Cruise Lay Up Best Practices: Be Ready to Enter Service

Cruise Ship in Nassau

The key to laying up a cruise ship may be in the preparation to quickly enter revenue service again, according to Per Bjornsen, director, V.Ships Leisure.

“The only option right now is a hot lay-up,” he told Cruise Industry News. “That means the ship runs on its own power, its own systems and there is a crew; a proper crew onboard maintaining the vessel.”

That is a full deck and engine crew and some hotel crew to cater, clean and run various hotel systems.

The ship will thus be ready to resume regular passenger service on short notice.

“You need to make sure the systems are running, going into cabins every day and running the water for example,” said Bjornsen.

Overseeing multiple cruise ships for various brands, Bjornsen said the company was ready to support industry players with a wide network of offices.

“If you want to support your vessel from a shore-based organization, the vessel should be laid up where you have an office,” he said, noting most borders in Europe were closed. “We have the offices, the network and our operation are more resilient.”

V. Ships Leisure is also looking at synergies among its clients and talking to other cruise lines he said, considering putting ships in one place or port, for best practices.

“We are discussing these synergies as they relate to operating costs to see how we can be looking after ships together in the best possible way.”

Oasis of the Seas will summer in N.Y. in 2020

Royal Caribbean International said the Oasis of the Seas will make its 2020 summer home in the New York metropolitan area, sailing seven-night itineraries to the Bahamas from Cape Liberty in Bayonne, N.J. It marks the debut of the 5,400-passenger ship in the Big Apple.

The Oasis will be the first ship in its class, and the largest, to sail from the Northeast.

The Bahamas sailings will include a stop at Perfect Day at CocoCay; the private island will receive calls from 10 different Royal ships in 2020.

The Oasis will have a Canada/New England season, as well.

In addition, the Adventure of the Seas will return to Cape Liberty in 2020, sailing a variety of five- and nine-night summer and fall itineraries to Bermuda; New England and Canada; the Bahamas; and the Caribbean.

Travellers can extend their leaf-peeping experience with longer sailings aboard the Vision of the Seas, which will offer three 10- to-11-night, open-jaw itineraries between Cape Liberty and Quebec City with an overnight in Quebec’s capital.

MSC Cruises to homeport ‘enlarged’ ship in Southampton

MSC Cruises is to lengthen and refurbish one of its ships and homeport it in Southampton for the summer season in 2021.

The ship, which has not been named, will go into drydock and re-emerge as “a super-enhanced version” of itself.

It will be the first time MSC has based one of its ships in the UK for a full season.

Speaking exclusively to Travel Weekly, Antonio Paradiso, managing director for UK & Ireland, said: “This is not just a refitting. It will be a perfect blend of an old prototype ship and a new one.

“The larger ship will sail northern Europe itineraries to the Baltic capitals, Norwegian Fjords, North Cape and some southbound destinations.”

He also said: “It was the first time we have made a 100% commitment to the UK market.”

Paradiso revealed the ship would partner with “exciting British brands” and be “adapted” to meet the needs of the UK market.

“We learnt a lot from MSC Magnifica, bringing on British food, kettles and tea bags,” he added. “It has satisfaction scores of 7.5 out of 10 which is great for a first operation out of the UK.

“2021 gives us an opportunity to further improve those scores.”

Paradiso said plans were still being finalised and he would confirm the ship, deployment and details in “two to three months’ time”.