Cruise industry affected by volcano

The cruise industry has mobilised
its transatlantic services to accommodate passengers stranded due to the
volcanic ash cloud.

Cunard said that its next three
transatlantic sailings between New York, Southampton
and Hamburg
were fully booked and that they had a waiting list of passengers which were
being dealt with in the order of requests received.

Ruby Princess sails for 16 nights
from Fort Lauderdale to Barcelona and the Princess group is working, they said,
on last-minute bookings. There’s also limited availability on the Star Princess
departing from Fort Lauderdale toward Copenhagen and Crown Princess which eventually hits Venice.

Holland America’s
transatlantic sailings are sold out, but a waiting list is in operation.

Other lines offering cruises across
the Atlantic include MSC Cruises, SeaDream,
Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Royal Caribbean.

The widespread cancellation of
flights has impacted on European passengers hooking up with their Caribbean cruises over the last week.

Royal Caribbean
said that they were waiving a transfer fee for passengers who rebooked on a
different sailing, and would offer a free refund should an alternative not be


The European air system had been
brought to a standstill for nearly a week, stranding passengers who were all
looking to find alternative routes to find their way home.

Monty Python star John Cleese was
due to fly from Oslo to Brussels
to link up with a Eurostar train to London
following an appearance at a talk show in Norway. However, his flight was
cancelled, he said.

“We checked every other option but
there were no boats and no train tickets available. That’s when my fabulous
assistant determined the easiest thing would be to take a taxi.

“The bill? A whopping $5,000,”
explained the multi-millionaire septuagenarian funnyman.