Poor Asian weather forces cruise line cancellation

Voyages to Antiquity, a cruise company based in Oxford, UK, and which specialises in cultural cruises, has cancelled its Asian winter 2013-14 schedule due to the bad weather that its vessel experienced in the region during January and February this year.

During the last winter season, the company’s ship, Aegean Odyssey, suffered rough seas and gale force winds while in Asian waters, so the decision has been made to leave the vessel idle in Greece for this coming winter. Passengers that are already booked on to the 570 capacity ship for next winter’s schedule will either receive a refund of their deposit or have the opportunity of changing their booking to the soon to be announced 2014-15 programme.

David Yellow, Voyages to Antiquity’s managing director, said, ‘We plan all our programmes with meticulous detail but the problems we encountered, most notably the severe weather the region experienced this past winter, was beyond our control. With this in mind, we are leaving the market for this winter and will dock in Piraeus, Greece as we have in previous years. By exiting at this stage we know that we are disappointing those who have already booked, and we are sorry for these guests.

‘It is important all our cruises match up to our high quality standards, hence we have taken the difficult decision to cancel, and concentrate our efforts on revising the programme in the area for 2014-15. This new cruise programme will feature areas less prone to unpredictable weather, which was a recurrence of the first programme.

‘We hope that our guests will re-book with us for the 2014-15.’

The company intends to avoid the areas where it experienced the worst weather, notably the South China Sea near Borneo, for its revised 2014-15 schedule.