The Cruise Examiner for 31st October 2011 – British Tipping and Cruising – Other Cruise News: Seattle Has A Bumper Year – Crystal’s 7-Night Round Trip From Montreal Revives an Old Format

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com
by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 31st October 2011

This week, we have a look at tipping as it affects the UK cruise market as well as others, seeing what various cruise lines recommend. While we all know the Brits hate tipping, we have a look at the different amounts recommended by different lines, as well as the fact that some don’t ask for gratuities at all. Seattle, once home to a cruise line whose motto was “Tipping Not Required,” had a bumper year in 2011 and now that this year’s Alaska cruise season is over we look at the  final results there. Finally, Crystal Cruises will be trying a lot of new itineraries in 2012 and one in particular, a 7-day round trip itinerary from Montreal with the Crystal Symphony, seems to be the first cruise of this type to be offered in almost twenty years.

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The Cruise Examiner for 24th October 2011 – Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth Leaves UK Registry Today – Other Cruise News: Celebrity Adds A Second UK Ship – Bermuda Seeks Smaller Ship for 2013

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com
by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 24th October 2011

Cunard Line's Queen Elizabeth, registration transferred from Southampton to Hamilton, Bermuda, Monday 24th October 2011

Today sees the first Cunard Queen ever to be registered outside the UK while still under Cunard ownership, when the year-old Queen Elizabeth is re-flagged in Bermuda. Last week, after a month of public speculation, Cunard Line announced that it would transfer all three of its Queens to Bermudian flag. That the first ship would be transferred as early as today was unexpected. The Queen Elizabeth,  in Amsterdam today, will be followed by the Queen Victoria on Thursday in Piraeus, and the Queen Mary 2 in five weeks time in Hamburg. Behind it all, many suspect that the official reason for this, being able to offer weddings at sea, is just a cover to help Cunard avoid the mess that is the UK’s new Equality Act, at least as far as shipping is concerned. This act came into effect on August 1 and will adversely affect the competitiveness of UK shipping throughout the world. Meanwhile, Celebrity Cruises will bring a second ship to Southampton when it bases the Celebrity Constellation there next autumn for a series of eight cruises ranging from a 2-night cruise to Amsterdam to a 15-night Transatlantic crossing to Miami. And with word that Holland America’s Veendam may not be back in 2013, Bermuda is looking for another ship to call at Hamilton.

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The Cruise Examiner for 17th October 2011 – Singapore Aims To Be Cruise Hub of Asia – Other Cruise News: 2010 Winners and Losers Among Cruise Ports – Princess Daphne Chartered to Ambiente – Canadian Pacific’s Keewatin To Return to Canada

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com
by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 17th October 2011

November 16 sees Singapore hosting the first Cruise Shipping Asia conference so we have a look at plans there for the opening of a second cruise terminal and projections that will see cruise passenger numbers at Singapore rise to 1.5 million by 2015. From May 2012, Royal Caribbean International will base their Voyager of the Seas there. Elsewhere, we look at the winner and loser cruise ports of 2010 (2011 will of course be different). And Classic International’s Princess Daphne returns to the German market on a three-year charter to the new Berlin-based Ambiente Cruises.

Meanwhile, as Canadian Pacific’s last remaining passenger ship, the Keewatin, is about to be returned to Canada, here are some of the contributions Canadian Pacific has made to cruising over the years. In 1931, it created the first dual-purpose North Atlantic liner and world cruise ship, with the 42,348–ton Empress of Britain, a concept that is followed today by Cunard Line’s Queen Mary 2. In 1964, it gave Princess Cruises its name when that company chartered CP’s Alaska cruise ship Princess Patricia to cruise to Mexico.  In 1972, it gave Carnival Cruise Lines its funnel design and logo, which were adapted from CP Ships’ Empress of Canada by changing the colours and making a circle out of a triangle. That ship, which was renamed Mardi Gras,  had been retired in 1971 as CP’s last North Atlantic liner, and every Carnival ship built since has  had an Empress Deck.

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Never a Better Way to Sail the Upper Amazon, from Barbados to Peru

Join all The Cruise People clients who have enjoyed the trip either up or down the upper Amazon as far as Iquitos, Peru, and this time on a very classy vessel, one the top-rated SeaDream luxury yachts. This is the way to do it as well, 2o days up from Barbados or 2o days down to Barbados. Great all-inclusive yachting value from $15,499 per person plus $1,250 dues and taxes.

Each voyage gives you the chance to swim across the Equator, see the “Wedding Of The Rivers” and sail not just as far as Manaus, the biggest city on the river, but many miles further upstream to Iquitos in Peru, somewhere that very few passenger ships ever sail!

