Fred Olsen Cruise Lines fleet
Review of Fred Olsen Cruise Lines
Fred Olsen Cruise Lines (fredolsencruises.com) is a Norwegian-owned, UK-based cruise shipping company headquartered in Ipswich (Suffolk UK). The company is part of Fred Olsen Group (family-owned, by Bonheur and Ganger Rolf). Other subsidiaries of Fred Olsen Group (headquartered in Oslo Norway) are the shipping companies Fred Olsen Express (fast-speed ferries in the Canary Islands) and Fred Olsen Energy (crude oil tankers).
The cruise company and travel brand Fred Olsen was established in 1848 (in Hvitsten Norway) by three Olsen brothers (Petter, Andras and Fredrik-Christian) with the purchase of their first ships and starting international passenger shipping.
Today, this family-owned business (into its 5th generation) operates several companies specializing in cruise ship travel, ships' crewing, shipbuilding, even in aviation and offshore industries. Fred Olsen Group also has business interests in the sectors of property development, estate management, luxury hotels, and electronics.
The cruise company's current President and CEO is Peter Deere. In July 2022, Fred Olsen Jr resigned, being the Fred Olsen Group's Chairman and Board Member for 29 years (between 1993-2022).
Fred Olsen ships are smaller-sized but attractive with stylish bars and lounges, smartly furnished staterooms and premium restaurants. Airy public areas provide excellent places to read, have a drink and relax at sea. Daily scheduled activities, uncrowded pool decks, luxury spas are among the other reasons to book cruise vacations with Fred Olsen.
Fred Olsen purchased its first ship in May 2006 - Norwegian Crown (now Balmoral), bought from NCL Norwegian Cruise Line. In November 2007, the vessel was drydocked for lengthening and refurbishment, adding a 40-m long pre-built midship section. The ship (renamed MS Balmoral) entered service in 2008. This project was repeated in summer 2008 with the extension of MS Braemar. The vessel's size was increased from 19,000 to 24,000 GT tons.
Fred Olsen provides traditional, home-like cruising with unhurried onboard life - the main reason for the company's many repeating customers. The liners offer a variety of itineraries with different durations - from a few days (European mini-cruises) to Around the World Voyages. Brochure 2018-2019 ("Venture to the four corners of the world") included two World Cruises - 107-night (Black Watch, departing from Southampton on November 12, 2019, prices from GBP 9,850 pp) and company's ever-longest itinerary - 168-night (Boudicca, departing October 3, 2019, prices from GBP 15,000 pp).
On March 7, 2017, Fred Olsen announced its most successful cruise sales day ever. Total bookings were over GBP 3 million for that day. Most of the bookings were made by top-tier loyalty club members, following the official release of Fred Olsen's 2018-2019 cruise itinerary program. The increase in bookings over the same launch day in 2016 was 15%. By the new program, all 4 Fred Olsen ships had planned visits to 228 ports/islands in 73 countries. The program also featured 91 scenic cruising destinations included in 135 unique itineraries.
The company enjoys a high repeat booking rate. To attract first-timers, since 2013 Fred Olsen offers "Enjoyment Promise". By this initiative, a full cruise full refund is guaranteed to anyone who doesn't enjoy the company's cruising vacation product. The cruise line guarantees that if passengers find that the experience is not for them, they can leave the cruise ship at the next available call port. The "Enjoyment Promise" offer applies only to new bookings and first-time customers.
Occasionally, Fred Olsen offers short-breaks (themed as "Taster Cruise") allowing potential customers to book 1-night UK cruise deals. This is a perfect opportunity to sample the company's product without committing too much money or time. Booking these 1-night deals doesn't require purchasing travel insurance. Package price includes Drinks Package added for free. Optional flights from Belfast or Derry can be added with cruise port transfers for GBP 1000 pp. For cruise passengers who don't want to fly, overnight ferry (Belfast Ireland to Birkenhead England) can be added with cruise port transfers for GBP 100 pp.
In August 2017, the company contracted Speedcast International Ltd to provide fleetwide full package communication (voice and data) services. Speedcast (renowned provider of remote communication and IT solutions) installed on all Fred Olsen ships satellite VSAT terminals plus land-based 4G data connectivity. The new technology allows seamless, automatic switching between various networks ensuring highly reliable connectivity at all times. The new network also provides connectivity between the company's offices and the fleet all over the world.
