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Published on Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Fred Olsen suspends cruises beyond May 23

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has suspended cruises beyond May 23 in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Managing director Peter Deer said he was not able to give a date when they would resume normal operations, adding: "What I don't want to do is set an expectation and not be able to deliver what we promise.

"What I can say is that we are keeping a very close eye on the latest guidance from the relevant authorities, including the UK Government and Public Health England, as well as overseas policies. 

"We are very clear on our position that we will not resume cruising until we know that it is safe for us to do so. The safety of our guests and crew is always our utmost priority, and this is especially true now."

He said guests would be given at least 30 days' notice of cancellations.

"It is regrettable that we won't be welcoming guests back on board at the end of May as we had initially hoped, but we can't wait to start sailing again as soon as the world is ready for us to do so," he added.

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines said it will assess all upcoming cruises from May 23 in date order. The first five sailings aboard its European river cruise ship, Brabant, have also been cancelled. 

Fred. Olsen's ocean fleet - Balmoral, Braemar, Boudicca and Black Watch - will remain in Scotland's Firth of Forth, just outside the Port of Rosyth, during the company's pause in cruise operation.

The cruise line is allowing anyone who has booked a 2020 cruise to transfer to any other cruise up to the end of 2022 with at least 14 days' notice.

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