NCLH Focusing on Longer, Open-Jaw Itineraries to Reduce Emissions

Norwegian Star

As part of its efforts to reduce emissions, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH) is working on optimizing cruise itineraries for its trio of brands in Norwegian Cruise Line, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises.

“Itineraries have an important role in how the ship operates, as they influence the ship’s speed, distance and overall energy load,” the company explained in its 2023 “Sail & Sustain” Report.

Among other initiatives, the company is focusing on adding more open-jaw cruises to its portfolio, the study added.

“We have started to shift, design and sell cruises with longer, open-jaw itineraries, which means the ship embarks from a different port than where it disembarks,” Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings explained.

The one-way itineraries not only reduce emissions but also increase guest satisfaction, as they result in more time in port, the company said.

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings pointed to the Eastern Mediterranean region as one of the areas where good results were achieved.

“We are transitioning many cruises in the Greek Isles to open jaw, versus closed loop, compared to what we had in 2019. For ten- to 11-day cruises in the Greek Isles, we expect an average emissions reduction between open jaw and closed loop for similar-sized vessels to be approximately 16 percent,” the company said.

Supporting its net zero ambition, NCLH is also reviewing and identifying other opportunities to optimize itineraries in other parts of the world.

Itineraries are optimized by analyzing currents, time at sea, and efficient port selection, the company added.

According to the company, one of the most important indicators of an efficient itinerary is the vessel’s speed, which impacts the power needed to power the propulsion engines.

“It is standard for each cruise to review the weather forecasts and wave conditions to optimize the ship’s speed profile and route and engine loads,” the company said.

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