Book now for 2013, or try your luck for 2012 – there are still a handful of suites left if you’re lucky.

For further details please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

The Cruise Examiner for 10th October 2011 – Icebreaker News – Other Cruise News: Norwegian Breakaway Year-Round From New York – Carnival Europe, Australasia and Asia Account for 40% of Revenue

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com
by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 10th October 2011

Kapitan Dranitsyn to return to Arctic service with TUI's Quark Expeditions

With the public having expected no longer to be able to book passage on a conventional icebreaker once Quark Expeditions’ Kapitan Khlebnikov finishes her final passenger season in January 2012, come two pieces of potentially good news  for icebreaker aficionados. While Toronto-based Quark Expeditions has announced that it will reintroduce the Kapitan Dranitsyn to its fleet in July of 2012, there are reports that G Expeditions, as Gap Expeditions has recently restyled itself, also based in Toronto, may be having a look at the troubled icebreaker Polar Star. The latter has been stranded at a shipyard in the Canary Islands since her previous operators, Polar Star Expeditions, found themselves unable to pay the bill after she suffered damage in the Antarctic in January.

NCL’s Norwegian Breakaway before application of her hull art by New York artist Peter Max.

Meanwhile, over at the mainstream lines, Norwegian Cruise Line has announced that its new 144,017-ton 4,000-passenger Norwegian Breakaway, now under construction at Meyer Werft in Germany, will be based year-round in New York from May 2013. As the largest cruise ship to be based there year-round, her first program will be 7-day summer cruises to Bermuda, making her the  largest regular trader there as well.

And as the cruise world continues to grow outside of its long-established North American base, 40% of Carnival Corp & PLC’s third quarter 2011 revenue is reported to have come from Europe, Australasia and Asia.

THIS WEEK’S STORY

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Cargo-Passenger Service Resumed Between Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand: Good News for Those Wanting to Sail via Suez

NSB’s 53,700 deadweight ton German-flag container ship NYK Galaxy has now entered service between Hong Kong and Brisbane, Auckland, Lyttelton, Napier and Tauranga, with a return by way of Tokyo, Kobe, Pusan and Shanghai to Hong Kong. For those travelling from Europe it is now possible to travel to Australia with a change of ship at Hong Kong, and the voyage can also be taken from Australia as a 32-day round trip freighter cruise.

The NYK Galaxy can carry a maximum of seven passengers in an Owners cabin, two Double cabins and a single cabin for sole travellers. Fares are €85 per day for the single cabin, €85 per person per day for the doubles and €95 per person per day for the Owners cabin, while sole occupany of a double is €110 per day and the Owners €110 per day. Port charges are extra at €85 and deviation insurance is €105 for voyages up to 15 days and €160 for longer trips. The vessel is equipped with an indoor pool and fitness room as well as lounge and video/tv room. Meals are taken with the officers.

For those who want to travel all the way by sea by way of the Suez Canal, as well as those who like to travel overland to or from Hong Kong,  there is once more a sea connection between Hong Kong and New Zealand that has been missing for some time. And for those who like to travel either way by sea, a change of ships can now be arranged at Hong Kong that will give them a through service to or from Europe.

NSB, or Niederelbe Schifffahrtsgesellschaft Buxtehude, offers cargo-passenger voyages on a fleet of forty container ships on routes worldwide. In addition to cargo ship services, NYK Line, charterers of the NYK Galaxy, offers cruises worldwide on Crystal Cruises’ Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony and its own Asuka II, formerly Crystal Harmony.

For further details please call Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People Ltd on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

The Cruise Examiner for 3rd October 2011 – AIDA Cruise Ship Order In Japan – Other Cruise News: Paul Gauguin Cruises Expands – St Kitts Sees Cruise Boom – Cruise Survey of Cruise Virgins

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com
by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 3rd October 2011

Just as the order for a new 98,000-tonner for TUI Cruises, with option for a second, was confirmed last week, came criticism by European shipbuilders of the two-ship order already placed by AIDA Cruises with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in August.  Both Fincantieri and STX claim the price is below cost. Elsewhere, Paul Gauguin Cruises expands with the acquisition of Compagnie du Ponant’s 90-guest Le Levant, which it will rename Moana. Doubling the Paul Gauguin fleet and increasing the berth count by about a quarter, Moana will widen the Paul Gauguin product range,  cruising the Mediterraean and Caribbean, and in Latin American waters. Meanwhile, the Caribbean island of St Kitts is due for a cruise ship boom with eleven first-time callers this winter. And a UK cruise blogger asks how do we overcome old outmoded attitudes and get cruise virgins to book their first cruise?

THIS WEEK’S STORY

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