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Cunard

History, Review, Itineraries, Ships, Deck Plans, News

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Cunard fleet

Review of Cunard

Cunard Line is a British-American cruise line brand, operated by Carnival UK and since 2005 owned by Carnival Corporation (shipowner). Cunard is headquartered in Southampton (England UK) and is among world's oldest passenger shipping companies. In 2015 was celebrated company's 175th anniversary.

Company history

In 1839, Samuel Cunard (Canadian from Nova Scotia) was awarded the first British Transatlantic steamship mail contract. In 1840, he and Robert Napier (Scottish steamship engine designer and builder) formed the "British and North American Royal Mail Steam-Packet Company". The "cruise line" operated four paddle steamers on the UK-Canada-USA Transatlantic route Liverpool-Halifax-Boston.

Cunard Line logo

In the 1870s the line fell behind its rivals, White Star and Inman Line. To meet the competition, in 1879 Cunard was reorganized into Cunard Steamship Company, Ltd in order to raise capital. In 1902 the British Government provided the line with substantial loans and subsidy to build a couple of superliners needed to retain Cunard's competitive position. In the late 1920s, Cunard faced another competition when the Italians, French, and German built large prestige liners. Because of the Great Depression, the company was forced to suspend the construction on its new superliner. In 1934, Cunard was offered loans by the British Government to finish Queen Mary and to build its second ship, Queen Elizabeth. The condition was Cunard to merge with the White Star line and form Cunard-White Star Ltd. Cunard purchased White Star's one-third share in 1947. The name of the company was reverted to Cunard Line in 1950.

Cunard liners

Cunard regained its position as the biggest Atlantic passenger line upon the end of World War II. By the mid-1950s, the line operated 12 ships to Canada and the United States. After 1958, trans-Atlantic liners became increasingly unprofitable due to the introduction of jet airliners. In 1968 Cunard Line withdrew from year-round service to concentrate on cruising and summer transatlantic sailings for vacationers. The Queens were replaced by QE2 (Queen Elizabeth 2), which was designed for her special dual role.

In 1998, Carnival Corporation acquired Cunard. Five years later, Queen Elizabeth 2 was replaced on her transAtlantic runs by QM2 (Queen Mary 2). The line also operates Queen Elizabeth (QE) and Queen Victoria (QV). Currently, Cunard is the only shipping company operating a scheduled passenger service between North America and Europe.

With the opening of Carnival House in 2009 in Southampton, executive control of Cunard was subsequently transferred from Carnival Corp. in the US, to Carnival UK, a primary operating company of Carnival plc. Carnival plc, as the UK-listed holding company of Carnival Group, had executive control of all activities of the group in the UK, with headquarters of all UK-based brands, including Cunard Line, in offices at Carnival House.

The 36-year-old Queen Elizabeth 2 was replaced in 2004 on the North Atlantic by QM2 (Queen Mary 2). QE2 continued cruising until her retirement in 2008. Cunard added a big cruise ship, Queen Victoria (QV) in 2007. QV is not a sister for QM2, being ordered as a Vista class cruise ship by Carnival for Holland America Line (HAL). To reinforce the traditions of Cunard, Queen Victoria has a small museum onboard. In 2010 Cunard Line commissioned a 2nd Vista-class cruise ship, Queen Elizabeth.

In 2011 the three Cunard vessels in service changed their ship registry to Hamilton, Bermuda. For the first time in the company's 171-year history, it had no ships registered in the UK. The captains of cruise ships registered in Bermuda can marry couples at sea.

Cunard ships

On May 25, 2015, the three Cunard ocean liners - RMS Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth - sailed down the Mersey into Liverpool and commemorated the 175th anniversary of Cunard. As The Red Arrows performed a flypast, the trio performed exciting manoeuvers including 180-degree turns.

Cunard ships

In 2015, Cunard Line was awarded best in the categories "Transatlantic Itineraries" and "World Cruise Itineraries" of Porthole Cruise Magazine's Readers' Choice Awards. The magazine's readers participate in an annual contest that evaluates the world's largest cruise shipping companies and determines the industry's leaders in several categories.

