Fly To Australia For £299 And Sail Back On Cruise & Maritime Voyages’ ms Astor (46 nights) from Fremantle March 16, 2015

FLY TO AUSTRALIA FOR ONLY £299 (Including taxes)

Astor South PacificAustralia to UK liner voyage on board ms Astor

Departs March 16, 2015 

Experience the voyage of a lifetime, cruising on board ms Astor to London Tilbury in Spring 2015 via the iconic Cape of Good Hope. There’s plenty of time to relax and enjoy the comforts of cruising along with the excitement of exploring an array of diverse and exciting destinations


  • 46-night cruise aboard ms Astor fom Fremantle to Tilbury
  • All meals &  entertainment on board
  • Port charges & air taxes
  • Prepaid crew gratuities

Accommodation and transfer costs in Perth prior to cruise are available on request

Astor Hanse BarFares per person twin share.Fly to Australia for £299 includes air taxes, which is additional to the below fares:

Category Cabin Description Cruise Fare per person
1 Four Berth Inside £3,319
2 Four Berth Oceanview £5,089
3 Standard Twin Inside £3,979
4 Standard Twin Inside £4,309
5 Single Inner Sold Out
6 Standard Twin Oceanview £4,869
7 Standard Plus Twin Oceanview £5,519
8 Superior Twin Oceanview £6,079
9 Premium Twin Oceanview £6,629
10 Single Oceanview £9,389
11 Superior Inside Suite £6,519
SG Voyager Suite Oceanview Sold Out
12 – PS Premium Suite Oceanview £9,499
13-DS Deluxe Suite Oceanview £10,269
S Senator Suite £14,359
AS Astor Suite £15,459

For further details on Cruise & Maritime Voyages’ liner sailings between the UK and Australia on board the ms Astor please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail In North America please call 1-800-961-5536 or e-mail

The Cruise People Ltd Have Joined Cruiseco And Now Offer Cruiseco’s Exclusive Azamara Club Cruises Charters For 2016

Cruiseco’s 2016 Azamara Luxury Charters!


Cruiseco, a consortium of cruise travel agents based Down Under and in the UK, has looked to create a voyage that combines sophisticated sailing with authentic cultural experiences. The Azamara Journey departs Nice on April 24, 2016, visiting some of the Mediterranean’s least-visited gateways, getting closer than others can, while cosseting its guests in absolute splendour.

This luxurious cruise will take you from Nice to Venice over 34 enchanting nights, visiting 30 ports, with 5 overnight port stays. Earlybird offer available!

Click here for more information


Cruiseco offers a voyage that combines the bizarre, the beautiful and the absolutely breathtaking. This itinerary is for those keen to unlock lesser-known ports on North America’s historic eastern seaboard, while still enjoying some of its most iconic.

The Azamara Quest will leave Montreal on September 24, 2016, for New Orleans, on a cruise of 32 enthralling nights, visiting 19 ports with 9 overnight port stays. Earlybird offer available!

Click here for more information

For further details on either of these exclusive Cruiseco departures with Azamara Club Cruises please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450, complete the enclosed form by clicking on the links provided above or e-mail

Special Offer On 9-Night Atlantic Coast Cruise Package – Barcelona to Southampton on board Norwegian Epic, September 17, 2015


Balcony fly/cruise & stay offer on board the 155,873-ton Norwegian Epic from £1,229 per person ex-UK

Norwegian Epic in Barcelona

Norwegian Cruise Lines’ Norwegian Epic embarking passengers in Barcelona.

