Celestyal Cruises, the award-winning, number one choice for travelers to the Greek Islands and the Eastern Mediterranean,  has announced the further suspension of its sailings until the already announced 2021 season commencing March 6, 2021. 

Celestyal was one of the first cruise lines worldwide to take an immediate decision to temporarily suspend  cruise operations out of the abundance of caution for our guests, crew and local communities in mid-March. This decisive action resulted in no COVID-19 cases on our ships and were able to repatriate our guests and crew safely home before international air travel and borders globally shut down.

Leslie Peden, chief commercial officer for Celestyal Cruises, said, “As the core of our season runs from Spring through the Autumn, we were optimistic that we would be able to resume our cruise operations later this summer. However, given the prevailing uncertainty regarding travel restrictions through the balance of our operating season from our largest international source markets coupled with the continuing discussions at the European Union level regarding the enhanced health protocols that will apply to EU cruise operations, we made the difficult but prudent decision to postpone resuming cruise operations until the scheduled start of our normal spring season next year. We felt that as a company, we have already put our travel partners and guests through enough date changes on when cruising could return safely. By voluntarily pausing operations until our scheduled departures of next year, Celestyal will be better positioned to offer more clarity and certainty to our valued partners and guests, as well as peace of mind. We will now shift our full attention to developing both 2021 and 2022 business where we are seeing encouraging signs of pent-up demand and be well prepared to implement all enhanced health protocols that will ultimately be established by the EU and the countries where we operate. Whilst we appreciate and share in the disappointment this decision has on our guests, their wellbeing, as well as that of our loyal crew and the local communities we visit is always top of mind.”

For all named and paid individual guests impacted by this suspension, Celestyal Cruises is offering a Future Cruise Credit (FCC) valued at 120 percent of original booking value. Guests will have until the end of December 2021 to redeem their Future Cruise Credit against any of Celestyal Cruises’ itineraries through end of December 2022. To provide additional peace of mind, should guests choose not to redeem their FCC by end of December 2021, they will automatically receive a full refund equal to the original amount paid to Celestyal upon the voucher’s expiration. Celestyal is providing unique confidence to both guests and travel advisors through the welcomed assurance of their FCC’s supported by enhanced consumer rights and underlying guarantees, as the case may be.

Celestyal Cruises will automatically send the Future Cruise Credit voucher directly to guests or their travel advisors, so there will be no need to call the Contact Center other than to rebook.

Celestyal Cruises recently launched their 2021 and 2022 digital brochure supported by the generous early booking promotional campaign ”Escape To The Future”, and a comforting “Peace of Mind” policy that allows newly booked guests to change any cruise that sets sail through December 31, 2021. This applies to new bookings made until August 31, 2020. As long as the booking is changed at least 30 days before the sail date, a future cruise credit for 100 percent of the value received by Celestyal will be issued. The credit can be used toward any cruise that sets sail through December 31, 2022.     

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Positive prospects for the resumption of cruise operations in Greece by August were raised during discussions between CLIA and the Greek Minister of Tourism, Greek Minister of Maritime Affairs and Insular Policy, and experts of the National Public Health Organization, according to Maria Deligianni, CLIA Regional Representative, East Mediterranean.

“All parties agreed on the need for national and industry coordination, and a clear timeline, in order to achieve a smooth resumption of cruise operations” Mrs Deligianni says. 

Cruise lines are looking at a gradual, phased resumption with potentially a limited number of cruise trips initially. We informed Greek officials that cruise lines are interested to include Greece in their itineraries in coming August, an aspiration which was positively received by the Government.  For its part the Government indicated its intention to develop a national protocol as key to resumption of operations based on guidelines being prepared by the European Commission, specifically the EU Health Gateways guidance and the European Maritime Safety Agency”. 

“While we stressed the need for all stakeholders to work intensively so that everything is ready by August, the safety, health, and well-being of passengers and crew is the industry’s number one priority” says Mrs Deligianni and concludes: “Our discussions focused on the development of framework protocols, highlighting a holistic approach which includes the whole cruise trip, from the booking process until the departure home. Emphasis was given on the strict pre-boarding measures and onboard procedures as well as the measures that will be taken at the embarkation and disembarkation ports, and transit calls”.

