Carnival-owned cruise lines announce extension to sailing suspension

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If you were thinking Australia’s efforts to get on top of the COVID-19 pandemic might mean we are ready to hit the seas next year, you might need to think again.

Carnival-owned cruise lines Princess Cruises, Holland America Line and Seabourn all announced that they were extending their current suspension on sailing, with some cruises suspended for at least a year.

All the cruises have suspended sailing in response to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) orders relating to the resumption of cruise operations.

The CDC raised their warning for cruise ships to the highest level and recommends that “all people avoid travel on cruise ships, including river cruises, worldwide, because the risk of COVD-19 on cruise ships is very high.”

The guidelines especially urge that people who are in a high-risk category avoid cruise ship travel for any reason.

Princess Cruises said that it was extending its pause on global operations to allow time for the estimated preparation needed to complete the required activities prior to sailing.

The Princess pause applies to all cruises that were scheduled to be sailing through to 31 March 2021, while all cruises longer than seven days sailing in and out of United States ports would be suspended through to 1 November 2021.

Princess Cruises is also extending its pause in operations for cruises departing in and out of Japan through to 25 June 2021.

“We are focused on preparing our ships to meet the CDC health and safety requirements for our eventual return to service,” said Jan Swartz, president of Princess Cruises.

“We also appreciate the continued support we have received from our guests, partners and travel advisers, reinforcing for all of us why we do what we do.”

Guests who are booked on cancelled Princess Cruises voyages have the option of a full refund, 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 25 per cent of the cruise fare.

Holland America Line is also suspending select longer voyages in Asia, Australia/New Zealand and South America through to mid-April 2021.

All Holland America Line cruises through to 31 March 2021 will be suspended and cruises of eight days or more that call at a US port will be suspended through to 1 November 2021.

Guests booked on several longer Holland America voyages to South America aboard Westerdam, Asia aboard Noordam and Australia/New Zealand aboard Oosterdam will be rebooked to similar dates and itineraries in 2022. Full refunds or cruise credits are also available.

Seabourn announced that select voyages aboard its Odyssey and Quest cruise ships would be cancelled up until November next year.

“We’re fully committed to meeting the requirements necessary to bring guests back to our ships, including those issued by the CDC,” said Josh Leibowitz, president of Seabourn.

Affected guests on Seabourn cruises will automatically receive future cruise credits or they can request a full refund of money paid.

Do you have a booking on a cruise that has been cancelled? Are you taking cruise credits or applying for full refunds? When do you expect cruising to resume?

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Written by Ben

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