This week’s Cruise Wrap is a big one, so we recommend settling in with a cup of tea and a few biccies.
MSC Cruises welcomes back first guests on MSC Grandiosa
MSC Grandiosa was the first ship from the MSC Cruises fleet to welcome guests back and the first ship to implement the company’s health and safety protocol.
The first guests began embarking MSC Cruises’ flagship in the port of Genoa, Italy yesterday morning, arriving at the cruise terminal according to their allocated time slots and followed the new universal screening procedures according to the company’s own health and safety protocol, which includes a temperature check, medical review of a health questionnaire and an antigen COVID-19 swab test for every guest prior to boarding.
After completing these steps and having received the results of the test while in the terminal, guests that were fit to travel then embarked the ship according to the new health and safety procedures, which includes sanitation of both hand and hold luggage.
All guests received a complimentary MSC for Me wristband, which provides them with contactless options whilst on board such as opening the cabin or making payments and will also help to facilitate proximity and contact tracing, if needed.
Scenic Eclipse celebrates one year
15 August 2020 marked the first anniversary of Scenic Eclipse’s maiden voyage which departed from Reykjavik, Iceland.
Scenic Eclipse was christened in New York city by godmother Dame Helen Mirren in September 2019, and has since explored the world from the Arctic to the Antarctic polar regions.
In the past year, Scenic Eclipse has taken guests to more than 20 countries across four continents and three oceans. They have enjoyed more than 290 helicopter flights beyond the horizon, experienced more than 200 underwater journey’s in Scenic Eclipse’s onboard submarine and been immersed in the world’s most safe, ultra-luxury and truly all-inclusive discovery yacht.
Emerald Waterways releases new 2021 Russian River Cruise brochure in Australia
As part of the Emerald Waterways Australia launch program, the cruise line has released a second brochure, which features our new 2021 Russia River cruise collection.
For 2021, Emerald Waterways is introducing a new river-ship to its portfolio, the recently refurbished MS Nizhny Novgorod, built to sail Russia’s Volga River. Featuring two itineraries, the Russian program on board the MS Nizhny Novgorod begins sailing from May 2021.
Crazy savings as kids ferry free to Kangaroo Island
Escape to Kangaroo Island with SeaLink’s ‘Kids Go Free Deal’ offering savings of up to $150 per family.
This offer allows up to three kids aged three to 14 years to travel free on SeaLink’s Kangaroo Island ferry when accompanied by at least one paying adult and a vehicle.
Simply use the promo code KIDSFREE when booking travel between 12 October and 9 December 2020.
Norwegian Cruise Line’s new incentive
Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) has launched a new booking incentive for its travel partners in Australia and New Zealand, alongside an offer which will see guests receive a 20 per cent discount off their cruise fare.
Travel partners are being rewarded with a $100 gift card for every booking deposited by 31 August 2020. This incentive is in addition to NCL’s commissions which are protected on fully paid bookings if they are cancelled as part of NCL’s Peace of Mind Policy. The commission is also paid on all new bookings that are made and paid for using a Future Cruise Credit (FCC).
NCL is further supporting travel partners through its Book-A-BDM platform, allowing agents to book in a personal session with their BDM at a time and in way that best suits their needs, including as a phone call or conference call via Zoom.
Royal Caribbean Group secures commitment for $700 million loan
Royal Caribbean Group has secured a binding commitment from Morgan Stanley for a $700 million term loan facility.
The Company can draw on the loan at any time before 12 August 2021.
RCG can increase the capacity of the facility by an additional $300 million from time to time subject to the receipt of additional or increased commitments and the issuance of guarantees from additional subsidiaries of the Company.
If drawn, the RCG expects to use the net proceeds for general corporate purposes.
Crystal Clean+ 2.0 protocols introduced for Crystal Expedition Cruises and Crystal Yacht Cruises
Following the announcement of the Crystal Clean+ safety and health protocols for its ocean and river fleets, Crystal has unveiled public health measures for its upcoming expedition ship, Crystal Endeavor and for its yacht, Crystal Esprit.
The set of protocols was developed according to the most up-to-date scientific data and expert recommendations available and will be continually evaluated and revised as new information becomes available.
