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Royal Caribbean switches ships and P&O changes booking policy… latest cruise news

Cruise news this week ranges from a new Norwegian Cruise Line ship to Royal Caribbean switching schedules. This is what you need to know.

Cruise lines continue to announce a raft of updates, from exciting spa developments to booking policy changes.

Many brands also changed their Covid testing rules at the start of August, too – our latest guide will advise you on this.

Furthermore, it’s been a big week for cruising Down Under after New Zealand finally lifted its cruise ship ban.

Here is the latest cruise news from Marella Cruises and P&O Cruises to NCL and Ponant as well as destination updates.

Norwegian Cruise Line ship Norwegian Prima

Brand new shipNorwegian Cruise Line

NCL has taken delivery of its newest ship, Norwegian Prima. The milestone marks the arrival of the first ship in NCL’s Prima Class which will see six new ships delivered through 2027.

Norwegian Prima is 965ft long, 142,500 gross tons and has capacity for 3,100 guests. It boasts the title of the most spacious new cruise ship in the contemporary categories and offers the most outdoor deck space and expansive accommodations of any new build.

Onboard is the largest and first three-level racetrack at sea on the Prima Speedway; The Drop, the world’s first freefall dry slide offering a 10-story plunge experience; and The Concourse, the first outdoor sculpture garden at sea.

SwitcherooRoyal Caribbean

Royal Caribbean has announced it is swapping the deployment of two cruise ships in 2023.

Brilliance of the Seas, a Radiance-class ship built in 2002, had been due to sail in Europe but will now carry out Alaska cruises from Vancouver, Canada in 2023, starting in April, during the spring and summer seasons.

From October 2023, Brilliance of the Seas will sail Australia cruises out of Sydney.

Meanwhile, the 1997-built Vision-class ship Enchantment of the Seas, which had been due to cruise Australia will now offer Europe cruises in 2023.

The Royal Caribbean cruise ship will sail in the Mediterranean from late April to November next year, then offer Bahamas and Caribbean cruises out of Tampa, Florida.

Royal Caribbean customers will be moved automatically onto their respective substitute ship on the same dates as their original booking or they may rebook or request a refund.

Sydney Australia
woman massage spa

Aaaand relaxMarella Cruises

Marella Cruises announced that its partnership with OneSpaWorld has expanded to all four of the TUI cruise line’s current ships as well as Marella Voyager, due in 2023.

OneSpaWorld products and services had previously only been available in Ocean Spa venues on Marella Discovery and Marella Discovery 2.

The products across the four (soon to be five) Marella ships will be ocean-inspired and comprise well-known beauty brands, such as Kérastase, ELEMIS and L’Oréal.

Spa services utilise the best of the ocean’s restorative features, including marine algae and active ingredients.

They will range from facial services blending the power of touch, ingredients and technology to body treatments – such as ocean-inspired wraps, polishes and massages to help eliminate toxins and purify the skin.

Change it upP&O Cruises

P&O Cruises has updated its flexible booking policy. Guests wishing to reschedule their cruise vacation can take advantage of P&O’s fee-free flexible transfer policy if they’ve booked on a Select Price vacation.

This means P&O passengers can:

  • Transfer a booking once
  • Transfer a booking to a P&O Cruises vacation of equal or higher value
  • Transfer a booking up to the date that the balance for the vacation is due (90 days before departure of the existing booking)
  • Transfer a booking to a P&O Cruises vacation sailing within six months of the original sailing date for full World Cruises, Classic Southern Hemisphere Journeys, Grand Tours or Exotic fly-cruises or 12 months of the original departure date for all other cruises.
P&O Cruises Iona guests
Ponant ship

Go greenPonant

French expedition cruise line Ponant has revealed it is designing a new cruise ship that will have zero impact on the environment while sailing.

Ponant’s 14th vessel is set to combine several non-fossil fuel energy sources, including wind propulsion, by integrating technological bricks.

The scope of work should be ready by end of 2022, with the preliminary plans then produced and technical specifications drawn up for a call for tenders. The goal is to have the ship up and running by 2025.

Ridin' soloAPT

APT, the luxury river cruise line, and its sister brand Travelmarvel have axed single supplements on all European river cruises in 2022 in a boon for solo travelers.

Those traveling alone with Travelmarvel in Europe can also bag up to 50 percent off plus a free upgrade to the best available cabin, while singles cruising with APT can get 50 percent off their cruise as well.

Cruise fares with APT include door-to-door UK airport transfers, flights, accommodation aboard a luxury Concerto river ship, unlimited drinks, onboard dining, sightseeing and signature experiences.

With Travelmarvel, the price includes return flights, accommodation aboard one of the line’s new Contemporary River Ships, drinks, dining and sightseeing.

the-iron-gate river danube
Bay-Of-Islands-Northland New Zealand

Kiwi go again New Zealand

New Zealand has finally lifted its cruise ship ban allowing the return of international ships.

The country’s ports are now open for cruise ships and recreational yachts, with the cruising season due to start in two months, lasting from October until April.

Everything you need to know about the new rules and the best advice for cruising New Zealand can be found here.

Set sail

Highlights of the Mediterranean with Marella Cruises

Duration: 7 nights

Where: Palma, Majorca | Propriano, Corsica | Civitavecchia (for Rome), Italy | Livorno (for Florence and Pisa), Italy | St Raphael (for St Tropez and Cannes), France | Barcelona, Spain | Palma, Majorca

Ship: Marella Voyager

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Published 08.05.22