A BUSY season of Clyde cruise ship calls was supposed to start at the weekend — instead the coronavirus pandemic has left Greenock Ocean Terminal bosses not knowing when to expect any holiday vessels.
The 140,000-tonne MSC Splendida had been due to sail up the river on Saturday (2 May), the first of 80 planned visits by 31 cruise ships that were to bring tens of thousands of passengers and crew to the terminal this year.
But the Covid-19 nightmare has hit cruise lines hard and uncertainty hangs over the whole season.
The Ocean Terminal say it is “more than likely” there will be no cruise ship calls before mid-June “and probably beyond” although not all of the 25 ship visits in the next six week have been cancelled officially yet.
Cunard has ‘paused’ its activity until at least 31 July so one definite non-attender is Queen Victoria, which had been due on 14 June.
Princess Cruises have so far suspended operations until the end of June. Their vessel Regal Princess (142,700 tonnes) was lined up for 13 visits to Greenock this year, fiver of them before 30 June.
Other ships due to call before mid-June on the original schedule included newcomer the 102,700-tonne Costa Fortuna, the 91,700-tonne Norwegian Star, the 99,500-tonne Mein Schiff 3 and the 125,000-tonne Celebrity Reflection.