CMA CGM La Traviata: Le Havre, New York, Norfolk, Savannah, Charleston, Southampton, Antwerp, Rotterdam And Bremerhaven

Cma-Cgm-La-Traviata-c.CorneliaReports have come back to us from two of our clients who travelled on board the CMA CGM La Traviata recently that may be of interest to intending Transatlantic passengers.

The first is from Heinz K, a German passenger, who told us he wanted “to let you know a little bit about my experience with my travel with CGM CMA from Savannah to Bremerhaven in Germany in June/July 2017.

“I wanted to thank you for all of your effort to go with me through all the booking and set up my freighter voyage. It was a great success. I enjoyed it tremendously and I think I couldn’t have chosen a better company to go with and a better agent to lead me through everything to be able to do this journey on the La Traviata cargo freighter!

“It couldn’t have gone smoother, the ship was great, the crew and all the officers have been just wonderful. The journey crossing the ocean was a fantastic adventure for me, but it couldn’t have been a better crew on board, a better chef like the two French guys cooking for us and a better captain with all his officers. Everybody did the best and made my journey a big success.

For sure I want to get in touch with you again in two years to find me a route and a boat again crossing the ocean and this time going from the US to an Italian port on the Riviera side in the Mediterranean Sea. It was really the best boat and experience I could get on freighter travel!”

CMA CGM La Traviata - Betty's tablemates at lunch

Betty and luncheon companions enjoy the fare on board CMA CGM La Traviata

The second report (with photos) comes from Betty Steinhauer, a Canadian passenger who has just arrived in New York from Southampton this week. Betty reports:

“The ship was built in 2006, sails under French flag, and is named La Traviata. It is 334 meters in length, beam is 43 meters, gross tonnage is 91,410 tons , holds 8,440 containers, if it is dangerous cargo, they are told what is inside.

“My cabin is large. It has three windows, piles of cupboards, and a large desk. My room is on a corner with a balcony. ‎I have a steward by the name of Tony. He is of course from the Philippines and his contract is for eight months. This is how he supports his family by sending salary and tips back home. The French crew consists of thirty members led by the Captain as we call him. His crew call him Master.”

CMA CGM La Traviata - half of Betty's stateroom

“My room is really excellent. It’s a large corner room with three windows. two to view Ocean and one to see containers. There are two beds, a sofa, coffee table, chair, large desk, full bathroom, and wrap around balcony!” [The balcony is public but is directly outside the cabin.]

More photos and blog postings can be found on Betty Steinhauer’s own blog here.

The CMA CGM La Traviata accommodates up to ten passengers in three double-bedded cabins at 215 sq ft and two twin-bedded cabins of 258 sq ft (see photos above and below). The vessel sails every five weeks on CMA CGM’s Liberty Bridge service between New York, Norfolk, Charleston and Savannah on the US side and Southampton, Antwerp, Rotterdam, Bremerhaven and Le Havre in Europe.

CMA CGM La Traviata - Betty at work in her cabin

Betty Steinhauer hard at work on board CMA CGM La Traviata.

Fare for the full 35-day round voyage is €3,965 per person for a double-bedded cabin and €4,315 single, while a twin-bedded cabin runs to €4,315 per person or €4,665 for sole use. Fares include port charges, evacuation insurance and a booking fee.

The Transatlantic voyage from Le Havre to New York takes 9 nights and a double-bedded cabin runs to €1,285 per person or €1,465 single, while a twin-bedded cabin runs to €1,375 per person or €1,645 for sole use.

In the other direction, Charleston to Southampton takes 13 nights and the fare is €1,545 per person for a double-bedded cabin and €1,675 single. A twin-bedded cabin runs to €1,675 per person or €1,805 single.

For further details of booking with CMA CGM please call Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People Ltd in London on +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or email PassageEnquiry@aol.com.

