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

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Cunard Line Coronavirus update

Cunard Line cancelled all cruises with pre-scheduled departures between March 14 and November 1, 2020 (initially through May 15 and July 31). Operations are planned to resume on November 4 (previously on August 1). Cunard now has an expanded cancellation policy.

  • In late-April, Cunard cancelled the company's 2020 Alaska season. The cancelled voyages were all Queen Elizabeth ship cruises (scheduled for August 2020) as roundtrips from Vancouver (BC Canada).
  • In early-June Cunard cancelled more itineraries. RMS Queen Mary 2's program from homeport NYC (August 14 through November 1 including) was cancelled - Transatlantic crossings, Caribbean, Canada-New England. MS Queen Victoria's program (August 14 through October 21 including) was cancelled, affecting departures from Germany (Hamburg, Kiel) and the UK (Southampton). MS Queen Elizabeth's Asian and partially Australian programs (September 28 through November 23 including) were cancelled, affecting departures from Japan (Tokyo), China (Hong Kong), Singapore and Australia (Brisbane, Sydney). 

All bookings on itineraries with departures in the period March 14 through August 31, 2020, were given the option to cancel up to 48 hours (prior departure) without penalties. All affected bookings received a full refund (100% FCC / future cruise credit) transferred to a booking made before December 31, 2021.

Cunard fleet

Review of Cunard

IMPORTANT: Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Cunard Line cancelled all cruises with pre-scheduled departures between March 14 and November 1, 2020 (initially through May 15 and July 31). Operations are planned to resume on November 4 (previously on August 1). Cunard now has an expanded cancellation policy. All bookings on itineraries with departures in the period March 14 through August 31, 2020, were given the option to cancel up to 48 hours (prior departure) without penalties. All affected bookings received a full refund (100% FCC / future cruise credit) transferred to a booking made before December 31, 2021.

IMPORTANT: In late-April, Cunard also cancelled its 2020 Alaska season. The cancelled voyages were all Queen Elizabeth ship cruises (scheduled for August 2020) as roundtrips from Vancouver (BC Canada). In early-June Cunard cancelled more cruises.

  • RMS Queen Mary 2's program from homeport NYC (August 14 through November 1 including) was cancelled - Transatlantic crossings, Caribbean, Canada-New England.
  • MS Queen Victoria's program (August 14 through October 21 including) was cancelled, affecting departures from Germany (Hamburg, Kiel) and the UK (Southampton).
  • MS Queen Elizabeth's Asian and partially Australian programs (September 28 through November 23 including) were cancelled, affecting departures from Japan (Tokyo), China (Hong Kong), Singapore and Australia (Brisbane, Sydney). 

During the no-cruising period, the Cunard ships remain docked in Port Gladstone Queensland Australia (MS Queen Elizabeth) and Port Southampton (Queen Victoria, RMS Queen Mary 2).

Cunard Line (website) is a British-American cruise shipping company and travel 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 2020 was celebrated company's 180th anniversary. 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.

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 - CruiseMapper

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 Germans built large ocean liners.

Because of the Great Depression in the USA (1929-33), 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 1/3rd shares in 1947. Company's name was changed 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. In 2003, RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 was replaced on its Transatlantic service by QM2 (RMS Queen Mary 2). The company also operates MS 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.

In 2020, Cunard Line celebrates company's 180th Anniversary with a special sale on voyages between July 2020-May 2022 fleetwide. The "180th Anniversary Sale" is offered on cruises booked in 2020 (new bookings only, made between February 28-May 18). The promo applies to various itineraries, including Alaskan and Transatlantic Crossings. The promo sale offers 50% reduced deposit, USD 180 pp in OBC (onboard credit with balcony cabin bookings) and free drinks package and free gratuities (with Grill Suite bookings).

In 2022, Cunard will mark company's 100th World Voyage. The first was launched in 1922 when was chartered RMS Laconia (1921-1942) to sail the first continuous world circumnavigation cruise (130-day itinerary with 22 ports). 

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-travelled 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. Travellers 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 on 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 Cunard's liners are dressier than most cruise vessels at night. To maintain high standards, the company requests its customers to dress 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 Italian dishes (pizza, pasta). The Carvery is for carved meats, Lotus is for Asian food.

