Named godmother to the ship, owner and chair of Hays Travel Group, Dame Irene Hays DBE DL, will preside at the ceremony.
Gratitude towards travel agents
Referring to Hays, president of P&O Cruises, Paul Ludlow, said: ‘Since the inception of Hays Travel there is no one who has been more supportive of cruising or more of an ambassador for the travel industry. As such there is no one more appropriate to name Iona in this prestigious event than Dame Irene as we celebrate her achievements.
‘We are so immensely grateful for the support we have received from travel agents across the UK, all of whom have faced commercial challenges none of us could have imagined.’
P&O Cruises also supports the Hays Travel Charitable Foundation.
LNG-powered Iona, the cruise line’s first Excel class ship, will sail its seven-night maiden voyage around the coast of the island of Iona and the Scottish Isles from Southampton on August 7.