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CMA CGM Expands North Atlantic Passenger Capacity On Its Liberty Bridge and Victory Bridge Services – Now With Four Ships

CMA CGM Jamaica © Matthes

CMA CGM will now have four passenger-carrying container ships in its North Atlantic trades

CMA CGM’s changing deployments are going to add significant passenger capacity to the Transatlantic business, where it is often difficult to get space. First, the 8-passenger CMA CGM Sambhar has joined the 7-passenger CMA CGM Jamaica in the Victory Bridge service, while the 5-passenger CMA CGM Amber and CMA CGM Coral have been brought into full-time service on the Liberty Bridge toute. This will thus be the first time in several years that CMA CGM has had four ships in North Atlantic passenger service. As part of this, the CMA CGM Amber and CMA CGM Coral will be offering berths on the Le Havre – Southampton – New York route, which was once famous for ocean liners such as the s.s France.

Liberty Bridge

CMA CGM’s Liberty Bridge service includes Le Havre, Southampton and New York

Effective immediately, CMA CGM is adding two 5-passenger ships, the CMA CGM Amber and CMA CGM Coral to the Liberty Bridge service. This route offers a 35-night round voyage from New York via Norfolk, Charleston and Savannah to Antwerp, Rotterdam, Bremerhaven, Le Havre and Southampton, with a 9-night sailing back to New York. These ships, featuring one double Owners cabin and three Single cabins, have been brought in from the Vespucci service, which serves the Far East. Although this adds an extra 20 sailings and 100 berths per year, space will still be limited so it is wise to apply early. The fare for the full 35-night round voyage on he Liberty Bridge service is €3,850 per person for two in the Owners Cabin or €4,200 for a Single Cabin.

Victory Bridge

CMA CGM’s Victory Bridge route includes Gulf ports

At the same time, CMA CGM is doubling its Victory Bridge passenger capacity with the addition of the 8-berth CMA CGM Sambhar to the 7-berth CMA CGM Jamaica. This route offers a 42-night round voyage from Houston, New Orleans and Miami to Le Havre, Antwerp, Rotterdam and Bremerhaven and returns via Charleston, Savannah and Miami to Veracruz and Altamira and then back to Houston.This service provides another 120 berths annually, which added to the Liberty Bridge means about 36 sailings and 220 berths in each direction across the Atlantic yearly. The fare for the full 42-night round voyage on the Victory Bridge service is €4,620 per person twin in the CMA CGM Sambhar or €5,040 in the CMA CGM Jamaica and between €5,040 and €5,460 for a Single passenger.

Projected schedules on some of the typical one-way routes are as follows:

Eastbound Passenger Service – USA to Europe

New York to Antwerp (20 days) : fares €2,800 per person in Owners or €3,000/3,600 Single
CMA CGM Coral 11.10.16
CMA CGM Amber 25.10.16
CMA CGM Coral 15.11.16
CMA CGM Amber 29.11.16
CMA CGM Coral 20.12.16
CMA CGM Amber 03.01.17
CMA CGM Coral 24.01.17
CMA CGM Amber 07.02.17

Savannah to Antwerp (13 days): fares €1,820 per person in Owners or €1,950/2,340 Single
CMA CGM Coral 18.10.16
CMA CGM Amber 01.11.16
CMA CGM Coral 22.11.16
CMA CGM Amber 27.12.16
CMA CGM Coral 10.01.17
CMA CGM Amber 23.01.17
CMA CGM Coral 31.01.17
CMA CGM Amber 14.02.17

New Orleans to Le Havre (16 days): fares €1,760/1,920 per person or €1,920/2,080 Single
CMA CGM Sambhar 09.10.16
CMA CGM Jamaica 22.10.16
CMA CGM Sambhar 12.11.16
CMA CGM Jamaica 03.12.16
CMA CGM Sambhar 24.12.16

Miami to Le Havre (12 days): fares €1,320/1,440 per person or €1,440/1,560 Single
CMA CGM Sambhar 05.10.16
CMA CGM Jamaica 26.10.16
CMA CGM Sambhar 16.11.16
CMA CGM Jamaica 07.12.16
CMA CGM Sambhar 28.12.16

