AMID continuing uncertainty around the resumption of cruising in Australia, P&O Cruises, Carnival Cruise Lines and Silversea Cruises were forced to cancel additional sailings Down Under.
P&O Australia cancelled its Adelaide, Fremantle and Cairns homeport seasons for next year, revoked cruises scheduled to call in Papua New Guinea until Oct next year, and rescinded the reposition sailing from Singapore to Cairns, originally scheduled to depart on 19 May.
All Carnival Splendor voyages are also cancelled up to and including 04 Mar 2022, along with Carnival Spirit departures through until 06 Mar 2022.
Meanwhile, voyages aboard Silver Muse will not operate, but Silversea has not given up on its overall local summer deployment.
“While the Government has made positive indications about cruising’s return, including verbal commitment to end the cruise ban on 17 Dec, no concrete decision has been made,” said Managing Director Asia Pacific Adam Radwanski.
The season had been scheduled to kick off on 21 Dec with the arrival of the 596-guest Muse in Cairns, but mid-last month, Silversea confirmed the first three departures had been cancelled.
Radwanski said the move was necessitated “in light of ongoing ambiguity from state and federal governments on the return of cruising in Australia”.
Carnival’s outgoing President Sture Myrmell said there was no doubt Adelaide, Fremantle and Cairns all remained important ports for visiting ships when governments allow cruising to resume in Australian waters.
“P&O Cruises Australia has prided itself on being the cruise line that has ships based from all mainland cities,” he said.
“We are naturally disappointed our guests in Adelaide, Fremantle and Cairns will be unable to cruise from their doorstep until 2023, however, they are all extremely popular ports of call for ships on coastal or around mainland Australia itineraries and will benefit from a resumption in cruising, when approved.”
Meanwhile, Carnival said in a travel agent update: “while we continue to make progress on our plan to return to service, there is still no certainty when cruise departures from Australia can resume.”
“Carnival will resume cruising when the time is right and will do so with enhanced health measures developed in conjunction with government authorities, public health experts, local ports of call and the Cruise Lines International Association,” the line noted.