2018 was the company's record year as cruise sales, with November 19 (Monday) being the year's most successful sales day (nearly GBP 1,6 million). Also in 2018 was started the charter operations of Fred Olsen's first dedicated riverboat Brabant (Amadeus Princess). The 156-passenger ship cruises on the rivers Moselle, Rhine, Main, and the Danube.
In April 2019 was introduced the "Brexit Promise" guarantee. In cases of cruise cancellation due to UK's Brexit, the company guarantees a full refund to all bookings - plus a free cruise. In 2020-2021, Fred Olsen ships (ocean and riverboats) will visit a total of 277 destinations in 90 different countries across 6 continents on 170 itineraries.
Fred Olsen cruise and ferry fleets' cellular services (onboard Internet/WiFi/connectivity) are provided by WMS-Wireless Maritime Services LLC (Miramar Florida-based company).
Fred Olsen Ferries
"Fred Olsen Express" (1974-founded as "Ferry Gomera", headquartered in Tenerife) is also part of Fred Olsen Group. The company provides regularly scheduled inter-island passenger shipping services via fast ferries in the Canary Islands. The company's main rival on this market is Naviera Armas.
Fred Olsen Express has a fleet of nine Ro-Pax ships (including 2 trimarans under construction, scheduled deliveries 2020-2021). Among these vessels is the world's first trimaran ferry (HSC Benchijigua Express, launched 2005) with a capacity of 1350 passengers and 357 vehicles. Each of the new trimarans is powered by four Rolls-Royce engines (MTU Series 8000 M71L / 20-cylinder) with combined power output 36,4 MW. Trimaran's max capacity is 1100 passengers and 276 cars. Max speed is 38 knots (44 mph / 70 kph).
Currently, Fred Olsen ferries operate 12 routes in the Canaries, connecting the islands Tenerife, Lanzarote, Gran Canaria, Fuerteventura, La Palma, and La Gomera. Crossings travel time range between 25 min (Lanzarote - Fuerteventura) and 4 hours (Lanzarote - Gran Canaria).
Fred Olsen fleet meets 2015-2018-2021-2023
The four vessels arrived at 8 am and left the port at 6 pm.
- MS Balmoral was on an 8-night "Norwegian Fjords" cruise from Southampton UK (July 25). Arriving from Stavanger Norway, it docked at Bontelabo Terminal.
- MS Black Watch was on a 9-night "Cruising the Fjordland" cruise from Liverpool UK (July 23). Arriving from Flam Norway, it docked at Skolten South Terminal.
- MS Boudicca was on a 7-night "Glaciers, Fjords and Waterfalls of Norway" cruise from Newcastle UK (July 26). Arriving from Newcastle upon Tyne, it docked at Skolten North Terminal.
- MS Braemar was on a 14-night "Falls, Fjords and Faroe Islands" cruise from Dover UK (July 18). Arriving from Akureyri Iceland, it docked at Festningskaien Terminal.
- The day-long festivities in Bergen included quayside live music performances (marching drummers, singers, music bands), onboard entertainment (afternoon show, open deck party, live band music), onboard treasure hunt, "water cannon" send-off show as all Fred Olsen ships were leaving the port.
- All four Fred Olsen ships visit Bergen every year since 1997.
- Following the "fleet meet" day, Balmoral continued to Flam, both Black Watch and Braemar to Eidfjord, Boudicca - to Alesund.
On September 10, 2018, for the company's 170th anniversary, Fred Olsen's fleet docked together in Cadiz (Spain). The 4 themed cruise itineraries ("Captains in Cadiz") were opened for booking on September 28, 2017. Port's excellent facilities are located within the city and allowed all 4 liners to be berthed alongside each other.
- All 4 liners sailed into Cadiz harbor at ~8 am and ~4000 passengers were welcomed by "Los Sones de Cadiz" (music band). The ceremony was attended by Fred Olsen Junior, as well as the city's Mayor, Cadiz Port Authority's President, and other VIP guests.