Westbound Passenger Service – Europe to USA

Le Havre to New York (10 days): fares €1,400 per person in Owners or €1,500/1,800 Single
CMA CGM Coral 30.09.16
CMA CGM Amber 14.10.16
CMA CGM Coral 04.11.16
CMA CGM Amber 18.11.16
CMA CGM Coral 9.12.16
CMA CGM Amber 23.12.16
CMA CGM Coral 13.01.17
CMA CGM Amber 27.01.17

Southampton to New York (9 days): fares €1,400 per person in Owners or €1,500/1,800 Single
CMA CGM Coral 01.10.16
CMA CGM Amber 15.10.16
CMA CGM Coral 05.11.16
CMA CGM Amber 19.11.16
CMA CGM Coral 10.12.16
CMA CGM Amber 24.12.16
CMA CGM Coral 14.01.17
CMA CGM Amber 28.01.17

Le Havre to Miami (17 days): fares €1,870/2,040 per person or €2,040/2,210 Single
CMA CGM Sambhar 16.10.16
CMA CGM Jamaica 06.11.16
CMA CGM Sambhar 27.11.16

Rotterdam to Charleston (13 days): fares €1,430/1,560 per person or €1,560/1,690
CMA CGM Jamaica 28.09.16
CMA CGM Sambhar 19.10.16
CMA CGM Jamaica 09.11.16
CMA CGM Sambhar 30.11.16

For bookings or further details please contact Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People Ltd in London on +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail PassageEnquiry@aol.com.

 

Carnival Plan Evokes Return To The 1930s In Hispaniola – Major Changes At Pullmantur – Book Review: Great French Passenger Ships

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 20th October 2014... ..

.Great French Passenger Ships

This week we look at how Carnival Corp & plc’s investigation into developing a new two-berth cruise port at Haiti’s Tortuga Island, together with its Amber Cove development in the Dominican Republic, take us back to the 1930s. Both are on the island of Hispaniola and relatively close to Miami, especially in these days of high fuel costs. We also look at how Pullmantur is extending its reach far beyond Spain, while at the same time watering down its much-vaunted “All-Inclusive” plan. Finally, for a change, we review Bill Miller’s most recent book, Great French Passenger Ships, just published by The History Press.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                                 (See previous columns)

Cruise Examiner Special – Slow Boat To China: Travel By Cargo Ship – Cruise Shipping Miami News To Follow Next Week

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 17th March 2014..

Freighter Map

The subject of travel by cargo ship has received a good deal of coverage in the world press this quarter. In late December, The Financial Times dedicated most of a page to a feature called “A Freight Adventure.” In late January, the Wall Street Journal (above) did the same with a story entitled “Travel the World on Cargo Cruises.” And last month’s issue of The New Yorker carried a six-page essay on a voyage in a Rickmers Line multi-purpose cargo ship. So this week we bring you an update on that market, as published in “Pennant” magazine for May 2014.

Most of us know Slow Boat to China as part of the title of a popular 1948 song, but recent world events have made a revival of this expression quite appropriate. A decade ago, for example, a round trip from Le Havre to half a dozen ports in China and back on CMA CGM’s French Asia Line took 56 days (with 8 ships in a weekly service). Today, due to “slow steaming” in an effort to cut high fuel expenses, the same voyage takes 77 days (11 ships in the same weekly loop). On the same route, a one-way voyage from Southampton to Shanghai that used to take 25 days now takes 45. The situation is similar for Hong Kong.

CMACGMChopinatseaThese longer voyage times are mainly the result of higher fuel costs, as the amount of fuel consumed (and the cost) rises exponentially as speed is increased. It has been estimated, for example, that by reducing speed from 25 knots to 20 knots a container ship carrying 8,000 twenty-foot-equivalent containers from Europe to the Far East can save 2,550 tonnes of fuel, or about $1,785,000 on a single voyage. The other benefit of slow steaming is substantially reduced emissions.

