Robert Courts MP has congratulated the cruise industry for its return to operations, following an over 500-day hiatus during the global pandemic
Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) UK & Ireland met with Robert Courts MP, minister for aviation, maritime and security, today (September 15) as part of an ongoing collaboration between the industry and the government.
During the meeting, the government hailed the industry’s steps and the success of CLIA’s return to action. The collaboration between the government and industry has led to the restart of domestic and international sailings in the last few months.
The meeting took place in Southampton as part of London International Shipping week, with CLIA’s executive committee outlining the success the cruise industry has had on the resumption of itineraries to date.
The UK domestic ‘seacation’ season saw thousands of residents taking national cruise holidays from Spring this year, with many cruise companies shifting their itineraries to suit.
As well as helping to keep many in the travel industry afloat, the seacation season aided in the set up of protocols and best practice for the return of international sailings, which recommenced during the summer. Approximately 1.2 million people have sailed on international cruises since.
During the meeting, Robert Courts said: “Thanks to the dedication and hard work of our cruise sector, we have seen the safe restart of international sailings this summer, after more than a year of still waters.
“I am incredibly proud of what we have achieved together, and look forward to even greater cooperation between Government and industry, helping more people return to seas and sail around the world safely again.”
The chair of CLIA UK & Ireland, Ben Bouldin, said: “The cruise industry has worked incredibly hard together with the government during the last eighteen months to resume operations responsibly. The success of this summer’s round-Britain cruises is a testament to the commitment shown by so many people working within cruise but also in ports, local authorities, health bodies and government.
“The seeds of recovery are vitally important for cruise, as well as the wider travel industry. We look forward to maintaining this collaborative approach as the industry steps up its operations internationally.”