Celebrity Cruises provided an update to travel agents on January 14, informing them of several cruise cancellations for Celebrity Eclipse cruises along the pacific coast. All sailings included several ports of call in California that have increased measures in place against COVID-19.
Starting March 26 through April 16, Celebrity Eclipse will not be operating the round-trip pacific coastal cruises and the LA to Vancouver cruise. It also means that Celebrity Eclipse’s return to service has been pushed back to April 23, 2022.
Celebrity Cruises has cancelled four cruises departing from the Port of Long Beach, California. The departures on March 26, April 2, April 9, and April 16 will not be sailing. The cruise line says the decision has been made after working closely with health and government authorities to evaluate operational plans and ship itineraries.
In the statement, the company says the following: We sincerely apologize for having to cancel these sailings as we’re sure your clients are eager to enjoy traveling once again. Please know that our Celebrity family anxiously awaits the opportunity to show them the world. At this time, we would like to offer your clients the choice of being re-accommodated on another Celebrity Cruises vacation or receiving a 100% Refund.
Whether the cancellations have something to do with the strict measures implemented in several Californian ports recently is unclear. The pacific coast itinerary included calls in Santa Catalina Island; Santa Barbara; Ensenada, Mexico, and San Diego. The repositioning from Long Beach to Vancouver included calls to Santa Catalina Island, San Francisco, Astoria Seattle, and Victoria BC, Canada.
The Santa Barbara Waterfront Department decided in August 2021 to put its cruise ship program on halt until at least March 2022 because of COVID-19 concerns. Earlier this week, San Francisco implemented strict testing guidelines for unvaccinated cruisers.
The Port of San Francisco said this: “Due to the recent surge in COVID-19 cases, effective January 7, the Department of Public Health is now requiring all vessels that disembark passengers at the Port of San Francisco to test all passengers that are not up-to-date on vaccination before coming ashore.”
The cancellation means the return of Celebrity Eclipse has been pushed back to April 23. The 121,878 gross ton, 2,850 passenger cruise ship has been laid up since March 2020, at the start of the global pause in operations. The first cruise for the vessel will now be an 11-day Hawaii cruise from Vancouver, Canada, sailing to Hilo, Kailua-Kona, Lahaina, and Honolulu.
Guests to Receive Several Compensation Offers
Guests booked on the cancelled voyages from Long Beach will receive several options for compensation. Guests can decide to Lift and Shift their cruise vacation plans to a Celebrity Millennium Coastal or Mexican Riviera sailing departing in September or October, 2022, through January 28, 2022.
Guests who cannot rebook by January 28 will receive a 100% refund to their original payment method. There will be no cash refunds for reservations paid with an FCC. However, Celebrity will reinstate the Future Cruise Credit to be used on a different voyage.
In the case of pre-booked shore excursions, beverage packages, internet, specialty dining, and other packages, guests will automatically be refunded in full to the original payment method. A refund will be automatically applied to guests who booked flights and hotels through Flights by Celebrity.