There are now about 300 passenger-carrying cargo ships trading on world routes, ranging from small short-sea vessels to the world’s largest container ships. These vessels are limited to a maximum of twelve passengers each (above which a doctor must be carried) and many have been built in recent years. Passengers dine with the officers, are allowed to visit the bridge and on French and Italian ships table wine is complimentary with lunch and dinner, while other lines sell wine and beer at genuinely duty free prices.

cma-cgm-marco-polo2Although some think that there are fewer cargo ships carrying passengers today than in the past this is not true. There has actually been a renaissance in cargo ship travel. Admittedly, many lines have dropped out of this trade over the past fifteen years, in particular companies such as Bank Line, Blue Star Line, CP Ships, Fyffes, Geest, Hanseatic Shipping, Egon Oldendorff and P&O Nedlloyd. But many of these more traditional lines only operated between one and four ships each, while today the chief players operate fleets of dozens of large new container ships.

CMA CGM, for example, operates 75 passenger-carrying cargo ships. After adding the privatised CGM (the French Line) to his own privately-owned CMA to form CMA CGM in 1996, chairman Jacques Saadé decided that new container ships should be built with passenger accommodation, most often five to seven cabins for 10 to 12 passengers. This was his way of commemorating the heritage of legendary French liners such as the Ile de France, Normandie and France. In fact, CMA CGM’s passenger section got its start in the Public Relations department. The line carried 662 passengers on its container ships in 2012.

While the Transatlantic services of the Cunard Line and the Queen Mary 2 are well known, very few know that CMA CGM still operates its own historic trans-Atlantic service, one that dates back to 1862, year-round every week of the year. This is the French West Indies Line, whose four ships each carry 12 passengers on a 28-day round voyage that begins in Le Havre and takes in Martinique and Guadeloupe.  One-way voyages are also available.

cma-cgm-manetWhile cabins are usually available on the French West Indies Line, CMA CGM’s popular Panama Direct Service from Tilbury to Australia and New Zealand is fully booked eighteen months in advance. A full round voyage take 84 days but one-way bookings can also be made. An interesting route for North Americans is CMA CGM’s Columbus Loop service, which connects New York with Seattle and Vancouver via the Suez Canal and the Far East. New York to Seattle is 60 days while Seattle to New York is 52 days and crossing North America by rail will complete a world circuit.

Hanjin Amsterdam © VesseltrackerGermany’s Niederelbe Schiffahrtsgesellschaft Buxtehude (NSB) started carrying passengers in a different way. As its newly-built container ships were financed by individual investors, accommodation was set aside for the use of these shareholders. After some time, however, NSB found that the shareholders were not making use of the cabins so it put them on sale to the general public, and now operates about 40 passenger-carrying container ships. One of its more interesting routes is the Hanjin Lines service between Italy, the Far East and California, a full round voyage of 91 days. La Spezia to Long Beach is 42 days and includes calls in Singapore, Vietnam, Hong Kong and two ports in China, while Oakland to Naples is 44 days with calls in Pusan, three ports in China, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Grande Costa d'AvorioGrimaldi Lines of Naples once operated passenger liners in the trans-Atlantic trades and retired its last cruise ship, the 11,879-ton Ausonia, in 1996. Today it provides passenger accommodation in about 35 cargo ships. All of these carry the maximum of twelve passengers allowed on a cargo ship, but as they are combination container, vehicle and roll on-roll off carriers of a different design, Grimaldi is the only cargo ship operator offering inside cabins. While other lines have maximum age limits of either 75 or 79, Grimaldi will accept passengers up to 85. Its most popular services are from Tilbury to South America (a 51-day round voyage) and from Southampton around the Mediterranean and Scandinavia (a 35-day round voyage).

LubieThe Polish Steamship Company, which operates into the Great Lakes, has a fleet of 11 ships that carry passengers. Carrying steel from Europe and loading grain out of the Great Lakes, these offer the last opportunity to travel on a bulk carrier. As the destinations for the outbound grain cargoes are not known until the last minute, it is almost like an old-fashioned tramp voyage. The cargo could be bound for anywhere in Europe or possibly even North Africa and the destination is not known until just a few days before sailing.

