Several cruise giants joined the sanctions against the Russians – we are talking about travel companies specializing in sea cruises – Carnival Cruise Line, Princess Cruises and Costa Cruises. According to ATOR experts, they have stopped cooperation with the Russian market, including not confirming new bookings. However, tourists who have already bought a cruise are nevertheless promised that the trip will take place.
“Partners of Costa Cruises have received a message from the operator that they will no longer accept applications for cruises from citizens residing in the territory of the Russian Federation, the Republic of Belarus, as well as in the territory of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions of Ukraine,” ATOR said. Carnival Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Cunard Line, Holland America Line Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Seabourn Cruise Line have also taken similar steps, but without loud official announcements.
At the same time, Costa Cruises, which took care of the official notification, directly reported that this decision was connected with the introduction of anti-Russian sanctions. “The company adheres to the sanctions regime and export control requirements imposed in connection with the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, including, but not limited to, sanctions imposed by the US, UK and the European Union. We regret to inform you of the company's decision to suspend the sale of cruises and new bookings to persons residing in Russia, Belarus, as well as in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine,” Costa Cruises representatives said.
However, also, commenting on the situation for partners, Costa Cruises explained the refusal to sell tours to Russians and financial risk. A person with Russian citizenship but with a residence permit outside Russia, a bank account in another country and who has booked a trip with a foreign travel agency can go on a cruise. At the same time, as experts add, Russian counterparties are disconnected from the booking systems of many of these international cruise companies, therefore they are not able to send tourists on their cruise ships by booking from Russia.
At the same time, Costa Cruises claims that confirmed bookings will not be cancelled. However, their implementation will also take into account some unclear “peculiarities of the sanctions regime in relation to payments, refunds and other issues that fall under the restriction,” representatives of the cruise company said. According to the statement of the tour operators, whether the tourists who paid for the tour will get on board is a moot point every time, however, there was already a fact that Costa Cruises had already refused to board our tourists who managed to purchase cruises, although this only affected those tourists who purchased cruises in the very early May.
How long the “lockdown” will last is unclear. Note, however, that not all companies supported it. So, MSC Cruises has no changes in working with the Russian market – this was announced by representatives of the tour operator PAC Group.
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