Cruise
Adviser

Cruise
Adviser

In this Issue

News: Taskforce sends ‘signal of confidence’ to cruise

Plus Virgin Voyages to sail out of the UK this summer

News: Norwegian Cruise Line announces return

Plus Silversea and Seabourn also announce Greek itineraries

News: Quark takes delivery of Ultramarine

Plus Carnival considers moving ships from US

News: P&O to offer Canary Islands fly-cruise for first time

Plus xxx

News: Domestic sailings from May 17

Plus P&O Cruises reveals Arvia features

News: Domestic sailings from May 17

Plus P&O Cruises reveals Arvia features

News: Uniworld boss aims for May return

Plus Crystal is the latest line to make vaccinations mandatory

News: Nicko Cruises joins Clia Europe

Plus, ten tips for selling river from Rupert Thomson, MD of Light Blue Travel

News: P&O and Princess plan summer UK cruises

The two lines follow government roadmap announcement with staycation itineraries

Incentives: Seabourn relaunches Early Bonus Savings

Plus, an interview with Paul Melinis MD UK & Europe, APT

News: Canada cruise ban

Seabourn, the ultra luxury cruise line, puts 2022 cruises on sale

News: Cancellations

From river to ocean, small-ship to mega-vessels, this is our comprehensive list of cruise line cancellation policies and suspension dates

News: Cancellations

From river to ocean, small-ship to mega-vessels, this is our comprehensive list of cruise line cancellation policies and suspension dates

News: When do cruise lines restart?

From river to ocean, small-ship to mega-vessels, we have created a comprehensive list of cruise line suspensions and restart dates so that you can keep up to date as the industry keeps moving

News: Fred Olsen pushes start date back

Plus, NCL launches new UK TV advertising campaign

News: 2020 delays result in bumper 2021

This is set to be a record-breaking year with an expected 31 vessels due to be delivered

News: Orlando Ashford joins Azamara

Plus, MSC takes delivery of MSC Virtuosa

News: Dr Sylvia Earle to join Aurora cruise

Plus, Hurtigruten launches 2022/23 Dover sailings

News: AmaWaterways reveals six trends for 2021

Plus, Viking Cruises to launch new Egypt vessel Viking Aton

News: Viking floats out expedition ship

Plus, an interview with Steve Wellmeier from Poseidon Expeditions

News

Taskforce sends ‘signal of confidence’ to cruise

 

The industry is hopeful for the ban on international sailings to be lifted with the introduction of the traffic light system in May


Clia has said that the Global Travel Taskforce’s report on restarting international travel “sends a signal of confidence” to the cruise industry.

The Taskforce revealed that the government would be introducing a traffic light system from May 17, although it did not mention the resumption of international cruise. UK cruises are allowed to sail from May, but currently the Foreign Office advises against sailing on a cruise ship that will travel internationally.

The Department for Transport said that key factors in the assessment of countries on the traffic light list will include:

  • the percentage of their population that have been vaccinated
  • the rate of infection
  • the prevalence of variants of concern
  • the country’s access to reliable scientific data and genomic sequencing

A statement from Clia read: “We welcome the announcement to restart international cruises alongside the wider resumption of international travel, in line with the ‘traffic light’ system.

“This announcement is the culmination of extensive collaboration between industry, government, health authorities and ports during the last 12 months to further strengthen health measures, which now go beyond any other travel sector. The industry’s protocols have already been tried and tested as almost 400,000 people have sailed on cruises since last summer elsewhere around the globe.

“It sends a signal of confidence to the industry and is a welcome boost to the thousands of people employed in the sector or whose livelihoods depend upon cruise, including travel agencies, hotels, tour guides, port operators and many other service providers up and down the country.”

News

Virgin Voyages to sail out of the UK this summer

The new line’s Summer Soirée Series will traverse the south coast of England and is on sale now


Virgin Voyages has revealed that it will be operating a series of cruises out of Portsmouth this summer. It is the latest line to announce a summer of ex-UK sailings, read our round-up here.

The sailings will be on offer only to UK residents and include three and four-night sailings this August. All passengers will need to be over 18, as is standard on Scarlet Lady, and be vaccinated.

“Virgin Voyages has been looking forward to sailing, and we’re so excited to announce our plans to sail from the UK,” said Sir Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group. “Our team has curated such a fantastic experience for our sailors and know this is a holiday they will love.”

Sailing along the south coast of England, these cruises offer a taste of the Virgin Voyages experience . The Summer Soirée Series includes:

● Itinerary 1 – Long Weekender (three-night, Friday to Monday)
○ August 6-9
○ August 13-16
○ August 20-23

● Itinerary 2 – Summer WeekDaze (four-night, Monday to Friday)
○ August 9-13
○ August 16-20
○ August 23-27

“After more than a year of waiting and a major emphasis on a safe return, we’re ecstatic to announce these new sailings and bring sailors onboard to experience what it’s like to set sail the Virgin way,” said Tom McAlpin, CEO and president of Virgin Voyages. “We look at our UK summer voyages as a homecoming to pay homage to our British roots, and what an excellent way to kick-off our sailing season before heading back to PortMiami.”

The Summer Soirée Series is on sale now.

News

Norwegian Cruise Line announces return...

The line will restart operations from July with reduced capacity seven-day cruises to the Greek Isles on Norwegian Jade


Norwegian Cruise Line has announced its return to service with new itineraries sailing Europe and the Caribbean beginning July 25.

The line will restart operations at a reduced capacity with seven-day cruises to the Greek Isles on Norwegian Jade from Athens (Piraeus). It will then commence week-long Caribbean itineraries from Montego Bay, Jamaica from August 7 on Norwegian Joy and Punta Cana (La Romana), Dominican Republic on Norwegian Gem, beginning August 15.

“Over a year after we initially suspended sailings, the time has finally come when we can provide our loyal guests with the news of our great cruise comeback,” said Norwegian Cruise Line’s president and chief executive officer Harry Sommer. “We have been working diligently towards our resumption of operations, focusing on the guest experience with health and safety at the forefront. The growing availability of the Covid-19 vaccine has been a game-changer. The vaccine, combined with our science-backed health and safety protocols, will help us provide our guests with what we believe will be the healthiest and safest vacation at sea.”

Sommer said: “All guests sailing aboard cruises with embarkation dates through October 31, 2021 will be required to be fully vaccinated and tested prior to boarding our ships. Given the ever-evolving nature of the pandemic, the accelerating rollout of the vaccine, and the speed of scientific learnings, it is premature to make decisions about our health and safety protocols for cruises with embarkation dates beginning November 1, 2021. We will continue to evaluate our health and safety protocols and rely on science and our expert council as we make decisions and evolve our policies and procedures.”

Parent company Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings has launched its SailSAFE Health and Safety Program, which includes vaccination requirements, universal Covid-19 testing and enhanced health screening protocols; medical-grade air filtration, increased sanitation measures and enhanced medical resources; and collaboration with land-based tour operator partners to extend health and safety measures to each destination.

Sommer said: “Resuming operations is a comprehensive endeavour, involving many parties around the globe. We are very proud of our collaborations and look forward to deeper partnerships as we forge into the future.”

News

...while Silversea and Seabourn go Greek

The two lines have announced itineraries out of Athens this summer, including the maiden season for Silver Moon


Silversea has announced that Silver Moon will embark on her maiden season from June 18, with itineraries sailing from Greece.

The line also revealed that all crew and guests will need to be vaccinated against Covid-19 in order to get on board. The only exception is cruises from Australia, for which the rules are still being considered.

Silver Moon will take guests on 10-day sailings calling at Santorini, Paros, Mykonos, and Crete, as well as Haifa (Israel) and Cyprus. The new round-trip itineraries will be put on general sale from April 15.

“Our guests share our excitement for our eagerly-anticipated healthy return to service. In recent months, we have seen the cruise industry resume responsibly in destinations around the world and we are delighted to announce these new inaugural sailings for our flagship,” says Roberto Martinoli, president and CEO of Silversea Cruises.

“Vaccinations will play a critical role in ensuring the health and safety of our guests, crew, and the communities we visit, which we prioritise above all else. Paired with our science-backed onboard procedures, which leverage on the expertise of the Royal Caribbean Group’s Healthy Sail Panel, vaccinations will enable our guests to travel deep into the world once again, with a renewed sense of appreciation for our beautiful planet. Backed by the Royal Caribbean Group, we have introduced a range of initiatives – including our ‘Cruise with Confidence’ programme and our Covid-19 protections – to enable our guests to travel in superlative comfort and with unwavering confidence.”

Meanwhile, Seabourn is also set to restart its cruise operations with sailings out of Athens (Piraeus) starting on July 3, the company has revealed. The plans are being created with the help of the Greek government.

Seabourn Ovation will operate a series of seven-day cruises calling at ports throughout the Greek Isles. Guests will also be able to book longer 14-day voyages, which combine individual seven-day voyages with a variety of different ports on each. The cruises will call at Agios Nikolaos, Rhodes, Mykonos and Nafplion as well as Limassol, Cyprus on one itinerary. On the other, guests will have the opportunity to experience Patmos, Rhodes, Thira and Spetsai along with a call at Paphos, Cyprus. They are open for booking now.

“The entire Seabourn family is truly excited to provide our award-winning travel experience aboard Seabourn Ovation starting again this July in the Greek Isles,” said Josh Leibowitz, president of Seabourn. “We’re grateful to the people of Greece for welcoming Seabourn back to the Mediterranean this summer.”

As with all of Carnival Corporation brands, the cruises are open to any guest that has been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. “Fully vaccinated” means a minimum of 14 days following the final dose of the currently approved Covid-19 vaccines being administered. Proof of vaccination and the dates given will be required.

News

Quark takes delivery of Ultramarine

The new expedition ship has capacity for 199 guests and boasts two helicopters and 20 Zodiacs


Quark Expeditions has taken delivery of Ultramarine, its new expedition vessel, at a ceremony at the Brodosplit shipyard in Croatia.

“Today, we took ownership of more than a new ship. We officially welcomed into our fleet a game-changing vessel that will soon become an unrivalled operational base for polar adventures,” said Andrew White, president of Quark Expeditions.

“Every aspect of Ultramarine has been designed and engineered to enable our teams to get guests off the ship and deep into the polar wilderness better than ever before. This new vessel – in the hands of the most experienced team in the expedition industry – will allow us to create truly immersive off-ship adventures for our guests, while providing them with a superior onboard experience.

“This game-changing ship was delivered after more than five years of dedicated work and considerable financial resources,” added White. “This commitment of time and money, especially during an industry-challenging pandemic, reflects our confidence in the future of polar travel and underscores our commitment to delivering life-changing polar experiences no one ever thought possible.”

The new ship will be able to accommodate 199 guests and will have two helicopters on board, operated from separate heliports – meaning both can be operated at the same time – as well as 20 “quick deploy” zodiacs.

“The completion of Ultramarine – with its superior on-ship amenities and advanced technology – is a testament to the community of engineers, naval architects, welders, structural fabricators, riggers, electricians and all of the other crew at the Brodosplit shipyard – as well as the designers, innovators and operational team members in the Quark Expeditions head office—who’ve worked long and hard over the last three years,” said Malcolm Ellis, senior vice-president of operations for Quark Expeditions. “So many people have contributed to the building of this vessel – and that includes our expedition team whose input spurred so many of the innovations that catapult Ultramarine into a league of its own.”

News

Carnival considers moving ships from US

Christine Duffy says that the line “may have no choice” in order to resume operations


The boss of Carnival Cruise Line has said that the company may have to move its ships away from US homeports unless a “workable solution” can be found.

The remarks came as Carnival pushed its restart date back until June 30.

“We know that this is very disappointing to our guests who continue to be eager to sail, and we remain committed to working with the administration and the CDC to find a workable solution that best serves the interest of public health. We are asking that the cruise industry be treated on par with the approach being taken with other travel and tourism sectors, as well as US society at large,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.

“While we have not made plans to move Carnival Cruise Line ships outside of our US homeports, we may have no choice but to do so in order to resume our operations which have been on ‘pause’ for over a year. We appreciate the continued patience and support from our loyal guests, travel advisors and business partners as we work on a return-to-service solution.”

Booked guests and travel agents are being notified directly of the cancellations and the options for a future cruise credit, plus onboard credit package, or a full refund.

News

P&O reveals Canary Islands fly-cruise

 

The line has unveiled details of its winter 2022/23 season, including a maiden programme for its new ship Arvia


P&O Cruises has revealed more details of its winter 2022/23 season, including a maiden Canary Islands programme for new ship Arvia and a 99-night world cruise on Arcadia.

