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.”
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.