Norwegian Getaway will not be visiting Bermuda as planned on her current sailing. Severe weather forecasted for the area makes it safer for the ship to remain far south of Bermuda, but an alternate port of call has been arranged. This also changes the ship’s overall route and rearranges days at sea for the remainder of the voyage.
Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Getaway is currently sailing a 10-night, round trip sailing from New York that was to have included Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic; San Juan, Puerto Rico; St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands; and an overnight call to Bermuda.
While the ship’s itinerary has so far gone smoothly, guests onboard have received notification that the visit to Bermuda must be cancelled due to poor weather.
“Due to adverse weather conditions, we have replaced our overnight call to Royal Naval Dockyard, Bermuda January 9 through January 10, with a call to St. Maarten,” the letter delivered to guests’ staterooms explained. “We share your disappointment and want to assure you that this modification was made with great consideration as your safety, and that of our crew, is always our number one priority.”
The call to Bermuda was to have been from 2 p.m. on Tuesday, January 9 through 4 p.m. on Wednesday, January 10. This would follow a day at sea on January 8 as the ship traveled to Bermuda following Sunday’s visit to St. Thomas.
The weather forecast for Bermuda is fairly mild on Tuesday, but on Wednesday, winds are expected to reach 25-35 miles per hour (40-56 kilometers per hour), with the potential for even higher gusts. That could make docking at the Royal Naval Dockyard very dangerous for the ship and guests.
With the change to include St. Maarten rather than Bermuda, the call to St. Thomas has been extended slightly. Instead of being in port from 7 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, January 7, Norwegian Getaway will remain in the US Virgin Islands until 6 p.m., giving guests more time to explore the luxurious destination.
Monday, January 8 was originally a day at sea, but will now be the visit to St. Maarten from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. The final three days of the cruise will all be days at sea, before the vessel arrives back in New York on Friday, January 12.
By visiting St. Maarten – 1,000 miles (1,610 kilometers) south of Bermuda – Norwegian Getaway will remain well out of range of the expected stormy seas, giving guests a smoother, more pleasant vacation without any of the risks associated with foul weather.
The 145,655-gross-ton, Breakaway-class Norwegian Getaway can welcome 3,963 guests onboard at double occupancy, and is also home to more than 1,600 international crew members.
While Norwegian Cruise Line has arranged St. Maarten as an alternative port of call, the cruise line is also providing onboard credit “in acknowledgment of the inconvenience” for the change. The non-refundable credit is being listed as $50 for the first and second guests in each stateroom, a total of $100 per stateroom.
All Bermuda shore excursions booked through the cruise line, whether pre-booked before sailing or reserved while onboard, are also being automatically cancelled and refunded to guests’ onboard accounts. New tour opportunities for St. Maarten can be booked onboard by visiting the excursions desk or through the cruise line’s app.
Bermuda had a rough 2023 with multiple ship cancellations due to hurricane tracks as well as winter storms. This latest cancellation does not make for a great start to 2024, but Norwegian Getaway is remaining homeported from New York through April, offering a range of Bermuda cruises with itineraries ranging from 5- to 12-nights.
Other ships scheduled to call on Bermuda in the early part of the year include vessels from Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, TUI Cruises, Oceania Cruises, and Celebrity Cruises.
The busy season for Bermuda sailings is spring through fall, with dozens of calls each month. Hopefully, 2024 will have fewer weather-related cancellations for the amazing destination.
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