Last large cruise line cancels
June 3, 2021
Hope for large cruise ship visits in Haines this summer was short-lived.
Last week, president Joe Biden signed a bill temporarily exempting foreign-flagged cruise ships from mandatory stops in foreign ports when sailing between U.S. ports, creating the possibility of a 2021 cruise season in Alaska. This week, Silversea Cruises, the last large cruise line with a port call on the calendar, confirmed it won’t visit Haines, according to tourism director Steven Auch in an interview Monday.
The same day, Silversea issued a press release that the 596-passenger Silver Muse will resume sailing in Alaska July 29.
The press release said itineraries will allow guests to “experience the state’s remarkable landscapes, wildlife and remote communities, such as Ketchikan, Juneau, Wrangell, Skagway and Sitka.” It doesn’t mention Haines.
Full itineraries for Alaska voyages will be published on the Silversea website on June 7, according to Silversea spokesperson Matthew Scott.
The bill Biden signed allows cruise ships to sail to Alaska despite the ongoing Canadian port closure. The news prompted several major cruise lines to say they intend to visit Alaska this year beginning in late July or early August. However, none plan to visit Haines.
American Cruise Lines, a small, U.S.-based company, is the only cruise line scheduled to visit Haines this year. It will make 12 stops this summer with its 175-passenger American Constellation. The ship’s first visit is scheduled for June 12 at 7 a.m.
Most of the major cruise lines visiting Alaska this summer have Skagway listed on their itineraries. Haines could receive additional visitors as a result of the Skagway port calls. Haines-Skagway Fast Ferry operators have said the company will operate if large cruise ships do, in fact, come to Skagway.