Cunard Line inaugurated the company's ever first regularly scheduled Transatlantic Crossing in 1840 with RMS Britannia. Cunard launched its first World Cruise itinerary in 1922 with RMS Laconia.

New ship

At the end of September 2017, Cunard Line officially announced the planned addition of a 4th vessel to its fleet. The investment is part of the shipowner Carnival Corporation's fleet expansion program adding new liners to the fleets of the brand companies AIDA, Costa, Princess, and P&O.

  • The Cunard's shipbuilding contract (memorandum of agreement) was signed with the Italian company Fincantieri on Sept 25, 2017.
  • The new cruise liner will enter service in 2022.
  • The yet unnamed vessel has gross tonnage 113,000 tons and passenger capacity 3000. It will be Cunard's 249th liners since the company’s establishment in 1839.

Cunard Line's cruising experience

Discerning, well-traveled British and American couples from their late 30s to retirees are drawn to the traditional style of Cunard and the notion of "a cruise aboard an ocean liner". Announcements are made in English, French, German, and, on occasion, Spanish. Travelers on cruises are older than those on crossings. However, there is enough buzz about Cunard Line as to attract a number of young passengers and families. The Kid Zone features a splash pool and a dedicated play area for kids ages one to six. Separate programs are reserved for older ages (7 to 12) and teens up to 17. Activities range from games to educational computer classes. Kids can practice social graces when served their afternoon teatime goodies. English nannies supervise the toddlers. Facilities are operated until midnight and group babysitting is complimentary. Infants under 12 months are not permitted. Kids ages 1 to 2 sail free (except for government fees).

The dress code aboard Cunard ships rotates among formal, informal and casual in about equal proportion. Typical for Cunard cruises are the glamorous evenings. Resort casual clothing prevails during the day, but at heart, Cunard ships are ocean liners and are dressier than most cruise vessels at night. To maintain high standards, the line requests her passengers to dress as for dining in fine restaurants.

Dining aboard Cunard ships is by class and dining-room assignments are made in accordance with the booked accommodation category. You can get as much luxury as you wish to pay for on Cunard liners. Passengers in ships' Junior suites are assigned to single-seating Princess Grill. Queen's Grill serves those booked in duplex apartments and the most lavish suites. The rest of the passengers are assigned to seating in the multideck Britannia Restaurant or Britannia Club Restaurant on QE.

Although Britannia's fare is reasonably traditional and frequently outstanding, off-menu requests by Grill guests are commonly granted. Menus also include low-calorie and vegetarian selections.

The most coveted reservations are those on Queen Victoria and Queen Mary 2 in the restaurants named for Todd English, celebrity American chef noted for his sumptuous desserts and innovative Mediterranean cuisine. Both dinner ($30 cover charge per person) and lunch ($20) are offered in this intimate restaurant.

Aboard QM2, Chef's Galley is a small restaurant, where guests can look on as their food is prepared in open galley setting; wine is the only item to be charged here. King's Court buffet is transformed into 3 no-charge alternative dining spots each evening: La Piazza is dedicated to pizza, pasta, and Italian dishes; the Carvery is specialized in carved meats, and Lotus features Asian specialties.

Cunard entertainment has English flavor, with cabaret-style performances, plays and nightly production shows. An authentic pub gives cruisers even more British air. Music for listening and dancing is played in other lounges and bars. In the first-ever shipboard planetarium aboard Queen Mary 2, virtual-reality shows and high-tech presentations offer a virtual ride through space.

Cunard's enrichment programs include expert lectures by top designers, artists, and master chefs. Even navigation and seamanship courses are offered to inspire novice mariners.

Jogging tracks, swimming pools, table tennis, paddle tennis court, golf driving ranges, and shuffleboard barely scratch the surface of facilities dedicated to recreation. Cunard fitness centers are top-quality and boast high-tech workout equipment, separate weight room and classes ranging from healthy living workshops to aerobics.

The Canyon Ranch Spa Club aboard Queen Mary 2 is a one-of-a-kind facility offering salon services, including such famous land-based spa signatures like the 80-minute Canyon Stone Massage. A large 30- by 15-foot thalassotherapy pool has a deluge waterfall, neck fountains, air tub, recliner lounges and massage-jet benches located in the pool. The thermal suite features an aromatic steam room, Finnish sauna, herbal sauna, and reflexology basins. All of these special features are complimentary with a body or massage treatment; otherwise, a per-day charge is applied.