Barcelona to Southampton  – 9 night package – departing UK September 17, 2015

Fares start from just £1,229 per person in a twin share Balcony Stateroom from Manchester

Available from Luton, Newcastle and Birmingham from £1,239, Edinburgh from £1,269 and London from £1,279

The Cruiseco Fare Includes:

One-way economy air fare to Barcelona

3 nights pre-cruise stay at the Petit Palace Opera Garden Ramblas Hotel

Private car transfers

6-night Atlantic Coast cruise: mv Norwegian Epic Barcelona via Cartagena, Malaga & Lisbon to Southampton

Port charges & taxes, air taxes and onboard gratuities

For further details please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail

CMA CGM’s 8-passenger CMA CGM Puget Joins Hong Kong – China – Taiwan – New Zealand – Hong Kong Cargo-Passenger Service

CMA CGM Puget © Iappino at ShipspottingThe Cruise People Ltd are pleased to announce that the 8-passenger CMA CGM Puget (above) is joining the cargo-passenger service between Asia and New Zealand, with sailings between Hong Kong, Chinese ports, Taiwan, South Korea, Fiji and five ports in New Zealand. The return voyage is made via New Caledonia. Chinese visa and Yellow Fever innoculations are required. Fares begin at €100 per person per day (€110 single). The CMA CGM Puget joins Hansa Shipping’s 3-passenger HS Beethoven on this route.

Meanwhile, the two-passenger Aglaia sails between Hong Kong, Brisbane in Australia and four ports in New Zealand while the Ariana sails between Port Kelang, Singapore, Brisbane and five ports in New Zealand – but book early because there is only one passenger cabin on each ship! Detailed port rotations follow for each route:

CMA CGM Puget (one Owners cabin, three double cabins, 8 passengers) and HS Beethoven (one double Owners cabin, one single cabin, 3 passengers): Hong Kong, Chiwan (day 1), Keelung (day 2), Ningbo (day 4), Shanghai (day 6), Pusan (day 8, disembarkation only), Suva, Auckland (day 25), Port Chalmers, Lyttelton (day 30), Napier (day 32), Tauranga (day 33), Noumea (day 36) and Hong Kong (day 49).

Aglaia (double suite, 2 passengers): Hong Kong, Brisbane (day 11), Auckland (day 16), Lyttelton (day 19), Napier (day 21), Tauranga (day 22), Tokyo (day 33), Kobe (day 35), Pusan, Shanghai (day 37), Yantian (day 40) and Hong Kong (day 42). Australian visa also required for this voyage.

Ariana (twin suite, 2 passengers): Singapore, Brisbane (day 14), Auckland (day 19), Lyttelton (day 21), Wellington (day 23), Napier (day 25), Tauranga (day 27), Port Kelang (day 41) and Singapore (day 42). Australian visa also required for this voyage.

For further details please call Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People Ltd in London or e-mail

Costa Celebration Headed For The Bahamas – Sterling Cruise Lines From Aruba – Just Two European Cruise Ship Builders?

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 15th December 2014... ..

Costa Celebration

Costa Celebration likely to replace Bahamas Celebration on the Palm Beach-Freeport route while the latter undergoes repairs


Three weeks ago Costa Cruises abruptly withdrew the Costa Celebration from the Costa fleet before she had even been introduced. According to some sources, an immediate sale was in the offing. Now, it seems clearer that the intention was to send her to the Bahamas as a substitute for Celebration Cruise Lines’ damaged Bahamas Celebration on the Palm Beach-Freeport route. Meanwhile, Clipper’s Gemini will soon leave her accommodation ship role in the Shetlands to go back into full time cruising for the first time since 2011, with start-up company Sterling Cruise Lines. Finally, do rumours that Fincantieri would like to acquire STX France mean that there will be only two European cruise ship builders by next year instead of the four we had in the past?

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                  (See previous columns)

“Shipping Network” – Holidays in the hold – The Cruise People’s Kevin Griffin says take a trip on a cargo ship to get under the skin of shipping

The following article appears in the December 2014 issue of “Shipping Network,” the official magazine of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers.

Holidays in the hold    by Kevin Griffin

CMA CGM Andromeda © Walter Rademacher

The UK-registered 2009-built CMA CGM Andromeda carries ten passengers in two twin cabins and three doubles

As many shipping people are aware, there are about 300 passenger-carrying cargo ships on world trade routes, ranging from shortsea vessels to the world’s largest container ships. These vessels, all built in recent years, are limited to a maximum of twelve passengers each, above which they must carry a doctor.

Still, it never fails to surprise us the number of people engaged in shipping who do not realise that cargo ships might carry passengers. Twice, we have had booked passengers to board in Long Beach who were told by the local agent that their ships did not carry passengers!