Arvia’s 14-night Canary Islands voyages will all be Southampton round-trips, followed by a season of seven and 14-night Caribbean fly-cruises out of Antigua and Barbados.

The Caribbean sailings will all include an overnight call in Barbados, as well as stops at La Romana in the Dominican Republic – a maiden port of call for P&O Cruises; Curaçao; Martinique; St Kitts; St Lucia and St Maarten.

P&O will also be offering Canary Islands fly-cruises for the first time on board Azura, with two alternating seven-night cruises that can also be combined. A double onboard spending offer is currently available on 14-night sailings booked before June 1.

Iona will sail a winter 2022 season of Spain, Portugal and Canary Islands holidays, featuring overnight calls in Lisbon or Barcelona as well as European city breaks.

P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said: “The first holidays on new ship Arvia, exemplifying design excellence and built for sunshine cruising, and our first-ever Canary Islands fly-cruises are just two of the exciting highlights of our winter 2022 programme.

“We’re all longing to get back to travelling the world so we’re making it as easy as possible to have a P&O Cruises holiday to look forward to. All our winter 2022 holidays are available with flexible booking terms, five per cent low deposit, plus the opportunity to spread the cost monthly at no additional cost.”

News

P&O Cruises reveals Arvia features

The second LNG-powered Excel class ship is set to arrive in December 2022 and is designed to appeal to all ages


P&O Cruises’ new Excel class ship Arvia will feature Altitude Skywalk high-ropes, minigolf, a swim-up bar and new restaurant Green & Co featuring Mizuhana.

Arriving in December 2022, the ship is designed to appeal to all ages, P&O Cruises said as it unveiled new renderings.

Guests will be able to choose from two different adventurous Altitude Skywalk high-ropes courses while suspended 54m above the ocean. Altitude Minigolf, comprising nine minigolf challenges and another P&O Cruises first, will be located below.

A swim-up bar and infinity pool with views of the ship’s wake will also be part of the on-deck experience.

SkyDome is a pool by day with dining and entertainment by night, including aerial performances, theatre productions and blockbuster movies al fresco on SeaScreen.

 

As well as entertainment, Arvia will feature 12 restaurants plus a further eight more casual places to eat.

Green & Co featuring Mizuhana with a “plant and fish-led” menu has been especially developed for Arvia. Mizuhana sushi bar will be within Green & Co.
Also on board is 6th Street Diner, informal by day, but with a sophisticated night-time vibe, featuring retro seating, atmospheric lighting and jukebox and serving all-American flavours including speciality fried chicken and waffles with bourbon mascarpone.

P&O Cruises’ signature restaurants Epicurean, Sindhu, The Glass House, The Keel & Cow and The Olive Grove, already across the fleet, will feature on Arvia.

P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said: “Arvia is the latest evolution in the P&O Cruises experience, embodying the newest trends in travel, dining and entertainment, and will be the epitome of a sunshine resort sailing year-round to the warmest climates.

“New restaurant Green & Co featuring Mizuhana will have a plant-led menu, reflecting the latest trends in vegan, vegetarian and flexitarian dining, while Altitude Skywalk and SeaScreen will entertain all ages.

Arvia’s extraordinary features maximise views of the ocean, seashore and destinations from everywhere on board, while guests enjoy the next generation of onboard entertainment.”

The 185,000-tonne ship, which is 345m in length and boasts 16 guest decks, will also be home to Ocean Studios cinema, 1,300 square metres of shopping and the Oasis Spa and Health Club.

The Oasis Spa boasts new treatments exclusive to Arvia – two couples’ suites, each with a hammam and steam room, a therapeutic cool room, a restorative salt sauna and an invigorating Kneipp Walk, which combines a pebble foot massage with hot and cold water treatments to stimulate circulation and boost vitality.

Similar to its sister ship Iona, Arvia will be powered by liquefied natural gas as part of P&O Cruises’ ongoing commitment to sustainable travel. Building of the ship is already underway at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Germany.

News

Domestic sailings from May 17

Maritime minister Robert Courts delivered the “much appreciated news” to the All Party Parliamentary and Ports Group


UK cruise lines will be able to restart domestic sailings from May 17, the maritime minister has told a group of MPs.

Robert Courts was appearing at a meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Maritime and Ports Group (APPMPG).

On Twitter, the group said he had announced “the reopening of the domestic cruise market in England”.

It added: “From repatriation procedures and risk mitigations to Covid-19 protocols and the domestic vaccination programme, a great APPMPG session [with] Robert Courts who delivered some much appreciated news.”

A Department for Transport spokesperson said that the return of domestic cruises would be aligned to the reopening of domestic tourism and indoor hospitality.

Last month, it was confirmed that holidays will resume no earlier than May 17,  as the government laid out its roadmap for exiting lockdown.

A DfT review into how to allow inbound and outbound travel to restart will report on April 12. Domestic cruises were outlined as the first step in the sector’s reopening by the Global Travel Taskforce in autumn.

According to The Independent, Courts told MPs that the government is working with the home nations to ensure the return of UK-wide domestic cruise.

A DfT spokesperson said: “We are committed to restarting cruise travel when it is safe to do so and we are working closely with the sector to prepare for a safe and successful restart.

“The restart of domestic cruises in England will be aligned with the wider resumption of the domestic tourism and indoor hospitality sectors.

“As set out in the prime minister’s roadmap, the earliest possible date for this step is May 17.”

Andy Harmer, director, Clia UK and Ireland, said: “We strongly welcome the announcement that cruise will be included alongside the restart of other domestic tourism in the UK. The industry has been working with the government over the last year on health protocols which put the safety of our passengers and crew first. Many of these protocols have already been tested successfully where cruise has been able to operate elsewhere in Europe.

“The industry has long planned a phased restart for cruise, with domestic cruises representing the first stage of this plan. We look forward to continuing to work collaboratively with the Government, including through the Global Travel Taskforce in order to ensure the safe restart of international cruise in time for the summer season.”

News

P&O Cruises reveals Arvia features

The second LNG-powered Excel class ship is set to arrive in December 2022 and is designed to appeal to all ages


P&O Cruises’ new Excel class ship Arvia will feature Altitude Skywalk high-ropes, minigolf, a swim-up bar and new restaurant Green & Co featuring Mizuhana.

Arriving in December 2022, the ship is designed to appeal to all ages, P&O Cruises said as it unveiled new renderings.

Guests will be able to choose from two different adventurous Altitude Skywalk high-ropes courses while suspended 54m above the ocean. Altitude Minigolf, comprising nine minigolf challenges and another P&O Cruises first, will be located below.

A swim-up bar and infinity pool with views of the ship’s wake will also be part of the on-deck experience.

SkyDome is a pool by day with dining and entertainment by night, including aerial performances, theatre productions and blockbuster movies al fresco on SeaScreen.

 

As well as entertainment, Arvia will feature 12 restaurants plus a further eight more casual places to eat.

Green & Co featuring Mizuhana with a “plant and fish-led” menu has been especially developed for Arvia. Mizuhana sushi bar will be within Green & Co.
Also on board is 6th Street Diner, informal by day, but with a sophisticated night-time vibe, featuring retro seating, atmospheric lighting and jukebox and serving all-American flavours including speciality fried chicken and waffles with bourbon mascarpone.

P&O Cruises’ signature restaurants Epicurean, Sindhu, The Glass House, The Keel & Cow and The Olive Grove, already across the fleet, will feature on Arvia.

P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said: “Arvia is the latest evolution in the P&O Cruises experience, embodying the newest trends in travel, dining and entertainment, and will be the epitome of a sunshine resort sailing year-round to the warmest climates.

“New restaurant Green & Co featuring Mizuhana will have a plant-led menu, reflecting the latest trends in vegan, vegetarian and flexitarian dining, while Altitude Skywalk and SeaScreen will entertain all ages.

Arvia’s extraordinary features maximise views of the ocean, seashore and destinations from everywhere on board, while guests enjoy the next generation of onboard entertainment.”

The 185,000-tonne ship, which is 345m in length and boasts 16 guest decks, will also be home to Ocean Studios cinema, 1,300 square metres of shopping and the Oasis Spa and Health Club.

The Oasis Spa boasts new treatments exclusive to Arvia – two couples’ suites, each with a hammam and steam room, a therapeutic cool room, a restorative salt sauna and an invigorating Kneipp Walk, which combines a pebble foot massage with hot and cold water treatments to stimulate circulation and boost vitality.

Similar to its sister ship Iona, Arvia will be powered by liquefied natural gas as part of P&O Cruises’ ongoing commitment to sustainable travel. Building of the ship is already underway at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Germany.

News

Domestic sailings from May 17

Maritime minister Robert Courts delivered the “much appreciated news” to the All Party Parliamentary and Ports Group


UK cruise lines will be able to restart domestic sailings from May 17, the maritime minister has told a group of MPs.

Robert Courts was appearing at a meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Maritime and Ports Group (APPMPG).

On Twitter, the group said he had announced “the reopening of the domestic cruise market in England”.

It added: “From repatriation procedures and risk mitigations to Covid-19 protocols and the domestic vaccination programme, a great APPMPG session [with] Robert Courts who delivered some much appreciated news.”

A Department for Transport spokesperson said that the return of domestic cruises would be aligned to the reopening of domestic tourism and indoor hospitality.

Last month, it was confirmed that holidays will resume no earlier than May 17,  as the government laid out its roadmap for exiting lockdown.

A DfT review into how to allow inbound and outbound travel to restart will report on April 12. Domestic cruises were outlined as the first step in the sector’s reopening by the Global Travel Taskforce in autumn.

According to The Independent, Courts told MPs that the government is working with the home nations to ensure the return of UK-wide domestic cruise.

A DfT spokesperson said: “We are committed to restarting cruise travel when it is safe to do so and we are working closely with the sector to prepare for a safe and successful restart.

“The restart of domestic cruises in England will be aligned with the wider resumption of the domestic tourism and indoor hospitality sectors.

“As set out in the prime minister’s roadmap, the earliest possible date for this step is May 17.”

Andy Harmer, director, Clia UK and Ireland, said: “We strongly welcome the announcement that cruise will be included alongside the restart of other domestic tourism in the UK. The industry has been working with the government over the last year on health protocols which put the safety of our passengers and crew first. Many of these protocols have already been tested successfully where cruise has been able to operate elsewhere in Europe.

“The industry has long planned a phased restart for cruise, with domestic cruises representing the first stage of this plan. We look forward to continuing to work collaboratively with the Government, including through the Global Travel Taskforce in order to ensure the safe restart of international cruise in time for the summer season.”

News

P&O Cruises reveals Arvia features

The second LNG-powered Excel class ship is set to arrive in December 2022 and is designed to appeal to all ages


P&O Cruises’ new Excel class ship Arvia will feature Altitude Skywalk high-ropes, minigolf, a swim-up bar and new restaurant Green & Co featuring Mizuhana.

Arriving in December 2022, the ship is designed to appeal to all ages, P&O Cruises said as it unveiled new renderings.

Guests will be able to choose from two different adventurous Altitude Skywalk high-ropes courses while suspended 54m above the ocean. Altitude Minigolf, comprising nine minigolf challenges and another P&O Cruises first, will be located below.

A swim-up bar and infinity pool with views of the ship’s wake will also be part of the on-deck experience.

SkyDome is a pool by day with dining and entertainment by night, including aerial performances, theatre productions and blockbuster movies al fresco on SeaScreen.

 

As well as entertainment, Arvia will feature 12 restaurants plus a further eight more casual places to eat.

Green & Co featuring Mizuhana with a “plant and fish-led” menu has been especially developed for Arvia. Mizuhana sushi bar will be within Green & Co.
Also on board is 6th Street Diner, informal by day, but with a sophisticated night-time vibe, featuring retro seating, atmospheric lighting and jukebox and serving all-American flavours including speciality fried chicken and waffles with bourbon mascarpone.

P&O Cruises’ signature restaurants Epicurean, Sindhu, The Glass House, The Keel & Cow and The Olive Grove, already across the fleet, will feature on Arvia.

P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said: “Arvia is the latest evolution in the P&O Cruises experience, embodying the newest trends in travel, dining and entertainment, and will be the epitome of a sunshine resort sailing year-round to the warmest climates.

“New restaurant Green & Co featuring Mizuhana will have a plant-led menu, reflecting the latest trends in vegan, vegetarian and flexitarian dining, while Altitude Skywalk and SeaScreen will entertain all ages.

Arvia’s extraordinary features maximise views of the ocean, seashore and destinations from everywhere on board, while guests enjoy the next generation of onboard entertainment.”

The 185,000-tonne ship, which is 345m in length and boasts 16 guest decks, will also be home to Ocean Studios cinema, 1,300 square metres of shopping and the Oasis Spa and Health Club.

