Hurtigruten’s Maud To Cruise From Dover From 2021 – Other Cruise News: Celestyal Cancels 2020 Cruise Program – Interim Cruise Guidance For Europe

by Kevin Griffin

While Hurtigruten was the first operator to begin regular cruises again following the latest Covid-19 pandemic, more news from the same operators says that they will begin cruising from the UK in March 2021, with a series of new itineraries from Dover. Elsewhere in Europe, Celestyal Cruises is cancelling all Greek Island cruises until 2021. And the European Union has released a 49-page guide to suggestions for healthy cruising in Europe.


Hurtigruten’s Maud To Cruise From Dover From 2021

Norwegian operator Hurtigruten will begin a year-round program of new expedition cruise itineraries onboard the 500-berth Maud from Dover in March 2021. The Maud is the former Midnatsol, built in 2002.

Departing on March 16, 2021, the first of four new itineraries will be a 15-day cruise to Norway’s southern fjords and the Arctic North. The ship will then sail summer itineraries along the Norwegian coast from April to September, 13-day voyages visiting islands off the British mainland between May and September 2021, and 15-day cruises across southern Scandinavia in June and July.Hurtigruten (logo)

The Maud will receive a multimillion-pound refurbishment ahead of her arrival in the UK. All public areas will be renovated, making use of natural materials such as Scandinavian wool, pine, birch oak and granite. The ship will be powered using environmentally certified biofuel and diesel and will be able to connect to shore power in port.

“We are thrilled to present expedition cruises from Dover year-round,” said Anthony Daniels, general manager of Hurtigruten UK & Ireland. “It is a boost for the UK cruise industry at this time and is especially important to showcase how expedition cruising differs from mainstream ‘big white ship’ cruising. Expedition cruising fuses sustainable activities, nature and culture into exceptional yet safe adventures to less-explored locations.”


Celestyal Cancels 2020 Cruise Program

Celestyal Cruises has announced that it has cancelled its 2020 season and will re-open with the 2021 season commencing March 6, 2021.

The Celestyal Olympia (Courtesy of Celestyal Cruises)

The Celestyal Olympia (Courtesy of Celestyal Cruises)

As the core of our season runs from Spring through the Autumn, Celesytal had been optimistic that it would be able to resume cruise operations later this summer.

However, given the prevailing uncertainty regarding travel restrictions affecting its largest international source markets coupled with the discussions at the European Union regarding the enhanced health protocols Celesytal decided to postpone resuming cruise operations until the start of the spring season next year.

By Celestyal cancelling operations until 2021, it will be better positioned to offer clarity and certainty to tour operators, who are so influential in the Greek market, and guests. Celestyal will now shift its attention to 2021 and 2022 business where it is seeing encouraging signs of pent-up demand and will at the same time be well prepared to implement all enhanced health protocols that will ultimately be established by the EU and the countries where Celestyal operates.

The Celestyal Crystal (Courtesy of Celestyal Cruises)

The Celestyal Crystal (Courtesy of Celestyal Cruises)

For all named and paid individual guests impacted by this suspension, Celestyal Cruises is offering a Future Cruise Credit (FCC) valued at 120% of the original booking value. Guests will have until the end of December 2021 to redeem their Future Cruise Credit against any of Celestyal Cruises’ itineraries through end of December 2022. T

Celestyal Cruises will automatically send the Future Cruise Credit voucher directly to guests or their travel advisors, so there will be no need to call the Contact Centre other than to rebook.

Interim Cruise Guidance For Europe

Under the EU Healthy Gateway program, first funded in 2017, and now with funding from the European Commission its interim guidance or restarting the cruise industry in Europe. The proposed new measures are strictly recommendations and not regulations, and include the measures outlined below:

· Recommends social distancing of 1.5 metres (5 feet)
· Introduction of plastic screens as dividers
· The use of masks in confined inside spaces
· No self-service at any food outlets.
· Segregate those over 65 from other passengers
· The use of shore-based quarantine faculties when available
· Spreading dining hours and sitting hours in dining areas
· The closure of indoor pools

With participation from thirty-five privately-owned cruise lines as well, representing Royal Caribbean Cruises (22), Cunard/P&O Cruises (6), MSC Cruises (2) and one member each from Costa cruises, Holland America Line and Viking Cruises.

(Kevin Griffin is managing director of The Cruise People Ltd in London, England. For further information concerning cruises mentioned in this article readers can visit his blog)

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