As container ships displaced cargo liners in the 1970s, much cargo-passenger activity faded away, but over the years the practice has been revived as the concept was introduced to container ships. The first container line to carry passengers was Hamburg-Süd in 1985.

The changed nature of the chartering of container ships today can, however, cause problems for would-be passengers. While once owners operated their own ships, today’s fleets are divided into owned, leased and chartered vessels, and since 2008 many of the latter have been operating on some very short charters.

This particularly affects Germany with its shipowning tax saving plans. When ships change charterers or are withdrawn from one route and moved to another this causes problems for passengers This is something passengers are made aware of when they book of course, but it’s still a disruption.

To take a German example, Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft Buxtehude (NSB) turned to passenger carrying after an unusual start. Managing newly-built container ships owned by many individuals investing in the 1980s and 1990s ‘KG’ tax saving schemes, it set aside accommodation for the owners’ holidays.

But when investors did not make use of the cabins NSB offered them to the public. It now operates about 40 passenger-carrying container ships on routes that are determined by charterers such as CMA CGM, Evergreen Line, Hanjin, MSC and Zim.

Chairman’s call

CMA CGM owns 75 passenger-carrying cargo ships, 30 of which are registered in London. After adding the privatised CGM to CMA to form CMA CGM in 1996, chairman Jacques Saadé decided that new container ships should have passenger accommodation, usually for eight or 10 passengers. This was his way of commemorating famous French liners such as the Normandie and the France.

CMA CGM’s Panama Direct Service between Europe and Australia and New Zealand is fully booked eighteen months in advance. A round voyage takes 84 days and one-way bookings are also accepted. But while cabins for voyages to Australia are full, trade with China means that there is still plenty of space for those wishing to travel to and from the Far East. CMA CGM carried 874 passengers during 2013.

Grande Costa d'AvorioFor its part, Grimaldi Lines provides passenger accommodation in about 35 cargo ships. As they are of a unique design, they are the only cargo ships offering inside cabins. Other lines have a maximum age limit of 79, but Grimaldi will accept passengers up to 85. Its most popular services run from Tilbury to South America and from Southampton to the Mediterranean and Scandinavia.

Hamburg’s Rickmers Line, meanwhile, operates nine multi-purpose heavy lift ships in round-the-world service. Spending more time in port, they are popular with passengers. Passengers join in Singapore, sail to ports in Southeast Asia and the Far East, transit the Panama Canal and call on the US eastern seaboard before crossing the Atlantic to Antwerp, Hamburg and Genoa. Those wishing to sail all the way round the world can connect to Singapore from Europe or North America by container ship.

Polsteam operates to the Great Lakes and has a fleet of 11 ships that accept passengers. Carrying steel from IJmuiden to the lakes and loading grain out, they offer the last opportunity to travel on a “tramp” bulk carrier.

In light of the popularity of passenger transits on cargo ships, why have some owners such as Maersk and Hapag-Lloyd taken themselves entirely out of the passenger game, while others such as CMA CGM, Grimaldi and Hamburg-Süd have upped their ante with more ships? When Hapag-Lloyd bought out CP Ships in 2005, for example, it took 21 container ships out of the passenger game.

One reason owners like passengers is that in a poor market a few passengers can add a few hundred dollars a day to the time charter return. Another, more altruistic reason, is that their officers and crew feel less isolated and disconnected from the real world, a worthwhile reason indeed. Fares average about €100 per person per day.

Kevin Griffin MICS is managing director of Griffin Maritime Co Ltd and its affiliate The Cruise People Ltd. Further details at

Mid-Size Newbuildings Gather Momentum – Celebrity Cruises’ New Class – Virgin Group To Branch Into Cruising

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 8th December 2014... ..

Celebrity EclipseThis week comes much news, with an order for another mid-size ship by Seabourn and pending orders for three more by Silversea, while the first of Viking’s new class enters service in just six months now. Elsewhere, Celebrity Cruises is introducing a new class of ship, just slightly smaller than the Solstice class (above), while Virgin Cruises has announced a chief executive for its planned two-ship Florida-based operation.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                                 (See previous columns)


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