The Oasis Spa boasts new treatments exclusive to Arvia – two couples’ suites, each with a hammam and steam room, a therapeutic cool room, a restorative salt sauna and an invigorating Kneipp Walk, which combines a pebble foot massage with hot and cold water treatments to stimulate circulation and boost vitality.

Similar to its sister ship Iona, Arvia will be powered by liquefied natural gas as part of P&O Cruises’ ongoing commitment to sustainable travel. Building of the ship is already underway at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Germany.

News

Uniworld boss aims for May return

The luxury river cruise operator hopes for a quick resumption of European sailings


Ellen Bettridge, the CEO of luxury river cruise operator Uniworld, has said she is hopeful that the company will return to service in May.

Bettridge, who was speaking at Clia’s Virtual River Cruise Showcase, said that the Danube, Rhine and Douro would all return to service quickly, with Asian rivers such as the Mekong coming back in September.

She said: “We don’t really know for sure what’s going to be required, but what we do know is that guests will still have a fantastic experience.”

Demand for the company’s cruises is high, with 11 per cent of bookings being carried over from 2020. Overall, 52 per cent of bookings so far for 2021 represented people new to the brand.

“People see [river cruising] as the opportunity to be close to land, on a smaller vessel and you have the space, comfort and luxury – I think they feel more comfortable being close to land.”

However, Bettridge conceded that shore excursions were still a big unknown for Uniworld, with different destinations expected to have different rules.

Clia’s Virtual River Cruise Showcase replaced its member event, which is usually held in November. Other speakers included Walter Littlejohn, the managing director of Crystal River Cruises, and Rudi Schreiner, co-founder of AmaWaterways.

News

Cruise lines make vaccinations mandatory

Ultra-luxury line Crystal joins the likes of Swan Hellenic and Saga in asking for proof of vaccination before sailing


Crystal has announced that it will now require all guests to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 at least 14 days prior to embarkation.

Guests will need to provide proof of vaccination before sailing and must have received both doses of the vaccine if recommended by the manufacturer. The ultra-luxury line joins the likes of Swan Hellenic and Saga in making the measure mandatory.

The vaccine requirement is part the company’s comprehensive Crystal Clean+ 4.0 measures, including negative Covid-19 tests for guests and crew, temperature checks at the terminal prior to boarding, a “nimble” mask policy, social distancing guidelines, enhanced cleaning and disinfection measures, reduced capacity and more.

“We are encouraged by the progress being made with the Covid-19 vaccines and what this means for our Crystal Family and the travel industry as a whole as we eagerly look forward to exploring the world again,” said Crystal’s interim president and CEO, Jack Anderson.

“We know that peace of mind is the greatest luxury; and the vaccine requirement is simply the best way to ensure the safest possible Crystal Experience for all on board. This sentiment is underscored by conversations with our guests and travel partners and a recent survey of cruisers that revealed more than 80 per cent of respondents would cruise if a vaccine were required.

“As part of the company’s Crystal Clean+ 4.0 measures, crew members will be tested for Covid-19 prior to leaving their home location to join the ship and must receive a negative result. They also will take a Covid-19 test at embarkation; quarantine for seven days upon arrival; be tested again at the end of that seven-day period and must receive a negative result before beginning their duties,” Anderson said.

“When vaccines are widely available, they will be a requirement of employment for crew which must be completed at least 14 days prior to service.”

In addition to providing verified documentation of their Covid-19 vaccine at the time of boarding, guests will complete an online form acknowledging this requirement before their cruise tickets will be issued. Crystal has published a frequently asked questions document on the advisory alert section of its website for further reference.

Crystal said it will continue to evaluate and update its Crystal Clean+ 4.0 health and safety protocols for its luxury brands – Crystal Cruises, Crystal River Cruises, Crystal Yacht Cruises and the upcoming Crystal Expedition Cruises – according to the latest scientific data and expert guidance.

News

Nicko Cruises joins Clia Europe

The Stuttgart-based line is well known in Germany and is keen to raise awareness of the brand in international markets


German river cruise operator, Nicko Cruises, has been confirmed as a member of Cruise Lines International Association (Clia) Europe.

The Stuttgart-based line has operated as a specialist in small ship cruise for 25 years. Its all-inclusive ships are designed for between 50-125 passengers, with English spoken on board and no-fly options available from the UK.

Andy Harmer, Clia UK & Ireland director, said: “We’re delighted to have Nicko Cruises join Clia. They are a well-established, premium brand which provides guests with unique river cruise experiences. We look forward to supporting them as they develop and build relationships with the trade across Europe.

“Their addition to Clia’s membership is testament to the continued desire for travellers to cruise, and their confidence that the industry will always have the health and safety of passengers and crew as the number one priority.”

Rupert Thomson, managing director of river cruise specialist company Light Blue Travel, which represents Nicko Cruises in the UK, said: “Nicko Cruises is very well known in the German market and we are keen, with the help of Clia, to raise awareness of the brand to a wider international audience. We look forward to participating in Clia events and reaping the benefits membership offers.”

Nicko Cruises, took part in last week’s Clia’s virtual river cruise showcase, which brought together river cruise operators and experts.

The line became one of the first operators in the world to restart operations last year. You can read more about river’s restart here.

Comment

10 tips for selling river

Rupert Thomson is MD of river cruise specialist Light Blue Travel, UK representative for the American Queen Steamboat Company, Victory Cruise Lines and Nicko Cruises. Here, he’s compiled the top ten tips for selling river cruise


1. Cruise customers will be desperate to get back on the water, but there may be some nervousness to board the big ocean ships, so suggest river cruise as an option to ease back into life onboard. Smaller vessels, less people, social distancing easier to control and very strict health and safety protocols – plus you’re never far from land!

2. A customer wanting to maximise their first holiday after lockdown? River cruise offers the chance to visit a different place every day and even several countries in one trip, without the hassle of transfers and you only have to unpack once. Suggest river cruise to customers who say they are put off by mass ocean cruising and want something more personalised, where the staff will call them by name and remember what they like to drink.

3. Most river cruises dock in the historic centres of the port of call, so it’s possible to step straight off the boat and walk into town – no hanging around for coaches or even having to use tenders to get off ocean ships at some destinations. River boats are also usually easier for those who are unsteady on their feet to manage, too.

4. Most river cruises include excursions at each port; if your customer likes to know that everything is paid for check that all-inclusive deals really include everything – all drinks, gratuities, wi-fi, port fees as well as fine dining – it’s increasingly becoming the norm.

5. If you’ve got a repeat cruise customer, who’s ‘done’ European river cruise, why not suggest a US river cruise? In terms of safety, they are rolling out the vaccine programme in the US at a similar percentage rate as the UK. It is very different – historically, culturally, in terms of dining and, of course, it’s always English language. The Lower Mississippi is the most popular with first time US cruisers and it’s a joy to package with other US attractions either end. It’s higher value, so there’s great commission to be made too!

6. Agents who know their product tend to earn more commission as they know how to upsell – one agent started off with an enquiry for an eight-day Lower Mississippi cruise and ended up selling the Mighty Mississippi – an epic 23-day cruise (now also available with a 16-day option) sailing from New Orleans to Minneapolis – worth £29,000!

7. In order to know the product, sign up to all the river cruise training sessions offered by the operators. Light Blue Travel is about to launch its 2021/22 accredited training modules with multiple choice questions, pre-recorded webinars, video onboard tours and much more. And when we can travel again keep asking about fam trips – they will restart!

8. To make up for missing a year, 2021/22 is tipped for booking the BIG holiday – be sure to offer upgraded options, as an alternative to the standard cabins and economy flights – there are bound to be great upgrade deals.

9. Younger customers? Don’t discount cruise, the demographic is getting younger, thanks to programmes like Cruising with Jane McDonald. River cruising has a laid-back but sophisticated vibe.

10. And the final selling tip – when confronted by a customer who dismisses ocean cruise because they get seasick, tell them there’s no sea sickness on rivers!

News

P&O plots ‘staycation’ cruises…

Iona

However, cruises on Arcadia, Aurora, Azura and Ventura cancelled until the end of August and on Britannia and Iona until the end of September


P&O Cruises will offer a series of short break and week-long UK cruises this summer, which go on sale this month.

However, the line also announced that cruises on ArcadiaAuroraAzura and Ventura have been cancelled until the end of August and on Britannia and Iona until the end of September.

P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said: “Following recent Government announcements and as the vaccine programme is rolled out across the globe we can all begin to feel a sense of reassurance and hope that this current lockdown period in the UK will come to an end. Life can, we hope, slowly return to some semblance of our previous normality as hospitality opens up and summer holidays can be booked with confidence.

“While holidays here in the UK will be the first to become a reality we will, of course, gradually see the return of international travel but first we want guests to be able to enjoy a proper summer holiday at sea with the best in relaxation, entertainment and dining choice.

“These sailings will leave from our home port in Southampton and sail around UK coastal waters enjoying the summer sunshine. More details of dates, prices and the experience on board will be announced later this month, but they will, of course, all have flexibility so guests can book with confidence.

“We hope that the UK ‘ultimate escape’ staycation option will have wide appeal and we will do our utmost to make it a very special time. There really will be something for everyone and the opportunity to spend precious and much longed-for time with family and friends.

“In order to offer these UK breaks it does mean that, unfortunately, we need to cancel some of our current published programme of holidays this summer.

“We remain in very close contact with the UK government and associated bodies as we monitor the latest situation and guidance on travel. From the moment we see travel restrictions lifting we will begin the significant logistical task to restart our operations. It will take some time for the first ship to return to service, followed by the phased return of the remaining fleet. We cannot wait to welcome everyone back on board with the protection of effective protocols to safeguard the health and wellbeing of all crew and guests.

“I really am so sorry for the disappointment these cancellations will cause, but hope that the new UK cruises will enable everyone to enjoy a wonderful holiday this summer.”

All guests whose cruises have been cancelled will automatically receive a future cruise credit (FCC) worth 125 per cent of what they paid. This 125 per cent FCC can be redeemed against any new booking made by the end of December 2021, on any cruise on sale at the time of booking.

Alternatively, a 100 per cent refund is available through the form on pocruises.com and may be requested until December 2021.

News

…as Princess follows in its wake

Sky Princess

Regal Princess and Sky Princess ex-UK cruises cancelled until September, but short UK cruises to go on sale in their place later this month


Princess Cruises will launch a series of short UK cruises departing in late summer, which go on sale later this month.

Following in the wake of sister company P&O, which has announced ‘staycation’ cruises this summer, Regal Princess and Sky Princess will offer short breaks and week-long holidays sailing from Southampton to UK guests. The shift to UK-focused cruises does mean that original ex-UK sailings on these ships, as well as on board Island Princess, have been cancelled until September 25.

Thanks to the line’s MedallionClass experience and OceanMedallion wearable device, guests will enjoy ‘Truly Touchless’ experiences that are in line with current health guidance. The technology allows for more streamlined check-in, simplified safety training, reductions in queuing and the ability to order food and drink to anywhere on the ship.

Tony Roberts, vice president Princess Cruises UK & Europe, said: “Recent announcements from the UK government on the roadmap to the end of lockdown has given us all optimism that we will be able to have a summer break.

“When restrictions are lifted, it is clear that holidays in the UK will be the first to restart before the gradual return of international travel. We are eager to welcome our guests back on board as soon as it is safe to do so. By offering a series of short UK breaks, we can provide guests with a relaxed holiday at sea so they can enjoy a much-needed getaway.

“In order to offer these new cruises, we have unfortunately had to cancel our current ex-UK programme until late September. We share in the disappointment over these cancelled cruises and we appreciate the continued patience from our loyal guests and travel agents.”

Princess will offer to move guests booked on a cancelled voyage to the equivalent cruise in 2022. Alternatively, guests can choose a future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100 per cent of the cruise fare paid plus an additional non-refundable bonus FCC equal to ten per cent of the cruise fare paid (minimum £25) or a full refund to the original form of payment. Where there is no matched cruise available in 2022, guests will automatically receive a refundable FCC, or they can request a full refund.

Requests must be received through this online form by April 15, 2021 or guests will automatically receive the FCC option. FCCs can be used on any cruises booked by and sailing by December 31, 2022.

For agents, Princess will transfer the commission earned from the cancelled 2021 cruise to the new booking in 2022.

Roberts added: “We are extremely appreciative of the unwavering support from our trade partners and would like to thank them for their continued understanding and cooperation.

“As we prepare our ships for our return to service, we remain in close contact with Clia, the UK government and associated bodies to monitor the latest travel guidance. More details of dates, itineraries and prices for the new UK cruises will be announced later this month. We look forward to welcoming our guests back on board to create summertime memories in a safe and relaxed environment.”