- At 5 pm, all 4 liners departed in convoy, serenaded by a local jazz band. They were led out of Cadiz Harbour by a fire tugboat spraying water cannons. The fleet passed under "Constitution of 1812 Bridge" information: Braemar returned to Southampton; Black Watch and Balmoral went to Lisbon; Boudicca - to Ibiza.
The next fleet-meet was initially planned for April 4, 2020, in Port Funchal (Madeira Island). All 4 itineraries (themed "Four Freds in Funchal") included as activities welcome ceremony, live music performances, specially-prepared food menus, fun competitions between the crew and passengers of each boat. However, due to the global Coronavirus crisis, the fleet rendezvous was canceled and rescheduled for October 22, 2021 ("Four Ladies in Lisbon") in Port Lisbon Portugal.
Next are listed the 4 itineraries planned for the "Four Ladies in Lisbon" (fleet-meet 2021).
- (Braemar) 27-night "Iconic Sites of Croatia and Italy" roundtrip from Southampton (September 30, from GBP 3800 pp)
- (Balmoral) 16-night "Heritage Sites of the Med" roundtrip from Newcastle (October 12, from GBP 2000 pp)
- (Borealis) 15-night "Exploring the Azores and Portugal" roundtrip from Liverpool (October 18, from GBP 2000 pp)
- (Bolette) 15-night "Escape to the Canaries" roundtrip from Dover (October 18, from GBP 1900 pp)
Next are listed Fred Olsen's "fleet-meet in Funchal" itineraries scheduled for 2023. Prices ranged between GBP 2000-2100 per person.
- (Bolette) 15-night "Spain & Portugal with Fleet in Funchal" roundtrip from Southampton (October 29)
- (Balmoral) 15-night "The Canary Islands with the Fleet in Funchal" roundtrip from Southampton (October 30)
- (Braemar) 15-night "Discovering Cultural Morocco with the Fleet in Funchal" roundtrip from Dover (October 30)
- (Borealis) 14-night "The Azores with The Fleet in Funchal" roundtrip from Liverpool (November 1)
(Coronavirus crisis) passenger shipping pause 2020-2021
Due to the Coronavirus crisis, Fred Olsen suspended the entire cruise fleet's passenger shipping operations (all vessels - ocean and riverboats) canceling all voyages with pre-scheduled departures between March 14, 2020, and June 30, 2021.
River- and ocean fleets' operations were planned to resume on October 24, 2020, but were eventually canceled. Ocean voyages resumed in 2021 on July 5 (Borealis/Maiden Voyage, cruise to nowhere from Liverpool), and on August 16 (Bolette/Maiden Voyage, cruise to nowhere from Dover). Balmoral restarted in 2022 (May 2/Canaries from Newcastle). Braemar was scheduled to restart in 2023 (on April 28, from Southampton).
All affected bookings were fully refunded, including on prepurchased through the cruise company packages and services. All bookings on Fred Olsen cruises 2020 (any itinerary) are allowed to cancel penalty-free (up to 14 days prior departure) and rebook any Fred Olsen 2021 cruise (river or ocean).
During the lay-up period, all ships were anchored in the Firth of Forth estuary, near Rosyth (Edinburgh Scotland).
IMPORTANT: in July 2020, Carnival Corporation (via its subsidiary company Holland America Line) sold to Fred Olsen two cruise ships - MS Amsterdam (2000-built) and MS Rotterdam (1997-built), which were renamed "MS Bolette" and "MS Borealis", respectively. Both vessels' deliveries were planned for September 2020.
- On August 21, 2020, Fred Olsen confirmed the retirement of two cruise ships - Boudicca (1973-built, 47-years-old) and Black Watch (1972-built, 48-years-old). Both were sold to a Turkish company to serve as hotel ships.
- After joining the fleet, the former Holland America ships Amsterdam (Bolette) and Rotterdam (Borealis) increased the company's passenger capacity by ~30%.
All bookings on Boudicca and Black Watch were automatically transferred onto the ships Bolette and Borealis. Bookings opened on September 7 (Bolette) and September 15 (Borealis).
Itinerary of Fred Olsen Cruise Lines
Fred Olsen"s cruise fleet is UK-based (homeported) during most of the year, with roundtrips out of UK departure ports - Southampton, Dover, Falmouth, London-Tilbury, Harwich, Liverpool, Newcastle, Rosyth (Edinburgh), Portsmouth, Greenock-Glasgow and Belfast Ireland. MS Braemar ship"s winter Caribbean fly-cruise program is from homeport Bridgetown Barbados and provides connecting flights from Manchester and London Gatwick.
