Red Sea Conflict Reroutes Virgin Cruise to Now Circumnavigates Africa

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Virgin Voyages has significantly changed its upcoming Australia-Europe repositioning cruise on Resilient Lady due to the tense security situation in the Red Sea region.

resilient lady bow virgin voyages
Resilient Lady (Photo courtesy of Virgin Voyages)

With shipping in the Red Sea being targeted by Yemen-based Houthis, the cruise line’s Resilient Lady will sail the long route around Africa.

The original voyage was a series of three repositioning legs: Sydney – Singapore, Singapore- Dubai, and Dubai- Piraeus, Greece. It will instead cross the Indian Ocean and around southern Africa to the Mediterranean.

Resilient Lady departs Sydney on March 27 and will make calls at Eden and Freemantle (for Perth). It will sail to Mauritius before two South Africa stops at Durban and Cape Town.

Sailing up the West Africa coastline, Resilient Lady will make port calls at Walvis Bay (Namibia) and Praia (Cape Verde). Further calls include the Canary Islands, Casablanca, Barcelona, Malta, and Santorini before reaching Piraeus.

What the Cruise Line Said

“We have been left with no choice but to make changes to Resilient Lady’s repositioning voyage. We remain concerned about potential escalations over the next 12 months and the risk that this presents for safe passage through the region,” Virgin said. Guests have been given the option of a full refund or a future cruise credit. Virgin said it would protect travel advisors’ commissions.

Other Sailings Could be Impacted

Celebrity Apex cruise ship

Virgin says it is taking a wait-and-see approach to future sailings which may need to be adjusted. “Virgin Voyages is now conducting a full review of other geographically similar repositioning voyages and linked sailings. We will provide an update on any further changes we will need to make.”

When it reaches Piraeus, Resilient Lady will sail 7-night roundtrip voyages featuring an overnight stop in Mykonos plus calls to Rhodes, Santorini, and Bodrum in Turkey.

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