Will Thomson resume cruising from the U.K.?
That's the gist of a report on travelweekly.co.uk, which says that David Selby -- TUI director of cruising UK and Ireland -- has vowed that Thomson Cruises will resume cruising from the U.K. when it gets another ship. (Calypso, which Thomson has operated as an adults-only ship for the past two years, will depart the fleet at the end of this summer.)
However, a spokesperson for Thomson tells us that there are no confirmed plans to return to ex-U.K. departures or replace Calypso at the moment. In fact, in Travel Weekly, Selby is quoted as saying, "We're not in any hurry. I wouldn't rule out getting something in 2010, but 2011 is more likely."
Thomson began sailing cruises from Liverpool and Harwich in 2005, but is pulling out of the U.K. next year to concentrate on fly-cruises from Marmaris, Corfu and Palma. Though Thomson tells us it wouldn't rule out heading back to the U.K., the current focus remains on the Mediterranean, an area where there's greater demand -- especially with Ocean Village's departure from that market imminent.
As for replacing Calypso? We're told the line is "always looking" for new vessels and that there are no plans to reduce the fleet in the long term. But again, nothing's set in stone.
We'll keep you posted.
--by Melissa Baldwin Paloti, Managing Editor, with research by Kelly Ranson, U.K. Editor
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Will Thomson Return to the U.K.?
May 8, 2009