Fred Olsen"s itineraries are in popular destinations like the Baltic, Norway Fjords, Mediterranean, Canaries, Caribbean. Longer itineraries include "Around the World" and "Around South America" voyages. The list of cruise destinations operated by Fred Olsen ships includes Mediterranean (also Adriatic), North Africa (Morocco), Canary Islands, Transatlantic crossings, Canada-New England, Northern Europe-UK (Around Britain/British Isles, Iceland, Norway), South America, USA-Canada.
One of the "most British" cruise companies, Fred Olsen"s fleet consists of smaller-sized vessels. Fleet"s largest liners (two former Holland America ships) joined in September 2020 - Bolette/MS Amsterdam (2000-built) and Borealis/MS Rotterdam (1997-built). At the same time, the fleet left Boudicca (1973-built, 47-years-old) and Black Watch (1972-built, 48-years-old).
Fred Olsen cruise itinerary changes
Fred Olsen added a South Africa program on MS Boudicca (transferred to Bolette) operated with the UK to South Africa fly-cruise deals. Boudicca"s fares were inclusive of flights from London (or Manchester) to Cape Town (departure port). The 14-day roundtrip itinerary included overnights in Port Elizabeth, Richards Bay, and Durban. The 3-day stay in Cape Town offers as tour options Scale Table Mountain (cable car ride), wine tours (Stellenbosch, Constantia), Camps Bay strolling, visiting the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront complex and the Newlands (cricket ground), Cape Town Harley Davidson bike tour, boating, shark diving, whales-dolphins watching.
- mv Balmoral (1988) - the UK/British Isles, Baltic Sea (Russia-Scandinavia and Norwegian Fjords) and the Canary Islands leaving out of Newcastle (home-port), also from Dover and Southampton (home-port) including on Transatlantic round-trip cruises to South America.
- sold and left the fleet in 2020/ ms Black Watch (1972) - World Cruise from Southampton, Northern Europe (Norway Fjords, Russia and Scandinavia) leaving from England (Dover, homeport) and Scotland (Edinburgh-Rosyth homeport).
- sold and left the fleet in 2020/ ms Boudicca (1972) - UK/British Isles, Azores, and Madeira, the Mediterranean leaving from Liverpool (home-port), World Cruise round-trip from Southampton to the Caribbean and South America. Select departures from Greenock-Glasgow, Belfast, and Rosyth were also available.
- ms Braemar (1993) - Baltic Sea (Russia and Scandinavia, Norway Fjords), France (Atlantic Coast ports), Canary Islands, and Eastern Mediterranean out of Southampton (home-port). During the winter season offers Caribbean cruises out of Barbados.
- ms Bolette (fka MS Amsterdam, 2000-built) was acquired from Holland America Line (Carnival Corporation) in July 2020.
- ms Borealis (fka MS Rotterdam, 1997-built) was acquired from Holland America Line (Carnival Corporation) in July 2020.
After joining the fleet (in September 2020), Bolette and Borealis increased the company's passenger capacity by ~30%. To Bolette and Borealis were transferred the itineraries previously scheduled, respectively, for Boudicca and Black Watch.
At an extra charge, Fred Olsen cruise passengers benefit from exclusive excursions on newly-installed RIBs (Rigid Inflatable Boats) with max capacity 12 people (each). Fred Olsen also offers all-inclusive cruise package upgrades (additional fixed price PP per day) and UK fly-cruise deals to Canary Islands (year-round discounted airfare from Southampton).
In 2022, the company introduced 5x "Signature Experiences" (Itinerary Insights, Sky at Sea, Ship and the Sea, Scenic Discoveries, Treats of the Region) as part of its “Joy of the Journey” program. All experiences are led by expert guides and include Sky at Sea (open-deck sunrise and sunset viewing, stargazing events, wildlife watching and nature-themed talks in the Observatory Lounge), Itinerary Insights (lectures and talks themed on culture, arts, and the history of the visited destinations), Ship and the Sea (themed on Fred Olsen company's history, including meetings with the Captains and crew), Treats of the Region (food- and dining-temed, led by the chefs and galley teams, live cooking demos for making and sampling local dishes).
