When P&O Cruises’ ship Arcadia sets sail to the Canary Islands this Sunday, March 27, it will mark the British line’s full return to service since the industry shutdown due to the pandemic.
“We’re back sailing and this is certainly cause for celebration,” said P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow. “Sunday is an important milestone as we will have all six ships back in operation and doing what we do best. We are delighted to be welcoming Arcadia back to the fleet. This ship is hugely popular with our loyal cruisers and I know the captain and team on board cannot wait to sail the fantastic itineraries we have planned for this year.”
According to Ludlow, two other ships in the fleet — Azura and Britannia — have had a very successful season sailing around the Caribbean from the island of Barbados. The vessels are set to move over to Europe for the summer season, operating Mediterranean voyages.
The line’s newest ship, Iona, spent her maiden winter season in the Canary Islands and Northern Europe. Soon, she’ll head up to the Norwegian fjords for the summer.
“It is evident that our guests are reassured by the steps we have taken to protect their health and wellbeing and that they are delighted to be back on board re-igniting their passion for travel,” Ludlow continued. “We all spent so long missing the simple pleasures of great restaurants, beaches and city sights that having them all now makes the holiday experience even better.”
P&O Cruises’ next ship, Arvia, will become the fleet’s seventh ship in December. Her maiden voyage will be to the Canary Islands, followed by a winter season of Caribbean sailings from Barbados.
Both Iona and Arvia are part of Carnival Corporation’s Excel class of vessels. Carnival Cruise Line’s Mardi Gras and upcoming sister ships Carnival Celebration and Carnival Jubilee are also part of the Excel class.
The entire P&O Cruises fleet being back in service does not include sister brand P&O Cruises Australia, which has not yet resumed service. The ship Pacific Explorer is expected to kick off P&O Cruises Australia’s restart on May 31, 2022.