NEW CRUISE SHIPS 2020 - WHEN WILL THEY LAUNCH NOW?

2020 was a cruise season full of promise! There was going to be a record number of passengers both from Ireland and worldwide, we were going to new destinations, experiencing lots of new features and onboard venues. There were also a host of brand new ships from the worlds leading brands and these were going to wow us all! Then along came something we'd never heard of before...out of nowhere it came, it saw and it conquered us (albeit temporarily!) and the world will never be quite the same again. The world of cruise will never be quite the same again but rest assured it will be back... and you will get to enjoy the cruise holidays you love again!


So what about all these incredible new ships that were set to wow us in 2020? Will they launch? When will they launch? What happens to their itineraries? Here's what we know so far...


VIRGIN VOYAGES SCARLET LADY

Intended Launch? March 2020

Now Launching? Currently scheduled for 7th August 2020


One of the biggest casualties at this point is Virgin Voyages Scarlet Lady. Not only because this was a brand new ship of course but a brand new cruise line with the thunder and impact completely undermined by Covid 19. We were truly blessed to have stepped foot onboard, one of only a few hundred who have done so, but if we're being honest she wasn't ready. There were also lots of mixed reviews and Virgin cancelled intended press events in New York as well as dining events for passengers in order to work on the ship after such reviews. This might all work in Virgin's favour as they may rework some elements.


Will she launch 7th August? We'd be surprised, cruising won't be ready and the time isn't right for a relaunch... expect further delay.


CELEBRITY CRUISES APEX

Intended Launch? April 2020

Now Launching? Currently scheduled for 12th June 2020


Celebrity Cruises was all set to launch Apex just as the Covid 19 lockdowns began. She is in essence all ready to go so won't take long to launch when cruise re-opens. In fact Celebrity became the first cruise line to ever receive a ship virtually from the shipyard! Apex is the little sister to the Celebrity Edge which was a groundbreaking ship for Celebrity and becomes the second in the class of five (although whether this changes who knows?). There's no doubt Apex will make a splash when she launches and you can expect her to do so as soon as cruise re-opens


Will she launch 12th June? We'd be VERY surprised as we expect further worldwide suspensions past 12th June... expect further delay!


P&O IONA

Intended Launch? May 2020

Now Launching? No New Launch Date


Iona is a huge deal for P&O given that it will be the largest ship in the fleet and comes complete with new venues and many new celebrity partnerships including Gary Barlow! This will be a major step forward for P&O. Sadly for them everything is on hold and there's no word at all about when work is now going to be complete.


When will she launch? Unsure at this point... she wasn't far away...we're thinking September?


RITZ CARLTON EVRIMA

Intended Launch? June 2020

Now Launching? April 2021


You won't have heard about Ritz Carlton Cruise Line as much as Virgin... but quietly thisultra luxury hotel brand has been working on their brand new yacht collection! This will be quite something when it launches, competing with the likes of Scenic...watch this space!


Will she launch April 2021? Yes, we're confident you'll see Ritz Carlton Evrima next year!


SILVERSEA SILVER MOON

Intended Launch? August 2020

Now Launching? Not known


No word yet on whether Silver Moon will meet it's intended launch date of August 2020. Fincantieri shipyard however did have to close in March and has only just started to open up again with hugely reduced workforce and capacity. This can surely only mean delays to this stunning sister to Silver Muse.


Will she launch August 2020? No official word but we can't see this launching in August. We suspect something like October / November?


CRYSTAL ENDEAVOUR

Intended Launch? August 2020

Now Launching? November 14th 2020


Crystal Endeavour is a ultra luxury expedition ship which will carry just 200 guests with a staff member per guest to take care of you. This is an all suite ship, with a butler to take care of you with a team of destination & expedition experts to guide you.


Will she launch November 2020? We think there's a good chance that Endeavour will join the fleet in November!


SAGA SPIRIT OF ADVENTURE

Intended Launch? August 2020

Now Launching? August 2020


Saga Cruises launched Spirit of Discovery last year and it was a huge step forward for the cruise line with the ship receiving huge acclaim. Spirit of Adventure is the sister of Discovery with some new features all of its own. Saga maintain that the ship is going to launch as planned in August and although that does seem ambitious the shipyard Meyer Werft has stayed open through most of the lockdown, albeit with a reduced workforce.


Will she launch August 2020? Given Meyer Werft have continued working if cruising has returned then Spirit of Adventure may launch in August. Reasonable to expect a slight delay.

PRINCESS CRUISES ENCHANTED PRINCESS

Intended Launch? June 2020

Now Launching? August 2020


Princess Cruises deserves a positive news story and the launch of the beautiful Enchanted Princess would really help! Sky Princess launched to huge acclaim last year and Enchanted should have a similar impact when it launches as the 5th Royal Class Princess ship! Quite when this will be is still unknown. Princess have cancelled early sailings until the end of July.


Will she launch in August 2020? August still seems ambitious but Princess are likely to be keen to have something to celebrate and talk positively about. If cruising returns in August we think there's a real chance you'll see Enchanted.


CARNIVAL MARDI GRAS

Intended Launch? September 2020

Now Launching? November 2020


Carnival had already been hit with delays with Mardi Gras, some as a result of the complications of the ship itself but some because of the complications in the shipyard of Costa Smeralda which delayed all subsequent work. The roller coaster element is complete but the ship is now behind schedule and will be further delayed by Covid.


Will she launch in November 2020? We could be wrong but we have a feeling we won't see this headline grabbing ship until 2021!


MSC VIRTUOSA

Intended Launch? November 2020

Now Launching? No Change As Yet


MSC Virtuosa is the (not so little) sister to the very impressive MSC Grandiosa and is currently scheduled for November 2020. It is just one of the many ships that MSC have on order right now and while there's no real risk to the launch of Virtuosa, it will be very interesting to see just how aggressive MSC are in launching new ships post Covid.


Will she launch November 2020? Absolutely, we would be surprised if MSC did not finish the year with a brand new member of their growing family.



ROYAL CARIBBEAN ODYSSEY OF THE SEAS

Intended Launch? November 2020

Now Launching? No Change As Yet

Royal Caribbean Odyssey of the Seas is set to be one of the biggest news stories of the year. This will be Royal Caribbean's first Quantum Ultra Class ship and we're expecting a host of new features building on the popular Quantum Class ships with iFly, the North Star observation pod along with newer features such as Playmakers bar and Skypad which have proved incredibly popular. The biggest thing we're looking forward to is actually the itineraries, especially having a ship of this size and status taking in the Greek Islands which typically is visited by slightly smaller, slightly older ships.


Will she launch November 2020? We're sure she will! She is being worked on at Meyer Werft which has remained open for most of Covid and she continues to progress there. We'd be shocked if Odyssey didn't launch in November. This should ensure a positive end to a very difficult year.


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