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Cunard Reveals Added 2021 Plans

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Luxury cruise line Cunard has announced its voyage program for the remainder of 2021, including an extended season in Japan and new voyages in Iceland, the Baltics, and North Cape. Cunard’s iconic ships – Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria – will pamper travellers, offering an exquisite onboard experience as they visit remarkable cities around the globe.

Queen Victoria will offer a new 14-night itinerary in majestic Iceland, and will also sail a new nine-night Baltic itinerary with a maiden call at Aarhus, Denmark. Queen Elizabeth will spend more time in East Asia with five roundtrip Tokyo voyages, including a maiden call at Seogwipo in Jeju Island, South Korea, followed by two Southeast Asia sailings before heading to Australia. Flagship liner Queen Mary 2 will increase the number of the brand’s signature Transatlantic Crossings in 2021, with short breaks in Europe, along with New England & Canada voyages.

“In 2021, Cunard will focus each ship in unique regions of the world to offer our guests more immersive experiences,” said Josh Leibowitz, SVP Cunard North America. “Queen Elizabeth will offer an extended Spring season in Japan, Queen Victoria in Europe, and Queen Mary 2 will sail the unparalleled Transatlantic Crossing.”

Queen Mary 2
Queen Mary 2 will continue to be the only ship to offer regularly-scheduled service between New York and London, making 23 Transatlantic Crossings from April through December in 2021, including Crossings from Hamburg, Germany and Le Havre (Paris), France. Queen Mary 2 will also sail her very popular New England & Canada voyages over the July Fourth holiday with an overnight in Boston, and in early October with overnight calls in Québec City. Other itineraries include the Norwegian Fjords, Caribbean, and short break five-night voyages in Western Europe.

Queen Victoria
Queen Victoria will sail Northern Europe itineraries from May through November 2021, interspersed with a few Southern Europe voyages in late spring and during autumn, all of which are roundtrip out of Southampton, England. The ship will make one maiden call in Aarhus, Denmark, and will have overnight stays on various voyages in St. Petersburg, Russia; Reykjavik, Iceland; as well as Funchal and Lisbon, Portugal. Evening departures will be offered in Liverpool, England; Tromso and Narvik, Norway; and Funchal, Portugal.

Queen Elizabeth
In 2021, Queen Elizabeth will offer an extended season in Japan with two additional Tokyo roundtrip sailings in the spring. The first will visit Western and Southern Japan ports of Kagoshima, Fukuoka, Nagasaki, Busan and a maiden call at Seogwipo in Jeju Island, South Korea. The second will circumnavigate Japan with calls in Aomori, Akita, Kanazawa, Nagasaki and Busan. After her June-August Alaska season (details to be released later this year), Queen Elizabeth will return to Japan for three Tokyo roundtrip voyages and then sail to Southeast Asia with overnight stays in the iconic ports of Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore. In November, the ship will sail to Australia and New Zealand.

2021 Early Booking Benefits
Guests who book launch fares by December 4, 2019 will receive exclusive benefits including:

Up to $1,000 per person Onboard Credit based on cabin category and voyage length; applies to the first two guests in a stateroom

Free drinks and gratuities in Princess Grill and Queens Grill Suites

Use promo code ZEB.

World Club Member Savings
World Club Members receive a 5% past guest discount off launch fares, available for past guests only, until February 27, 2020. Use promo code PA1.

Value Fares
Cunard is offering Value Fares for the 2021 Program Launch. Value Fares feature the following:

Up to 25% off public standard fares

Reduced non-refundable and non-transferable 12.5% deposit (required within three days of reservation)

Fares are capacity controlled, subject to change, and may not be combinable with any other public, group or past guest discount. Bookings are on guarantee status, meaning that a cabin assignment will not be available at the time of booking. Guests are guaranteed the category booked or higher. Offer expires April 30, 2020; promo code is KG5.

Group Rates
Group rates are available at 5% discount off the Public Standard Fares at launch. Group rates will be combinable with Early Booking Benefits. Group space will be available on September 24, 2019.

This post was published by our news partner: TravelPulse.com | Article Source |

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Cruises

AmaWaterways’ Rudi Schreiner Optimistic About River Cruising’s Rebound

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AmaWaterways President and Co-Founder Rudi Schreiner is optimistic that the river cruise industry will rebound once the coronavirus outbreak dissipates.

“Once everything is over people often forget quickly,” he told TravelPulse. “There will be pent-up demand, but the question now is when does it start up again?”

AmaWaterways has suspended river cruise operations until May 31 but is protecting travel agent commissions on canceled departures and paying 10 percent again when the agents’ clients rebook using future cruise credits (valued at 115 percent of the initial payments). That commitment is valued, especially since this is one of the direst situations in memory for travel.

“This is for sure one of the most severe situations we’ve ever had,” Schreiner said. “It is worse than 9/11 and worse than some of the terrorist attacks.”

For river cruising, this situation is worse than 9/11 because that attack occurred in September when most of the river cruise season was over – not at the beginning of the season like it is now.

“So, 9/11 was huge but didn’t affect European river cruising as strongly,” he said. “The most intense time for us personally was the first two weeks of March this year. Ships were ready, crews were onboard, provisions were ready” and then the virus spread across parts of Europe. The season was suspended.

“Once that was done, you at least had a clear picture ahead of you,” Schreiner said.

That doesn’t mean work is over for the time being. Schreiner is working out of his home in Westlake Village, Calif., and “right now we are busy on daily conference calls with the management team, individual calls with departments and so on. It’s very busy, and it’s getting organized, sorting through the whole thing. If we don’t cruise this entire season, we’ll make it through.”

That’s because Schreiner said AmaWaterways’ 25 ships are all paid off and funding in place will carry the company through.

“My worst-case scenario over the last 6-7 years, when our fleet became bigger, was because of such extreme low water we cannot cruise for a season,” he said. “In 2018, we had low water through the whole season. If it would get to an extreme level and we couldn’t cruise for a season, that’s why I always wanted to be as debt-free as possible. For many, many years, every penny we made went back into the company and our last 12 ships were completely paid in cash. Now everything is paid off.”

The company also is focused on its staff members. “We’re trying to maintain pretty much all our staff in our offices in Calabasas (Calif.), Dallas, Basel (Switzerland), and London,” Schreiner said. But European nations often operate differently. In Switzerland, for example, the government wants people to continue working and will pay 80 percent of the workers’ salaries, he explained.

When river cruise does rebound, it likely won’t get the same kind of fear that ocean companies are likely to face – such as being quarantined or turned away from countries. River ships are always close to land and don’t sail in international waters, so can’t be turned away from a country.

“On the river, you’re always within a country, you’re not coming from international waters,” he said. “It’s a different environment. Small-ship cruising will continue, and expedition cruising will continue. Ocean cruising may take longer, but I think it will also come back.”

This post was published by our news partner: TravelPulse.com | Article Source

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