Through Princess Cruises’ ‘Book with Confidence’ policy, for bookings made by April 30, 2021, guests can cancel up to 30 days prior to sailing for voyages departing through October 31, 2021, and receive cancellation fees back as an FCC.

Incentives

Seabourn relaunches Early Bonus Savings, plus offers from Silversea, Riviera and

Seabourn has relaunched its Early Bonus Savings promotion, allowing agents to earn commission now during the pause period.
Guests who pay their booking in full by March 31, 2021, will receive an additional 10 per cent saving off the cruise fare. The promotion applies to select voyages that depart on or after July 15, 2021 and includes voyages throughout summer and autumn 2022.
“We chose to extend the Early Bonus Savings offer because guests have reacted so favourably,” said Josh Leibowitz, president of Seabourn. “We are also motivated to help our travel adviser partners earn much-needed revenue immediately as we pay commission in period for early bonus savings bookings.”
Early Bonus Savings can be combined with other promotions including group rates, solo traveller offers and the Signature Savings Event, featuring benefits such as shipboard credits, suite upgrades and more. Early Bonus Savings is not valid on the World Cruise. A complete listing of the applicable sailings, including terms and conditions, for the Early Bonus Savings promotion can be viewed on the Seabourn website.

Ultra-luxury cruise line Silversea has announced a new referral programme. Sail With Us will give Venetian Society members a £350 saving per suite when they refer a new-to-Silversea guest who books a new voyage. The referred party also gets a £350 saving. Savings of £1,100 and £750 per suite can be enjoyed by both parties when referring guests for World Cruises or Grand Voyages respectively. The offer runs until the end of March.

“We know that our valued Venetian Society members are our greatest ambassadors and that the majority of our most loyal guests regularly refer their friends and family to Silversea,” says Barbara Muckermann, Silversea’s chief marketing officer. “We have launched the Sail With Us referral programme to extend our gratitude to our close-knit community, recognising their trust in our cruise line and rewarding them with savings on voyages to all seven continents. Our Sail With Us promotion makes it possible for our loyal guests to introduce their friends to the unrivalled comfort and elegance of our ships and the amazing destinations to which we sail.”


Riviera Travel has extended two of its guest offers – covering booking flexibility and onboard credit – until the end of March. The offers were originally due to stop at the end of February.
Riviera Travel’s fully flexible booking promise means that customers can change their booking for free up to 45 days before travel on all 2021 holidays. The offer also runs up until June 30 for 2022 holidays. The company will also be offering up to €400 onboard credit on select European river cruises.
Jim Forward, Riviera Travel’s chief commercial officer, said: “We’ve had a particularly positive response from the trade to these offers, so are pleased to be able to extend their availability. With the assurances we have in place, plus the onboard credit offer, now is the time for agents to encourage their customers to look to the future and start planning their ideal holiday on a risk-free basis.”
Riviera’s Holiday Happiness Guaranteed assurance gives guests benefits that include a promise to bring home and fully refund any guest who is on a tour or cruise of eight days or more and is not completely satisfied with their holiday by the second day; a Covid-19 cancellation policy, which allows guests to transfer their holiday free of charge to a later date, if they have to cancel due to the pandemic; Covid-19 curtailment protection, which automatically compensates any guest who has their holiday cut short as a direct consequence of the pandemic and isn’t covered by their insurance provider.
For more information visit rivieratravel.co.uk or contact your Riviera account manager.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises is offering guests the chance to enhance and extend their holiday by up to six nights in a range of exotic destinations across Africa, Asia, Australia & New Zealand and South America, with their FREE Extended Explorations offer. In total, there are 13 complimentary pre and post-cruise land programmes that can bookend 22 voyages sailing between October 2021 and March 2022 on Seven Seas Explorer and Seven Seas Voyager.

FREE Extended Explorations also offers reduced 10 per cent deposits and is applicable to bookings made between March 1 and 31, 2021. Alternatively, guests who do not wish to take advantage of one, or both, of the free land programmes can opt to receive savings of up to £2,320 per suite. There is a dedicated toolkit for travel partners to access guides and digital assets here.

All travel partners booking any of the FREE Extended Explorations up to March 31, 2021 can enter a prize draw to win one of five luxury Globe-Trotter suitcases. Simply register your booking at RSSC.com/FREE-Extended-Explorations-Globe-Trotter-Contest

“With massive pent-up demand for the ultra-luxury cruise experience we have no doubt that Regent guests will want to extend their travel in some of the most exotic destinations in the world, at no extra cost,” said Graham Sadler, senior vice president and managing director, EMEA, Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “I strongly encourage all of our Travel Partners to utilise the dedicated FREE Extended Explorations toolkit to take advantage of this incredible opportunity and to also enter the prize draw to win one of these stunning Globe-Trotter suitcases.”

For more information, please visit RSSC.com/agent or call 023 8068 2280.

Interview

Paul Melinis, MD UK & Europe, APT

The boss of the luxury touring specialists and sister brand Travelmarvel says they’re ready to return and “we’ve already started filling those ships”


In the UK, APT operates its five-star eponymous product, as well as Travelmarvel, which is four stars and offers a more relaxed atmosphere on board. All being well, the latter will be sailing from August to the end of November. Cruise Adviser spoke to Paul Melinis, MD UK & Europe about European cruises in 2021 and the return of long-haul in 2022.

Cruise Adviser: APT is perhaps best known for its long-haul itineraries, but with short-haul likely to open sooner, is there a renewed focus on Europe?
Paul Melinis: “We’re the number one river cruise specialists going into the Mekong; we sell more cabins to the Mekong than anybody else, and we also operate in Myanmar and do a little bit in China on the Yangtze. But Europe is a big focus for us. So, it’s not a renewed focus, it’s a focus that has been there, and continues to be. We sell longer trips – the majority of UK operators sell seven-night cruises, but the majority of ours are 14 nights, because, as an Australian company, we obviously have to serve the Australian guests, and they’re not going to just come to Europe for seven nights. That said, we do also operate seven-night cruises, so we’ve got a mixture that we specialise in.”

When do you expect to be sailing?
“We will operate a programme in August, if we can, to the end of November. It is going to be UK guests only, because obviously no Australians can travel. I can tell you that we’ve already started filling those ships and I think it is going to be a two-pronged attack. What I mean by that is that the majority of people booked to travel with us in Q2 will move to Q3, which is your best-of-August class. And then there’ll be a time when people will be vaccinated and there’s so much pent-up demand for travel it will become a late booker’s market. And then [operators] will be scrambling around saying, ‘Should I put a ship on the river?’ It’s like a chess game at the moment, people are waiting to make the first move. But we’ve made the move, and we’re travelling if borders allow it; if we can offer the same experience that our guests know and want, then we will operate.”

River quietly got back up and running last summer when the majority of cruise couldn’t operate. That puts it in good stead.
“We’re not really comparable to ocean cruise lines; they’re a lot bigger and so their protocols are going to be a lot different, and most worldwide cruises float into a lot of ports. Sure, we cross a lot of countries so there’ll be a many border restrictions, but I think you know with ships carrying 160 guests, it’s a lot easier to get your protocols and everything correct. You’re more nimble; you can make changes quickly on the ground. Our guests are 55-plus, so the majority of those will have been vaccinated hopefully by the end of May, then will be ready to go. And you know we’ve seen the difference in [attitudes] once people get a vaccination – they want to travel, they want to take a holiday this year. We all want to take all a holiday this year, it’s just being able to do it safely and in a way that we are used to. But, you know, it’s going to be an ever-changing scenario and we’re just going to have to get used to some rules. I can’t see masks going away any time soon; I can’t see social distancing being abolished. Even with the vaccine, the virus is here to stay, so it’s just how we deal with it.”

Are you looking at formalising a vaccination policy?
“I don’t think you can force anybody to have a vaccination, everyone’s got their own views on it. I think we take it day by day and see what the government asks us to do, and we’ll follow the guidelines. If they say that everyone must be vaccinated before getting on board, then we’re going to follow that. It’s just more of a ‘watch it and see’ exercise. One thing that we will guarantee is safety and security. It’s absolutely the heartbeat of what we’re going to do.”

How have you been keeping in touch with travel agents during the pandemic?
“That’s been a new experience for us! The trade continues to be just over 75 per cent of our business, so we’ve spent a lot of time and effort working with trade. We’ve got a team of business development managers, and our national sales manager, Jess [Shelton-Agar], speaks to the trade on a regular basis. We’ve been there for every agent; they’ve done a fantastic job, because it has been very difficult. You can imagine the number of changes they have had to make. We’re talking about river cruise, but these guys are selling across the board, and across the world – so it’s been a lot harder for them.

“We’ve worked very closely with them to make sure that all of our APT guests have been looked after, to a point of working with some partners, where we’ve said, ‘Look, we know that you’re super busy, we know you’ve got tons of incoming calls, we know that most of your staff are on furlough and some are down to a one and two-person show, so what we’ll do is go above and beyond’. So I brought a lot of the staff back, we upped our reservations, numbers and we started calling APT guests on behalf of travel partners for a while just to share the load. And that proved very successful. It shows  how strong our partnerships are, because we are actually calling their clients that are booked through us, but on behalf of them. So, we got the messaging right, and they were happy with it and we found that very successful. Our move-over rate was nearly 80 per cent, which was fantastic. We weren’t expecting anywhere near that – in a world today where a refund is widely available and anybody who wants a refund must be paid a refund, we managed to save that money, which was very, very good.”

How was your wave period?
“We knew it was never going to be a normal January, but we went out and ran a small campaign with a selection of partners. I was actually surprised at the results. We had targeted a certain number of new bookings and, although we didn’t get the same amount as we normally do – that was never going to be the case – I was quietly pleased and surprised how many new bookings we had. The majority now are looking at 2022. We started out with Europe because we saw that Europe is going to be the place that everybody wants to go. Europe is very close to home, and you know it’s not that long a flight, so people will be OK with masks. Then we launched Asia, and Asia outperformed Europe in some weeks, which was incredible. So, people are thinking about Asia in Q1 in 2022.”

It’s really interesting to hear that long-haul might return sooner than expected.
“Yes, I’m surprised. We did not predict that it would come back like it did. Asia will always be on the long-haul dream map and I think Asia has done a really good job [of handling the pandemic]. If you look at the numbers in Cambodia, for example, you’ll be shocked. So, I think that they’re going to be up and running quicker than we think.”

News

Canada cruise ban impacts Alaska season

Clia says it is “surprised” as the Canadian government extends its cruise ship ban until February 2022


The summer Alaska cruise season may be severely impacted after the  Canadian government extended its cruise ship ban until February 2022.

Omar Alghabra, the country’s transport minister, announced an extension of the ban on ships carrying more than 100 people from operating in Canadian waters. It also prohibits passenger ships carrying more than 12 people from entering Arctic coastal waters.

Alghabra said: “As Canadians continue to do their part to reduce the spread of Covid-19, our government continues to work hard to ensure Canada’s transportation system remains safe.

“Temporary prohibitions to cruise vessels and pleasure craft are essential to continue to protect the most vulnerable among our communities and avoid overwhelming our health care systems. This is the right and responsible thing to do.”

Transport Canada said cruise vessels in Canadian waters “pose a risk” to its healthcare systems.

“Should the Covid-19 pandemic sufficiently improve to allow the resumption of these activities, the minister of transport has the ability to rescind the interim orders,” the transport department added.

Clia said it was “surprised by the length of the extension”. Chair Charlie Ball said: “While we understand and support the government’s focus on combatting Covid-19 in Canada, we are surprised by the length of the extension of the prohibition of cruise.

“We hope to have an opportunity to revisit this timeline and demonstrate our ability to address Covid-19 in a cruise setting with science-backed measures, as Clia members are doing in Europe and parts of Asia where cruising has resumed on a limited basis.”

A spokesperson for Carnival Corporation said: “Given the unexpected length of the order, it will take us some time to assess whether there are any options to preserve a portion of the 2021 Alaska season.

“We will be consulting authorities in both the US and Canada before we take any additional action.”

News

Seabourn puts 2022 on sale

The ultra luxury line says they hope their new voyages “will give luxury travellers something to look forward to”


Seabourn, the ultra luxury cruise line, has put 2022 cruises for Europe, Alaska, British Columbia, Canada and New England on sale.

The new cruises include 68 sailings in Europe, with voyages from seven to 14 days. In addition, the line has scheduled 15 2022 summer sailings on Seabourn Odyssey in Alaska and British Columbia, with voyages from seven to 11 days and options to extend up to 14 days.

The line will also offer six sailings in late summer and early autumn aboard Seabourn Quest in Canada and New England.

