Start-up cruise brand  ;Virgin Voyages announced Wednesday, June 8, that it is postponing the start of operation of its next vessel, Resilient Lady, from mid-August this year to May 2023.
The operator cited a number of issues impacting its business, including supply chain and staffing issues following the COVID-19 pandemic, crew shortages due to government regulations, and restrictive US entry requirements. He also hinted at demand issues related to the situation in Eastern Europe.
Virgin Voyages entered the market at the end of 2021 with one Scarlet Lady, and in March of this year a second Valient Lady was added. The two ships currently operate in the Caribbean and the Mediterranean respectively.
The Resilient Lady was due to join the Valiant Lady in the Mediterranean in August, sailing from Athens.
All three ships are “twins”, they can accommodate 2,770 passengers in double occupancy.
The arrival of Virgin Voyages in 2021 has been one of the most anticipated developments in the industry in the past decade.
Plans for Virgin Voyages, originally called Virgin Cruises, were first announced in 2014, with the brand promising to shake up the world of cruising with “a lively, adult-oriented on-board experience unlike anything else on a cruise.”
But coincidentally, this is a difficult time for cruises and the travel industry in general. The first cruise scheduled for early 2020 had to be postponed by more than a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Virgin Voyages — not the only company that has postponed the start of cruises. Luxury brand Seabourn also announced on Wednesday that the launch of its new 264-passenger liner, the Seabourn Venture, has been delayed, albeit for just a few days. Seabourn Venture will now debut on July 27 — 13 days later than planned. This is the third delay for Seabourn Venture since last year.
Several other operators have also delayed the debut of new vessels in recent months. Thus, The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection, positioning itself in the luxury segment, recently postponed the launch of its long-awaited first vessel Evrima for 298 passengers from May to August — sixth delay in the last two years. Another relative newcomer to cruising, luxe adventure brand Atlas Ocean Voyages, recently rescheduled its first cruise from July to October.
Disney Cruise Line's first new ship in a decade — Disney Wish is also out of work.
Virgin Voyages said on Wednesday that the Resilient Lady will remain at the Fincantieri shipyard in Genoa, Italy, where she has been under construction for the past year.
the project also has a fourth ship — Brilliant Lady.
As a result, all Resilient Lady flights scheduled between mid-August and early May 2023 have been cancelled.
Passengers who have booked tickets for the canceled flights can choose between full refund plus a voucher for a future cruise of 25 percent of the amount paid, or a voucher of 200 percent of the value of tickets purchased.
At the same time, passengers who choose the option with a 200% voucher and rebook tickets In the future, an additional, completely free cruise will be offered.