Maiden Voyage Of Tahiti-Based Aranui 5 Delayed Until October 2015; Passengers Can Rebook To Ensure They Are On The New Ship

Aranui 5Tahiti’s Compagnie Polynésienne de Transport Maritime (CPTM) has just confirmed to us that the Aranui 5 ‘s maiden voyage will be delayed by one sailing. At the moment, CPTM believe that she should be able to enter service with departure N°14/2015 (October 10, 2015). This date could change again in the future. To be on the safe side, passengers wishing to travel on the new vessel should probably book on Voyage N°16/2015 and thereafter.

With these latest changes, for passengers already booked and wishing to travel on the new ship CPTM will allow them to postpone or even cancel their cruise without penalty. CPTM’s reservations department will shortly be contacting all operators and agents having passengers on these trips.

Furthermore, CPTM has decided to reintroduce for 2015, their Senior Special (voyage N°12 – Aug 29th 2015). The discount granted will be 10% applicable to passengers already booked on this departure and also to new reservations (some conditions apply).

For further details on booking on either the Aranui 3 or the new Aranui 5 please contact Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk. In North America please call 1-800-961-5536 or e-mail cruise@thecruisepeople.ca.

Last Minute North Atlantic Space Available On Oceania’s Insignia, Southampton to New York, 15 Days, October 2, 2014

InsigniaTwo weeks from today, Oceania Cruises’ 684-berth Insignia departs Southampton for New York by way of Belfast, Dublin and Cork and crossing via St John’s NF, Halifax, Saint John NB and Portland ME, to arrive in New York on October 17. In the UK, there is also a special Business Class airfare supplement of £999 from New York to London.

For further details on this crossing or Oceania Cruises in general please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk. In North America call 1-800-961-5536 or e-mail cruise@thecruisepeople.ca.

Three Ships Placed In NSB’s Mediterranean-Australia Cargo-Passenger Service With MSC : Last-Minute Bookings Now Being Taken

Three ships, the MSC Monterey, MSC Geneva and most recently MSC Carouge, have now been placed into MSC’s Italy-Australia service via Suez. Each ship can carry six passengers in one Owners Cabin and two Doubles. These ships are 4,870 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent container) capacity vessels and single passengers are carried at a very modest single supplement of €15 per day on top of the normal fare.

MSC Monterey © Lotse 1967 @ FleetmonThe overall route is : Valencia – Fos sur Mer – La Spezia – Naples – Gioia Tauro – Suez – Pointe des Galets(La Reunion) – Port Louis(Mauritius) – Sydney – Melbourne – Adelaide – Fremantle – Singapore – Jebel Ali – Ad Dammam – Jubail – Jebel Ali – Salalah – King Abdullah – Suez – Piraeus – Valencia – Fos sur Mer – La Spezia.

One-way and partial bookings are possible but passenger bookings are not accepted to or from Middle Eastern ports. The MSC Monterey (pictured) is on charter until 2019, but, subject to renewal, MSC Geneva and MSC Carouge have charters that last only until January / February 2015.

Last-minute passenger space is now available on the following departures:

MSC Carouge from La Spezia about October 5, 2014. For this departure only we also can accept bookings to La Reunion and Mauritius.

MSC Geneva from La Spezia about October 19, 2014 to Sydney etc or the full round voyage.

For further details and bookings to and from Australia please call Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

A Prestige Ship For Bermuda At Some Time In The Future?

Norwegian Cruise Line ceo Kevin Sheehan was quoted in Bermuda recently as having said that with its acquisition of Prestige Cruises the “new” Norwegian group might take a bigger interest in the now underused Bermuda ports of Hamilton and St George’s. The maximum length of ship allowed in Hamilton is about 720 feet, on 26 feet of draft, and similar limitations apply at St George’s. The great advantage to Hamilton of course is that ships dock right on the city’s main thoroughfare of Front Street.

Seven Seas Mariner and Voyager in Hamilton April 2008

Regent’s Seven Seas Mariner and Seven Seas Voyager together in Hamilton, Bermuda, in April 2008

Both Regent and Oceania have been to Bermuda in the past and indeed in 2003 Regent (then Radisson) ran the 560-foot 490- berth Seven Seas Navigator on eleven weekly cruises from New York and Norfolk to Hamilton and St George’s. Oceania, on the other hand, has put ships into Bermuda, on positioning voyages or seasonal cruises.

At 594 feet, Oceania’s 684-berth “R” class ships Insignia, Nautica and Regatta can get into Hamilton and St George’s, but because of their length, the 776-feet 1,250-berth Marina and Riviera are restricted to Bermuda’s outlying Naval Dockyard. The “R” ships are only slightly longer than the Furness Bermuda Line’s 580-foot Queen of Bermuda and Monarch of Bermuda, which at one time were the mainstay of the New York-Hamilton trade.

Of the three Regent ships, not only the Seven Seas Navigator but also the 709-foot Seven Seas Mariner and 677-foot Seven Seas Voyager, both with 708 berths, have docked on Front Street in the past. Indeed the Mariner and the Voyager became two of the largest ships to do so when they docked together in Hamilton in April 2008. At 732 feet, the 738-berth newbuilding Seven Seas Explorer, due in 2016, will be subject to approval by the local authorities as to whether she will be able to berth in Hamilton. That means that five or six out of the eight existing Prestige ships could be candidates for Bermuda.

But whether a regular upmarket service to Bermuda can survive since the relaxation of the shipboard casino opening laws has yet to be proven. Sheehan told the Royal Gazette, “We would be open to bringing more of the smaller ships into Bermuda – it seems like the perfect market.”