“For the past year, most of us have been dreaming about travelling again and exploring this magnificent world we live in,” said Josh Leibowitz, president of Seabourn.

“We hope our new 2022 voyages will give luxury travellers something to look forward to and encourage them to make future travel plans. There is no better way to explore Europe, Alaska and Canada and New England than with Seabourn.”

Travellers interested in booking a 2022 Seabourn voyage can take advantage of several promotions to receive additional savings, including Early Bonus Savings.

News

Cancellations

From river to ocean, small-ship to mega-vessels, this is our comprehensive list of cruise line cancellation policies and suspension dates

A-Rosa

A-Rosa River Cruises has suspended all Rhine and Danube sailings suspended up to March 28. Sailings in France and on the Douro in Portugal are suspended until further notice.

AmaWaterways

AmaWaterways has suspended sailings until April 30.

They are automatically issuing a future cruise credit equal to 115 per cent of the value of the funds received for all purchased services through AmaWaterways, redeemable on any AmaWaterways river cruise in Europe, Asia, or Africa (including Egypt) up to December 31, 2023. These FCCs are transferrable at any time prior to December 31, 2023 with the original owner’s written authorisation.

APT Touring

APT Touring has suspended all tours and cruises until April 30.

 

Avalon Waterways

Avalon Waterways has suspended cruises until April 30.

All 2021 and 2022 bookings come with their Peace of Mind Travel Plan, which gives guests the ability to move their booking to another destination, brand or date until 2023.

Azamara

Azamara has cancelled all sailings until June 30.

In January, Royal Caribbean Group announced it was selling the Azamara brand to Sycamore Partners, a private equity firm.

Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line has suspended cruises in North America until May 31.

Carnival Miracle cruises from San Diego and San Francisco are suspended until further notice.

Voyages aboard Carnival Liberty (September 17-October 18) and Carnival Sunshine (October 11-November 13) are cancelled to accommodate drydock work.

Carnival Magic, Carnival Paradise, Carnival Valor and Carnival Victory/Radiance won’t return to service until November.

The launch date for Mardi Gras has been put back to May 29.

European itineraries for Carnival Legend have been cancelled until October 31.

All Australian cruises on Carnival Splendor and Carnival Spirit have been cancelled until June 28 and September 12, respectively.

Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises has cancelled all sailings until April 30, including the May 1 transatlantic cruise on Celebrity Apex.

All cruises in Asia, Australia and New Zealand are cancelled for the entire 2020-2021 cruise season, while South America sailings are also cancelled until April 7.

All May to October Europe and transatlantic cruises on Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Constellation are also suspended.

Celestyal Cruises

Celestyal Cruises has suspended all cruises until April 24.

CroisiEurope

CroisiEurope are due to resume ocean cruises in early March; river cruises in late March.

Crystal

Crystal has cancelled all ocean, river and yacht sailings until the end of 2020. Sailings on Crystal Serenity and all river cruise itineraries are cancelled until May; Crystal Symphony until June; Crystal Esprit and Crystal Endeavor until August.

Crystal is providing all affected guests with credits equal to 125 per cent of the cruise fare paid on fully-paid reservations – along with a refund of port charges, taxes and fees paid, and any air and hotel packages booked through Crystal. For guests who have not fully paid, the credit will then be based on the deposited amount. Credits are valid on any Crystal experience (ocean, river, yacht or expedition) embarking through December 31, 2023.

For river sailings, guests can move their current 2020 reservation, including all payments made, to an equivalent sailing during the same time period in 2021, with price protection on the cruise fare and port charges – representing a significant value for them. If a guest chooses not to rollover their cruise to a 2021 river sailing, they may transfer their reservation to any Crystal experience (ocean, river, yacht or expedition) embarking up to December 31, 2023 at prevailing rates. All monies paid will be transferred to the new reservation.

Cunard

Cunard has suspended operations until June 4 for Queen Elizabeth; May 28 for Queen Mary 2 and May 16 for Queen Victoria.

Disney Cruise Line

Disney Cruise Line has cancelled all sailings until the end of May.

Disney Magic sailings are suspended until August 10. Alaska sailings aboard Disney Wonder departing after May 31 are “under evaluation”.

Emerald Waterways/Scenic

The Scenic Group, including Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours and Emerald Cruises has suspended all itineraries until May 31.

The Scenic Group is offering booked guests a flexible future travel credit (FTC) valued at 110 per cent of monies deposited on any affected river and cruise booking and 100 per cent of monies deposited on any affected land tours. Guests will be offered a FTC that can be applied to any new or existing booking across the portfolio of brands through to June 30, 2023. The FTC is fully transferrable to another guest. Should a guest be unable to travel by June 30, 2023, they will be given a refund.

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines has suspended cruises on Balmoral, Bolette and Borealis until July 1; Braemar until spring 2022.

The line has cancelled its entire 2021 river cruise season aboard Brabant in order to focus on its oceangoing operations.

G Adventures

G Adventures has suspended all cruises until April 30, 2021, including the 2020-2021 Antarctic season aboard Expedition.

Holland America Line

Holland America Line has cancelled all cruises until June 30.

This will impact cruises departing in May and June on Nieuw Statendam, Volendam and Westerdam, along with the Collectors’ Voyages associated with those cancelled cruises.

Guests currently booked on the cancelled Europe departures will be able to rebook on an equivalent cruise in 2022 at the 2021 fare – with all cash and future cruise credit (FCC) funds moved to the new booking.

If guests decide not to accept a cruise booking in 2022 by April 15, 2021, they automatically default to receive a FCC of 110 per cent of any cash paid on the booking. Guests will retain any other FCC used for the cancelled 2021 booking with all FCC amounts moved to their loyalty account for use on a future cruise booking. FCC is valid for sailings departing until December 31, 2022. For all bookings in 2022, standard cancellation policies apply. A 100 per cent refund is also available.

Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten expanded its Norwegian coastal sailings to five vessels in January to serve local and freight traffic for residents of Norway.

Expedition voyages are cancelled until May, while voyages aboard MS Roald Amundsen are cancelled until July.

 

Marella Cruises

Marella Cruises has cancelled all European sailings until May 16.

MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises has suspended cruise operations until May 31 for its Caribbean voyages from North America aboard MSC Divina, MSC Meraviglia and MSC Armonia and MSC Orchestra in South Africa until November.

The line restarted limited Mediterranean cruises aboard MSC Grandiosa on January 24Sailings in Greece aboard MSC Magnifica are now paused until April 29.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line has suspended operations until the end of May 2021, with a planned restart date of June 1.

Oceania Cruises

Oceania Cruises has cancelled all cruises until May 31.

P&O Cruises

P&O Cruises has cancelled all international cruises until September. It is scheduled to restart domestic UK cruises in April.

Guests with a holiday affected will automatically receive a 125 per cent future cruise credit (FCC). FCCs may be used for any sailing up to the end of March 2022.

Paul Gauguin Cruises

Paul Gauguin Cruises has suspended sailings until June 5.

Ponant

Ponant has suspended all cruises up to April 2021.

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises has cancelled cruise holidays sailing the Caribbean, California Coast, Mexico and Mediterranean until June 30.

The  affects the following voyages: Caribbean Princess (seven-night Western and Eastern Caribbean cruises); Enchanted Princess (seven-night Mediterranean & Adriatic, seven-night Western Mediterranean, and 14-night Western Mediterranean & Adriatic Medley); Ruby Princess (seven-night Classic California Coast, seven-night Mexican Riviera, and five-night Cabo San Lucas Getaway sailings).

For guests booked on a cancelled voyage, Princess will offer to move guests to the equivalent cruise in 2022. The rebooking process will have the added benefit of protecting the guests’ 2021 fare on their 2022 voyage. Alternatively, guests can choose a future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100 per cent of the cruise fare paid plus an additional non-refundable bonus FCC equal to 10 per cent of the cruise fare paid (minimum £25 or a full refund to the original form of payment).

For guests currently booked on a cancelled voyage where there is no matched cruise available in 2022, guests will automatically receive a refundable future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100 per cent of the cruise fare paid plus an additional non-refundable bonus FCC equal to 10 per cent of the cruise fare paid (minimum £25). Alternatively, guests can request a full refund to the original form of payment.

FCCs can be used on any cruises booked by and sailing by December 31, 2022.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has suspended its global cruise operations until May 31.

Riviera Travel

Riviera Travel has cancelled all cruises until May 17.

Royal Caribbean International

Royal Caribbean International has cancelled all sailings until April 30, excluding sailings from Singapore on Quantum of the Seas and Spectrum of the Seas from China.

Saga

Saga has cancelled all cruises on Spirit of Discovery until June 27 and the new Spirit of Adventure until July 26.

Seabourn

Seabourn has paused global operations, with Seabourn Encore cancelled until May 28; Seabourn Quest until November 6 for voyages longer than seven days and calling at a US port; Seabourn Sojourn until May 24, including the 2021 World Cruise; Seabourn Odyssey until November 5, apart from seven-day Alaska/British Columbia and Pacific Coast sailings; all 2021 Alaska sailings on  Seabourn Ovation are cancelled.

In addition, the line has announced a further delay to its new purpose-built expedition vessel, Seabourn Venture, until December.

Silversea

Silversea has suspended sailings until the following dates: Silver Cloud (May 5); Silver Wind (November 20); Silver Shadow (May 15); Silver Spirit (May 5); Silver Muse (May 20); Silver Whisper (June 20); Silver Explorer (May 28); Silver Moon (May 4); Silver Dawn (November 9); Silver Origin (May 1).

Titan

Titan has suspended all tour and cruise departures until April 30.

Uniworld

Uniworld has suspended all river cruises until April 2021.

Viking Cruises

Viking has suspended all ocean and river cruises until May 31, 2021.

For passengers booked on one of the canceled sailings, Viking is offering future cruise credit of 125 per cent of the fare paid, or a refund equal to the amount paid. Passengers have 24 months to use their FCC. If passengers opting for FCC are then unable to use their voucher, Viking will automatically send a refund equal to the original amount paid.

Virgin Voyages

Virgin Voyages has postponed the inaugural season of its first ship Scarlet Lady until June 30 and for its second ship, Valiant Lady, until November 14.

Those booked on a cruise that has been cancelled can opt for 200 per cent in future cruise credit (FCC) which can be applied to another sailing, up to $500 in onboard credit, or 100 per cent refund, plus 25 per cent FCC on the value paid to use for a future booking. Bookings made prior to December 10, 2021 for sailings in 2021 and 2022 will be eligible for cancellation up to 48 hours in advance, with a full credit given.

Windstar

Windstar has suspended all cruise operations. Wind Spirit will resume sailing on June 10; Star Breeze (June 19); Wind Star (June 19); Wind Surf (June 29); Star Legend (July 4); Star Pride (July 14).

Guests on cancelled cruises receive the choice of a future cruise credit valued at 125 per cent of all monies paid to Windstar Cruises or a refund equal to the amount paid on the Windstar booking. Guests have 24 months to book and embark on any available Windstar cruise using their future cruise credit. In addition, Windstar has launched a new Travel Assurance Booking Policy, which is applicable to new and existing cruises departing until December 31, 2021. Travellers who cancel a cruise booking up to 15 days prior to departure will receive a 100 per cent future cruise credit to be used on another Windstar departure within one year of the issue date of the credit. The offer is for cruise fares only.

News

Cancellations

From river to ocean, small-ship to mega-vessels, this is our comprehensive list of cruise line cancellation policies and suspension dates

A-Rosa

A-Rosa River Cruises has suspended all Rhine and Danube sailings suspended up to March 28. Sailings in France and on the Douro in Portugal are suspended until further notice.

AmaWaterways

AmaWaterways has suspended sailings until April 30.

They are automatically issuing a future cruise credit equal to 115 per cent of the value of the funds received for all purchased services through AmaWaterways, redeemable on any AmaWaterways river cruise in Europe, Asia, or Africa (including Egypt) up to December 31, 2023. These FCCs are transferrable at any time prior to December 31, 2023 with the original owner’s written authorisation.

APT Touring

APT Touring has suspended all tours and cruises until April 30.

 

Avalon Waterways

Avalon Waterways has suspended cruises until April 30.

All 2021 and 2022 bookings come with their Peace of Mind Travel Plan, which gives guests the ability to move their booking to another destination, brand or date until 2023.

Azamara

Azamara has cancelled all sailings until June 30.

In January, Royal Caribbean Group announced it was selling the Azamara brand to Sycamore Partners, a private equity firm.

Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line has suspended cruises in North America until May 31.

Carnival Miracle cruises from San Diego and San Francisco are suspended until further notice.

Voyages aboard Carnival Liberty (September 17-October 18) and Carnival Sunshine (October 11-November 13) are cancelled to accommodate drydock work.

