Ambassador Swaps Ships After Drydock Delay

Shaft Repair

Ambassador Cruise Line is adjusting its 2023-24 winter program following an unexpected delay in Ambience’s routine drydock.

Previously set to offer a 38-night cruise to the Caribbean, the Ambition will now take over most of the itineraries scheduled to depart onboard the Ambiance through the end of the year.

“We have reluctantly taken the decision to switch Ambience’s scheduled operation to the Ambition after needing to extend biennial drydock maintenance works on the Ambience in Bremerhaven, Northern Germany,” the company said in a statement shared on its social media profiles.

According to Ambassador, routine inspections onboard the 1991-built vessel found that both propellor shafts and stern bearings have been damaged by way of metal grinding (see photo).

The situation requires essential repair work which would risk leaking oil into the environment if not addressed immediately, the company added.

“Therefore, the two propeller shafts, each 20 meters long and weighing over 30 tons, together with their bearings have been transported by sea to a specialist metal repair shop in Denmark,” Ambassador said.

The additional maintenance work won’t be concluded in time for the ship to operate the remainder of its 2023 schedule.

“As a result of these unexpected but essential works that will see the Ambience remain in drydock longer than originally planned, it made operational sense to swap these itineraries over from the Ambience to the Ambition,” the company added.

“With over 6,600 guests due to be onboard the Ambience in December and 800 booked on the Ambition, it made operational sense to cancel the one sailing over this period on the Ambition than all Ambience’s planned itineraries, which limits the impact on most guests with forward bookings.”

“It is never an easy decision to change or cancel any Ambassador sailing, particularly at this time of year, and I would personally like to apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. I fully understand that an apology does not cover what many of you may be feeling right now,” Ambassador said in the statement, which was signed by its Chief Executive Officer, Christian Verhounig.

The Ambiance is now scheduled to resume service for its “Grand Around the World Cruise” in early January 2024.

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