Holland America Line and Seabourn both returned ships to service this week as cruise companies get closer to having their entire fleets back in operation after the pandemic-induced hiatus.
HAL’s Zaandam, which set sail on Thursday out of Port Everglades, leaves the line one ship away from a 100% return. Also back in service this week is the Seabourn Quest, becoming the fourth of seven Seabourn ships to return.
The 1,432-guest Zaandam is sailing a nine-day Atlantic Coast cruise to Montreal. The ship will largely position itself in Canada and New England through October, resuming service to the region for the first time since the pandemic began.
Zaandam’s summer and early fall will include sailings between Boston and Montreal. However, the ship will also set sail on a 35-day Voyage of the Vikings itinerary from Boston that retraces the routes of the legendary Scandinavian explorers. The July 9 cruise will port in Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, Norway and the Netherlands.
The Zaandam will depart on another long cruise on Oct. 10 for a 71-day Grand Africa Voyage that sails roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale and includes 25 port calls, including four overnights. The ship will spend the holidays in the Caribbean before returning to Canada and New England next spring.
The 450-passenger Seabourn Quest, which departed this week on a Barcelona-to-Ravenna, Italy, voyage, will sail in Europe this summer with seven-, 10- and 11-day roundtrip voyages from Ravenna, with itineraries in the Adriatic and Ionian seas until mid-July. The ship will then sail to Spain, Portugal, France and the U.K. on a 14-day Jewels of Western Europe itinerary.
The Quest will then head north, sailing a 24-day Route of the Vikings itinerary that visits Scotland, Iceland and Greenland before crossing the Atlantic for three 12-day sailings in Canada and the New England coast to catch the fall colors. Those will originate in Montreal.
Seabourn expects to have a fifth ship, the Seabourn Sojourn, resuming service on June 6 from Athens.
Several cruise companies are close to getting their entire fleets back in operation or are nearing that milestone. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings announced this week it has redeployed 100% of ships for its three brands, and Royal Caribbean Group said 95% of its fleet capacity was back in service for its three brands.
While Carnival Corp. hasn’t released how many of its ships have resumed operations, Carnival Cruise Line was the first brand to announce all its ships were back.
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