Sunday, 9 June 2019

Trump Administration ruins cruise holiday plans for 800,000

Havana: Royal Caribbean 
American cruise lines have been forced to cancel trips to Cuba, affecting almost 800,000 passengers worldwide.

The US Government has announced the immediate implementation of new regulations banning previously approved cruises from the US to the Caribbean island, Travel Mole reported.

the Cruise Lines International Association said US cruise lines had been forced to eliminate all Cuban destinations from itineraries with immediate effect.

It said this affects almost 800,000 passenger bookings that are currently scheduled or already underway.

US citizens have long been banned from taking independent trips to Cuba, but under previous US President Barack Obama's regime new rules allowing 'people to people' or group travel were introduced. 

The Trump Administration, which allegedly promotes freedom of choice, said it wants to steer American dollars away from "the Cuban regime, and its military and security services, who control the tourism industry in Cuba".

"We are disappointed that cruises will no longer be operating to Cuba," said CLIA chairman Adam Goldstein. "While out of our control, we are genuinely sorry for all cruise line guests who were looking forward to their previously booked itineraries to Cuba."

Norwegian Cruise Line said it is closely monitoring the situation and will contact guests and travel partners with information when details are available.

Royal Caribbean has dropped Cuba from itineraries.

Carnival Corporation said its brands would no longer be permitted to sail to Cuba "effective immediately".

"Currently, Carnival Corporation is sailing to Cuba on Carnival Cruise Line and Holland America Line, and Seabourn had been scheduled to begin sailing in November to Cuba." said. "Additional details will be provided for currently booked cruises by the cruise lines."

MSC Cruises said it is currently reviewing and working through the details of the administration's Cuba policy to assess the scale and timing of its effect on its cruise sailings from the US to Cuba.

Viking Ocean Cruises said it has one remaining call in late December 2019 and is currently reviewing its options for that and early 2020 sailings. "Once confirmed, guests and travel partners will be notified directly," it added.

The ban is a blow to Virgin Voyages, whose first trip was due to sail from Miami to Cuba.

 

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