Russians Pull Charter Deal from One Ocean Expeditions

One Ocean Expeditions (OOE) will be down to one ship from three this summer as the niche cruise operator was informed that two of its chartered ships have unexpectedly been withdrawn from service.

Just weeks from starting the summer season, the company has lost both its Akademik Ioffe and Akademik Sergey Vavilov, which it has operated on charter deals since 2011.

The ships are a pair of research vessels on charter from Russian authorities. 

The company said that in response it is advancing its fleet renewal plans. 

“In recent days OOE was informed that the owners of the Ioffe and Vavilov have suddenly and unexpectedly withdrawn the vessels from passenger service. Their decision comes as a complete surprise to OOE and is out of our control,” said Catherine Lawton, general manager.

“The withdrawal of the vessels for the 2019-2020 season is a break of the owners’ contract with OOE and is now the subject of legal action,” she said.

The company has been on the expansion path recently, having welcomed the RCGS Resolute under its banner in 2018 as it chartered the former Hanseatic on a long-term 10-year deal.

“RCGS Resolute is superior in both ice class (1AS), passenger facilities and comfort for polar expedition cruising and beyond. We are working with our agents and clients on an urgent basis to find alternatives for planned travel in the short-term, and RCGS Resolute will play a key role in those arrangements. For those passengers unable to re-book we are working closely with agents and clients to arrange refunds,” Lawton said. 

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