Growing list of cruise lines take Turkey ports off the itinerary

Growing list of cruise lines take Turkey ports off the itinerary

TORONTO — Several major cruise lines have suspended calls at Istanbul following the deadly attack on Ataturk Airport on June 28.

Windstar says it is cancelling all of Wind Star’s visits to ports in Turkey through the rest of 2016. The cruise line is replacing turnaround port calls in Istanbul with Athens on 16 cruises. Scheduled mid-cruise ports of call in Kusadasi and Bodrum are canceled on all 16 sailings and replaced with visits to Greece’s island of Kalymnos and seaport of Nafplio.

In a statement Windstar said its staff and employees “are deeply saddened by the attacks in Istanbul and our thoughts and prayers are with those whose lives were lost and their loved ones. We offer our support and solidarity to our long-standing travel partners there, and to all travelers and people in the region.”

The decision was made “out of abundance of caution” and in light of recent attacks in Turkey, said the company. The first cancelled port call to Istanbul was scheduled for July 9. Guests sailing on the July 2 cruise will now disembark in Athens on July 9, and guests booked on the July 9 cruise departure will now board the ship in Athens, also disembarking there as originally scheduled on July 16.

Windstar is in the process of contacting all booked guests and their travel agents with details on cruise and travel itinerary changes and will assist with alterations to travel plans.

Seabourn says it too has decided to replace a turn port of Istanbul with Piraeus (Athens), on July 2. The move comes on the heels of “a very careful and thorough review”, said Seabourn.

According to Travel Weekly, other cruise lines taking Istanbul off their itineraries include Celebrity Cruises, Costa and Cunard Line. Earlier this year Crystal Cruises announced it was cancelling all 2016 calls to Turkey.