OCEAN itineraries 2021
In September 2020 were announced MS Balmoral's new itineraries leaving in 2021-Q3 roundtrip from homeport Portsmouth England.
- 5-night "French cities with the Seine" (departure October 30)
- 13-night "Arctic Norway and Northern Lights" (November 4)
- 13-night "Winter warmth of the Canaries" (November 17)
- 6-night "German Christmas Markets" (November 30)
In April 2020, the entire Fred Olsen ocean fleet was expected to reunite for the 3rd time in the Madeiran capital of Funchal to celebrate "Four Fred.s in Funchal"! In September 2018, the fleet came together to mark the line"s 170th anniversary in shipping via the "Captains in Cadiz" celebration. However, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines confirmed that its 3rd historic fleet get-together will be "Four Fred.s in Lisbon" which is expected in October 2021. It comes after the "Four Fred.s in Funchal" event which was scheduled to take place on April 4 on the garden island of Madeira was cancelled because of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
In September 2020, Fred. Olsen launched 8 new itineraries for Balmoral in 2021, which include a series of regional sailings from the port of Portsmouth UK (England). On these new cruises of 5 nights or more, passengers are able to enjoy a free beverage package, on bookings made by October 31, 2020.
Clare Ward, Director of Products and Services for Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines said they were very excited to introduce more new cruises and equally excited to return to Portsmouth for 4 of their 8 new voyages. He added that onboard Balmoral, "guests can sail the Seine, search for the Northern Lights, chase the sun in Madeira and the Canaries or visit the German Christmas markets for festive shopping."
- Highlights of Balmoral's new itineraries include a 14-night voyage "The Canary Islands and Madeira" departing from Southampton UK on February 2, 2021. Prices start from GBP 1,600 per person and include calls at Lisbon, Funchal, Santa Cruz de la Palma, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Las Palmas, Arrecife, La Coruna.
- On November 4, 2021, Balmoral is scheduled to commence a 13-night "Arctic Norway and Northern Lights" sailing which sets sail from Portsmouth. Ports of call include Molde, Narvik, Alta (overnight), Tromso, Alesund. Prices start from GBP 1,600 per person.
- Another new cruise is the "German Christmas Markets" with prices from GBP 700 per person and visits to Bremen and Hamburg. Balmoral departs from Portsmouth on November 30, 2021.
OCEAN itineraries 2022-2023
MS Braemar returns to Corinth Canal in September 2022 for the 3rd time. Boat's maiden transit was in October 2019 when it sailed the 6,4-km long, 24-m wide waterway. Voyage 2022 (26-night "Corinth Canal and Greek Islands Cruise") departs from Southampton on September 23, 2022, with prices from GBP 4200 per person with double occupancy. Itinerary's call ports include Malaga, Valletta, Agios Nikolaos, Rhodes, Ermoupoli (Syros Island), Corinth Canal passage, Patras (overnight), Katakolon, Argostoli, cruising Strait of Messina, passing by Stromboli, Trapani, Ibiza, Cartagena, Lisbon, back to Southampton.
Braemar"s 2nd Corinth Canal (2021) is a 25-night "Greek Islands and Corinth Canal" voyage from Southampton (departure April 16, 2021). A 29-day Arctic itinerary (August 2021) visits Norway, Greenland and Iceland. Call ports include Dover, Andalsnes, scenic cruising Naeroysundet, Torghatten, crossing Arctic Circle, Svolvaer, Trollfjord, Tromso, Honningsvag, cruising by North Cape, Longyearbyen, Tempelfjorden and Tuna Glacier, Jan Mayen Island, Reykjavik (overnight), scenic cruising Prins Christiansund and Tunugdlliarfik Fjord, Narsarsuaq (overnight), Nanortalik, scenic cruising Tasermuit Fjord and Prins Christiansund, Isafjordur, Akureyri (overnight), back to Dover.