The economic contribution of the cruise industry in the Greek economy is close to 1 billion euros per year, with almost 12.000 jobs depending on cruising. In the discussions with the government, CLIA highlighted that it is not only the cruise lines experiencing economic losses from the suspension of operations but also the cruise destination countries such as Greece, looking too for the resumption of cruise operations. The suspension of operations which has exceeded the 90 days has led to a total national economic impact at least of 200 million euros while more than 1.700 jobs can be lost. Cruising is an important part of the tourism flows by bringing more than 15% of the total 33 million visitors in the country every year. 

Source: https://news.travelling.gr

Celestyal Crystal

Cruise Destinations For Whole Family Fun

76% of cruise-going families agree that cruise vacations are better and more enjoyable than traditional land-based vacations in a study reported by the FCCA. Cruises are the perfect and safe getaway vacations for families of all types. From tropical destinations, to the storied landscapes of the Pacific, to the enchanting history of the Mediterranean, cruise style vacations offer multi-country and city destinations on the vast open sea – something that a land-based location can’t compete with.

Set Standards Before Sailing On The Seas

Before embarking on these grand adventures, however, it’s important to set guidelines as a family to ensure a safe and fun family vacation. Sit down with your kids and discuss a set of ground rules – what freedoms they’re allowed –  before sailing off to your destination. While it’s important to set guidelines as a family, many cruise lines are making it easier for parents by going hi-tech with passenger bracelets that not only can track purchases, but can also act as a location tracker for those you’re traveling with.

Make Your Way To The Mediterranean

One of the most coveted and grand landscapes to cruise away to is the colorful Mediterranean coast. Both parents and kids will be mesmerized by the kaleidoscope of colors of Italy’s southern coast or the cool blue oasis of a Greek village. While porting at these countries, enjoy learning the history of Greek and Roman soldiers, take a ride on a gondola in Venice, or stop at the Agora Market. This destination not only is magical in its appearance, but offers an educational experience for the children.

Wherever you decide on as a perfect destination for your family, discuss not only guidelines before your trip, but also what type of experience you yearn for. Tropical? Glacial getaway? Mediterranean? Fortunately, there’s no wrong way to go.

Author Ali Vincent

Louis Olympia Cruise Ship of Louis Cruise LinesEnjoy the luxury on board our cruise ships and get to know the Greek Islands and the Greek hospitality. The breeze of the clear blue waters of the Aegean Sea will make you wanting to come back and spend more time in the islands.

MONDAY: ATHENS/MYKONOS: Embarkation starts at 09:00. Our cruise ship will Mykonos_Myconos_Island_Greeceleave the port of Piraeus at 11:00 for a 3 full days of fun and experiences. We go along the Athens Riviera in the Saronic Golf to the south end of Attica passing close to the Temple of Poseidon in Cape Sounion. This afternoon is a good opportunity to get around and know your ship and the services we provide. In the afternoon arrival at the famous island of Mykonos, an international “jet-set” known for its beautiful sandy beaches, hundreds of tiny white chapels and incredible night life. Walk around the town and admire the small houses, all white and blue, have a coffee or a cocktail in one of the famous bars and promise to return for longer stay and more experiences.

Celcius_Library_Epheus_Turkey   TUESDAY: KUSADASI/PATMOS: First port of call today is the Turkish port of Kusadasi with the option to visit Ephesus, one of the most complete ancient cities ever excavated. Then on to the island of Patmos, where participating in the optional tour, you will have the opportunity to visit the Monastery & the Grotto of St. John, where he lived and recorded the Book of Revelation.

WEDNESDAY: RHODES: Today we visit the magnificent island of the roses, Knights  Rhodes_Rodos_Island_Greece_Maltan_knights_Castleand Butterflies. Participating in one of the optional tours, you can visit the old medieval city and the famous Acropolis of Lindos. If you want to be on your own you can swim in one of the many beaches of the island or just stroll in the old city and imagine being one of its inhabitants of the ancient times, Late evening return in the ship.. Participating in one of the optional tours, you can visit the famous Acropolis of Lindos.