Hamilton will see only seven calls this year, with nothing between late April and mid-October, and St George’s only two cruise ship calls in the whole year.

Azamara Club Cruises tried one season with its 684-berth “R” ship Azamara Journey on the New York-St George’s-Hamilton run in 2007 and then left.

Between 2010 and 2012, in which year she made 19 voyages, Holland America Line ran its 719-foot 1,348-berth Veendam between New York and Hamilton, but she did not call at St George’s. After not being able to make enough money sailing to Bermuda, Holland America switched the Veendam to the Boston to St Lawrence trade at the end of 2012.

However, with ships’ casinos now allowed to open in port, Veendam will test the waters again in 2015, making six sailings between Boston and Hamilton between May and July, alternating with her Boston sailings to the St Lawrence.

Norwegian of course holds Bermuda contracts for the New York-Bermuda and Boston-Bermuda trades and has the largest ship in the Bermuda trade with the 4,000-berth Norwegian Breakaway serving New York, and the 2,476-berth Norwegian Dawn on the Boston route. Their ships will make 48 calls at Dockyard in 2015.

For further details of cruising with Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk. In North America call 1-800-961-5536 or e-mail cruise@thecruisepeople.ca.

Norwegian’s “All-Inclusive” Packages – A Prestige Ship For Bermuda? – Chinese Taishan Enters Service

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 15th September 2014...

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        NCL All-Inclusive

Last month, Norwegian Cruise Line announced its new 2015 all-inclusive program for North America, and this month it announced a similar program for the UK. There are some interesting comparisons between the two programs in that fare reductions that are a part of the package differ, as do rates of exchange used for different cruise lengths. Elsewhere in Norwegian’s “new” realm since they agreed to acquire Prestige Cruises, Norwegian ceo Kevin Sheehan remarked that Bermuda might see more Prestige ships in future years, as being a good destination fit for the Regent and Oceania cruise brands. And in China, Bohai Cruise has inaugurated its new cruise service using the 800-berth Chinese Taishan, formerly Costa Voyager.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                                  (See previous columns)

Five Transatlantic Sail Opportunities With Star Clippers In 2015 – Schooner Or Square Rigged – Caribbean to Europe And Vice Versa

Star Clippers TransatStar Clippers’ range of extended ocean cruises allows you really to get a feel for life on the open water as you sail across the Atlantic Ocean from one delightful destination to another. Usually these crossings embark from in Europe and travel to a port in the Caribbean, or vice versa, giving you the opportunity to discover two vastly different continents and enjoy a relaxing break at sea in between.

Flights, non UK transfers & port charges included in the following fares

St. Maarten to Lisbon

Departing April 2, 2015 – 18 nights aboard Star Flyer – Visiting: St. Maarten, 12 nights at sea, Punta Delgada, 4 nights at sea and Lisbon – From £1,979 per person, Single from £2,359

Barbados to Rome

Departing April 25, 2015 – 21 nights aboard Royal Clipper – Visiting: Barbados, 10 nights at sea, Punta Delgada, 4 nights at sea, Malaga, Palma, Mahon and Rome – From £2,049 pp, Single from £2,679

Las Palmas to Barbados

Departing October 24, 2015 – 15 nights aboard Star Flyer – Visiting: Las Palmas, Santa Cruz, 13 nights at sea and Barbados – From £1,789* pp, Single from £2,229

Malaga to St. Maarten

October 31, 2015 – 21 nights including Star Clipper – Visiting: Malaga, Safi, Arrecife, Las Palmas,
13 nights at sea and St. Maarten – From £2,539 pp, Single from £3,279

Lisbon to Barbados

November 5, 2015 – 16 nights including Royal Clipper – Visiting: Lisbon, Casablanca, Safi, Tenerife,
10 nights at sea and Barbados – From £2,149 pp, Single from £2,729

For further details of crossing the Atlantic with Star Clippers please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk. In North America call 1-800-961-5536 or e-mail cruise@thecruisepeople.ca.

CMA CGM Signs Three Major Agreements That Could Affect Cargo-Passenger Operations On Its 85 Passenger-Carrying Container Ships

cma cgm jules-verneThe CMA CGM Group, the world’s third largest container shipping company, yesterday announced the signature of three major agreements with China Shipping Container Line (CSCL) and United Arab Shipping Company (UASC).

Under the name OCEAN THREE, the agreements involve the following maritime trades: Asia-Europe and Asia-Mediterranean, Transpacific and Asia-United States East Coast.

The agreements (a combination of Vessel Sharing Agreements, Slot Exchange Agreements and Slot Charter Agreements) will complete the CMA CGM offering on the largest global maritime markets:

  • On the Europe-Asia trade: 4 weekly services, which complete the 2 existing services, thereby offering 6 departures per week
  • On the Mediterranean-Asia trade: 4 weekly services, 2 to the Mediterranean, 1 to the Adriatic and 1 to the Black Sea the only one on this market
  • On the Transpacific trade: 4 weekly services to California and 1 service to the Pacific Northwest (United States and Canada)
  • On the Asia-US East Coast trade: 1 service via the Suez Canal and 1 service dedicated to the Gulf of Mexico.
  • The agreements on the Transatlantic trade are being finalized and will be announced soon.

These new offerings will combine speed and reliability. Rotations will be optimized with calls in all the biggest Asian, European and North American ports and common feeder ports.

The number of weekly calls proposed and the transit times will be among the best on the market, thereby responding to the expectations of CMA CGM’s clients. Once passenger details are known they will be announced.

For further details of cargo-passenger services offered by CMA CGM, which operates about 85 of its own passenger-carrying container ships, please call Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

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