In 2023, Fred Olsen's Balmoral offers the "North American Waterways and Canadian Fall" itinerary (UK roundtrip) that includes the company"s maiden cruise on Hudson River (New York USA). The 34-night / 35-day voyage (booking code L2323 ) starts from Southampton (September 26, 2023), with prices from GBP 5300 (EUR 5860 / USD 6940) per person with double occupancy. Call ports include St John"s Newfoundland (overnight), Sydney NS, Halifax NS (overnight), Saint John NB, Portland ME, Boston MA, Cape Cod Canal, passing by NYC"s Statue of Liberty, NYC New York (2-night stay), Hudson River, Chesapeake and Delaware Canal, Baltimore MD (overnight), Transatlantic crossing, Hamilton Bermuda, Ponta Delgada Azores, La Coruna Spain.
In late-November 2020, the company announced more details of its 2022 itinerary program, with 2 new cruises available for booking: "Canada in the Fall" and "Rugged and Remote Spitsbergen". Early bookings receive up to GBP 250 per person in OBC (onboard credit). Fred Olsen's 2022-2023 full program will be released in March 2021.
In June 2022, MS Balmoral starts a 15-night cruise to Spitsbergen Island in Norway's Svalbard Archipelago, including an Arctic Circle crossing to experience the Midnight Sun. A 19-night Canada cruise itinerary is planned for MS Borealis and visits 7 ports across 3 Canadian provinces. Bookings made before December 31, 2020, receive up to GBP 200 per person in OBC (Spitsbergen) and up to GBP 250 per person (Canada).
- Balmoral's 15-night "Rugged and Remote Spitsbergen" cruise departs from Newcastle England on June 222, 2022. Prices start from GBP 2500 per person, with up to GBP 200 pp in OBC.
- Borealis' 19-night "Canada in the Fall" cruise departs from Liverpool UK on September 28, 2022. Prices start from GBP 3000 per person, with up to GBP 250 pp in OBC.
Earlier in 2020, the company introduced the new 28-night "Black Sea Discovery with the Mediterranean" itinerary (September 2022) and the 101-day World Cruise on Borealis (January 2022).
Braemar ship's Prussia-themed voyage (10-night "Revisiting Prussia" itinerary) departs from Rosyth-Edinburgh Scotland on August 19, 2022. Prices start from GBP 1500 per person, with up to GBP 150 per person in OBC for bookings made by January 29, 2021. Call ports include Rosyth, Szczecin Poland, Gdansk-Gdynia Poland, Baltiysk-Kaliningrad Russia, Sassnitz (Rugen Island), Travemunde, Kiel Canal (transit), and back to Rosyth.
MS Braemar's 27-night "Discovering the Adriatic Cruise" (booking code M2230 ) departs from Southampton on October 23, 2022, with pices from GBP 4200 pp. The itinerary's call ports are Cadiz Spain, cruising by Stromboli Island, Strait of Messina, Crotone, Gallipoli, Bay of Kotor, Kotor Montenegro, Sibenik Croatia, Venice, Chioggia, Split Croatia, Dubrovnik Croatia, Monopoli, Cartagena Spain, Lisbon, Leixoes-Oporto, Aviles Spain.
A voyage to the Balkans is scheduled for MS Bolette. The 18-night "Discovering the Balkans" cruise is a roundtrip from Southampton (departure June 14, 2022) with prices from GBP 2800 per person with double occupancy. Ports of call are Cartagena, Kotor Montenegro, Dubrovnik Croatia, Neum Bosnia (maiden port call), Split Croatia, Durres Albania, Cagliari (Sardinia) Italy, Tangier Morocco.
This was the 6th released by Fred Olsen 2022 itinerary, following the 15-night "Rugged and Remote Spitsbergen" (Balmoral in June), 10-night "Revisiting Prussia" (Braemar in August), 19-night "Canada in the Fall" (Borealis in September) and 28-night "Black Sea Discovery with the Mediterranean" (Balmoral in September) and the 101-night World Cruise (Borealis in January).
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ Braemar ship is scheduled to repeat history when she returns to the Corinth Canal in April 2022. In October 2019, the 924-passenger Braemar broke the world record for being the largest vessel ever to traverse the 6,4-km long Corinth Canal in Greece. In April 2022, Fred Olsen Braemar returns to the Canal, which is just 24-m wide at its narrowest point, in order to complete the feat again.
