Strikes in Athens Force Cruise Ships Diversions

By ,   June 8, 2016 ,   Cruise Industry

Ongoing strikes in the busiest Greek port, Piraeus outside Athens, have forced at least a couple of cruise ships to divert to alternative port and are likely to affect other ships over the next days.

On May 28, Seabourn Odyssey was forced to divert to Port of Lavrion, on the other side of Athens peninsula and more than an hour from the city.

On Saturday, June 4, Celebrity Constellation skipped Piraeus due to absence of dock workers, and instead headed to Turkey. Tomorrow, June 9, Celebrity Reflection is due to overnight in Piraeus.

Port workers are on rolling 48-hour strikes protesting the privatization of Piraeus Port Authority and are due to be on strike until at least June 9, this Thursday.

Talks are due to be held today, June 8, to try and resolve the situation.

Piraeus

Image: news.gtp.gr

A number of cruise ships are due to call at the port, including: MSC Magnifica and Rhapsody of the Seas today; and MSC Orchestra and Celebrity Reflection on Thursday.

A spokesperson for Celebrity confirmed that the line took the decision to divert its Celebrity Constellation from Piraeus on Saturday (June 4), but: 

"Due to the strike's potential to disrupt port operations, Constellation will now call to Athens (Piraeus) on Wednesday, June 8."

A spokesperson for Greek line Celestyal Cruises, which homeports in Piraeus, shared the cruise line had so far been unaffected, but added: 

"Of course if strikes continue in Piraeus we are going to have Lavrion as alternative embarkation port."

Princess Cruises' Royal Princess is due to call at Piraeus on Saturday, June 11. A spokesman said: 

"We understand a further round of discussions regarding the situation at Piraeus will take place on Wednesday. As soon as we know the outcome we will, if required, make additional arrangements for our ship and guests."