Carnival Magic, Carnival Paradise, Carnival Valor and Carnival Victory/Radiance won’t return to service until November.

The launch date for Mardi Gras has been put back to May 29.

European itineraries for Carnival Legend have been cancelled until October 31.

All Australian cruises on Carnival Splendor and Carnival Spirit have been cancelled until June 28 and September 12, respectively.

Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises has cancelled all sailings until April 30, including the May 1 transatlantic cruise on Celebrity Apex.

All cruises in Asia, Australia and New Zealand are cancelled for the entire 2020-2021 cruise season, while South America sailings are also cancelled until April 7.

All May to October Europe and transatlantic cruises on Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Constellation are also suspended.

Celestyal Cruises

Celestyal Cruises has suspended all cruises until April 24.

CroisiEurope

CroisiEurope are due to resume ocean cruises in early March; river cruises in late March.

Crystal

Crystal has cancelled all ocean, river and yacht sailings until the end of 2020. Sailings on Crystal Serenity and all river cruise itineraries are cancelled until May; Crystal Symphony until June; Crystal Esprit and Crystal Endeavor until August.

Crystal is providing all affected guests with credits equal to 125 per cent of the cruise fare paid on fully-paid reservations – along with a refund of port charges, taxes and fees paid, and any air and hotel packages booked through Crystal. For guests who have not fully paid, the credit will then be based on the deposited amount. Credits are valid on any Crystal experience (ocean, river, yacht or expedition) embarking through December 31, 2023.

For river sailings, guests can move their current 2020 reservation, including all payments made, to an equivalent sailing during the same time period in 2021, with price protection on the cruise fare and port charges – representing a significant value for them. If a guest chooses not to rollover their cruise to a 2021 river sailing, they may transfer their reservation to any Crystal experience (ocean, river, yacht or expedition) embarking up to December 31, 2023 at prevailing rates. All monies paid will be transferred to the new reservation.

Cunard

Cunard has suspended operations until June 4 for Queen Elizabeth; May 28 for Queen Mary 2 and May 16 for Queen Victoria.

Disney Cruise Line

Disney Cruise Line has cancelled all sailings until the end of May.

Disney Magic sailings are suspended until August 10. Alaska sailings aboard Disney Wonder departing after May 31 are “under evaluation”.

Emerald Waterways/Scenic

The Scenic Group, including Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours and Emerald Cruises has suspended all itineraries until May 31.

The Scenic Group is offering booked guests a flexible future travel credit (FTC) valued at 110 per cent of monies deposited on any affected river and cruise booking and 100 per cent of monies deposited on any affected land tours. Guests will be offered a FTC that can be applied to any new or existing booking across the portfolio of brands through to June 30, 2023. The FTC is fully transferrable to another guest. Should a guest be unable to travel by June 30, 2023, they will be given a refund.

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines has suspended cruises on Balmoral, Bolette and Borealis until July 1; Braemar until spring 2022.

The line has cancelled its entire 2021 river cruise season aboard Brabant in order to focus on its oceangoing operations.

G Adventures

G Adventures has suspended all cruises until April 30, 2021, including the 2020-2021 Antarctic season aboard Expedition.

Holland America Line

Holland America Line has cancelled all cruises until June 30.

This will impact cruises departing in May and June on Nieuw Statendam, Volendam and Westerdam, along with the Collectors’ Voyages associated with those cancelled cruises.

Guests currently booked on the cancelled Europe departures will be able to rebook on an equivalent cruise in 2022 at the 2021 fare – with all cash and future cruise credit (FCC) funds moved to the new booking.

If guests decide not to accept a cruise booking in 2022 by April 15, 2021, they automatically default to receive a FCC of 110 per cent of any cash paid on the booking. Guests will retain any other FCC used for the cancelled 2021 booking with all FCC amounts moved to their loyalty account for use on a future cruise booking. FCC is valid for sailings departing until December 31, 2022. For all bookings in 2022, standard cancellation policies apply. A 100 per cent refund is also available.

Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten expanded its Norwegian coastal sailings to five vessels in January to serve local and freight traffic for residents of Norway.

Expedition voyages are cancelled until May, while voyages aboard MS Roald Amundsen are cancelled until July.

 

Marella Cruises

Marella Cruises has cancelled all European sailings until May 16.

MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises has suspended cruise operations until May 31 for its Caribbean voyages from North America aboard MSC Divina, MSC Meraviglia and MSC Armonia and MSC Orchestra in South Africa until November.

The line restarted limited Mediterranean cruises aboard MSC Grandiosa on January 24Sailings in Greece aboard MSC Magnifica are now paused until April 29.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line has suspended operations until the end of May 2021, with a planned restart date of June 1.

Oceania Cruises

Oceania Cruises has cancelled all cruises until May 31.

P&O Cruises

P&O Cruises has cancelled all international cruises until September. It is scheduled to restart domestic UK cruises in April.

Guests with a holiday affected will automatically receive a 125 per cent future cruise credit (FCC). FCCs may be used for any sailing up to the end of March 2022.

Paul Gauguin Cruises

Paul Gauguin Cruises has suspended sailings until June 5.

Ponant

Ponant has suspended all cruises up to April 2021.

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises has cancelled cruise holidays sailing the Caribbean, California Coast, Mexico and Mediterranean until June 30.

The  affects the following voyages: Caribbean Princess (seven-night Western and Eastern Caribbean cruises); Enchanted Princess (seven-night Mediterranean & Adriatic, seven-night Western Mediterranean, and 14-night Western Mediterranean & Adriatic Medley); Ruby Princess (seven-night Classic California Coast, seven-night Mexican Riviera, and five-night Cabo San Lucas Getaway sailings).

For guests booked on a cancelled voyage, Princess will offer to move guests to the equivalent cruise in 2022. The rebooking process will have the added benefit of protecting the guests’ 2021 fare on their 2022 voyage. Alternatively, guests can choose a future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100 per cent of the cruise fare paid plus an additional non-refundable bonus FCC equal to 10 per cent of the cruise fare paid (minimum £25 or a full refund to the original form of payment).

For guests currently booked on a cancelled voyage where there is no matched cruise available in 2022, guests will automatically receive a refundable future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100 per cent of the cruise fare paid plus an additional non-refundable bonus FCC equal to 10 per cent of the cruise fare paid (minimum £25). Alternatively, guests can request a full refund to the original form of payment.

FCCs can be used on any cruises booked by and sailing by December 31, 2022.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has suspended its global cruise operations until May 31.

Riviera Travel

Riviera Travel has cancelled all cruises until May 17.

Royal Caribbean International

Royal Caribbean International has cancelled all sailings until April 30, excluding sailings from Singapore on Quantum of the Seas and Spectrum of the Seas from China.

Saga

Saga has cancelled all cruises on Spirit of Discovery until June 27 and the new Spirit of Adventure until July 26.

Seabourn

Seabourn has paused global operations, with Seabourn Encore cancelled until May 28; Seabourn Quest until November 6 for voyages longer than seven days and calling at a US port; Seabourn Sojourn until May 24, including the 2021 World Cruise; Seabourn Odyssey until November 5, apart from seven-day Alaska/British Columbia and Pacific Coast sailings; all 2021 Alaska sailings on  Seabourn Ovation are cancelled.

In addition, the line has announced a further delay to its new purpose-built expedition vessel, Seabourn Venture, until December.

Silversea

Silversea has suspended sailings until the following dates: Silver Cloud (May 5); Silver Wind (November 20); Silver Shadow (May 15); Silver Spirit (May 5); Silver Muse (May 20); Silver Whisper (June 20); Silver Explorer (May 28); Silver Moon (May 4); Silver Dawn (November 9); Silver Origin (May 1).

Titan

Titan has suspended all tour and cruise departures until April 30.

Uniworld

Uniworld has suspended all river cruises until April 2021.

Viking Cruises

Viking has suspended all ocean and river cruises until May 31, 2021.

For passengers booked on one of the canceled sailings, Viking is offering future cruise credit of 125 per cent of the fare paid, or a refund equal to the amount paid. Passengers have 24 months to use their FCC. If passengers opting for FCC are then unable to use their voucher, Viking will automatically send a refund equal to the original amount paid.

Virgin Voyages

Virgin Voyages has postponed the inaugural season of its first ship Scarlet Lady until June 30 and for its second ship, Valiant Lady, until November 14.

Those booked on a cruise that has been cancelled can opt for 200 per cent in future cruise credit (FCC) which can be applied to another sailing, up to $500 in onboard credit, or 100 per cent refund, plus 25 per cent FCC on the value paid to use for a future booking. Bookings made prior to December 10, 2021 for sailings in 2021 and 2022 will be eligible for cancellation up to 48 hours in advance, with a full credit given.

Windstar

Windstar has suspended all cruise operations. Wind Spirit will resume sailing on June 10; Star Breeze (June 19); Wind Star (June 19); Wind Surf (June 29); Star Legend (July 4); Star Pride (July 14).

Guests on cancelled cruises receive the choice of a future cruise credit valued at 125 per cent of all monies paid to Windstar Cruises or a refund equal to the amount paid on the Windstar booking. Guests have 24 months to book and embark on any available Windstar cruise using their future cruise credit. In addition, Windstar has launched a new Travel Assurance Booking Policy, which is applicable to new and existing cruises departing until December 31, 2021. Travellers who cancel a cruise booking up to 15 days prior to departure will receive a 100 per cent future cruise credit to be used on another Windstar departure within one year of the issue date of the credit. The offer is for cruise fares only.

News

Cancellations

From river to ocean, small-ship to mega-vessels, this is our comprehensive list of cruise line cancellation policies and suspension dates

A-Rosa

A-Rosa River Cruises has suspended all Rhine and Danube sailings suspended up to March 28. Sailings in France and on the Douro in Portugal are suspended until further notice.

AmaWaterways

AmaWaterways has suspended sailings until April 30.

They are automatically issuing a future cruise credit equal to 115 per cent of the value of the funds received for all purchased services through AmaWaterways, redeemable on any AmaWaterways river cruise in Europe, Asia, or Africa (including Egypt) up to December 31, 2023. These FCCs are transferrable at any time prior to December 31, 2023 with the original owner’s written authorisation.

APT Touring

APT Touring has suspended all tours and cruises until April 30.

 

Avalon Waterways

Avalon Waterways has suspended cruises until April 30.

All 2021 and 2022 bookings come with their Peace of Mind Travel Plan, which gives guests the ability to move their booking to another destination, brand or date until 2023.

Azamara

Azamara has cancelled all sailings until June 30.

In January, Royal Caribbean Group announced it was selling the Azamara brand to Sycamore Partners, a private equity firm.

Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line has suspended cruises in North America until May 31.

Carnival Miracle cruises from San Diego and San Francisco are suspended until further notice.

Voyages aboard Carnival Liberty (September 17-October 18) and Carnival Sunshine (October 11-November 13) are cancelled to accommodate drydock work.

Carnival Magic, Carnival Paradise, Carnival Valor and Carnival Victory/Radiance won’t return to service until November.

The launch date for Mardi Gras has been put back to May 29.

European itineraries for Carnival Legend have been cancelled until October 31.

All Australian cruises on Carnival Splendor and Carnival Spirit have been cancelled until June 28 and September 12, respectively.

Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises has cancelled all sailings until April 30, including the May 1 transatlantic cruise on Celebrity Apex.

All cruises in Asia, Australia and New Zealand are cancelled for the entire 2020-2021 cruise season, while South America sailings are also cancelled until April 7.

All May to October Europe and transatlantic cruises on Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Constellation are also suspended.

Celestyal Cruises

Celestyal Cruises has suspended all cruises until April 24.

CroisiEurope

CroisiEurope are due to resume ocean cruises in early March; river cruises in late March.

Crystal

Crystal has cancelled all ocean, river and yacht sailings until the end of 2020. Sailings on Crystal Serenity and all river cruise itineraries are cancelled until May; Crystal Symphony until June; Crystal Esprit and Crystal Endeavor until August.

Crystal is providing all affected guests with credits equal to 125 per cent of the cruise fare paid on fully-paid reservations – along with a refund of port charges, taxes and fees paid, and any air and hotel packages booked through Crystal. For guests who have not fully paid, the credit will then be based on the deposited amount. Credits are valid on any Crystal experience (ocean, river, yacht or expedition) embarking through December 31, 2023.

For river sailings, guests can move their current 2020 reservation, including all payments made, to an equivalent sailing during the same time period in 2021, with price protection on the cruise fare and port charges – representing a significant value for them. If a guest chooses not to rollover their cruise to a 2021 river sailing, they may transfer their reservation to any Crystal experience (ocean, river, yacht or expedition) embarking up to December 31, 2023 at prevailing rates. All monies paid will be transferred to the new reservation.

