With the 2009 Alaskan cruise season half-way through, cruise lines are making major changes to their 2010 cruise schedules to adapt to the economic changes sweeping the cruise industry. Several cruise lines have pulled ships from Alaska to more lucrative waters.
The good news in all this? Change. Some cruise lines have reduced their 2010 Alaska sailings by almost 50%. Others have consolidated and reinvented itineraries. Most all are or will be offering substantial savings for booking in 2009 for 2010 sailing.
Cruise West will operate just four ships in Alaska next year, down from five this year and eight in 2008. It is also dropping several itineraries, including “In Harriman’s Wake,” “Coastal Odyssey,” and “Voyage to the Bering Sea,” which were explored aboard the Spirit of Oceanus. That ship is being redeployed to a world cruise. The best of “Alaska’s Whales & Wilderness” is being rolled into the popular “Alaska’s Inside Passage,” leaving Cruise West with just four itineraries to select from. And now you can save up to $1,400 per cabin if you book, make deposit and pay in full by August 14, 2009.
Cruise West’s most popular itinerary is getting a bit of a makeover. Now sailing roundtrip from Juneau, the itinerary drops Ketchikan, Metlakatla and Haines and adds the highlights of “Alaska’s Whales & Wilderness.” Alaska’s Inside Passage now adds Wrangell, two additional days spent searching for sea and wildlife, including opportunities to explore around Lake Eva, Red Bluff or Security Bay by Zodiac inflatable craft, and a full day at Icy Strait and the Inian Islands. Cruise West’s 138-passenger Spirit of Yorktown and 102-guest Spirit of Endeavour will operate the seven-night itineraries. Prices start at $4,399 per person, double occupancy.
The 84-passenger Spirit of Discovery, meanwhile, will sail four-night voyages to Glacier Bay National Park (including two nights in the park) out of Juneau (Prices start at $1,599 per person, double occupancy).
The 78-passenger Spirit of Columbia will sail a four-night Glaciers of Prince William Sound itinerary out of Whittier that includes a stop in the small fishing village of Cordova (Prices start at $1,199 per person, double occupancy).
Cruise West offers a shoulder season 10-day Gold Rush Inside Passage itinerary that has been revised to include Misty Fiords and Metlakatla. The one-way departures between Seattle and Juneau take place at the beginning and end of the season on all four ships heading to Alaska.
Lindblad Expeditions is the only cruise line which is maintaining their current two itineraries.
This Alaska expedition explores the magnificent Inside Passage of Alaska with an intimate number of guests in the company of Naturalists. Enjoy Zodiac and kayaking forays, whale watching, and learn about Alaska’s rich Native American heritage. A full day is spent in Glacier Bay National Park. You may also join our optional land extension to Denali National Park.
This shoulder season itinerary sails from Seattle, Washington to Alaska’s Glacier Bay National Park, including the San Juan Islands. This wilderness expedition travels through some of the most spectacular scenery in North America, sailing past mist-shrouded fjords and tidewater glaciers. These waters are among the best for whale watching, with good chances of finding humpback and orca whales. Along the way, meet people of Native American, Russian and Scandinavian ancestries. Kayak, beachcomb and explore forest trails under the guidance of our expert Naturalists.
American Safari Cruises
Luxury yacht cruise line American Safari Cruises is scaling back their 2010 Alaska cruise schedule, dropping their “Voyagers’ Glacier Country” and “Naturalists’ Whale Country” itineraries. For 2010, the luxury adventure cruise line is placing all three of their luxury yachts on two itineraries. Each itinerary features an exclusive 2-days in Glacier Bay National Park.
Spend two of a total of eight days exploring Glacier Bay National Park with a park Naturalist aboard a luxury yacht. Kayak and view wildlife such as bears & whales crusing Alaska’s inside passage.
Experience Alaska’s Inside Passage in depth during the shoulder season with this 15 day itinerary. Travel between Seattle and Juneau, through the San Juan Islands, Prince Rupert, the Alaskan’s towns of Ketchikan and Petersburg, remote fjords, all leading to the climax, two full days in Glacier Bay National Park. And there’ll be plenty of opportunities for kayaking, wildlife viewing, and guided nature walks in Alaska’s rain forest.