Braemar's 25-night "Corinth Canal & Ancient Greece" cruise is roundtrip from Southampton UK on April 20, 2022. Prices start from GBP 5000 per person. Ports of call include Malaga, Milazzo, cruising by Stromboli, cruising Messina Strait, Katakolon, Argostoli (Kefalonia Island), Corinth Canal passage, Ermoupoli (Syros Island), Piraeus-Athens, Rhodes, Agios Nikolaos, Valletta, Ibiza, Cartagena, Lisbon.
In mid-March 2021 was unveiled a new itinerary 2022-2023 program with a total of 126 new cruises (visiting ports in 82 countries) and new departures from London-Tilbury and Belfast. The program includes 5-night mini-cruises out of 8 UK ports (Tilbury, Belfast, Southampton, Dover, Liverpool, Portsmouth, Newcastle, Edinburgh) as well as fly-cruise deals.
Fred Olsen's 2022-2023 itineraries include as maiden ports in Japan (Hakata-Fukuoka, Nagoya), Italy (Crotone, Gallipoli, Monopoli), Norway (Lyngdal), Canada (Louisbourg NS). Fred Olsen's 2022-2023 itineraries include:
- MS Borealis/ 8-night "Scenic Isles of Scotland" from Liverpool (June 9) and from Belfast (June 10) in 2022 - prices start from GBP 1300 per person with double occupancy.
- MS Balmoral/ 5-night "Summertime Norwegian Fjords" from Newcastle (August 27, 2022) - prices start from GBP 800 pp.
- MS Bolette/ 15-night "Ancient Walls of the Med with Malta" from Tilbury (November 17, 2022) - prices start from GBP 1900 pp.
- MS Braemar/ 10-night "Corinth Canal and Ancient Greece" (fly-cruise from Valletta Malta, March 27, 2023) - prices start from GBP 2200 pp.
Fred Olsen Bolette ship's inaugural cruises 2021-2022
MS Bolette ship"s inaugural cruise program consists mainly of itineraries previously scheduled for Boudicca, plus new sailings added. The UK-based vessel is predominantly homeported in Dover England. MS Bolette"s maiden voyage is a 7-night "Scotland and Northern Ireland Cruise" leaving roundtrip from Southampton on March 5, 2021. The inaugural cruise is followed by two ex-UK voyages before visiting Portugal"s Azores and Madeira islands over Easter break.
Customers who booked by September 30 (2020) any Fred Olsen Bolette cruises 2021-2022 received free shipboard gratuities and up to GBP 100 per person in OBC (onboard credit). Highlights of MS Bolette"s inaugural cruise season include:
- 7-night "Scenic Scotland with Belfast" departing from Southampton UK on March 5, 2021. Prices start from GBP 700 per person. Ports of call include Southampton, Belfast, scenic cruising by Fingals Cave and Dutchman"s Cap, Lerwick, Kirkwall, Southampton.
- 12-night "Icelandic Wonders and Wildlife" departing from Dover UK on June 3, 2021. Prices start from GBP 1800 per person. Ports of call include Dover, Reykjavik (overnight stay), Isafjordur, Akureyri, scenic cruising Eyjafjordur and Hrisey, Seydisfjordur, Kirkwall, Dover.
- 16-night "Moroccan Discovery with Cape Verde" departing from Southampton on November 20, 2021. Prices start from GBP 1800 per person. Ports of call include Southampton, Santa Cruz de la Palma, Mindelo (Sao Vicente Island, Cape Verde), Praia (Santiago Island, Cape Verde), Porto Novo (Santo Antao Island, Cape Verde), Agadir (Morocco), Casablanca (Morocco), Tangier (Morocco), Southampton.
Fred Olsen Borealis ship's inaugural cruises 2021-2022
Voyages for Fred Olsen's second (ex-Holland America) cruise ship Borealis (fka MS Rotterdam) went on sale in mid-September 2020, with an inaugural program 2021 that includes new itineraries out of homeport Liverpool England.
MS Borealis' maiden voyage is a 6-night "Scottish Lochs and Isles" roundtrip (April 23, 2021). Follows a 5-night "Irish Capitals and Scottish Scenery" itinerary, before the liner goes to the Mediterranean, Iceland, Norway and other popular destinations.