Cunard

Cunard has suspended operations until June 4 for Queen Elizabeth; May 28 for Queen Mary 2 and May 16 for Queen Victoria.

Disney Cruise Line

Disney Cruise Line has cancelled all sailings until the end of May.

Disney Magic sailings are suspended until August 10. Alaska sailings aboard Disney Wonder departing after May 31 are “under evaluation”.

Emerald Waterways/Scenic

The Scenic Group, including Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours and Emerald Cruises has suspended all itineraries until May 31.

The Scenic Group is offering booked guests a flexible future travel credit (FTC) valued at 110 per cent of monies deposited on any affected river and cruise booking and 100 per cent of monies deposited on any affected land tours. Guests will be offered a FTC that can be applied to any new or existing booking across the portfolio of brands through to June 30, 2023. The FTC is fully transferrable to another guest. Should a guest be unable to travel by June 30, 2023, they will be given a refund.

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines has suspended cruises on Balmoral, Bolette and Borealis until July 1; Braemar until spring 2022.

The line has cancelled its entire 2021 river cruise season aboard Brabant in order to focus on its oceangoing operations.

G Adventures

G Adventures has suspended all cruises until April 30, 2021, including the 2020-2021 Antarctic season aboard Expedition.

Holland America Line

Holland America Line has cancelled all cruises until June 30.

This will impact cruises departing in May and June on Nieuw Statendam, Volendam and Westerdam, along with the Collectors’ Voyages associated with those cancelled cruises.

Guests currently booked on the cancelled Europe departures will be able to rebook on an equivalent cruise in 2022 at the 2021 fare – with all cash and future cruise credit (FCC) funds moved to the new booking.

If guests decide not to accept a cruise booking in 2022 by April 15, 2021, they automatically default to receive a FCC of 110 per cent of any cash paid on the booking. Guests will retain any other FCC used for the cancelled 2021 booking with all FCC amounts moved to their loyalty account for use on a future cruise booking. FCC is valid for sailings departing until December 31, 2022. For all bookings in 2022, standard cancellation policies apply. A 100 per cent refund is also available.

Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten expanded its Norwegian coastal sailings to five vessels in January to serve local and freight traffic for residents of Norway.

Expedition voyages are cancelled until May, while voyages aboard MS Roald Amundsen are cancelled until July.

 

Marella Cruises

Marella Cruises has cancelled all European sailings until May 16.

MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises has suspended cruise operations until May 31 for its Caribbean voyages from North America aboard MSC Divina, MSC Meraviglia and MSC Armonia and MSC Orchestra in South Africa until November.

The line restarted limited Mediterranean cruises aboard MSC Grandiosa on January 24Sailings in Greece aboard MSC Magnifica are now paused until April 29.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line has suspended operations until the end of May 2021, with a planned restart date of June 1.

Oceania Cruises

Oceania Cruises has cancelled all cruises until May 31.

P&O Cruises

P&O Cruises has cancelled all international cruises until September. It is scheduled to restart domestic UK cruises in April.

Guests with a holiday affected will automatically receive a 125 per cent future cruise credit (FCC). FCCs may be used for any sailing up to the end of March 2022.

Paul Gauguin Cruises

Paul Gauguin Cruises has suspended sailings until June 5.

Ponant

Ponant has suspended all cruises up to April 2021.

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises has cancelled cruise holidays sailing the Caribbean, California Coast, Mexico and Mediterranean until June 30.

The  affects the following voyages: Caribbean Princess (seven-night Western and Eastern Caribbean cruises); Enchanted Princess (seven-night Mediterranean & Adriatic, seven-night Western Mediterranean, and 14-night Western Mediterranean & Adriatic Medley); Ruby Princess (seven-night Classic California Coast, seven-night Mexican Riviera, and five-night Cabo San Lucas Getaway sailings).

For guests booked on a cancelled voyage, Princess will offer to move guests to the equivalent cruise in 2022. The rebooking process will have the added benefit of protecting the guests’ 2021 fare on their 2022 voyage. Alternatively, guests can choose a future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100 per cent of the cruise fare paid plus an additional non-refundable bonus FCC equal to 10 per cent of the cruise fare paid (minimum £25 or a full refund to the original form of payment).

For guests currently booked on a cancelled voyage where there is no matched cruise available in 2022, guests will automatically receive a refundable future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100 per cent of the cruise fare paid plus an additional non-refundable bonus FCC equal to 10 per cent of the cruise fare paid (minimum £25). Alternatively, guests can request a full refund to the original form of payment.

FCCs can be used on any cruises booked by and sailing by December 31, 2022.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has suspended its global cruise operations until May 31.

Riviera Travel

Riviera Travel has cancelled all cruises until May 17.

Royal Caribbean International

Royal Caribbean International has cancelled all sailings until April 30, excluding sailings from Singapore on Quantum of the Seas and Spectrum of the Seas from China.

Saga

Saga has cancelled all cruises on Spirit of Discovery until June 27 and the new Spirit of Adventure until July 26.

Seabourn

Seabourn has paused global operations, with Seabourn Encore cancelled until May 28; Seabourn Quest until November 6 for voyages longer than seven days and calling at a US port; Seabourn Sojourn until May 24, including the 2021 World Cruise; Seabourn Odyssey until November 5, apart from seven-day Alaska/British Columbia and Pacific Coast sailings; all 2021 Alaska sailings on  Seabourn Ovation are cancelled.

In addition, the line has announced a further delay to its new purpose-built expedition vessel, Seabourn Venture, until December.

Silversea

Silversea has suspended sailings until the following dates: Silver Cloud (May 5); Silver Wind (November 20); Silver Shadow (May 15); Silver Spirit (May 5); Silver Muse (May 20); Silver Whisper (June 20); Silver Explorer (May 28); Silver Moon (May 4); Silver Dawn (November 9); Silver Origin (May 1).

Titan

Titan has suspended all tour and cruise departures until April 30.

Uniworld

Uniworld has suspended all river cruises until April 2021.

Viking Cruises

Viking has suspended all ocean and river cruises until May 31, 2021.

For passengers booked on one of the canceled sailings, Viking is offering future cruise credit of 125 per cent of the fare paid, or a refund equal to the amount paid. Passengers have 24 months to use their FCC. If passengers opting for FCC are then unable to use their voucher, Viking will automatically send a refund equal to the original amount paid.

Virgin Voyages

Virgin Voyages has postponed the inaugural season of its first ship Scarlet Lady until June 30 and for its second ship, Valiant Lady, until November 14.

Those booked on a cruise that has been cancelled can opt for 200 per cent in future cruise credit (FCC) which can be applied to another sailing, up to $500 in onboard credit, or 100 per cent refund, plus 25 per cent FCC on the value paid to use for a future booking. Bookings made prior to December 10, 2021 for sailings in 2021 and 2022 will be eligible for cancellation up to 48 hours in advance, with a full credit given.

Windstar

Windstar has suspended all cruise operations. Wind Spirit will resume sailing on June 10; Star Breeze (June 19); Wind Star (June 19); Wind Surf (June 29); Star Legend (July 4); Star Pride (July 14).

Guests on cancelled cruises receive the choice of a future cruise credit valued at 125 per cent of all monies paid to Windstar Cruises or a refund equal to the amount paid on the Windstar booking. Guests have 24 months to book and embark on any available Windstar cruise using their future cruise credit. In addition, Windstar has launched a new Travel Assurance Booking Policy, which is applicable to new and existing cruises departing until December 31, 2021. Travellers who cancel a cruise booking up to 15 days prior to departure will receive a 100 per cent future cruise credit to be used on another Windstar departure within one year of the issue date of the credit. The offer is for cruise fares only.

News

NCL launches TV advertising campaign

The Queen soundtracked ‘Break Free’ campaign will be shown across 38 channels in the UK


Norwegian Cruise Line has unveiled a new UK TV advertising campaign, its largest to date.

‘Break Free’ will be shown across 38 channels in the UK, including Channel 4, ITV, Channel 5 and a range of Sky channels. It is soundtracked by Queen’s song I Want to Break Free and will run from February 6 to March 7.

“At Norwegian Cruise Line, we have a history of innovation and we have always had a fighting spirit,” said NCL vice president and managing director in the UK, Ireland, Middle East and Africa, Eamonn Ferrin. “Our team has been using this pause to prepare for our comeback, and the creative minds and incredible talent we have in-house truly delivered. The NCL team has developed a campaign that calls to the traveller in each of us and our collective desire to feel free again.”

Karen Sequeira, marketing director, UK, Ireland, Middle East and Africa, adds: “‘Break Free’ is the first time we are undertaking a national TV campaign of this scale which will be combined with a 360-degree approach across digital, print and trade. Investment at this level is testament to a burgeoning interest in cruise in the UK and the country’s position as our number one international market. We’ve seen growing demand from the British public, and we are keen to invest in further strengthening our brand awareness in the region. We hope ‘Break Free’ inspires excitement and wanderlust.” 

News

Fred Olsen pushes start date back

The line has now cancelled a further 14 cruises and won’t resume sailing until the end of June


Fred Olsen Cruise Lines has cancelled all sailings until the end of June.

The company, which had been due to restart sailings on May 22, has cancelled 14 cruises as a result of extension.

Peter Deer, managing director of Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, said: “We are constantly reviewing our back in service dates in line with the latest government guidance and working closely with Clia and other industry bodies towards a return to sailing.

“This extra time allows us the opportunity to fully understand how the roll-out in the vaccine affects the procedures we operate on board and ashore. We know that our guests are missing cruising, as indeed are we, and we can’t wait to welcome them all back on board when the time is right.”

All guests affected can choose to either take a refund or a future cruise credit.

For more see our Cancellations table

News

Cruisers ready to return …

The latest Clia report reveals the majority of cruise passengers are happy to take a cruise in the next year


About two-thirds of regular cruise passengers are willing to take a cruise in the next year, while 58 per cent of non-cruisers are willing to try it in the coming years, according to the latest report by Clia.

The 2021 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook report outlined that there is a positive story going into 2021, with 27 Clia member cruise ships due to launch next year – taking Clia’s global fleet to 270 vessels.

Kelly Craighead, Clia president and chief executive, said: “For the cruise community, there is no denying that 2020 was not the year we anticipated. Still, the industry wasted no time adjusting course to address the challenges before us.

“Clia’s 2021 report highlights the extraordinary steps the cruise community took to develop and implement enhanced public health protocols to keep putting people first, while continuing to focus on innovation and responsible tourism practices that make cruising the best way to experience the world.”

The report also found that passengers spent $385 in port cities before boarding a cruise and $100 in each port during a cruise. The full 2021 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook report can be viewed here.

As we reported in December, the UK government has published its full Global Travel Taskforce report, which explores the return of cruise.

However, the report reveals that it has been proposed by Public Health England that it may be appropriate to resume cruises when the national alert level is at level 3 and when a move to level 2 is being considered by the Chief Medical Officer.

The report says: “It is critical that we proceed cautiously and are mindful of the public health risks as we consider when it is safe to restart cruises, and whether it is safe to move between stages.

“The protection of public health must come first, while enabling economic recovery and the growth of the sector. We need to ensure that there are clear public health measures so that we can increase demand for cruises safely.

“However, it is also vital that we provide clarity on the conditions for cruise restart to enable the sector to undertake effective financial forecasting for their businesses (and ensure financial viability); communicate with clarity to their crew, supporting travel supply chain and customers; secure future bookings for 2021 and beyond; and plan for operational restart.”

It also notes that FCDO travel advice on cruises is kept under continuous review and that the transition between each phase would be subject to agreement by the Department for Transport, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA), Public Health England, the Foreign Office and other bodies. See more here.

News

… as 31 ships set to arrive

Only 12 of 22 planned cruise ships were delivered in 2020 as Covid-19 disrupted a year when the industry’s exponential growth was set to continue.

As a result, 2021 is set to be a record-breaking year with an expected 31 vessels due to be delivered, worth a staggering $13.6 billion in total, according  to Vessels Value, which monitors shipping data.

The current cruise order book sits at 104 vessels, worth an aggregated value of $60.3 billion, accounting for 34 per cent of the overall global shipping order book.

After ordering activity between 2014 and 2018, last year was due to the following the record-breaking 2019 for delivery of vessels.

However, as the infographic on the next page shows, deployment fell as demand plummeted record lows due to restrictions brought about by Covid-19.

Ordering has slowed significantly, according to the company, with delays introduced.

Major operators chose to remove their older, less efficient vessels from their fleets meaning that, in 2020, the balance between removals and deliveries was more aligned for the first time in many years.