RickmersAntwerpThe Rickmers Line, meanwhile, operates nine multi-purpose heavy lift project ships in a round-the-world service. These ships carry project and general cargo and heavy lifts as well as containers, and tend to spend more time in port than pure container ships. Each is fitted to carry up to seven passengers. Passengers join ship in Singapore and sail to Vietnam, Shanghai, Dalian, Xingang, Qingdao, Masan in South Korea, Kobe and Yokohama, cross the Pacific and transit the Panama Canal. They then call at Houston, New Orleans and Philadelphia before crossing the Atlantic to Antwerp, Hamburg and Genoa. Depending on the cargo, calls can also be made in Indonesia, Thailand or Taiwan. Passengers wishing to sail all the way round the world need to connect by container ship from either Europe or North America and then change ship in Singapore.

As well as long-haul cargo ships, two island supply routes, one each in the Atlantic and Pacific, carry passengers.  Unlike pure cargo ships, these ships carry doctors, which makes them convenient for passengers above the age limits who are still fit. One ship will soon be retiring while the other is due to be replaced by a larger vessel.

St HelenaThe British-flag RMS St Helena trades from Cape Town to the islands of St Helena and Ascension about every three weeks, carrying a maximum of 156 passengers. As well as supplying the islands, she carries workers between St Helena and Ascension. An airport is due to open in St Helena in February 2016, however, after which sea travel will no longer be a necessity. As the St Helena is approaching twenty-five years of age and will be retired when the airport opens, now is the time to make this voyage before it is too late.

Aranui 5The French-flag Aranui 3, on the other hand, carries about 200 passengers and is due to be replaced. Sailing every three weeks from Papeete,Tahiti, to the Marquesas and Tuamotu Islands, the Aranui 3 operated at 90% of capacity in 2011, carrying 2,200 passengers. Her replacement, Aranui 5, now being built in China, is due to enter service in June 2015. Aranui 5 will carry 296 passengers, of whom 228 will be cruise passengers. Many of the cabins will have balconies and there will be 62 deluxe cabins on Aranui 5 as compared to just 24 on the Aranui 3.

As only thousands cruise in cargo ships compared to the millions that travel on cruise ships, just a few specialist agencies book them. Typical fares are in the region of €100 (about £87 or $145) per person per day and a further good source of information is The Internet Guide To Freighter Travel at www.seaplus.com

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

FOR FURTHER DETAILS                                                                               (See previous columns)

STX France Mix Up Their Facts on Delivery of MSC Divina – Other Cruise News: Royal Caribbean In Europe: 12 Ships to 9, But UK Goes From 2 to 3 – Salvage Work Begins on Costa Concordia

          THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com

          by Kevin Griffin

     The Cruise Examiner for 21st May 2012

After a century and a half of building ships, someone at STX France slipped up last week and left the shipyard’s general manager in the embarassing position of quoting an inaccuracy. Namely, that the yard had built eleven ships that now traded for MSC and that never before had so many ships been built for one owner. Perhaps something was missing in the final version, but this is the same shipyard that built twice as many ships for the old French Line, including the s.s. Normandie, pictured here. Meanwhile, although Royal Caribbean International will be cutting back on the number of ships it bases in Europe in 2013, it will increase by a third the number based in the UK, with Adventure of the Seas and Independence of the Seas sailing from Southampton and Brilliance of the Seas from Harwich. Also last week, details were announced for the salvage of the Costa Concordia.


THIS WEEK’S STORY
                                          (See previous columns)

French Line CMA CGM Revives Its North Atlantic Passenger Service With Two Ships Between the US East Coast and the Mediterranean

Photo of CMA CGM Coral, which carries up to six passengers is  courtesy of ChasB

French liner operator CMA CGM has recently revived its Trans-Atlantic passenger trade between Europe and the United States by placing the six-passenger CMA CGM Coral and seven-passenger CMA CGM Jamaica into its Amerigo Express service between the Mediterranean and US East Coast ports.