Cunard shipboard policies

  • Pregnant women must have a letter from their doctor or midwife. They can't travel with Cunard Line after the 24th week of pregnancy. Kids under 12 months old are also not permitted. Kids between 12 and 24 months old travel free as 3rd or 4th person in the stateroom. A child sharing a cabin with 1 adult is charged an adult fare. Children (over 2 years of age) sharing a stateroom with 2 adults are charged as 3rd or 4th person (around half the normal fare).
  • A toddler-dedicated nursery is staffed by professional young nannies, and available for kids between 1 and 3 yo.
  • The dedicated "Play Zone" is for kids ages between 4 and 6. "The Zone" is for children up to 17 yo. Kids between 1 and 7 years old are allowed in Play Zone (free of charge) during its opening hours - 9am-12noon, 2-5 pm, 6pm-12midnight. Children 1 to 7 yo must be accompanied by an adult outside the Play Zone. Children 8 to 17-year-old can sign themselves in and out Play Zone and are free to wander solo throughout the ship.
  • Billed to adult's onboard account is everything available for purchase on the ship - bar drinks, Internet access, shopping, spa and beauty treatments. Cabin card's total is deducted from your credit card at the end of the voyage. Bar prices have 15% gratuity (added automatically).
  • Mobile phone calls and Internet access are available on board. The Internet has good download speed and is available in all public areas (including bars) and all staterooms.
  • Pay-per-item laundry service is available on the ship. Laundry items are collected from staterooms by cabin stewards. On all cabin decks are available small self-service (free-of-charge) laundrettes.
  • Cunard ships don't have baggage limits (as a number of bags). However, there is a weight limit per bag - individual bags must not exceed 23 kg (51 pounds). Upon boarding, bags are taken at the cruise terminal and delivered to staterooms. Upon debarkation, they are transferred ashore.

Cunard wine cruises

Since January 2017, Cunard offers shipboard wine-themed education courses via a partnership with the world's largest provider of wine and spirits qualifications WSET ("Wine and Spirit Education Trust").

  • WSET courses were initially available only on QM2’s westbound Transatlantic crossings and world cruises, but were later offered fleetwide and on all voyages.
  • The 5-day course gives WSET Level 1 in wines and covers the basics (wine types, styles, sight, smell, taste, storing, serving, food pairing).
  • The 12-day course gives WSET Level 2 in wines and spirits and explores grape varieties, styles of wines, produce, wine regions, classifications, labeling terminology, categories of spirits and liqueurs.
  • Classes are led by professional sommeliers and educators from Cunard Wine Academy. Each course finishes with an exam. In addition to the globally recognized WSET qualification certificates, passengers also receive lapel pins.
  • The first wine cruise was the crossing Southampton-NYC (December 15, 2016). The first world cruise with WSET courses was on QM2 (January 10, 2017).
  • WSET's qualification program is offered to enthusiasts and wine professionals. It ranges from Level 1 Award (Wines, Spirits, and Sake) to Level 4 Diploma (Wines and Spirits).

Itinerary of Cunard

The Atlantic crossings of Queen Mary 2 attract British and American passengers in equal proportions. There are also a significant number of passengers from continental Europe and smaller numbers of guests of other nationalities. Cunard passengers on crossings are from all age groups.

Cunard Line ships sail almost everywhere vacationers would want to go. Practically every destination around the world is accessible by water. In addition to Cunard's Trans-Atlantic route, the ships of the line ply the waters worldwide, including the Caribbean, Mexico, Panama Canal, South America, Alaska, Africa, Europe, Scandinavia, Russia, the Baltic, New England, Canada, Asia, and Australia.

The bread and butter for Queen Mary 2 are her Atlantic crossings, taking place from spring through fall each year. Mixed in are sailings to the Caribbean, British Isles, Baltic, Norwegian Fjords, as well as short European coastal sailings.