The Crystal Clean+ protocols are predominantly consistent across the entire Crystal fleet, with some specific nuances to accommodate the differences of the River ships and Crystal Endeavor and Crystal Esprit. Protocols will be similar to those set for the company’s Ocean ships Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity, with slight modifications to accommodate each ship’s unique facilities.
Share a cocktail with Cam from Celebrity Cruises
Looking for a new drink to master at your home bar? Cameron Mannix, director of sales for Celebrity Cruises AUNZ, has recreated the delicious Lycheetini served at the ice-topped Martini Bar aboard Celebrity Solstice and Millennium Series ships.
Within the video, Mannix who is based in Melbourne and currently in lockdown, expresses his appreciation on behalf of Celebrity Cruises for the amazing support agents have shown and for the work they continue to do for their mutual guests.
View the video HERE.
Fly free to Europe and save $4,000 per couple with Riviera Travel
Free flights to Europe and savings of $4,000 per couple are available on two back-to-back river cruises on the Douro River in Portugal and Danube River through central Europe in September and October 2021 as part of a new package for Australians.
The exclusive, 18-night ‘Double Up on the Danube and Douro’ package is being offered by Riviera Travel River Cruises, and their Australian representative, small ship cruise specialist, Cruise Traveller.
Including the two cruises, accommodation in Porto, Lisbon and Budapest, transfers and guided shore excursions, the 18-night package is available from $9895 per person, twin-share (October departure) – a saving of A$2000. The savings and free return flights to Europe from Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide or Perth are offered for bookings made by 30 November 2020.
New music-themed river cruise
Your clients can rock’n’roll down America’s iconic rivers of rhythm on a new music-themed river cruise from Louisville to Memphis aboard an authentic steamboat paddle-wheeler as part of a new, all-inclusive cruise package offered by the American Queen Steamboat Company and Australian small ship cruise specialist, Cruise Traveller.
The ‘Music of the 50s and 60s’ river cruise package begins in Louisville, Kentucky, on 22 August 2021, and for a limited time, travellers can save up to US$1,800 ($2,578AUD) per couple if booked by 30 September 2020. Guests can also receive a bonus US$100 ($150AUD) cruise credit per booking by downloading the new American Queen Steamboat Company’s 2021 online brochure via Cruise Traveller’s website.
American Queen Steamboat Company’s new digital brochure for 2021 features a record 173 cruises on five of America’s most iconic rivers – The Mississippi, Ohio River, Tennessee River, Snake River and Columbia River. The 2021 season will feature the new American Countess as well as the American Queen, American Duchess and American Empress – all of which will offer an authentic and elegant American river cruise experience.
Seabourn adds enhanced web content
Seabourn has made it easier for prospective charter, incentive, meeting and group travel clients to understand why a Seabourn ship may be the perfect choice for their next gathering. The brand recently added a substantial amount of information to its website dedicated to this niche segment of the travel industry.
The pages begin with a robust outline of reasons why one of Seabourn’s ultra-luxury ships can be a competitive choice vs. a traditional land-based hotel or resort. The brand’s small ship environment offers the opportunity to “wow” almost any guest list with multiple destinations in one trip, coupled with a sophisticated onboard all-inclusive environment and service delivered by a crew that is educated and trained to deliver the finest in hospitality service.
Carnival Corporation & plc announces closing of 9.875 per cent second-priority senior secured notes due 2027
Carnival Corporation has closed its private offering of $900 million aggregate principal amount of 9.875 per cent Second-Priority Senior Secured Notes due 2027.
The company expects to use the net proceeds from the offering of the secured notes for general corporate purposes.
Costa Cruises reserves cruises for Italian guests
Costa Cruises has announced that the September cruises of Costa Deliziosa from Trieste and Costa Diadema from Genoa will be reserved exclusively for Italian guests, with one-week itineraries calling at Italian ports only, allowing to rediscover in safety Italy’s finest destinations.
The decision was made considering the evolution of the epidemiological scenario and taking in account the regulation issued by the Italian Ministry of Health regarding mandatory checks for travellers returning from some European and foreign destinations, which suggests a cautious approach.
The company has also extended all other cruises until 30 September 2020, except for the above-mentioned departures of Costa Deliziosa and Costa Diadema.
Viking update on suspension of operations
Viking Ocean Cruises has extended its temporary suspension of operations across all scheduled departures through 31 December 2020.
If itinerary changes are required, impacted guests and their travel agents will be notified directly by Viking customer relations.