NCL-Norwegian Cruise Line is the new company to enter South African waters

   December 19, 2022 ,   Cruise Industry

Although MSC Cruises has long had a monopoly on South Africa's mainstream cruising market, they are about to get competition from NCL-Norwegian Cruise Line.

The 2400-passenger ship Norwegian Jade arrived on South African shores over the weekend and will commence cruising from Cape Town on Wednesday, December 21st.

Having had 2 false starts, this addition to the cruising market in South Africa is long-awaited.

NCL was originally scheduled to start operating from the shores of South Africa in March 2020, a few days after most of the cruise industry was suspended following the COVID outbreak.

The 2nd attempt was scheduled for December 2021 but was again delayed by Omicron's discovery.

NCL's Jade ship is now sailing/satellite AIS on a relocation voyage from Dubai ( visiting destinations in UAE, Oman, Madagascar, Mauritius, Reunion, and Seychelles, before Richards Bay, Gqeberha/Port Elizabeth, and Mossel Bay on her way to Cape Town.

From this week, Jade will be offering 12-day itineraries out of Cape Town, visiting Mossel Bay, Port Elizabeth, Richards Bay, and Durban prior to heading up the west coast to Namibia (Luderitz and Walvis Bay).

At the end of January, the boat will reposition back to Dubai UAE.

Currently, NCL is the world's 3rd largest cruise shipping company.

Norwegian Jade cruise ship

NCL (known for its "freestyle cruising") was the first to eliminate assigned/fixed dinner times. The brand also boasts a more flexible approach to dress codes than other companies that often deny those who are casually dressed from dining in the MDRs on formal nights.

While many itineraries require visas for South Africans and expensive international flights, the upcoming Norwegian Jade itinerary is totally visa-free and enables South Africans to see different parts of the country and Namibia after boarding in Cape Town.