Cunard entertainment has English flavour, 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 centres 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 - 9 am-12noon, 2-5 pm, 6 pm-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 onboard. 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, labelling 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

Transatlantic crossings with RMS Queen Mary 2 attract British and American passengers (in equal proportions) and from all age groups. Cunard ships cruise to almost all most-popular ship travel destinations in the world, including Caribbean, Mexico, Panama Canal, South America, Alaska, Africa, Europe (Mediterranean and Baltic / Scandinavia and Russia), North America east coast (New England and Canada), Asia, Australia and New Zealand.

Queen Mary 2 cruises are often mixed with destinations in the Caribbean, British Isles, Norwegian Fjords, Canada. Queen Victoria usually operates from homeport Southampton to Canary Islands, Mediterranean, Baltic. All Cunard liners operate around the world cruises.

For season 2019-2020, MS Queen Elizabeth was 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, NZ, South Australia, Papua New Guinea (14-day from Sydney, with maiden port calls to Conflict Islands and Kiriwina, Trobriand Islands).

Cunard cruise itinerary changes (2020-2021-2022)

Cunard Line's November 2019-April 2020 program "Oceans of Discovery" includes 123 destinations in 48 countries, including 10 maiden port calls (in Australia, PNG-Papua New Guinea, Japan), The World Voyage (2020 by RMS Queen Mary 2 - itinerary length 113 nights); Regions of the World; Grand Voyages (with more days at sea).

  • QM2 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 and 2020-H1, Queen Elizabeth sails on a series of roundtrips from international seaports with regionally-focused itineraries. QE operates 6 roundtrips from Melbourne and 2 from Sydney NSW, covering Tasmania, South Australia, and New Zealand, along with a new itinerary featuring Papua New Guinea with maiden calls in Kiriwina and Conflict Islands. 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 program with new voyages to Japan, Australia, Norway Fjords. The fleet sails 169,000+ nautical miles (313,000 km / 195,000 mi) to global 110 destinations in 34 countries, with 8 maiden port calls (including Bornholm, Jakarta, Tokyo). The company offers 2-night stays in major port cities (Barcelona, Hong Kong, Quebec) and also late-evening departures (in Juneau, Aomori, Malaga, 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.

In February 2020, Cunard Line announced a 60-day extension of the current Australian cruise season of its Queen Elizabeth. The iconic ship is scheduled to sail local waters until May 9 strengthening regional and domestic tourism. The extension of the liner’s Australia & New Zealand season is a result of the uncertainty because of port closures and travel restrictions in Asia and their effect on cruise operations, according to Katrina McAlpine, Commercial Director Cunard Australia & New Zealand. The extended Australia season is expected to benefit local tourism via 29 visits to ports around the country during the additional 60-day deployment.

Highlights of the luxurious ship’s 6 new itineraries include Queen Elizabeth’s first-ever 27-night full circumnavigation of Australia and calls to destinations like Eden and Kangaroo Island, which have welcomed cruise visits as a timely contribution after the bushfire emergency. 

On May 9, Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth is scheduled to depart Sydney on a 24-night Transpacific crossing to Vancouver BC via New Caledonia, HonoluluMauiLos Angeles, and San Francisco before the ship commences her Alaska programme. 

Highlights of Queen Elizabeth’s new program include: 

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.

MS Queen Elizabeth is returning to Australia for 118 days (November 2020-February 2021) summer season. It features port calls by ~M2 and Queen Victoria (during their world cruises) with the trio spending a record 49 in-port days in Australia.

Queen Elizabeth’s 4-month homeporting in Australia (since November 2020) includes 60+ itineraries from homeports Sydney NSW and Melbourne. Voyages range from 2-night (between Brisbane, Adelaide, Sydney, Melbourne) to longer itineraries around Australia and New Zealand. They include 12- and 13-night trips between Auckland and Sydney, and visits to Tasmania, and can be combined to B2Bs (25-night back-to-back itinerary) with 9 NZ ports. The Royal Rendezvous (QE and QV) in Sydney NSW is on March 1, 2021. For the first time, two Cunard ships meet in Australia. A special overnight visit to Auckland is on December 31, 2020.

Cunard's Oceans of Discovery program (November 2020-May 2021) features Full World Voyages along with itineraries in Australia and Asia (Japan). The fleet calls at 94 destinations in 38 countries, including 4 maiden port calls in Taiwan, Japan, NZ.

Cunard's world cruises 2021 are on 2 ships - QM2 (East-West cruise to Australia, Asia, Southern Africa, Indian Ocean, Arabian Gulf, Mediterranean) and Queen Victoria (westbound circumnavigation through Panama Canal, Japan, Australia). QM2's "East-West World Voyage to Australia and Asia in 2021 visits ports in the Mediterranean, Suez Canal, Arabian Gulf, Indian Ocean, Southern Africa. It can be booked as roundtrip from Southampton (99-nights, January 10-April 19) or as shorter segments (2- to 64 nights).

