Independence of the Seas, Royal Caribbean's next Freedom-class ship, will be coming into service two weeks earlier than planned according to a report on the Web site of Cruise Business Review (CBR), a business-to-business magazine. As previously reported here on Cruise Critic, the ship was supposed to debut May 17; passengers will now have the chance to sail on a handful of voyages before then.
It's important to note that for those booked on the inaugural sailing that was to leave on May 17, Royal Caribbean is now hosting its maiden voyage on May 2. The cruise will call at the same itinerary (a four-nighter between Southampton and Cork) and passengers who are booked on the "old" inaugural are being offered the chance to move to the earlier cruise.
There will also be an additional offering; an 11-night Canary Island cruise will depart on May 6.
The dates changed, according to the CBR story, because Independence of the Seas' shipyard in Turku, Finland, plans to finish ahead of schedule.
--by Carolyn Spencer Brown, Editor in Chief
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New Maiden Voyage for Independence of the Seas!
December 13, 2007