The tragic series of bomb blasts in London that according to CNN killed 50 people and wounded another 700, has -- at least for now -- made no major impact on travel to or from Europe. Cruise line executives contacted by Cruise Critic, all of whom expressed sadness about the events that occurred at London's Underground and on one double-decker bus, said that for the most part the major concern is intra-England transfers between airports and ports such as Southampton, Dover and Harwich.
Airports are open.
So far there has been no official upgrade of port security classification -- in the U.S., for instance, the level remains at one (on a one-to-three scale in which three reflects "imminent attack").
Crystal Cruises' Mimi Weisband echoes executives at other lines who have responded to Cruise Critic's inquiries -- such as Seabourn, Holland America, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and Oceania -- when she says that there have been no inquiries from passengers slated to depart on upcoming cruises from Dover about canceling their plans. "We are," she adds, "implementing additional security onboard and on transfer buses. We have and will always continue to raise our ships' security levels to exceed the level of the port."
Jan Swartz, senior vice president, customer service and sales for both Princess Cruises and Cunard Line did not address our inquiry about possible passenger cancellations but did issue the following statement: "It's much too early to say what the impact will be of these tragic events in London. However, we remain hopeful that passengers will continue to travel to London as they have done in the face of previous tragedies."
Michael Crye, president of the International Council of Cruise Lines, a lobbying organization that is involved in cruise industry security issues, says that "our security plans are relatively mature compared to other modes of transportation and we have a much more controlled environment than, say, mass transit systems which were the object of target today.
"Obviously," Crye continues, "this event gives people pause about their plans and time to reflect on travel safety. The important thing for people to know is that the cruise industry has taken security very seriously for a very long time.
"I am going to echo statements heard from others today: 'If you allow these incidents to disrupt your life you are in essence allowing the terrorists to win.'"
We'll post updates if and when they occur.
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Cruise Critic Coverage: London Bombings & Travel Impact
July 7, 2005