April 8, 2020
(9:40 a.m. BST) -- TUI River Cruises has postponed the launch of its new river line until November 26, 2020, after originally delaying the launch until May 2020 as a result of the global coronavirus pandemic.
The line was scheduled to debut its river cruise programme on March 29 with a fleet of three refurbished vessels -- Tui Isla, Tui Maya and Tui Skyla -- offering adult-only sailings on the Danube, Rhine, Moselle, Main, and Dutch and Belgian waterways.
In a statement, the line said: "We are constantly monitoring the situation and will start taking people on holiday again as soon as we are able to do so. At this point in time, nobody can accurately predict when that will be, so for the time being we will keep a close eye on our programme and continue to amend and adapt timings in line with the latest global travel advice. We will update our customers as soon as we can of any changes to their holidays. We, like other travel companies, want to travel again as soon as we possibly can and will do so in line with government advice.
"Our customer teams are working extremely hard to contact everyone affected, however changes in ways of working and the closure of our retail stores have impacted the speed at which this can happen. And have also made it more difficult for our customers to reach us. We do understand this may be frustrating but we’d like to assure everyone that we will be in touch as soon as we can.
"Customers who have a booking impacted by these changes will be able to amend their holiday to any other TUI package holiday on sale for free via manage my booking on our website. Customers who booked in retail should wait for us to contact them to discuss their options."
TUI has also suspended the majority of its holidays, including voyages on Marella Cruises, which have been cancelled through May 31.
Virtually all cruise lines worldwide have now temporarily ceased operating, including UK-based companies Arena River Cruises (formerly The River Cruise Line), Cunard, Cruise & Maritime Voyages, Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, P&O Cruises and Saga Cruises.