New ship Iona ‘a very positive signal’ for cruise industry

P&O Cruises has taken delivery of the largest cruise ship built for the UK market.

Iona weighs 185,000 tonnes, is 345 metres long and has 17 passenger decks.

It has a maximum capacity for 5,200 holidaymakers, before social distancing measures are taken into account.

Features include a glass dome roof above a dining and entertainment venue, and a gin distillery.

The ship was due launch in May but that was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Passengers will have to wait even longer to experience Iona, as P&O Cruises has suspended its operations until early next year because of travel restrictions.

Iona is the first British liner powered by liquefied natural gas.

Speaking at a handover ceremony at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said: “Iona’s delivery is a very positive signal for the future of cruising.

“She is now officially part of the

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Less Is More or How 2 Cruise Companies Disrupt the Industry – Cruise Industry News

As cruise ships get bigger and bigger, Ponant has stayed true to its form, building luxury expedition ships that are French flagged, with the idea “to create special relationships between the oceans of the world and people sailing on them,” said the CEO of Ponant Americas, Navin Sawhney.

Ponant’s specialization is in expedition ships, vessels that allow guests to see the most exciting and distant destinations while at the same time, thanks to their size, feeling like “you are one with the ocean and the destination that you sail in.”

“What Ponant saw as a void that we could fill was that the tastes of the consumer were changing. They wanted to go on expeditions, they wanted to understand and immerse themselves in destinations beyond [what] existed in the 80s and 90s,” Sawhney said during a virtual panel discussion.   

“We were the first who purpose built ships that combined [a

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Impact of Coronavirus COVID-19 Pandemic on Wedding Industry in India

The Indian wedding industry, worth around $50 billion, is among the sectors that has been severely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. We caught up with wedding photographers Ankita Asthana and Akash Agarwal of WeddinNama to find out how the industry is bouncing back now that restrictions have been lifted.

Here are excerpts from the interview.

How has the pandemic impacted the wedding industry in India?
Ankita: Oh, it’s been like a pause button. Weddings thrive on social gatherings and human interaction and that is exactly what got affected by this pandemic. So it is no surprise that the industry has got severely hit. Not only did the weddings planned this year get postponed but even people who wanted to plan one next year are not able to do so because of uncertainty and risk factors. 

Akash: Almost everyone in the over-a-crore people who are involved in the wedding industry are

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Meeting With Cruise Industry, CDC and White House Officials

Leaders from the cruise industry, the US Centers for Disease Control, the Department of Health and Human Services, and members of the Healthy Sail Panel joined a conference call with Vice President Mike Pence on Friday to discuss a proposal to resume cruise operations in the United States.

REPORT: Cruise Industry One Step Closer to Sailing

Notes provided from the White House give a glimpse into what was discussed in Friday’s meeting.

What Happened During the Conference Call

Pence provided an overview of the current “No Sail” order, set to expire October 31, 2020, and indicated the administration shares the cruise industry’s goal of reopening the maritime economy and particularly the cruise line industry safely sailing once again.

HHS Secretary Alex Azar and CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield cautioned that the industry would have to backstop their venture to resume operations under the 74 recommendations created by the Healthy Sail

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Global cruise industry still largely stuck in port, but several regions have restarted cruises cautiously, Singapore News & Top Stories

The cruise industry across the world remains largely at a standstill due to the high coronavirus infection rates in North America, a major market, and the closure of many ports.

Major cruise operators such as Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line and MSC Cruises have suspended operations globally till next month while waiting for the United States market to reopen, USA Today reported on Wednesday.

A panel assembled by Norwegian Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean Group has put up a list of 70 health and safety recommendations for the industry. These included pre-boarding screening, plans to address cases of infection on board and strictly controlled shore excursions.

The recommendations were submitted to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention a few weeks ago.

In Europe, some of the world’s biggest cruise liners set sail in August with large-scale testing efforts being undertaken. Keen to resume operating its Mediterranean route, MSC

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Cruise Industry Top Leaders Show Optimism for U.S. Cruise “Restart”

Leaders from the “Big Four” cruise companies are generally optimistic about their lines sailing from U.S. ports later this year, despite the “No Sail Order” being recently extended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) through October 31, That was the big “takeaway” Tuesday from the Seatrade Cruise Virtual conference. 

