Holland America Line Pauses All Alaska Cruises Sailing Roundtrip from Seattle Scheduled to Depart in June 2021
Posted & Edited By MARY KAUFFMAN
March 22, 2021
At this time, Alaska cruises sailing roundtrip from Seattle departing in July and onward have not been canceled. Following the earlier Canadian Transport Ministry Interim Order that closed Canadian ports to passenger vessels, discussions continue with Canadian and United States government authorities to try to preserve remaining Seattle Alaska sailings. Holland America Line previously announced the cancellation of all 2021 Alaska cruises to or from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
"We continue to stay actively engaged in dialogue with authorities in Canada and the United States to understand what cruise opportunities may still exist in Alaska, knowing how important this market is not only to our brand, but to the communities and individuals who depend on our business," said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. "We share with our guests the disappointment of canceling these voyages, and we remain hopeful that we can operate some of the Alaska cruise season."
U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) on March 3rd, introduced the Alaska Tourism Recovery Act to alleviate the Passenger Vessel Services Act (PVSA) restrictions for cruise ships transporting passengers between the State of Washington and the State of Alaska. This legislation will allow cruise ships to sail to Alaska without requiring that they stop in Canada, as U.S. law normally would require.
Canada’s Interim Order No. 5 Respecting Passenger Vessel Restrictions Due to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) prohibits cruise ships from navigating, mooring, anchoring or berthing in Canadian waters until February 28, 2022 or until the Canadian Government lifts the prohibition. U.S. Congressman Don Young (R-AK) also recently introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.
Cruise Industry News reported last week that Hannah Ray, press secretary for U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski, said there is not currently a vote scheduled in the U.S. Senate for the Alaska Tourism Recovery Act.
According to Cruise Industry News, the Act is seen a “first step” in operating cruises in Alaska and was not part of the COVID-19 relief package which many in the cruise industry thought it would be tagged onto. The Act will thus need to be part of a larger bill, or be voted on, which could be months off.
According to a Holland America Lines' press release, guests currently booked on the canceled roundtrip Seattle-Alaska June departures will automatically be moved to an equivalent cruise in 2022 at the 2021 fare – with all cash and Future Cruise Credit funds moved to the new booking.
Once a new booking confirmation is received, if guests decide not to accept the 2022 cruise booking, they will have the option to decline the booking and receive an FCC of 110% of any cash paid. Guests will also be able to request a full refund of all monies paid to Holland America Line.
The minimum FCC is $25 and will be valid for sailings departing through Dec. 31, 2022, and will be moved to the guest loyalty account. Non–cruise fare purchases (shore excursions, airfare, gifts, dining and spa) will be transferred to a new booking or automatically refunded via the method of payment used to purchase the goods or services.
Other booking and cancellation conditions and policies may apply if the cruise was not booked through Holland America Line.
For more information about Holland America Line, consult a travel advisor, or visit hollandamerica.com.
Edited By Mary Kauffman, SitNews
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