Your Ultimate Boating Resource

Why are bananas not allowed on boats?

There is a long-standing superstition in the boating community that bananas are bad luck on a boat. This belief has been held for centuries by seafarers, with many considering bananas to be a curse that brings misfortune.

While it may seem like a silly superstition, there are a number of reasons why bananas are not allowed on boats. One of the most common reasons given is that they produce ethylene gas, which can cause other fruits and vegetables to ripen and spoil more quickly. This can be a problem on longer voyages when fresh food is scarce and every item is precious.

Another reason behind the banana taboo is rooted in history. When ships transporting bananas first started crisscrossing the oceans, they were notorious for attracting pests such as spiders and snakes, which often made their way into other parts of the cargo hold. This led to fears among sailors that bananas were a harbinger of danger and unwanted surprises.

In addition to these practical reasons, there are also many historical, cultural, and even mythical traditions behind the superstition. Some say that the curse dates back to the days of the banana trade in the Caribbean, where pirates and other nefarious characters were known to indulge in the fruit. Others believe that the negative energy associated with bananas is due to their association with death and bad luck in various cultural and religious traditions.

Despite the lack of scientific evidence supporting the idea that bananas are bad luck on boats, the superstition continues to persist to this day. Many boaters still refuse to bring bananas on board, and some even go so far as to ban the fruit from their vessels altogether.

Whether it’s due to practical concerns about spoilage and pests, or deeper fears based on history and culture, one thing is clear: bananas are not welcome on boats. While this may seem like a silly superstition, it’s always better to err on the side of caution when it comes to seafaring, and many boaters would rather be safe than sorry.

Have something to add or correct? Please let us know by clicking here.
* See disclaimer in the footer of the site for use of this content.

Related Questions


Latest Posts

Don't Miss

Our Newsletter

Get the latest boating tips, fishing resources and featured products in your email from!