WHAT’S GOING ON: The latest update on cruising

The cruise industry has suffered more than many during the pandemic. And, while some countries are relaxing restrictions, ocean going cruising is not bouncing back quickly, especially in the US. A no-sail order for US waters initially issued by the Centers for Disease Control in March has been extended through Sept. 30. The Cruise Lines International Association has extended its travel suspension twice – the latest being a suspension of operations through October 2020. However, CLIA, which represents more than 50 companies and 95 percent of ocean-going cruise capacity, said last week that if conditions in the US change, it would consider allowing short, modified sailings. Meanwhile some cruise lines are looking at alternate plans, while others  are releasing  itineraries for the 2021-2022 season.

Silversea Cruises

Silversea Cruises unveiled a revised collection of 157 new expedition voyages. Departing from January 2021 to July 2022, the revised voyages have been designed by the cruise line’s destination experts to preserve and enhance the diverse array of experiences on offer to guests in ultra-luxury expedition travel.

The enhanced expedition offering includes itineraries in the Galapagos aboard new ship Silver Origin, the Deep Antarctica expedition and the first-ever ultra-luxury fly-cruise to Antarctica, a 51-port Arctic grand voyage, and the world’s first-ever expedition world cruise, among other immersive experiences.

Enjoying 12 maiden calls while journeying aboard Silversea’s four expedition ships, guests will travel deeper through the following expedition experiences as part of the new voyage collection:

68 new voyages aboard Silver Origin will incorporate five maiden calls, including the beautiful island of Santa Fe. The iconic islands of Fernandina and Isabela now feature on both itineraries, and each will include improved programs ashore.

On Silversea’s longest-ever voyage to Antarctica, travellers will embark on the cruise line’s first-ever voyage dedicated to attempting to cross the Antarctic Polar Circle on a 20-day exploration of the White Continent, departing January 27th, 2022. The Deep Antarctica expedition on the Silver Explorer is proposing to reach an impressive 69°S. Guests aboard Silver Explorer will venture to Marguerite Bay and potentially even as far south as the Bellingshausen Sea, a spectacular and seldom visit area of the Antarctic Peninsula.

Setting sail on January 25th, 2022, Silversea’s 167-day Uncharted World Tour will be the first Expedition World Cruise in history. The pioneering voyage will take adventurous travellers across 21 oceans and seas, calling in 107 destinations in 20 countries. Enriching the experience for guests, 70 leading experts and 20 guest speakers will join the voyage, sharing their insight as Silver Cloud travels to some of the most remote locations on earth.

Silversea’s guests will enjoy even greater diversity in the cruise line’s Antarctica offering, with the launch of Antarctica Bridge. With the option of an all-inclusive nine-night fly-cruise option aboard Silver Explorer, travellers now have greater choices in the duration of their Antarctic expedition, as well as the destinations they visit, with immersive experiences in the Antarctic Peninsula, South Georgia, the Falkland Islands, the Ross Sea, and the Subantarctic Islands included in the cruise line’s enriched Antarctica collection.

Departing 16 July 2021, Silver Cloud will embark on Silversea’s first Arctic Grand Voyage, unlocking unforgettable experiences for guests in 51 destinations across seven countries. Journeying on through some of the world’s remotest waters over 63 days, while enjoying exclusive events and an impressive line-up of guest speakers, Silversea’s guests will discover many once-in-a-lifetime experiences on the all-inclusive Arctic Grand Voyage. As part of an enriched Arctic season, guests will also retrace the route taken by famous explorers of yesteryear during an intrepid Northwest Passage crossing, as well as embarking upon incredible new sailings in Svalbard aboard Silver Cloud.

Also included in Silversea’s new collection of expedition voyages for 2021/2022 are 10 voyages in Northern Europe, with five sailings departing from various ports in the British Isles and two voyages to the Norwegian Fjords; a wide selection of in-depth expeditions in Australia’s Kimberley Region, as well as Southeast Asia and Melanesia; seven exceptional voyages to the South Pacific Islands; a variety of options in South America, including two spectacular itineraries to the Chilean Fjords; and the chance to discover Alaska and the American West Coast; and more.

Silversea’s guests will embark upon these enriched voyages aboard the cruise line’s fleet of ultra-luxury expedition ships—two of which -Silver Explorer and Silver Wind – will see further enhancements in 2021.

