MIAMI — NCL has announced a further restart of operations in Europe from Barcelona and Rome with previously scheduled port-intensive itineraries to the Med and Greek Isles beginning Sept. 5, 2021.
Currently scheduled to sail from Barcelona, Norwegian Epic will cruise seven-night Western Med itineraries Sept. 5, 2021 – Oct. 24, 2021, with Norwegian Getaway sailing a mix of 10 to 11-day Greek Isles voyages from Rome (Civitavecchia) Sept. 13, 2021 – Oct. 25, 2021. The sailings offer five to eight ports of call, up to 13 hours in each city and no more than two days at sea.
“Europe is a top travel destination, so we are very much looking forward to returning to some of our most beloved homeports, resuming those itineraries and welcoming our guests to experience a vacation of a lifetime in the safest possible manner,” said Harry Sommer, NCL’s President and CEO.
Mercè Conesa, President of the Port of Barcelona, adds: ”While cruising has not yet restarted from Spanish ports, the Port of Barcelona has been closely working and cooperating with the Spanish Ministry of Health and with the Health Department of the local government of Catalonia towards the same objective: the resumption of cruise traffic following the safest protocols for guests, crew and the inhabitants of Barcelona. We are hopeful that we will soon welcome Norwegian Cruise Line and its guests to Barcelona.”
NORWEGIAN EPIC REDESIGN, AND CANCELLATION UPDATE
NCL will debut an all-new The Haven by Norwegian complex aboard Norwegian Epic, following an extensive refurbishment in Marseille at the end of 2020. The renovation resulted in 75 reimagined and upgraded suites combined with redesigned experiences including The Haven Restaurant and The Haven Courtyard Pool and Sundeck. Norwegian Epic features one of the largest The Haven complexes in the Norwegian fleet.
In conjunction with the redeployment announcement for Norwegian Epic and Norwegian Getaway, NCL has cancelled all voyages on Norwegian Bliss and Pride of America through July 31, 2021; Norwegian Getaway through Sept. 2, 2021; Norwegian Dawn, Spirit and Star through Sept. 30, 2021; Norwegian Sun through Oct. 7, 2021; Norwegian Escape through Oct. 10, 2021; Norwegian Breakaway through Oct. 17, 2021; and Norwegian Gem from Oct. 29 through Nov. 17, 2021. Guests and travel agents with impacted reservations will be contacted directly.
CARIBBEAN SAILINGS & PEACE OF MIND POLICY
Earlier this month NCL announced its plans to restart sailings on Norwegian Jade, Joy and Gem out of the Med and the Caribbean starting July 25, 2021. All passengers will be required to show proof of vaccination.
Norwegian Jade’s new seven-day cruises to the Greek Isles will sail out of Athens (Piraeus) starting July 25, 2021. And week-long Caribbean itineraries will operate from Montego Bay starting Aug. 7, 2021 on Norwegian Joy, and from La Romana, D.R. starting Aug. 15, 2021 on Norwegian Gem.
NCL is one of many U.S.-based cruise lines that is restarting sailings using non-U.S. ports, circumventing the CDC’s Conditional Sail Order.
As these first ships prepare to welcome guests back on board, NCL says it looks forward to announcing further redeployments in the near future.
NCL’s Chief Sales Officer, Katina Athanasiou, talked to Travelweek about the cruise line’s restart strategy in an earlier edition of Travelweek Daily.
NCL has also extended its temporary Peace of Mind cancelation policy to guests sailing on cruises with embarkation dates through Oct. 31, 2021. Passengers have the flexibility to cancel their cruise 15 days prior to departure. Those who take advantage of the Peace of Mind policy will receive a full refund in the form of a future cruise credit which may be applied to any sailing through Dec. 31, 2022. In addition, final payment for all voyages with embarkations through Oct. 31, 2021, will require payment 60 days prior to embarkation versus the standard 120 days
For an insider’s look at the cruise line’s restart plans and progress, check out EMBARK – The Series. Tthe first episode of ‘EMBARK – The Series,’ which to date has received nearly 700,000 views, premiered live on April 15, 2021 and is now streaming on-demand as part of NCL’s recently announced EMBARK with NCL content platform at www.ncl.com/embark. The next episode, ‘Second to None,’ is scheduled to air on May 20, 2021 at www.ncl.com/embark and Facebook at 8 p.m. ET.