Depending which ships have been on the run, passengers have been carried on the Amerigo Express service on and off since 2003, thus marking the revival of a service that had come to an end almost two decades before. The French Line’s North Atlantic passenger service had closed in 1985 with the retirement of the Atlantic Champagne and Atlantic Cognac, container ships that carried four passengers each. These two had maintained a limited passenger service since the 1974 withdrawal of the French Line’s famous s.s. France. The 1,035-foot France, the world’s longest passenger ship, was eventually, in 2004, overtaken by Cunard Line’s 1,132-foot Queen Mary 2, a ship that not incidentally was built in the same French shipyard that had delivered the France in 1962.

Ports served by the CMA CGM Coral and CMA CGM Jamaica include Livorno, Genoa, Fos-sur-Mer, Barcelona, Valencia and Malaga in Europe and New York, Norfolk and Savannah in the United States, with a return to Livorno and Genoa by way of Algeciras and Malta, for a full round voyage of 42 days.

The CMA CGM Coral carries six passengers in two double and two single cabins and CMA CGM Jamaica seven in three doubles and one single cabin. Fares for both ships are €110 per person per day for double occupancy or for the single cabins and €120 per day for sole use of a double cabin. The fare for the full round voyage is therefore €4,620 (about £3,975 or $6,290). The ship features an indoor swimming pool, gymnasium and library and passengers take breakfast in their own lounge and lunch and dinner together with the officers. Complimentary French table wine (“Chateau Paquebot”) is served with lunch and dinner.

As CMA CGM is not signatory to the European/US visa waiver schemes, non-US and Canadian citizens need a full US visa to enter the USA on this service.

Passenger bookings on the CMA CGM Coral and CMA CGM Jamaica can be made through The Cruise People Ltd in London, England, at +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

French Line CMA CGM Revives Its North Atlantic Passenger Service With Two Ships Between the US East Coast and the Mediterranean

Photo of CMA CGM Coral courtesy of ChasB

French liner operator CMA CGM has recently revived its Trans-Atlantic passenger trade between Europe and the United States by placing the six-passenger CMA CGM Coral and seven-passenger CMA CGM Jamaica into its Amerigo Express service between the Mediterranean and US East Coast ports.

Depending which ships have been on the run, passengers have been carried on the Amerigo Express service on and off since 2003, thus marking the revival of a service that had come to an end almost two decades before. The French Line’s North Atlantic passenger service had closed in 1985 with the retirement of the Atlantic Champagne and Atlantic Cognac, container ships that carried four passengers each. These two had maintained a limited passenger service since the 1974 withdrawal of the French Line’s famous s.s. France. The 1,035-foot France, the world’s longest passenger ship, was eventually, in 2004, overtaken by Cunard Line’s 1,132-foot Queen Mary 2, a ship that not incidentally was built in the same French shipyard that had delivered the France in 1962.

Ports served by the CMA CGM Coral and CMA CGM Jamaica include Livorno, Genoa, Fos-sur-Mer, Barcelona, Valencia and Malaga in Europe and New York, Norfolk and Savannah in the United States, with a return to Livorno and Genoa by way of Algeciras and Malta, for a full round voyage of 42 days.

The CMA CGM Coral carries six passengers in two double and two single cabins and CMA CGM Jamaica seven in three doubles and one single cabin. Fares for both ships are €110 per person per day for double occupancy or for the single cabins and €120 per day for sole use of a double cabin. The fare for the full round voyage is therefore €4,620 (about £3,975 or $6,290). The ship features an indoor swimming pool, gymnasium and library and passengers take breakfast in their own lounge and lunch and dinner together with the officers. Complimentary French table wine (“Chateau Paquebot”) is served with lunch and dinner.

As CMA CGM is not signatory to the European/US visa waiver schemes, non-US and Canadian citizens need a full US visa to enter the USA on this service.

Passenger bookings on the CMA CGM Coral and CMA CGM Jamaica can be made through The Cruise People Ltd in London, England, at +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.