To find out more information on Silversea’s revised expedition itineraries for 2021/2022: https://www.silversea.com/lp-expedition-itineraries-2021-2022.html

Costa Cruises

Following the approval this week by the Italian Government of the resumption of cruises and the new health protocol, Costa Cruises is planning to restart its operations from Italian ports gradually on September 6, 2020.

The return to cruising will be progressive, involving an increasing number of ships. The first ship to set sail will be Costa Deliziosa, on September 6, 2020, offering every week cruises from Trieste to discover the most beautiful destinations in Greece. She will be followed by Costa Diadema, on September 19, 2020, operating on 7-day cruises in Western Mediterranean from Genoa to experience the best of Italy and Malta.

From the entry into force of the new decree by the Italian Government, Costa Cruises is working with Flag State authorities and the destinations to ensure a responsible, smooth and well organized application of the new regulations and protocols, in close cooperation with the local institutions, health authorities, harbor master’s offices, ports and terminals and RINA. Consequently, further details on the Costa Deliziosa and Costa Diadema itineraries will be announced in the coming days.

As the gradual implementation of these protocols is completed on board and ashore, the company must extend the pause of its cruise season until September 30, 2020, except for the above-mentioned departures of Costa Deliziosa (September 6, 13, 20, 27) and Costa Diadema (September 19). Costa is informing the impacted Guests and travel agents. They will be guaranteed a reprotection in accordance with the applicable legislation.

In order to offer the best possible holiday experience, while protecting the safety of guests, crew, and the residents of the local communities, Costa Cruises has developed the Costa Safety Protocol for its fleet, including new operating procedures in response to the COVID-19 situation. Supported by a panel of independent scientific experts in Public Health coordinated by V.I.H.T.A.L.I. (Value in Health Technology and Academy for Leadership and Innovation), a spin-off of the Università Cattolica of Rome, the Costa Safety Protocol is consistent with the health protocols defined by the Italian Government and European (EU Healthy Gateways) authorities.

Royal Caribbean Group

Royal Caribbean Group brands have cancelled more than 1,500 sailings so far and posted a $1.3 billion loss for the second quarter. It will defer delivery of two of five new ships due before the end of 2021, including mega liner Wonder of the Seas.

The company also said it wouldn’t rule out selling some ships.

Royal Caribbean Group also said it will ‘very likely’ implement Covid-19 testing as part of its safety measures. Testing will be a part of new as yet unpublished protocols it will launch ahead of the expiry of the current CDC No Sail order.

Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line are working together on new safety standards as part of the ‘Healthy Sail Panel’ partnership. It tapped former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb to be co-chair of the group.

Holland America Line

With the continuation of travel and port restrictions due to global health concerns, Holland America Line is extending its pause of cruise operations and cancelling departures on all ships through Dec. 15, 2020.

The pause extension affects Caribbean, Mexico, Panama Canal, Pacific Coastal, South America, Antarctica, Hawaii, South Pacific, Australia and Asia itineraries.

Guests Automatically Receive Bonus Future Cruise Credit

Those with impacted cruises automatically will be cancelled, and no action is needed for guests opting for the Future Cruise Credit (FCC). All guests will receive an FCC per person as follows:

Paid in Full: Those who had paid in full will receive 125% FCC of the base cruise fare paid to Holland America Line.

Not Paid in Full: Those with bookings not paid in full will receive an FCC of double the amount of the deposit paid for the cruise. The minimum FCC is $100 and the maximum will be an amount up to the base cruise fare paid.

The FCC is valid for 12 months from the date of issue and may be used to book sailings departing through Dec. 31, 2022. All other funds paid to Holland America Line may be transferred to a new booking or will automatically be refunded via the method of payment used to purchase the services.

Full Refund Option Also Available. Guests who prefer a 100% refund of monies paid to Holland America Line can visit the Cancellation Preferences form to indicate this preference no later than Sept. 15, 2020.

The above options are not applicable to guests booked on a charter sailing. Other booking and cancellation conditions and policies may apply if the cruise was not booked through Holland America Line. See the terms and conditions in the Cancellation Preferences form for all details.

Recognizing the vital role travel advisors play in the success of the cruise industry, Holland America Line will protect travel advisor commissions on bookings for cancelled cruises that were paid in full and for the total amount of the FCC when rebooked.

As previously announced, Holland America Line paused global cruise operations and cancelled all Alaska, Europe and Canada/New England cruises for 2020; additional departures from the port of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, in 2020; and select Hawaii itineraries for early 2021.

 

Source: Travel Industry Today
WHAT’S GOING ON: The latest update on cruising

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