  • QM2's 2021 World Voyage offers 45 itinerary combos (3 to 113 nights); 47,000+ nautical miles of cruising travel, 37 ports in 22 countries; overnights in Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Sydney, Cape Town (double overnight), 34 UNESCO sites, transitting the Suez Canal.
  • Queen Victoria's 2021 world cruise (via Panama Canal) is a Southampton roundtrip (108 nights, January 10-April 28) with alternative departures from Florida (Fort Lauderdale) and ending in London (97 nights). It starts with a Transatlantic crossing via Bermuda, follows Trans-Panama transit, Pacific crossing (via Hawaii and Samoa) to NZ, from there Sydney NSW, Australia's Gold Coast, Great Barrier Reef, Darwin and Vietnam to Hong Kong.

Queen Victoria's 2021 deployment offers 38 combinations (from 2 to 112 nights); 41,000+ nautical miles of cruising travel, 39 ports in 24 countries, overnights in Cape Town, Honolulu, Hong Kong, San Francisco, Singapore, Sydney; 25 UNESCO sites, Panama Canal transit.

  • 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 Auckland, Hobart, 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 Line's 2021 program also includes an extended Japan season plus new itineraries visiting Iceland and Baltic Sea ports. QM2 will increase Cunard’s regularly scheduled Transatlantic Crossings in 2021, adding New England and Canada voyages and short-breaks in Europe. Queen Victoria has a new 14-night itinerary in Iceland and a new 9-night Baltic cruise with maiden port call Aarhus, Denmark. Queen Elizabeth spends more time in East Asia with 5 Tokyo roundtrips, a maiden port call at Seogwipo (Jeju Island, South Korea), and two Southeast Asia voyages before the relocation to Australia.

QM2 is the world's only cruise liner with regularly-scheduled crossings between London and New York City. The vessel offers 23 Transatlantic Crossings (April through December 2021), including from Hamburg and Le Havre-Paris. QM2's New England and Canada cruise deals include a July 4th itinerary (with Boston overnight) and in early-October - overnights in Quebec City. Other itineraries include the Caribbean, Norwegian Fjords, 5-night short breaks in Western Europe.

Queen Mary 2 itinerary highlights include:

  • 23 (7- and 8-night) Transatlantic Crossings, including departures from Hamburg and Le Havre
  • 5-night Western Europe Short Breaks, that can be added to a Transatlantic Crossing (booked separately) with stops in Cherbourg, Rotterdam, St Peter Port (Guernsey Island, UK), Zeebrugge
  • 3 (7-night) Norwegian Fjord itineraries roundtrip from London (July and August)
  • 4th of July (6-night) Independence Day themed voyage roundtrip from NYC with an overnight in Boston MA
  • 2 (7-night) New England and Canada itineraries between NYC and Quebec City (October 1 and Oct 8), with overnight in Quebec City
  • 1 (14-night) roundtrip NYC to New England and Canada
  • 2 Caribbean itineraries (NYC roundtrips) including holiday-themed voyages (Thanksgiving Christmas and New Year’s).

Queen Victoria cruises in Northern Europe (May-November 2021) plus several Southern Europe cruises in late spring and autumn - all are roundtrips from Southampton UK. The ship makes a maiden call in Aarhus and offers overnights in St Petersburg, Reykjavik, Funchal, Lisbon. Evening departures are offered from Liverpool, Tromso, Narvik, Funchal.

Queen Victoria itinerary highlights include:

  • 2 new (14-night) itineraries in Iceland - the first one visits Liverpool and Belfast, the other Invergordon and New Haven, plus the Faroes, Inverness, Reykjavik
  • 1 new (9-night) Baltic itinerary to Aarhus (a maiden call), Bornholm, St Petersburg, Helsinki, Kiel, Goteborg
  • 1 new (12-night) North Cape itinerary to 6 Norwegian ports
  • 1 (13-night) British Isles itinerary to Inverness, Liverpool, Glasgow, Belfast, St Peter Port
  • 4 (7-night) Norwegian Fjord itineraries
  • 2 (14-night) Western Mediterranean itineraries to Oporto, Barcelona, Cannes, Gibraltar.
  • 1 (19-night) Central Mediterranean itinerary to Dubrovnik, Zadar, Sibenik
  • 2 (14-night) Canary Islands itineraries to Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, Tenerife
  • 1 (4-night) Western Europe mini-cruise to Bruges and Rotterdam.

