Industry publication cruise-community.com reports today that Star Cruises -- half owner of NCL Corporation Ltd. (Apollo Investment owns the other half) -- is pulling out of NCL America, the one-ship, U.S.-flagged, Hawaii-based subsidiary.
So what does this mean for cruise travelers? Very little at this point, as the move is bigger news for business publications than the travel pages. For all intents and purposes, the exit of Star Cruises is simply a complicated financial transaction -- Pride of America, NCL America's sole U.S.-flagged ship, will operate all upcoming cruises as scheduled.
Pride of America will continue to sail seven-night intra-island Hawaii cruises roundtrip from Honolulu. The ship's tenure there was just extended through January 2012.
It's unclear at this point whether Pride of America is still sailing under the NCL America sub-brand or now part of the broader Norwegian Cruise Line umbrella; a spokesperson did not respond to our request for additional information.
--by Dan Askin, Assistant Editor
Star Exits NCL America; Pride of America Sails On
December 26, 2008