Queen Victoria usually operates from Southampton (as well as from ports like Athens and Venice) and heads to the Canary Islands, Mediterranean, and Baltic. The mostly Southampton-based Queen Elizabeth offers cruises to the Canary Islands, Mediterranean, and Baltic. Additionally, all three Cunard ships sail world cruises.

For season 2019-2020, MS Queen Elizabeth is deployed in Australia to serve a 101-day itinerary program. During this season (December 2019 through March 2020), the ship had scheduled 6 roundtrips from Melbourne and 2 roundtrips from Sydney NSW on itineraries to Tasmania, New Zealand, South Australia, Papua New Guinea (14-day from Sydney, with maiden port calls to Conflict Islands and Kiriwina / Trobriand Islands).

Australia is Cunard's 3rd source market (following the UK and North America) and company's 2nd (after the UK) for Around The World voyages.

Cunard cruise itinerary changes

Cunard Line's January-May 2019 program named “Oceans of Discovery" includes:

  • Roundtrip Alaskan itinerary program (May and June 2019) on MS Queen Elizabeth, with all four 10-night long roundtrips out of Vancouver to Tracy Arm Fjord and Hubbard Glacier.
  • January through May 2019, RMS Queen Mary 2 and the fleet-mates Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria visit 49 different countries and 109 destinations, of which 21 are new call ports (including Boracay, Akita, and Goa.
  • In 2019, Cunard Line also operates a full world circumnavigation on MS Queen Victoria. Since Cunard pioneered the world cruising concept in 1922, the company has undertaken more world cruises than any other passenger shipping company in the world.
  • Queen Elizabeth embarks on a series of roundtrips in 2019. In between are Grand Voyages and the ship’s maiden 27-night Asia-Alaska repositioning cruise from Yokohama to Vancouver. Winter 2019 deployment of Queen Elizabeth includes 25 itinerary combinations (5 to 38 nights in length), 18 countries, 54 ports, 25 maiden calls, overnight stays in Cape Town, Hobart, Wellington and Amsterdam, Fjordland National Park NZ and Marlborough Sound scenic cruising, 23 UNESCO sites.
  • Winter 2019 deployment of Queen Victoria includes 37 itinerary combinations (from 2 to 27 nights), 24 countries, 40 ports, 1 maiden call, overnight stays (Sydney, Hong Kong, Cape Town, and San Francisco), Panama Canal transits, and 26 UNESCO sites.
  • Winter 2019 deployment of Queen Mary 2 includes 28 itinerary combinations (7 to 108 nights), 25 countries, 36 ports, 4 maiden calls, over-night port stays (Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tianjin, Haifa), Suez Canal transits, 42 UNESCO sites.
  • Cunard Line released additional 2019 cruises (North American and European itineraries / April through December 2019). In 2019, RMS Queen Mary 2, makes 19 one-way (eastbound and westbound) Transatlantic crossings, and one 7-night Le Havre to New York crossing (in September).
  • Following Queen Elizabeth's 27-night relocation voyage Yokohama-Vancouver, the ship sails out of San Francisco down North America's west coast through Panama Canal to Florida (Fort Lauderdale) and then on Transatlantic crossing to UK (Southampton) through NYC New York, Iceland, Greenock and Dublin, thus completing a 36-night cruise that includes an overnight in Los Angeles (on the 4th of July).
  • May through December 2019, MS Queen Victoria offers European itineraries.

Cunard's ‘Oceans of Discovery’ cruise program features voyages between November 2019-April 2020. Flagship liner RMS Queen Mary 2 along with Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth visits 123 destinations in 48 countries, including 10 maiden calls in Australia, Papua New Guinea, and Japan. Oceans of Discovery, by Cunard, features The World Voyage, by Cunard (in 2020, RMS Queen Mary 2 sails the only true World Voyage to last between 99-113 nights); Regions of the World, by Cunard; Grand Voyages, by Cunard (with more days at sea).

