After more than 18 months of limited operations, Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express will have all seven ships on the Bergen/Kirkenes route next month.
“The global travel industry has been hit hard by the pandemic. With the safety and well-being of our guests and crew as our number one priority, we are now entering a new phase of our step-by-step return to operations,” Hurtigruten Group CEO, Daniel Skjeldam (pictured) said.
With booking levels almost 50% higher than pre-pandemic levels, Hurtigruten reported record-strong demand for 2022 small-ship experiences.
“As vaccines are being rolled out and travel restrictions are lifted, we are seeing a huge pent up demand and strong booking trends across all markets. When international travel resumes, we will be ready to welcome our guests on board again,” Skjeldam added.
Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express CEO, Hedda Felin, said; “Our step-by-step return to sailing under our strict health and safety procedures has been extremely well received from both guests, our crew and the local communities.
“We continuously adapt to the Norwegian authorities’ plans for reopening, and follow all guidelines and recommendations. Operating safely throughout the pandemic also gives us unparalleled experience as we now are getting ready to welcome international guests.
“We were born and raised to connect the coastal communities and their people with the world. This summer, we will have the fjords almost to ourselves. And there is no better way to experience the Norwegian coast than with our small ships, close partners and our almost 130 years of local knowhow,” Felin said.
Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express is part of Hurtigruten Group, an adventure travel group, which also includes Hurtigruten Expeditions, the world’s largest expedition cruise line.
By using a combination of batteries, shore power and biofuel, the seven ships will be upgraded to reduce CO2 emissions by at least 25% and NOx emissions cut by 80%.
“The world’s most beautiful voyage just got even better. We are combining the best available technical solutions and cutting CO2 emissions along the Norwegian coast with at least a quarter. And most importantly, we are laying the foundation for introducing new and even more efficient environmental solutions as they are developed,” Felin said.
Later, the Hurtigruten Group reported that with booking levels almost 50% higher than pre-pandemic levels, record strong demand for 2022 small-ship experiences was recorded.
Across Hurtigruten Expeditions, the world’s largest expedition cruise company, and Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express, next year’s bookings are currently 45% ahead of bookings for 2020, as at the same time in 2019.