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'This is a once-in-a-lifetime launch and a once-in-lifetime customer experience, and we will do it together when we can all feel free to enjoy ourselves,' Richard Branson and Tom McAlpin said

Virgin Voyages postpones inaugural season until July 15

Virgin Voyages postponed Scarlet Lady's inaugural season until July 15. The maiden voyage will now take place Aug. 7.

'The current global health crisis is understandably making many people rethink upcoming travel plans. While there have been no health concerns on our ship Scarlet Lady, the Virgin Voyages team has engaged future sailors and travel partners as we all navigate this challenging moment together,' the company said.

Note from Sir Richard and Tom McAlpin

'This is a once-in-a-lifetime launch and a once-in-a-lifetime customer experience, and we will do it together when we can all feel free to enjoy ourselves,'  Richard Branson and Virgin Voyages CEO Tom McAlpin said in a note to customers.

New technologies to expedite health screenings

'To expand on our commitment to fostering the best environment for our sailors (passengers), Virgin Voyages is working with relevant parties to research new technologies that will help to expedite health screenings and make people feel safe. Developments are ongoing and the hope is to identify this opportunity over the course of the next month.

'Finally, despite what we are facing, travel will always be a way for us to connect with one another and open ourselves up to new ideas and ways of thinking. So while this isn’t the time for us to meet on the spectacular Scarlet Lady, it will be soon. We can’t wait to see you on board.'

Branson and McAlpin also said the business is 'well-supported and our partnership between the Virgin Group and Bain Capital means that Virgin Voyages can remain focuse on the health abd safety of our sailors and crew.'

200% future cruise credit or refund and 25% FCC

Booked passengers are getting a range of options from a full refund and a voyage credit to bonus offerings for future sailings.

Choices include 200% in future voyage credit, double the value of what the customer has paid.

Passengers can also receive up to $500 in on-board credit if they re-book before June 30.

Those who request a refund will get that plus a 25% future voyage credit on the value paid to use for a future cruise.

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