Friday, 12 July 2013

What about the ships on the Nile?

What about the ships on the Nile?

By Michelle Baran
InsightEgypt’s current political crisis cannot be good for tourism, but the fact that it is taking place during the hot summer months means that the escalation in violence will affect fewer Nile sailings, as many river cruise lines don’t offer Egypt departures during the summer.

Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection, one of the only U.S. river cruise lines that owns and operates its own ship on the Nile, the 82-passenger River Tosca, does not offer Tosca sailings during July and August, and thus has not yet had to cancel any departures due to the unrest.
Viking River Cruises also puts its Nile departures on hold during the summer, with its last chartered Nile cruise having taken place on April 30, and the next one slated to depart on Sept. 3. The company has not yet said how it plans to handle the remainder of its 2013 departures.MichelleBaran

Neither AmaWaterways nor Scenic Cruises offer Egypt sailings, and Tauck’s next Egypt itinerary that includes the Nile does not head out until October.

Avalon Waterways, one of the few river cruise operators that did have scheduled departures on the Nile in July and August, has canceled all its departures on the 148-passenger Mayfair (a ship built by Cairo-based Mayfair Cruises in 2010) through August, “given the current unstable situation in Cairo,” according to the Globus Family of Brands, Avalon’s parent company. 

“We are working closely with our operations team in Egypt to monitor the situation, including assessment of cruises and tours beyond August,” Globus said in a statement. “We will make any adjustments or cancellations necessary to ensure the safety and well-being of our customers.”

Affected Avalon passengers have the choice of either canceling with no penalty and receiving a full cash refund or rebooking on any Globus vacation, applying the full amount of their original Egypt booking.