Customers who booked by September 30 (2020) any Fred Olsen Borealis cruises 2021-2022 received free shipboard gratuities and up to GBP 100 per person in OBC (onboard credit). Highlights of MS Borealis inaugural cruise program include:
- 6-night "Scottish Lochs and Isles" departs from Liverpool (April 23, 2021). Prices start from GBP 600 per person. Ports of call are Liverpool, Belfast, scenic cruising (Loch Torridon, Loch Broom, Loch Eriboll), Lerwick, Kirkwall, Liverpool.
- 16-night "In Search of Aurora Borealis" (Norway) departs from Liverpool on November 16, 2021. Prices start from GBP 2000 per person. Ports of call are Liverpool, Belfast, Alesund, Arctic Circle crossing, Tromso, Alta, Hammerfest, Narvik, Trondheim, Liverpool.
- 14-night "Canaries Christmas and Funchal Fireworks" departs from Liverpool on December 21, 2021. Prices start from GBP 2300 per person. Ports of call are Liverpool, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Arrecife, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, San Sebastian de la Gomera, Funchal, Liverpool.
WORLD CRUISE 2022 (MS Borealis)
On October 1, 2020, Fred Olsen announced a World Cruise on MS Borealis (departing roundtrip out of the UK in January 2022) that visits a total of 37 call ports. "Around the World Voyage 2022" can be booked as Liverpool roundtrip (104-days itinerary, departs on January 4) and as Southampton roundtrip (100-days itinerary, departure January 6). Prices started from GBP 10450 (Liverpool) and GBP 10000 (Southampton).
- Signature destinations include Suez Canal transit, Panama Canals full transit, North America, Pacific Ocean islands (Hawaii, Papua New Guinea, Great Barrier Reef), Australia and New Zealand (3-day Sydney NSW overnight stay), Singapore, Dubai.
- Bookings made by October 31, 2020, received up to GBP 600 in OBC (onboard credit per cabin).
- Besides the full itinerary, World Voyage 2022 is available for booking in smaller segments (17- to 84-days in length).
WORLD CRUISE 2023 (MS Borealis)
In early-March 2021, Fred Olsen announced the "Around the World in 80 Days" itinerary themed on Jules Verne's novel "Around the World in Eighty Days" (1873-published). The 80-day world cruise celebrates the novel's 150th anniversary and will visit many of the ports visited by the novel's protagonist Phileas Fogg. Among the planned seaports are Mumbai India, China's Hong Kong and Shanghai, San Francisco CA USA. The visit to Safaga (port to Luxor) will coincide with the 100-year anniversary of the Tutankhamen Tomb's discovery. Japanese ports will be visited during Japan's cherry blossom season. The 80-day voyage also features Panama Canal and Suez Canal transits.
What is known so far is that MS Borealis departs from England in February 2023, with two roundtrip options available from England - Southampton and Liverpool. The itinerary (dates and ports) will be announced on March 5, 2021. As a promo offer is offered GBP 500 per person in OBC (onboard credit).
Fred Olsen RIVER CRUISE itineraries
The company launched its new European river cruise program via a chartered vessel. Fred Olsen river cruises are operated on the 156-passenger river ship MS Amadeus Princess (renamed "MS Brabant").
Fred Olsen"s river cruise program includes itineraries on Danube, Main, Rhine and Moselle rivers, with 30+ departures and itinerary durations from 5 to 25 nights (price-inclusive of luxury land tours and excursions). The new program was specifically planned to include a large amount of daylight river cruising, allowing passengers to enjoy as long as possible the riverside scenery along the itinerary routes.
The new river cruise itineraries on Brabant include Dusseldorf to Amsterdam (Holland), Dusseldorf to Nuremberg, Nuremberg to Budapest (Hungary), Budapest to Bucharest (Romania), Dusseldorf to Basel (Switzerland), and Bucharest to Dusseldorf.
Every Fred Olsen river trip is due to incorporate a lot of daytime scenic cruising so that travellers can enjoy some of the most fantastic European scenery with 14 areas of scheduled scenic cruising that are included across the itineraries. Brabant passengers can also benefit from the introduction of the brand's new enrichment program with almost every voyage featuring an onboard speaker, specifically tailored to the itinerary.
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