In 2021, Queen Elizabeth has an extended Japan homeporting season with 2 additional Tokyo roundtrips. The first one visits Busan, Fukuoka, Kagoshima, Nagasaki, with a maiden call at Seogwipo (Jeju Island). The second circumnavigates Japan and visits Aomori, Akita, Busan, Kanazawa, Nagasaki. Following the June-August Alaskan season, Queen Elizabeth returns to Japan for 3 Tokyo roundtrips and then repositions to Southeast Asia with overnights in Hong Kong, Singapore, Shanghai. Since November, the liner cruises in Australia New Zealand.

Queen Elizabeth itinerary highlights include:

  • 5 roundtrip Tokyo itineraries (7 to 9 nights) in May, September, and October
  • 2 Asian itineraries (8 and 10 nights) to Nagasaki, Hong Kong, Hanoi, Da Nang, Shanghai, Singapore
  • 1 (15-night) Asia-Australia repositioning itinerary from Singapore to Sydney NSW (November) visiting Bali, Brisbane, Jakarta
  • 1 (11-night) Australia-NZ itinerary (Sydney to Auckland) visiting Melbourne, Bay of Islands, Dunedin.

Cunard's 2022 "World and Exotic Voyage Program" runs January through April and features a full World Cruise, itineraries in Australia and Asia (Japan), a voyage around South America (passing Cape Horn). Cunard's fleet is scheduled to call at a total of 93 destinations in 42 countries, including 5 maiden port calls (Brazil, Australia, Japan, Vanuatu). MS Queen Elizabeth offers 2021 Alaskan season with 7 roundtrips from Victoria BC or Vancouver BC, ranging from 10 to 12 nights each.

2022 marks a special year in the history of the company as it is the 100th Anniversary of Cunard’s first World Cruise when American Express Company chartered the line’s Laconia to sail the first continuous circumnavigation of the world by a passenger ship, following in the path of Magellan’s fleet 400 years previously. During the last century, World Cruise has become the ultimate travel experience. No other company has taken more cruise passengers on world voyages than Cunard.

In early 2022, Queen Victoria continues the line’s tradition of world cruising via operating a full westbound World Voyage. She is expected to sail more than 37,600 nautical miles and call at 29 ports in 19 countries.

Cunard Alaskan cruises 2020

Cunard offers culturally-rich shipboard programming for all 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 Point, Juneau, Ketchikan, Sitka, Victoria BC and Skagway. Highlights include scenic cruising through Inside Passage, Hubbard 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 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 Juneau, Ketchikan, Skagway, Sitka. In addition, the voyages offer scenic cruising in Inside Passage, Hubbard 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 MS Queen Elizabeth visits Glacier Bay as part of the company's 2020 Alaskan program. Due to high demand, Cunard spends a full cruising season in Alaska 2020, offering roundtrips from Vancouver BC (June through September).

Cunard offers more deployment in 2020 for North America and homeporting in NYC and Vancouver. On the US East Coast, QM2 spends more time in Canada and New England from NYC and visiting Boston, Quebec City, Newport. On the US West Coast, QE offers departures from Vancouver and visits San Francisco and Los Angeles.

In October 2019, Cunard announced 3 additional roundtrips from homeport Victoria BC to Alaska in 2020.

These voyages are in addition to the roundtrips Victoria BC to Alaska which Cunard announced earlier in 2019.

  • 11-night (July 30-August 10, 2020) visiting Vancouver, Glacier Bay, Skagway, Sitka, Hubbard Glacier, Icy Strait Point, Juneau, Ketchikan. Prices start at US$1,500 pp.
  • 9-night (August 10-19, 2020) visiting Vancouver, Tracy Arm Fjord, Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, Sitka. Prices start at US$1,300 pp.
  • 9-night (August 19-28, 2020) visiting Vancouver, Tracy Arm Fjord, Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, Sitka, Ketchikan. Prices start at US$1,300 pp.
  • 10-night (August 28-Sept 7, 2020) visiting Juneau, Sitka, Hubbard Glacier, Icy Strait Point, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan. Prices start at US$1,450 pp.

Cunard is doubling the company's 2020 Alaskan program with a full cruising season (June through September) with 10 itineraries ranging from 9 to 12 nights.

Cunard Line offers over 140 shore excursions 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 tours 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 train tours inclusive of a 3- or 5-day hotel plus 2 full train travel days on the Rocky Mountaineer.

Cunard related cruise news

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