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P&O seems to have cancelled Azura’s world cruise, planned for January to April 2013. Instead, she is expected to do a programme of Caribbean fly-cruises.

Azura’s world cruise was announced in spring last year, and was planned to be a voyage around Asia via the Mediterranean,  Australasia, and Africa. The original announcement caused some surprise as Azura was not seen as a typical ‘world cruise’ ship in the way that Oriana, Aurora and even Arcadia are. Indeed, it wasn’t really marketed as a complete world cruise as such: I have a brochure in which it is broken up into a wide range of exotic fly-cruises, e.g. Southampton to Singapore; Sydney to Dubai; Dubai to Bangkok; Hong Kong to Mumbai, etc. While it is generally possible to purchase segments of a world cruise, these are usually themselves quite lengthy voyages and don’t usually overlap. In the case of these Azura cruises, there was considerable overlap e.g. from Dubai outwards, no less than three possible destinations were available: Sydney (31, 32 or 33 nights), Singapore (16 or 17 nights) and Bangkok (13 or 14 nights). As can also be seen from that list of alternatives, some quite short cruises were available, shorter than a typical world cruise segment.

Today an on-line cruise TA called ‘The Cruise Village‘ announced that these cruise(s) had been withdrawn, and that  Azura would instead do a programme of Caribbean fly-cruises. There are no dates yet, but Cruise Village suggested that they would be from Gatwick and Manchester initially, with possibly more airports to be announced later. Since this morning P&O have indeed withdrawn the original ‘exotic ‘ fly-cruises from their website, although they haven’t made a formal announcement that I’ve seen. The final cruise currently on Azura’s calendar is an 11-night New Year cruise to the Canary Islands departing Southampton on 27 December 2012 and returning there on 7 January 2013. Presumably there will be a transatlantic voyage to the Caribbean after that, to be followed by the fly-cruises through to the spring. It will be interesting to see how the itineraries of Azura’s new programme compares with Ventura’s.

4 Responses to “P&O cancel Azura 2013 world cruise”

  1. Tom: P&O gave me a formal confirmation of the change of plans, which you can see here:

    • Tom says:

      Thank you for the confirmation. It’s interesting to get it confirmed that P&O see better prospects for Azura in the Caribbean than on a world voyage. Now all we need to see are the itineraries. With the change to the organisation of Ventura’s schedule – weekly departures from Barbados and weekly embarkations, instead of ‘two succeeding days a fortnight’ as they are currently doing – it will be interesting to see how Azura’s voyages are going to be organised and where they will be.

  2. veronicaduffy says:

    Dear Sirs, I booked a world cruise with P & O last July 2011 for 110 nights. Much distressed today, to receive a cancellation of said trip. No explanation of why, and no alternatives suggested. Presumably will get a refund of deposit. But not of the health insurance, of 630.00 taken out at booking. Why do you big boys continue to get away with it.Can you explain why you have cancelled. Is it due to the recent disaster? the economic turndown or what. You have left my Husband and I, high and dry, we will never be able to afford such a trip again at our age. Extremely disappointed. Veronica Duffy

  3. Reg Briggs says:

    Yes I agree,the big boys do always geta way with it.
    I am79 wife 75,We took the Christmas Cruise on Queen ELIZABETH Dec 20th,16 days.Entertainment RUBBISH we could not believe we were on the supposed great Quee,Took 10 days to get a laugh in the theatre,guests were walking out,food in the main Britannia returant POOR,
    i HAVE WRITTEN AND EMAILED Cunard BOTH IN AMERICA and the UK as yet no reply,been back a month.Written to the President in the UK Mr Peter Shanks no reply.They treat us OAPs with contempt,they get your money and forget about you.

    I think these Christmas cruises are done by the companies on the CHEAP.,

    Disgusted with CUNARD

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