“We are optimistic that we’ll be in a position as an industry, in collaboration with CDC … in collaboration with the [Trump] Administration to resume cruising sometime this year, but we have to work that out,” said Arnold Donald, president and CEO, Carnival Corporation (CCL). “But we are definitely cautiously optimistic.”

Later in the program, panelists were asked by moderator Anne Kalosh, editor, Seatrade Cruise News, to rank on a scale from 1 to 5 (with five being the most optimistic), of whether ships will sail from U.S. ports in 2020. “On a scale of

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Photos shows luxury cruise ships being broken up at a dock in Turkey as the coronavirus pandemic continues to wreck the industry

a boat sitting next to a body of water: A drone image shows decommissioned cruise ships being dismantled at Aliaga ship-breaking yard in the Aegean port city of Izmir, western Turkey, October 2, 2020. REUTERS/Umit Bektas

© REUTERS/Umit Bektas
A drone image shows decommissioned cruise ships being dismantled at Aliaga ship-breaking yard in the Aegean port city of Izmir, western Turkey, October 2, 2020. REUTERS/Umit Bektas

  • Photos show rows of deluxe cruise ships waiting to be dismantled in a sea dock in Turkey as the coronavirus pandemic continues to sink the industry. 
  • Around 2,500 scrapyard workers are currently working to pull apart five cruise ships for scrap metal sales.
  • Among them was the Carnival Fantasy, a newly-refurbished cruise ship that was recently sold by Carnival Cruise Line.
  • “We are trying to change the crisis into an opportunity,” Kamil Onal, chairman of a ship recycling industrialists’ association told Reuters.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

British, American, and Italian cruise ships are being dismantled in a sea dock in Turkey as the coronavirus pandemic continues to sink the industry. 

Five hulking cruise ships are currently being

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Rethinking travel in Indonesia: How can the travel industry design the next normal? – Opinion

Since the COVID-19 crisis closed national borders, the message from local travel and tourism providers and the government has been clear: plan a holiday at home. Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Wishnutama Kusubandio has urged Indonesians to support local businesses and rethink their domestic travel plans.

As authorities relax social distancing restrictions and Indonesia transitions to what the government calls a “new normal”, travel providers will need to win back the hearts and minds of travelers. As the industry contemplates and explores new ways to recover, we believe it will take a community response to get the world traveling again. Technology and innovation will be a powerful enabler of change.

As a travel technology provider, we’re committed to working together with our customers, partners and the wider industry to rethink travel ultimately ensuring it continues to be a key driver of global progress, positivity and prosperity.

Modern technology is giving

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Cruise industry to test all passengers, crew before boarding worldwide


Cruise Lines International Association, which represents 95% of the cruise industry, introduced mandatory requirements to be able to set sail again.


Cruise lines around the world have committed to testing every passenger and crew member for COVID-19 before boarding, the industry’s leading trade group, Cruise Lines International Association, said Tuesday. 

“CLIA ocean cruise line members worldwide have agreed to conduct 100% testing of passengers and crew on all ships with a capacity to carry 250 or more persons – with a negative test required for any embarkation,” Bari Golin-Blaugrund, vice president of strategic communications for Cruise Lines International Association, told USA TODAY in a statement. 

“The global policy applies to ships capable of carrying 250 or more people, which is consistent with the policy in place as it relates to ships sailing from U.S. ports,” Golin-Blaugrund said.

The CDC’s “no-sail” order bars ships that can carry at

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Will cruises resume in 2021? Here’s what the industry is doing to sail safely | Sandy Fenton

It seems like forever since I last wrote a travel column for PennLive. The truth is I haven’t had a lot to say. There has been so many changes within the industry, sometimes weekly, often daily, and always confusing.

So here I am now, celebrating 28 years of broadcasting “Let’s Talk Travel with AAA” on iHeartRadio/WHP580, and I do have some thoughts to share. And positive thoughts at that.

For one thing, the cruise industry is ready to get back to work. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings CEO Frank Del Rio recently stated to the press, “Enough is enough,” and with a several billion dollar market cap drop from the three largest cruise lines, the CEOs are telling the CDC and government officials the industry must return to service in the United States.

Cruise lines from the U.S. have put together new plans to ensure a healthy return to cruising as

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