  • Queen Mary 2 operates the only World Voyage of Cunard in 2020 and undertakes a classic East-West Voyage to Asia and Australia, including the Mediterranean, Indian Ocean, Southern Africa, and Arabian Gulf. The World Cruise can be taken round-trip from either London (99 nights) or New York (113 nights). The voyage includes more overnights than in any of QM2’s world cruises during the past 10 years. 2020 deployment of Queen Mary 2 features: The World Voyage, Grand Voyages, and Regions of the World, by Cunard; 35 cruise combinations ranging between 7-113 nights; a total of 38 ports in 26 different countries; overnights in Dubai, Haifa, Hong Kong, Singapore, Sydney, and a double overnight stay in Cape Town; 38 UNESCO World Heritage Sites; Suez Canal transits. 
  • In December 2019 as well as the first half of 2020, Queen Elizabeth sails on a series of round-trip cruises from international ports with regionally-focused itineraries. QE operates 6 round-trip sailings from Melbourne and 2 from Sydney, covering Tasmania, South Australia, and New Zealand, along with a new itinerary featuring Papua New Guinea with maiden calls in Kiriwina and Conflict Island. The ship also offers multiple cruises in Japan, making 5 maiden calls to ports in Japan in 2020. Queen Elizabeth 2020 deployment offers: Grand Voyages and Regions of the World, by Cunard; 75 cruise combinations ranging between 2-49 nights; 67 ports in 21 different countries; overnights in Cape Town, Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Auckland; scenic cruising in New Zealand, Hubbard Glacier, the Inside Passage, Fiordland National Park; 15 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
  • The winter deployment of Queen Victoria consists of European departures in November-December 2019, followed by a winter round-trip experience to South America which offers a mix of exploration and relaxation. The liner offers longer stays in cruise ports like Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, and overnights in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Callao, and Manaus. Stunning scenic cruising includes Amazon River, Magellan Straits, Cape Horn, Chilean Fjords and Panama Canal. Queen Victoria 2020 deployment includes: Grand Voyages and Regions of the World, by Cunard; 23 cruise combinations ranging between 2-82 nights; 41 ports in 20 different countries; overnights in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Callao and Manaus; Scenic cruising in Amazon River, Panama Canal, Magellan Straits, around Cape Horn and Chilean Fjords; 22 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Cunard Line expanded its 2020 cruise program with new voyages to Japan, Australia, and Norwegian Fjords. In total, the fleet sails over 169,000 nautical miles (313,000 km / 195,000 ml) to global 110 destinations in 34 countries, with 8 maiden calls including Bornholm, Jakarta, Tokyo). The company offers 2-night calls in major port cities (BarcelonaHong KongQuebec) and also late evening departures allowing guests to spend more time in ports JuneauAomoriMalaga, Tromso.

RMS Queen Mary 2 continues to offer regularly-scheduled Transatlantic Crossings between NYC-London, making nineteen 7- 8-night cruises (April through December 2020). QM2 also offers two Norway Fjords cruises (7 to 25 nights) and five Western European (3 to 5 nights). QM2 cruise highlights include:

  • Nine 14- and 15-night Transatlantic Crossings roundtrip from New York/London;
  • Two 21-night cruises with visits to Canada, Iceland, Scotland, roundtrip from New York/London;
  • 4th of July 7-night Independence Day roundtrip from New York;
  • 4 seven-night cruises between New York-Quebec;
  • Eight 14-night Canada and New England cruises which begin and end in Quebec, New York, Le Havre or Southampton.

MS Queen Elizabeth, starting September 2020, embarks on 3 roundtrip voyages from Tokyo Japan, as well as Grand Voyages in North Pacific, Australia, and East Asia. Shorter cruises (2 to 18 nights) or B2Bs (combinations of up to 40 nights) are also available for booking. QE highlights include:

  • 5 roundtrip Tokyo itineraries with varied lengths/destinations;
  • 5 Southeast Asia cruises, ranging from 7 to 23 nights.

MS Queen Victoria returns to Southampton in early spring following a circumnavigation of South America. The liner continues to offer Northern Europe itineraries in addition to 7 shorter Western Europe cruises (2 to 7 nights). It makes 7 maiden calls with overnights (Reykjavik, Amsterdam, Barcelona, St Petersburg) and late evening departures (Narvik, Tromso, Bodo, Dublin, Hamburg, Rotterdam, Malaga). QV highlights include:

  • 4 Baltic voyages, ranging from 9 to 16 nights;
  • 4 Norwegian Fjords cruises, ranging from 7 to 12 nights;
  • 3 Atlantic Coast/Iberia sailings, ranging from 10 to 12 nights;
  • 12-night British Isles cruise;
  • Two 12-night North Cape itineraries;
  • Two 12-night Iceland cruises;
  • Two Western Mediterranean sailings, ranging from 14 to 17 nights.

