Norwegian Ship Shuffles

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) is moving ships around to make up for the delayed introduction of the Pride of America, which sank earlier this month while dockside and under construction.

A new delivery date bas not been set yet. At Lloyd Werft, Managing Director Werner Luken told Cruise Industry News it could take three weeks to get the vessel upright again. While an investigation was underway, be did not expect to find the cause of the sinking until the ship was upright and afloat.

Meanwhile, NCL is taking the Norwegian Sky out of its planned Alaska service from Seattle and transferring her to Hawaii to start up as the Pride of Aloha in July, substituting for the planned introduction of the Pride of America.

In addition, the Superstar Leo, from sister company STAR CRUISES, will replace the Norwegian Sky in Alaska. In a prepared statement, NCL said that the Superstar Leo will operate in Alaska as “a fully specified NCL product.”

In related news, Star Cruises has sold the Superstar Capricorn and will instead transfer what it called one of “NCL’s midsized ships” to Asia, but bas not specified which vessel. 

NCL also had no further news to report on the Norway, except plans to use her as a training ship.

NCL’s estimated capacity will be 736,200 passengers in 2004, compared to 871,500 in 2003. The year-over-year reduction is due to the Norway being out of service, changed ship deployments, and the delayed introduction of the Pride of America.

Instead, capacity will grow to an estimated 888,700 passengers in 2005, with two more new ships going into service (unless Star moves out more mid­ sized ships), and to an estimated 1,008,700 passengers with another new ship in 2006.

NCL bas not said if it intends to build a sister ship to the Pride of America based on the parts it bought from the bankruptcy of American Classic Voyages – much of which has since been used on the Pride of America – nor has the company said anything more about its plans for the United States or the Independence.

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