The majority of over 50s in the UK are fully vaccinated. If the line can make sure its workers are as protected as its customers a resumption of cruising seems like the smart reopening the sector needs.
British over-50s holidays group Saga Plc said on Monday it would likely resume its cruises on June 27, encouraged by high demand for tours despite repeated lockdowns, echoing similar projections from other cruise operators.
A year after several cruise ships were host to major coronavirus outbreaks, cruise lines including Royal Caribbean Group and Carnival Corp have been pushing ahead with plans to resume cruises this summer, especially as large numbers of Americans get vaccinated.
As demand for tours picks up further, tour bookings should represent 60% of Saga’s revenue targets for 2021/22, it said.
London-listed Saga had back-up plans to deal with any uncertainty around COVID-19 restrictions, including running cruises for a shorter period with fewer guests if necessary.
Britain on Monday is expected to delay the easing of remaining COVID-19 restrictions, following concerns about the spread of the Delta variant of the coronavirus.
Through the lockdowns, Saga said 73% of cancelled cruise bookings were retained, and that customer retention in tours was stable at 42%.
For its insurance business, Saga reported motor and home policy sales were 2% behind for the four months to May 31 from last year. Travel policies were impacted by the pandemic, with year-to-date sales 5% below a year ago, the company said.
(Reporting by Vishwadha Chander in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich)
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Photo Credit: The deck of Saga Cruise's Spirit of Discovery. The line expects to resume sailings at the end of June 2021. Saga Cruises