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May 28 updates: Variety OKd for Seychelles, Viking suspends through August, Marella for most of July

Torstein Hagen_1.jpg
'Travel remains complicated,' Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen said
Here's a quick read of some of today’s coronavirus-related cruise news and announcements.

Viking delays through August

Viking extended its suspension of cruises through August. 'While restrictions related to COVID-19 are beginning to ease in some countries, travel remains complicated,' Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen said.

Those on canceled sailings are offered a 125% future cruise credit, which is fully transferrable and may be gifted to someone else. The FCC can be applied within the next 24 months to any river, ocean or expedition cruise. Travelers unable to use their credit voucher by the expiration date can return it to Viking for a refund equal to the original amount paid.

Those who prefer an immediate refund are asked to request it by June 12.

'Risk-Free Guarantee'

Viking's 'Risk-Free Guarantee' applies to bookings made by June 30. It allows cancellation up to 24 hours prior to departure at no penalty.

Marella cancels for most of July

TUI UK and Ireland extended its cancellations of all beach holidays until June 30 and all Marella Cruises sailings up to July 30.

Variety Cruises gets Seychelles green light

Small ship and yachting specialist Variety Cruises plans a phased return of operations this summer with 49-passenger Galileo due to recommence scheduled seven-night Greek Island itineraries from July 24 and the 44-passenger Pegasos to offer seven-night Seychelles islands round-trips from Male. Both ships will stay in domestic waters.

Variety confirmed it has an agreement with the Seychelles government to be treated like a hotel as the ship is locally based and employs local staff. ‘The minister for tourism has personally confirmed that we can restart sailings,’ Diogenis Venetopoulos, commercial director, Variety Cruises, told Seatrade Cruise News.

Greek Islands

Galileo will sail round-trip Piraeus, visiting the Cyclades islands of Poros, Poliegos, Folegandros, Santorini, Antiparos, Paros, Delos, Mykonos, Syros, Kythnos and Cape Sounion.

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