Sunset_Santorini_Island_Greece   THURSDAY: HERAKLION/SANTORINI: New port, new places, new interesting sites in Crete. We will wake up in Heraklion, the biggest city of Crete, the island full of archaeological sites, beautiful beaches and fantastic scenery. Take the opportunity to participate in the optional tour to the Palace of Knossos, the centre of the Minoan Civilization.
We continue and this afternoon we visit the most breathtaking island, Santorini, believed to be the lost continent of Atlantis. You can participate in the optional tours or just relax in one of the famous cafes of the town and admire the sunset on the Caldera, known to be the most famous

FRIDAY: PIRAEUS: Early we arrive in Piraeus port. After breakfast disembarkation and continue for your Greece vacation or for your return home trip.

View Rates and Book now this cruise

Sovereign   Very special rates for this fascinating West Mediterranean Cruise starting from Rome Italy and ONLY for the departures of 02, 09, 23 and 30 May.

Day by day itinerary

Wednesday: Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy: Embarkation starts at 19:00 and your Colloseum Rome Italycruise ship will start at 20:00 for this very special cruise which will show you some of the most beautiful places of the Mediterranean rich in history and culture. Get customised with the services of our ship and enjoy the night program on board.

Monumento dei quattro mori Livorno Thursday: Livorno, Italy: The port city of Livorno in Tuscany is the second largest port in western Italy. The Venice district retains much of its original town planning and architectural features such as the bridges, narrow lanes, the noblemen’s houses and a dense network of canals which once linked the port to its storehouses.
Livorno is your gateway to Florence. The glory of Florence lies in the eminence of its past. Its buildings are masterpieces guarding within more works of art. Some of Florence’s illustrious citizens were Michelangelo, Galileo, Macchiavelli, Dante, Leonardo da Vinci and its renowned rulers, the Medici family.

Friday: Villefranche, France:  The bay of Villefranche-sur-Mer is one of the deepest Villefranchenatural harbours of any port in the Mediterranean Sea. The site has been settled since prehistoric times. The Greeks and later the Romans used the natural harbour as a stop-over en route to the Greek settlements around the Western Mediterranean. The main activity remains tourism with hotels and restaurants employing a sizeable portion of the population. Saint Michael’s Church and Saint Peter’s Chapel are very interesting to visit

Barcelona Saturday: Barcelona, Spain: World class museums, fine foods, wines and fashionable shops make Barcelona famous now days. This cosmopolitan city offers a very good combination of ancient history, cosmopolitan port life and beautiful beaches.  Particularly renowned are architectural works of Antoni Gaudí and Lluís Domènech i Montaner that have been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites.Our cruise ship will leave the port us at 18:00 for 7 full days of fun and experiences.  This afternoon is a good opportunity to get around and know your ship and the services we provide.

Sunday: At Sea: Enjoy a full day on board, both relaxing and soaking up the sun, reading a good book from the library, running for a prize with one of the quizzes or learning some new Greek dance steps. Start the evening with your favourite cocktail in one of the lounges of on deck and after a delicious dinner; enjoy an international show time, disco and casino.

Monday: Tunis, Tunisia:  Tunisia has for over 3.000 years witnessed the passage of  Carthage TunisPhoenicians, Romans, Vandals, Byzantines, Turks, Spanish and French, each leaving a part of their story in stones, mosaics and on the hills of Carthage. This heritage, has been held in trust and preserved in hundreds of sites and museums as in the vast collections of the prestigious National Museum of Bardo.

Napoli-New-Castle Tuesday: Napoli, Italy: Founded around the 9th century BC as a Greek colony, Naples is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. Originally named Parthenope and later Neápolis it was among the foremost cities of Magna Grecia, playing a key role in the merging of Greek culture into Roman society. Naples eventually became part of the Roman Republic as a major cultural center; the prominent Latin poet, Virgil, received part of his education in the city and later resided in its environ

Wednesday: Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy:

After breakfast on board disembarkation and continue your vacation in Italy or take your way back home.

Price per person in “Run of the House” cabin Euro 302 + Euro 190 for port taxes and fuel surcharge + Euro 72 for service and administration charges (to be paid on board).
Children 2-16 years old pay only port taxes and service charge.
Above prices include all meals on board and all the drinks

For reservations please contact us

Kyriakos Anastadiadis Louis Cruises Louis Cruises announces that as of January 16th 2012, Mr. Kyriakos (Kerry) Anastassiadis is appointed to the position of CEO of the company.

