Cruise: Royal Caribbean, Princess Cruises and Holland America extended cancellations

Cruises: Expert hopeful for 'July' return of holidays

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There was glimmer of hope for cruise holidays this week with the news some domestic cruises could return from May 17. However, there is still uncertainty ahead amid varying global travel restrictions.

As a result, three more cruise lines have decided to further cancel sailings with some now not starting until June.

Royal Caribbean Group, Princess Cruises and Holland America are among the big names which have set out new return to sailing dates.

What options are available to customers?

Royal Caribbean Group

Royal Caribbean Group has pushed back the restart of its brands’ cruises until May 31 at the earliest.

The suspension of sailings includes all cruises on Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Silversea Cruises.

The earliest restart for these lines is now May 31, 2021.

Furthermore, sailings onboard Azamara have been pushed back to June 30.

However, there are some exclusions.

Sailings onboard Royal Caribbean International’s Quantum of the Seas resumed sailing in Singapore last year.

Meanwhile, sailings on Spectrum of the Seas and Voyager of the Seas, departing from China, are due to resume from April 30.

Furthermore, two new cruises onboard Odyssey of the Seas setting sail from Israel, destined for Greece and Cyprus, are due to depart on June 2.

Sadly for UK cruise lovers, the Israel sailings are only for residents of the country.

The cruise line says it is continuing to work with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and government authorities around the world toward safely returning to sailing.

All holidaymakers impacted by cancellations will be given the option to “lift and shift” their holiday to a future date.

Alternatively, they can claim a 100 percent refund or a 125 percent Future Cruise Credit.

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Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises has announced plans to extend is suspension until June 30, 2021 at the earliest.

The cruise line says it is continuing to work with government and port authorities to finalise plans for a return to sailing.

The pause impacts the following voyages:

Caribbean Princess: Seven-day Western and Eastern Caribbean cruises

Enchanted Princess: Seven-day Mediterranean & Adriatic, seven-day Western Mediterranean, and 14-day Western Mediterranean & Adriatic Medley

Ruby Princess: Seven-day Classic California Coast, seven-day Mexican Riviera, and five-day Cabo San Lucas Getaway sailings.

Customers currently booked on cancelled sailings will be given the option to move the cruise to an equivalent holiday in 2022.

Alternatively, they can choose a Future Cruise Credit equivalent to 100 percent of the cruise fare paid, plus an additional non-refundable bonus Future Cruise Credit equal to 10 percent of the fare.

They will also be given the option to request a full refund worth 100 percent of the amount paid.

However, refund requests must be made by April 15, 2021, otherwise, the cruise company will automatically issue a Future Cruise Credit.

All Future Cruise Credits must be used on a sailing departing before December 31, 2022.

Holland America

Holland America has extended its suspension of European cruise operations until June 30, 2021.

The line says it continues to work with government and port authorities to facilitate a safe return to sailing.

The pause will impact cruises departing in May and June on Nieuw Statendam, Volendam and Westerdam, as well as any Collectors’ Voyages associated with those cancelled cruises.

Cruises impacted by cancellations include:

Nieuw Statendam: Eight departures from May 2 through June 27, 2021, that include seven- and 14-day Norway and Baltic itineraries, as well as the 14- and 21-day Collectors’ Voyages of those cruises.

Volendam: June 19, 2021, 14-day Adriatic Dream cruise and the 24-day Adriatic Dream and Greek Odyssey Collectors’ Voyage departing the same date.

Westerdam: June 19, 2021, 12-day Greece and Adriatic Antiquities cruise and the 24-day Adriatic Antiquities and Mediterranean Romance Collectors’ Voyage departing the same date.

The cruise line assures it will contact all guests and travel agents directly and notify them of the options available.

Guests impacted by cancellations will be able to rebook on an equivalent cruise in 2022 for no extra charge.

Alternatively, they will be automatically issued with a Future Cruise Credit of 110 percent of any payment made on the cruise.

A full refund is also available for those who do not wish to cruise.

This can be requested via the website but must be done no later than April 15, 2021.

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