about...

Joe Russo

I believe that the White Star Line pennant is also flown every April 15th on all the Queens in memory of that ship in some movie.

[Moderator's Note: This message and the three above it, originally a separate thread, have been moved to this pre-existing thread addressing the same subject. MAB]
>Crew members trained at Cunard’s elite White Star Academy

Which is quite funny, when you think about it. Factoring in the connotations of the Titanic; Atlantic; 1916 Brittanic; Naronic; Nantucket Lightship, insolvency,....I could go on..."White Star" does not exactly conjure up stellar~ or romantic~ connotations to anyone who knows about ships. In fact, "White Star Academy" and "White Star Service" can translate into "Stretches of Brilliance Punctuated By Some Of The Most Horrific Incidents At Sea You Are Likely To Encounter." White Star Academy: Our Motto~"Ships Have Gone Beyond That." Today's seminar: "Optimism! Are those lifeboats half full or half empty!"
>hmmmm... was something lacking in Cunard's service before the merger...? ;)

Apparently yes. There is a great section in Transatlantic about Cunard's less than envied reputation for customer service worth reading- it contains this ca 1910 joke (somewhat paraphrased- I'm working from memory)

Cunard Passenger: May I have another towel?
Steward: No, but we've never lost a life.

Brent Holt

I don't think its fair to mention Britannic since she was a war loss.
The public certainly did not seem to take disasters out on WS since the company usually ran a strong second to Cunard post-World War I.


There are many who would disagree with this quite strongly. I am one of them.