State’s Restoration Act allows ships to sail roundtrip from Seattle

By Patti  Pietschmann, Travel Diva

Back to Alaska for HAL and Princess

Richard Pietschmann photo of floatplane in Ketchikan

This is big news for seafarers starving to sail to Alaska this summer. The on again, off again season and now a go thanks to passage of the Alaska Tourism Restoration Act.

Holland America can now sail from Seattle to Alaska on its Nieuw Amsterdam while following CDC guidelines of course.  Bookings are open for eleven Saturday departures that will operate from July 24 through Oct. 2. The seven-day “Alaskan Explorer” itinerary calls at Juneau, Icy Strait Point, Sitka and Ketchikan. Scenic cruising in Alaska’s iconic locales includes Glacier Bay and Stephens Passage.

And the same goes for Princess Cruises that plans to sail, also round-trip from Seattle, on the Majestic Princess beginning July 25 to Sept.26.

Holland America’s 75 years cruising the Last Frontier

Holland America Line has been cruising to Alaska for nearly 75 years.  We  feel deeply committed to trying to help our friends in ‘The Great Land’ get back on their feet in any way we can this summer,” says Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “

Cruising on  HAL’s Nieuw Amsterdam will be somewhat the same. Dining will be available in all restaurants and specialty venues, as well as room service. Entertainment will also be in full swing in the main show lounge. And there  live music will take place in Lincoln Center Stage, B.B. King’s Blues Club and Billboard Onboard.

Some differences to the experience is the need to be fully vaccinated at least 14-days before departure. You must bring proof with you. In addition to that, passengers will be given protocols to follow on board and in port.

Full details, including information on shore excursions, are in the works. Holland America expects to share these in the coming weeks. The line confirms that it is offering  “Book with Confidence” guarantee for reservations made  by June 30, 2021, for sailings through Dec. 31, 2021. The cruise line’s Cancellation Protection Plan also allows cancellation up to 24 hours in advance. For fares and information contact a Pavlus Travel specialist at 800-528-9300 or on line at pavlus.com

Princess Cruises Alaska information

 Princess Cruises Alaska voyages will go to Glacier Bay National Park–a 3.3-million-acre world-renowned landmark and UNESCO World Heritage site.  The Majestic Princess will also stop in Juneau, Skagway and Ketchikan.

On board services

Remember we are still in rocky seas. That means that dining, entertainment and shore excursion details are a work in progress, according to Princess.

Just like Holland America, passengers must have had full doses of the COVID19 vaccine 14-days before boarding. Proof of shots are mandatory.

 Cruise cancellation policy

Princess reports that all remaining roundtrip Seattle cruises on Emerald Princess, including Alaska Inside Passage and a Northern California Coast cruise will be cancelled. For guests booked on Emerald’s Alaska voyages can substitute a Majestic Princess cruises departing the next day in 2021.

FYI: in preparation for resuming operations Majestic Princess crew members received COVID-19 vaccinations May 21 at the Port of Los Angeles.

However  guests can also opt for a future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100% of the cruise fare paid. This is in addition to a  non-refundable bonus FCC equal to 10% of the cruise fare paid (minimum $25 USD) or a full refund.  Requests must be made  online form by June 30, 2021. If not, you automatically receive the FCC option. FCCs can be used on any cruises booked by and sailing by December 31, 2022.

Ready to explore the wonders of Alaska by ship, call a Pavlus Travel advisor to book your space. They will help with all arrangements for seamless passages.  Just dial 1-800-528-9300.

 

 

 

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