Cunard also introduced voyage and cruise tour packages on Queen Mary 2 and Queen Victoria. The new pre- and post-cruise tours allow passengers to spend more time in Rome, Cape Town, Hong Kong, and Dubai. Tour packages (3 to 4 days) deliver a mix of cultural and landmark activities combined with upscale hotel rooms. Cunard's new voyage and tour packages include:

  • Discover Hong Kong aboard Queen Mary 2 (March 5, 2019, from $1,569 pp). Post-cruise tours are offered upon arrival in Hong Kong, while pre-cruise tours are available on QM2’s March 5, 2019 departure out of Hong Kong. Tour highlights include Sampan boat ride (to the famous Aberdeen typhoon shelters and the old fishing community), the Peak Tram (funicular railway taking guests to the top of Hong Kong Island), Imperial Dim Sum lunch at Hong Kong’s Jumbo Floating Restaurant, Stanley Village, Lantau Island.
  • Dubai and Omani Peninsula aboard Queen Mary 2 (January 3, 2019, from $3,149 pp). Post-cruise tours are available on the voyages departing from New York/Southampton January 3 and January 10, 2019, respectively. Pre-cruise tours are available on March 25 departure from Dubai. Highlights include Burj Khalifa Tower (featuring 360-degree views of the city), panoramic drive, Dubai Mall (the world's largest), Abra ride (sailing across the waterway on a local wooden boat), Musandam Peninsula.
  • Wild Cape Town aboard Queen Victoria (April 12, 2019, from $2,549 pp). Guests spend 4 days in Cape Town discovering the scenic ecosystems of South Africa with 3 nights’ accommodations at Southern Sun Waterfront Hotel. The Cape Town tour is offered pre-cruise QV’s 16-night cruise out of Cape Town April 12. Highlights of the tour include Cape Peninsula, Cape Point tram ride, Boulders Beach penguins, Table Mountain, Constantia Valley.

All fares are based on double occupancy and don't include taxes, fees, port expenses that range between $55-$830 per person and are subject to change.

Cunard's 2nd largest liner, Queen Elizabeth, is returning to Australia for 118 days between November 2020-February 2021 fully embracing the summer season Down Under. The season features calls from flagship Queen Mary 2 and sistership Queen Victoria during their world cruises, with the trio spending a record 49 days in ports in Australia.

Queen Elizabeth’s 4-month stay in Australia starts in November 2020 and includes over 60 itinerary options as she sails from homeports of Sydney and Melbourne. Voyages range from 2-night sojourns between BrisbaneAdelaide, Sydney, and Melbourne to longer voyages around Australia and New Zealand.

The new offerings include 12- and 13-night trips between Auckland and Sydney visiting a range of ports along the coastline of New Zealand, as well as visits to Tasmania and Victoria. Sailings can be combined to create a 25-night itinerary featuring 9 ports in New Zealand.

Other highlights include a Royal Rendezvous with QV in Sydney port on March 1, 2021, marking the first time the two have met in Australia, and a special overnight visit to Auckland on December 31, 2020, with Cunard's guests being among the first in the world to celebrate the New Year.

Luxury cruise brand Cunard Line announced their Oceans of Discovery cruise program for November 2020-May 2021, which features Full World Voyages along with in-depth itineraries in Australia and Japan. The fleet of Cunard calls at 94 destinations in a total of 38 different countries, including 4 exciting maiden calls in Taiwan, Japan, and New Zealand.

In 2021, Cunard continues the tradition of world cruising via Full World Voyages on 2 ships: QM2 sails the classic East-West cruise to Australia, Asia, Southern Africa, the Indian Ocean, Arabian Gulf, and the Mediterranean, while Queen Victoria travels the world with a westbound circumnavigation through the Panama Canal. Cunard's Queen Elizabeth offers regionally-focused itineraries in Japan and Australia.

