How big was Titanic compared to modern cruise ships?

How Titanic would look leaving Auckland.
How Titanic would look leaving Auckland. Photo credit: Getty Images/Newshub

The Titanic is one of the biggest things in modern history: The search for it was big, the movie about it was big, and according to some records it was so big that Captain Edward John Smith said "even God himself couldn't sink this ship".

But how big is big?

If you were to judge its size by the movie Titanic alone, you would assume RMS Titanic was one of the largest things ever built, perhaps so big that it's yet to be matched since.

However, as time rolled on and technology evolved, the cruise ships taking to the ocean these days are so big they'd make Cal Hockley spill his hair wax.

Putting Titanic next to some of the largest modern cruise liners underlines just how massive and amazing cruise ships have become.

How big was Titanic compared to modern cruise ships?
Photo credit: Newshub

Let's take a look at passenger numbers.

Titanic set sail with 2208 people onboard. It had capacity for quite a bit more than that, so there were plenty of empty rooms and beds onboard. Just 324 of those were in first class, while 709 shared the bunks down below.

Today's Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, both owned by Royal Caribbean International, have capacity for 6780 people each - that's three times that of Titanic.

The Symphony of the Seas is much heavier, too. Its gross tonnage is 228,081, compared to the Titanic's 52,310.

The Harmony of the Seas is one of the longest cruise ships sailing today at 362m, compared to the 269m length of Titanic. 

Jack and Rose would look considerably smaller on a modern cruise ship.
Jack and Rose would look considerably smaller on a modern cruise ship. Photo credit: Getty Images/Newshub

Titanic was three and a half times as long as an Airbus A380, or about two and a half times the length of a rugby field. 

However, in terms of speed, there's not a massive difference between the iconic vessels and the latest cruise ships. Titanic could power along at 21 knots, while the Oasis can hit 24.5 knots.

The biggest difference between Titanic and the ships of today is, tragically, the number of lifeboats onboard.

The Oasis of the Seas has 18 lifeboats - enough to carry everyone onboard. Titanic infamously only had enough lifeboats for half of those onboard. A total of 20, enough to save 1178 people.

Despite the ability to save many more, only 706 people survived when the Titanic sank, while 1517 died.

Regardless of when it happened - 1517 is a big number of deaths.