In a not-shocking-at-all kind of way since Princess made the same announcement and they’re owned by the same company, the Holland America suspension was just extended through March 31, 2021, for all voyages and 7-night (or 8-day) plus cruises through November 1, 2021. The only questions I have now is when will Carnival make the same announcement, and does it have anything to do with the court-ordered delay?
As you may be aware, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order setting out the conditions by which cruising can resume. We have begun to prepare our ships and implement procedures to meet all requirements to receive approval to sail and look forward to communicating more details as soon as possible. As we continue to prepare and develop our plans, we have made the decision to extend our pause in cruise operations for all departures through March 31, 2021, cruises of eight days or longer that call at a U.S. port through November 1, 2021, and select longer cruise itineraries departing this spring.Holland America Line
So what, exactly does this Holland America suspension mean for guests booked on a HAL cruise? The obvious part of the statement is no cruises until at least April 2021 and no week-or-longer cruises until November. While some of the cruise lines have “suspended bookings” for the longer cruises (meaning they aren’t canceled but no new reservations are being accepted) Holland America has decided to simply cancel 8+ day voyages through November 1, 2021.
What isn’t mentioned, though, is the ripple effect of the Holland America suspension. Select longer voyages in Asia, Australia/New Zealand, and South America through mid-April 2021 are affected, with some departures being rescheduled to comparable dates in 2022. If you have a travel advisor, reach out to them, and if you don’t, reach out to me.
Since the policies can be a little confusing, I’ll explain them in plain English. If you’re booked on one of the cruises affected by the Holland America suspension, you’ll automatically receive future cruise credit (125% for fully paid reservations and if you haven’t made your final payment, FCC for double what you have paid toward your reservation.
In both cases, the future cruise credit is based on the cruise fare. It doesn’t include taxes, fees, or any other additional purchases like pre-paid gratuities, drink packages, excursions, vacation insurance, etc., which will be refunded to your original form of payment.
If you would prefer a refund, know that it can take up to 90 days to be processed, use the online form by December 31, 2020, to request a refund of what you have paid.
- For guests booked on several longer voyages to South America aboard Westerdam, Asia aboard Noordam, and Australia/New Zealand aboard Oosterdam will be rebooked to similar dates and itineraries in 2022.
- Those booked on the Voyage of the Vikings cruise, scheduled to depart July 9, 2021, aboard Zaandam, will move to a similar date in 2022.
- All guests moving to a new voyage in 2022 will receive a $150 per person shipboard credit, protected pricing and equivalent stateroom category.
- 2021 Fall Grand Africa Voyage Redeployment: Guests may transfer all funds on file from the 2021 Grand Africa to pre-reserve your 2022 Grand Africa voyage.
- The booking will be at the same rate, in the same stateroom, with any early-booking bonuses, promotions or credits on your current booking maintained.
- Guests will also receive a bonus Future Cruise Credit for 25% of the base cruise fare if paid in full, or bonus FCC in the amount of deposit (up to the base cruise fare) if not paid in full.
- Should guests prefer not to move their 2021 Grand Africa booking to pre-reserve their 2022 Grand Africa voyage and retain all amenities and promotions, we are offering bonus Future Cruise Credits (same as above). Additionally, this credit will waive the required deposit on their next booking on a voyage up to 29 days in length.