  • Queen Mary 2 undertakes her classic East-West World Voyage to Australia and Asia 2021, including the Mediterranean, Arabian Gulf, Indian Ocean, Southern Africa. It can be taken as a roundtrip from Southampton (99 nights, January 10-April 19). Shorter options range in length from 2 to 64 nights and can be combined to create the best travel experience.

The beginning of the cruise is routed through South Africa and the Indian Ocean to Australia. Queen Mary 2 then heads north to Hong Kong and Singapore via Vietnam. The liner then sails through Malacca Straights across the Indian Ocean to the Arabian Gulf. The return to London from Dubai is routed via the Suez Canal and the Mediterranean. 

Queen Mary 2's deployment features for 2021 include The World Voyage; Grand Voyages; 45 voyage combinations that range from 3 to 113 nights; more than 47,000 nautical miles; a total of 37 ports in 22 different countries; overnights in DubaiHong KongSingaporeSydney, plus a double overnight in Cape Town; 34 UNESCO World Heritage Sites; Transit of the Suez Canal.

  • The World Voyage of Queen Victoria is a Westbound circumnavigation via the Panama Canal that can be taken as a roundtrip from Southampton (108 nights, January 10-April 28) or a one-way cruise starting in Fort Lauderdale FL and ending in London UK (97 nights). QV voyage starts by crossing the Atlantic to Florida via Bermuda, which is followed by a trans-Panama segment. The liner then crosses the Pacific via Hawaii and Samoa to NZ and from there calls in Sydney, Australia's Gold Coast, the Great Barrier Reef prior to traveling to Hong Kong via Darwin and Vietnam. Next in line is ship's Asia visit, and the return via Singapore, the Indian Ocean, and South Africa.

Queen Victoria's deployment features for 2021 include The World Voyage; Grand Voyages; 38 voyage combinations that range from 2 to 112 nights; more than 41,000 nautical miles; a total of 39 ports in 24 different countries; overnights in Cape Town, Honolulu, Hong Kong, San Francisco, Singapore, and Sydney; 25 UNESCO World Heritage Sites; scenic Panama Canal cruising.

  • In December 2020-early 2021, Queen Elizabeth offers a series of roundtrip cruises from international ports with regionally-focused itineraries. In between the deployments are exotic grand voyages. QE is due to operate 4 roundtrip cruises from Melbourne and 4 from Sydney, covering the regions of South Australia, New Zealand, and Tasmania. New in 2021 is a couple of "open-jaw" NZ voyages, sailing from Auckland to Sydney and the reverse.

At the end of her Australian season in March, the ship sails north to Japan via Southeast Asia. The cruise includes destinations like Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Taiwan, the Philippines.

QE's Japan deployment, from mid-April through mid-May 2021, consists of 4 roundtrip journeys from Tokyo. A couple of 9-night trips highlight the nature and cultural roots of Japan's main islands of Kyushu and Honshu and are timed to coincide with the spring blooms across the region. The 3rd roundtrip cruise, a 7-night itinerary, coincides with Golden Week, a celebratory time that features a number of Japanese holidays. The 4th roundtrip cruise is a new itinerary, sailing to Okinawa archipelago and Taiwan. It features a maiden visit to the island of Miyakojima and is due to arrive in the tropical islands of the archipelago at the start of the peak season.

Queen Elizabeth's deployment features for 2021 include Grand Voyages; 82 voyage combinations that range from 2 to 39 nights; more than 49,000 nautical miles; a total of 46 ports in 10 different countries; maiden calls in New Plymouth and Lyttleton, New Zealand; Miyakojima, Japan, and Hualien, Taiwan; overnights in AucklandHobart, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Wellington; 24 UNESCO World Heritage Sites; scenic cruising in Fiordland National Park, New Zealand.

  • Additional 2020-2021 cruises on Queen Mary 2 and Queen Victoria include Queen Mary 2's 7-night Transatlantic Crossings departing Dec 8 and 15, 2020, Jan 3 and Apr 19, 2021; as well as a 12-night Caribbean roundtrip itinerary from New York departing Dec 22, 2020. In January and April 2021, Queen Victoria offers 2- and 4-night Short Break sailings from Hamburg and Southampton.