Guy Cooper, cargo analyst at VesselsValue, said: “Going forward, cruise companies and shipbuilders must now be cautious not to oversupply the market without the increase in demand to match. By 2028 the fleet is projected to increase in size by 28 per cent, with the ability to carry over 925,000 passengers at any given time.

“Hopefully the Covid-19 vaccine will be the catalyst that propels the cruise industry back onto its previous positive trajectory. The stock market is already starting to reflect this with share prices for the major cruise lines over double what they were back in April.”

News

Orlando Ashford joins Azamara

The former president of Holland America Line will join once the purchase of Azamara from Royal Caribbean goes through


Orlando Ashford, the former president of Holland America Line, is to join Azamara as its executive chairman. The appointment will be effective once Sycamore Partners, a private equity firm, has completed its purchase of Azamara from Royal Caribbean. The deal is expected to be finalised in the first quarter of this year.

“We are pleased for Orlando to take on this role as Azamara embarks on its next chapter supported by Sycamore Partners,” said Stefan Kaluzny, managing director of Sycamore Partners. “Orlando brings significant leadership experience, as well as specific expertise in the cruise and travel industry, making him well-suited to serve as Azamara’s executive chairman.”

“I am thrilled to be appointed to the role of executive chairman at this exciting time for Azamara, having long admired the business and the brand,” said Ashford. “I believe Azamara is uniquely positioned in the industry, and I look forward to executing on our shared vision for growth. Together with the Azamara team, we’ll focus on offering Azamara’s loyal customers more of what they have come to know and love.”

“I look forward to working with Orlando, who has equal passion for the cruise industry and the very special product Azamara offers,” said Carol Cabezas, president, Azamara. “With the recent news of a planned addition to the fleet, Orlando will bring perspective that will support expansion of the brand while maintaining and growing the unique programming and itineraries beloved by guests and travel industry partners.”

Sycamore Partners have recently acquired Pacific Princess from Princess Cruises. The former R-class vessel will be fully renovated and is due to sail its inaugural season in Europe in 2022.

“The addition of this ship is an important milestone and reflects Sycamore Partners’ commitment to supporting Azamara in its next phase of growth,” said Kaluzny. “Expanding the fleet will allow Azamara to continue to serve loyal customers, as well as those new to the brand, with more unique Destination Immersion programming and itineraries.”

“We are thrilled to be expanding our fleet with a fourth ship, allowing us to visit even more regions of the world and better serve our guests,” said Cabezas. “We look forward to launching even more unique and immersive itineraries and feel this is just the beginning of an exciting growth phase for Azamara.”

News

MSC takes delivery of Virtuosa

The family-owned line holds a flag ceremony in Saint-Nazaire for its new ship, which is due to come into service from April


MSC Cruises has held a flag ceremony for its forthcoming flagship MSC Virtuosa, a ritual that forms part of the ship joining MSC’s fleet.

The ceremony, which was held at Chantiers de l’Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, was attended by executive chairman Pierfrancesco Vago, his wife Alexa Aponte-Vago and their children, as well as representatives from MSC Cruises’ new builds team and executives and workers from the shipyard.

Vago said: “My family and I could not miss this opportunity to welcome in person the newest member to our fleet. The delivery of MSC Virtuosa at such a challenging time for our industry symbolises how as a family company we continue to look at the longer term and build our future.

“In doing so we remain committed to building each time some of the most innovative ships in the world when it comes to their environmental performance, featuring nothing but the most advanced available technology at sea.

“Just as importantly, with each new ship we continue to push boundaries and innovate our product offering with new and unique experiences for our guests. On MSC Virtuosa, this includes the world’s first humanoid bartender at sea that will be the star of a futuristic, immersive experience using cutting-edge technologies. Our exceptional dining offering has been further enhanced with two new restaurant concepts that showcase popular international cuisines to take guests on a gastronomic journey of discovery.

“This is, of course, in addition to the richness of experience that already sets us apart such as the grand-scale nightly theatrical shows, the award-winning family offering, industry-leading guest technology, of course the now iconic promenade with a stunning 91.8m long LED sky dome that is the social heart of the ship and more.”

Laurent Castaing, general manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique, stated: “I am proud of what our teams have accomplished together, despite a difficult sanitary context. With the construction of MSC Virtuosa, we have reached a level of finish and performance that will give future guests the best that cruising has to offer. The 16th ship that the Chantiers de l’Atlantique has built for MSC Cruises is, therefore, an example that will be difficult to overtake.”

MSC Virtuosa will be a sister-ship to MSC Gradiosa, the company’s first Meraviglia-plus ship. The vessel will spend its maiden season in Europe before heading to the Gulf in November.

Vago added: “Our long-term goal is to achieve a zero-impact cruise operation and this is the journey we are on today. MSC Virtuosa represents another important step in this direction together with our other investments in the accelerated development of next-generation environmental technology. It also confirms our long-term firm commitment to achieving this ambitious goal.”

MSC Virtuosa will come into service for the summer season from April 16, with four cruises in the Mediterranean of three, four and 10 nights, before moving to its new homeport of Kiel, where it will commence her Northern Europe itineraries from May 8.

News

Dr Sylvia Earle to join Aurora cruise

The renowned marine conservationist is set to join the expedition line next year on the new vessel that bears her name


Aurora Expeditions is giving guests the chance to cruise with Sylvia Earle, the renowned marine conservationist, on board the ship that will bear her name.

The company’s latest newbuild vessel, Sylvia Earle, will join the Greg Mortimer as Aurora’s second X-Bow ship. The cruise with Dr Earle will be the nine-day sailing in and around Baja California and the Sea of Cortez and will take place from May 4-12, 2022.

“By travelling with Aurora Expeditions on Sylvia Earle, I feel it is an incredible opportunity for people to learn about these extraordinary marine habitats in situ and, as a result, become ambassadors for protecting them,” said Dr Earle.

“Ninety-seven per cent of the Earth’s water is the ocean, it is our life support system, and we need to learn everything we can about it,” she adds. “I see great synergies in working closely with a company that shares my vision for the future and which is, from the top down, passionate about the marine environment.”

Dr Sylvia Earle was the first female chief scientist of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; has been a National Geographic explorer-in-residence since 1998, and was named by Time magazine as its first ‘Hero of the Planet’ the same year.

“Our goal is literally to inspire a network of hope – one place, one community, one vision at a time – but together around the world,” added Dr Earle. “And by linking people, sharing stories and carrying evidence of success or problems from one place to another, we get this global ‘brains trust’ working to get us from where we are to a better place.”

News

Hurtigruten launches 2022/23 Dover sailings

The Norwegian line has introduced nine new no-fly itineraries taking in some of the most remote areas of the British Isles and Scandinavia


Expedition cruise line Hurtigruten has launched its Dover 2022/23 season, extending its existing programme to include nine new itineraries taking guests to the Norwegian coastline and fjords.

The 10 to 21-night itineraries will see guests travel onboard the refurbished MS Maud to destinations such as the Norwegian Lofoten Islands; North Cape, one of the northernmost points in Europe; and the fjords. Hurtigruten’s showcase voyage for the 2022/23 season is a journey along the Norwegian coast to the Svalbard archipelago.

The nine new sailings will join the existing five expedition itineraries departing from Dover exploring some of the best and remote locations around the British Isles, Norway and, for the first time in Hurtigruten’s 127-year history, Southern Scandinavia.

Anthony Daniels, UK general manager at Hurtigruten, said: “Since launching our Dover departure sailings, we’ve seen an increased demand and appetite for no-fly cruises that venture closer to home. We’re delighted to be expanding on our inaugural Dover season with a series of new and unique itineraries offering our guests the opportunity to experience the Norwegian coastline and beyond like never before.”

More information can be found at hurtigruten.co.uk/dover-cruises.

News

AmaWaterways reveals six trends for 2021

Luxury river cruise line identifies heightened demand for slow travel and celebration travel from current booking patterns


AmaWaterways, the luxury river cruise line, has revealed six travel trends for the river industry. The trends – which include slow travel and celebration travel – were driven by booking patterns that are reflected in heightened demand during a time when guests are unable to take a holiday.

“North American luxury travellers are beginning to plan their next holiday, and, based on what we are seeing, river cruises are poised to be among the first to bounce back to pre-pandemic levels,” said Rudi Schreiner, president of AmaWaterways.

“River cruise holidays take place on smaller ships with fewer guests, cruise within countries and conveniently dock in the centre of charming towns and hidden villages. Looking ahead, we anticipate travellers will prioritise meaningful and authentic travel experiences that create true connections with their loved ones and the destination they are visiting. Travellers seeking this type of unique, intimate experience are driving increased demand for AmaWaterways.”

The trends are as follows:

Celebration Travel – With many group gatherings to commemorate milestone birthdays and anniversaries postponed throughout 2020, celebration travel is anticipated to be a top trend among travellers of all ages in the year ahead.

Longer Stays, Shorter Booking Windows – With international travel regulations still evolving, booking windows are expected to shrink, as travellers stand by ready to leap at the opportunity to escape to a new destination as soon as conditions are right. AmaWaterways is seeing its guests increasingly adding extensions to their seven-night river cruise – combining back-to-back cruises through Europe and adding pre- and post-cruise land packages.

Slow Travel – Trend analysts report that more travellers are opting for unhurried and authentic experiences within less crowded destinations that offer a true immersion in the region’s culture, history and gastronomy.

Regenerative Travel – Now, more than ever, travellers are actively seeking ways to give back to destinations by contributing to local economies and choosing sustainable ways to explore the world.

Holistic Wellness – With the pursuit of improved physical and mental health becoming more prevalent, the global pandemic has inspired many to focus on wellness, connect with new activities in the outdoors and improve their health and fitness.

The Value of Travel Agents – The company highlighted the important role that travel agents have played in helping customers navigate their way through the increasingly complex travel picture. In a startment they said: “AmaWaterways has always worked hand in hand with the travel agent community and, at a time with complex restrictions and policies, professional travel agents are more valuable than ever, serving clients with expert knowledge, destination insight and a personal touch to ensure a seamless transition throughout the voyage.”

To recognise the importance of the trade, AmaWaterways recently launched an all-new Referral Savings Offer that rewards both past guests and their newly referred friends and family with savings while encouraging all guests to book with a travel agent.

News

Viking to launch new Egypt vessel

The new vessel will debut in September 2022, sailing the line’s Pharaohs & Pyramids itinerary


Viking Cruises has announced that it will be launching a new ship in Egypt. Viking Aton will debut in September 2022 and sail the line’s 12-day Pharaohs & Pyramids itinerary.

The new vessel will join Viking’s existing Egypt river fleet, which includes its identical sister ship Viking Osiris and Viking’s first owned and operated ship on the Nile, Viking Ra.

“Egypt remains a top destination for many of our guests who are inspired to discover the rich history and beauty of the region,” said Torstein Hagen, chairman of Viking. “We will always maintain our commitment to creating meaningful experiences that are focused on the destination. The addition of Viking Aton is a reflection of our continued investment in Egypt; we look forward to introducing the country’s cultural treasures to even more Viking guests in the future.”

The new ship will be capable of accommodating up to 82 guests within 41 staterooms. All staterooms will have river views, and it will include venues that are seen throughout the Viking brand, such as the Aquavit Terrace. Fares start from £4,665.00 per person.

News

Viking floats out expedition ship

Viking Octantis takes to the water in Norway; it is set to debut in January 2022


Viking Cruises has officially floated out Viking Octantis, its first expedition vessel. The ship, which is set to debut in January 2022, has now touched the water for the first time – marking a key construction milestone in its development.

The 378-guest ship is being built at the Fincantieri Vard shipyard in Norway and it will now move to a nearby outfitting dock for further construction and interior build out. It will spend its maiden season in Antarctica and North America’s Great Lakes. A second expedition ship, Viking Polaris, will launch in summer 2022.

Viking has also developed a series of short videos about the new expedition voyages, ship design and prestigious scientific partnerships, which can be found on its website here.

“Working with Fincantieri over the last eight years, we have built the world’s most beautiful ocean ships. We are pleased to continue our partnership with Fincantieri’s Vard and celebrate this important milestone in the construction of our first expedition vessel,” said Viking chairman Torstein Hagen.

“In creating ‘the thinking person’s expedition’, we are perfecting polar expedition cruising, and we will usher in a new era of comfortable exploration in the heart of North America.

Viking Octantis and her sister ship, Viking Polaris, will allow our guests to explore further – to the ends of the earth as well as closer to home. I would like to thank our partners at Vard and everyone working at the yard for the hard work and dedication on the building of Viking Octantis; we look forward to welcoming her to our fleet in early 2022.”

Interview

Poseidon Expeditions