Mr. Anastassiadis was raised in South Africa where he studied Commerce at the University of Witwatersrand and obtained a postgraduate title in Market Analysis and Advertising. He is distinguished for his rich and multifaceted experience since he has worked as General Manager, CEO and President at large multinational corporations such as Coca Cola, Procter & Gamble, Polaroid and others, in a number of countries including Italy, China, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates and Greece.  With Greek and English being his mother tongues, Mr. Anastassiadis is also fluent in French, Italian and Portuguese.

Commenting on this development, Mr. Costakis Loizou, Executive Chairman of Louis Group, made the following statement: “I warmly welcome Mr. Anastassiadis to Louis Cruises and our Group in general and express my confidence that his valuable experiences and the knowledge he acquired on an international level at leading multinational corporations will play a constructive role in Louis Cruises’ further enhancement and development. I wish the new CEO of Louis Cruises every success in the most important role he is undertaking”.

Referring to his new role, Mr. Anastassiadis underlined that: “It is with pleasure that I undertake the position of CEO at Louis Cruises, a subsidiary of a group with a 76 year long history in tourism and cruising in the Eastern Mediterranean. Louis Cruises is currently renewing its fleet and operations and I am confident that in cooperation with the rest of the management team we will set sail at full speed ahead towards new success”.

Posted by the Easytraveller Team

Heraklion Crete Island Greece Heraklion port authorities welcomed the arrival of new cruise ships and is encouraging more cruise companies to include Heraklion in Crete island in their itineraries.
Very close to many archaeological sites gives you the opportunity to be an eye witness of places where the western civilization started a few thousand years ago.
The Heraklion is a modern vibrant city with nice architecture and a very interesting museum with excellent ceramic paintings.
Enjoy the Greek and Mediterranean food in the restaurants and taverns of Heraklion and taste the local wine and “raki” the local spirit.
This very informative video is made by the port authorities of Heraklion.

Posted by the Easytraveller Team

Associaton of Mediterranean Cruise PortsMr. Stavros Hatzakos elected  as President of the Union of Mediterranean Cruise Ports (MedCruise), a particular success for the Greek port industry.
Mr. Hatzakos has been a founding member, representative of OLP SA (Piraeus port), both in the ESPO (European Sea Ports Association) and in MedCruise, and has served in many positions of responsibility in OLP.
As stated by the President and CEO of OLP SA Mr. George Anomeritis “We have called 2011 ” cruise year” and put  cruise activity at the forefront of our activities. With new infrastructures and quality services we have converted  Piraeus to the largest cruise port in the Mediterranean. Of course we have much more to do and we will do. We believe in Shipping, Tourism and Culture and the future of marine tourism. During last year we  returned in the “port diplomacy” on the ESPO and MedCruise, we became members of SETE, participated actively in all forums, organized successfully in June in Greece  the Annual General Meeting of MedCruise..
The decision of the management of OLP SA to propose to Mr. Stavros Hatzakis as president vindicates our initiatives and his long experience and history in OLP SA
Thanks are due to everyone who supported the candidacy from the world of cruise. In tough times we prove that together we can. ”

Posted by the Easytraveller Team

International Association of Travel AgentsAccording to a statement of IATA international passenger traffic grew by7.3%, while domestic by 3.5%.

The load factor rose in July by 0.5% to83.1% compared to last year in July, the North America at 86.9% while Europe increased to 84.1% with an increase of 9.3% in demand and 8.9%in capacity. Largest increases were recorded in Latin America with10.3%followed by the Middle East by 9.7%.

In a statement,General Director/CEO of IATA, Mr. Tony Tyler said that this increase is likely due to the good economic outlook earlier this year,unfortunately,do not expect these results at the end of the year because of international economic environment and the fuel increase

Posted by the Easytraveller.gr Team

Louis Majesty Cruise shipDear Apostolos,
It was a great pleasure to work with you for our Greek cruise arrangements and transfers. Email communications were very prompt and helpful. You never failed to answer all my many questions and allay my fears about dealings so far distant. You were more than courteous and professional, always willing to make our dealings as easy as possible. I thank you for all of that. I also thank you for your observations about the various Greek islands and shore excursions – they were immensely helpful. It was a pleasure to meet you and I will not hesitate to contact you again if my travel plans bring me to Greece.