Cunard Alaskan cruises 2019-2020

Cunard Line offers culturally-rich shipboard programming for all 2019 cruises to Alaska on MS Queen Elizabeth. The ship offers four 10-day roundtrip Alaskan voyages (themed ‘The Last Frontier") with roundtrip departures from Vancouver BC (2019 departures - May 21 and 31, June 10 and 20). Itinerary's call ports are Icy Strait PointJuneauKetchikanSitkaVictoria BC, and Skagway. Highlights include scenic cruising through Inside PassageHubbard Glacier, and Tracy Arm Fjord. Cunard’s Alaskan program includes the following special onboard amenities:

  • Lectures by Dr. Rachel Cartwright - a naturalist with 20+ years of experience in Alaska
  • Live performances by Alaska Native Voices and members of Huna Tinglet tribe
  • Presentations by LaDonna Rose Gundersen - cookbook author and commercial fisherwoman
  • Dedicated in-cabin TV entertainment, including documentary series “The Ketchikan Story”
  • Complimentary hot cocoa and blankets provided on Sun Deck
  • Live Navigation Bridge commentaries

Cunard also spends a full 2020 season in Alaska (June through September) on Queen Elizabeth. Due to high demand, the Alaskan program is doubled in comparison to 2019. The expanded program features 10 roundtrips from Vancouver (ranging from 9 to 12 days) plus one cruise to San Francisco (overnight on Independence Day).

Each Alaskan voyage offers popular destinations along the coast of British Columbia (Canada) and Alaska (USA) with longer port times in JuneauKetchikanSkagwaySitka. In addition, the voyages offer scenic cruising in Inside PassageHubbard Glacier and along Sawyer Glacier (Endicott Arm and Tracy Arm). Cunard customers also can combine these itineraries into B2Bs (back-to-back cruises). In 2020, Cunard's Alaskan cruises include:

  • 10-day "Alaska Voyage" roundtrip from Vancouver (June 2-12, 2019), fares start from USD 1600 pp.
  • 3-day "Independence Day Celebration" from Vancouver to San Francisco (July 2-5), fares start from USD 600 pp.
  • 16-day repositioning cruise from San Francisco to Vancouver (July 5-21), fares start from USD 2660 pp.
  • 29-day repositioning cruise from Vancouver to Tokyo (August 29-September 28), fares start from USD 4460 pp.

Cunard announced that their youngest vessel Queen Elizabeth is due to visit Glacier Bay as part of 2020 program in Alaska. Due to high demand, the cruise line spends a full season in the region in 2020, offering round-trip cruises from Vancouver BC from June through September 2020.

According to Josh Leibowitz, SVP Cunard North America, "Cunard's focus continues to be on increasing North American sourcing on our journey to doubling business from this part of the world." He added they are offering more deployment in 2020 for North America and homeporting in New York and Vancouver. On the East Coast, QM2 is due to spend more time in Canada and New England, with departures from NY, making visits to Boston, Quebec City, Newport. On the West Coast, QE offers departures from Vancouver and sails to San Francisco and Los Angeles, with a rare overnight on July 4th.

Cunard Line offers over 140 shore tours in Alaska, including "Whale Watching and Wildlife Quest", "Sea Otter and Wildlife Quest", "Taku Lodge Feast and Five-Glacier Seaplane Discovery", "Dogsled Adventure by Helicopter", "Wilderness Sea Kayaking Adventure", "Cooking in Alaska's Wildest Kitchen", "Bering Sea Crab Fishermen's Tour", "Scenic Mountain Ascent and World's Largest ZipRider".

Other Alaskan shore excursions are themed as ATV Expedition, Wilderness Cruise and Silverking Lodge Seafood Feast, White Pass Scenic Railway (Luxury Class), Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show and Crab Feast, Misty Fjords Seaplane Exploration, Ghosts, and Goodtime Girls Walking Tour, Exclusive Burro Creek Waterfall Lodge and Crab Feast.

Cunard also offers pre- and post-cruise rail tours, that include 3- or 5-day hotel plus 2 full days on the train. Rocky Mountaineer train travels through scenic destinations, such as the glacier and snow-capped peaks of Canadian Rockies, mountain passes, tunnels, and river canyons.

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