Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ Antarctic Season 2012/2013 Opens Tomorrow

On Sunday, November 11, the Bremen opens the 2012-13 Antarctic season with its first expedition cruise. From Montevideo, she will carry the maximum 164 guests to the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and the South Orkney Islands, then the Antarctic Peninsula. The Hanseatic will follow in mid December. For many guests, an Antarctic expedition means fulfilling a dream they may have had for a long time. To ensure that the expedition becomes an unforgettable experience, planning is recommended.

Antarctica is among the most sensitive ecosystems in the world and is under special ecological protection. The expedition ships Hanseatic and Bremen have been using more environmentally sound marine diesel oil in the polar regions for years, long before the new law entered force in 2011. Beyond this, a code of conduct for Antarctica stipulates that visitors are required to protect sensitive mosses, lichens and grasses and stay a safe distance from animals, for example five metres in the case of penguins. These rules are communicated by experienced lecturers in the time spent ashore.

“You need to take time when visiting Antarctica, as you cannot explore this unique destination on a cruise with a duration of merely one week. Anyone wishing to see more than plenty of water and a bit of ice should schedule around two weeks,” recommends Mark Behrend, captain of the Bremen, who has been to Antarctica more than 30 times.

“The choice of route and ship is decisive for intense expedition experiences. Solely small ships with few passengers fulfil the conditions for landings. With the Bremen’s twelve zodiacs, we offer first-hand nature experiences and ideal opportunities in terms of animal observations.

“Only passenger ships with the highest ice class are capable of advancing really far into Antarctica and even moving safely to the south of the Antarctic Circle. Besides the ice class, it is primarily of crucial importance to have on board an ice-experienced ship management and crew, who are able to read the ice and navigate accordingly,” adds Captain Behrend.

It is advisable to book Antarctic expeditions as early as possible – especially on ships with a capacity of fewer than 200 passengers. Special routes, for example those beyond the Antarctic Circle, are also booked out more than a year in advance.

Here Are Some of the Top Expedition Experiences in Antarctica:

– Zodiac tour in Paradise Bay and setting foot on the Antarctic mainland
– Landings in colonies with hundreds of thousands of penguins on South Georgia
– Bathing in the hot springs of Deception IslandCountdown to Europa 2
– Whale watching
– Cruising through the pack ice and huge table icebergs
– Sailing though the Lemaire and the Neumayer Channels
– Visit to a scientific station
– Landing at Cape Horn

Cruise Example: Expedition Semi Circumnavigation Antarctica with the Hanseatic from Ushuaia, Argentina, to Bluff, New Zealand, January 25 – February 21, 2014, 26 days, from €17.120 EUR, £13,360 or US $20,550 per person, cruise only, including charter flight from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia

For more information on Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ destinations and itineraries visit www.hl-cruises.com. For bookings, inquiries, or to request a brochure, please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk .

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Of Teddy Bears and Land Rovers : Brand Co-operation at Hapag-Lloyd Cruises

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises have recently announced marketing partnerships and brand co-operation with Land Rover, makers of the famous on- and off-road vehicles, and Steiff, makers of the famous line of teddy bears.

Under the agreement with Land Rover, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises will decorate a number of Land Rover off-road vehicles in black, white and orange Hapag-Lloyd Off-road Adventure livery, to emphasize adventures at sea in their top-rated expedition ships MS Hanseatic and MS Bremen. These vehicles could be driven by company managers or sales representatives or even in some cases used to pick up or deliver customers to airports when joining an expedition cruise.

Meanwhile, the agreement with Steiff is part of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ campaign to attract more family business to the line’s two new cruise ships, the MS Columbus 2, to be introduced in April 2012,  and MS Europa 2, to be built at St Nazaire and introduced in 2013. Children will be catered for in a brand co-operation with Steiff, the world’s oldest maker of teddy bears, and in particular, a new bear, Captain Knopf, will be introduced to take advantage of this.

Not only that, but the bears will be backed up by a program of children’s books. On board ship, meanwhile, children will be looked after in three different age groups, something different from what is offered in the existing MS Europa, which caters to only two age groups.

For further information on Hapag-Lloyd Cruises please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk

Photos courtesy of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises Chief Visits London

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-_6xEhjc_YzQ/TWtiihcqPGI/AAAAAAAANHc/5WFuO5EhAtQ/hapag-lloyd-logo.jpgSebastian Ahrens

Sebastian Ahrens, managing director of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises in Hamburg and a graduate of Cambridge, was in London last week for a presentation of the line’s expedition ships Bremen and Hanseatic at the Royal Geographical Society, as well as a UK press briefing and interviews. The presentation was made by David Fletcher, a member of the Royal Geographical Society, and Trixi Lange-Hitzbleck, both of whom are Hapag-Lloyd expedition leaders.

The travel trade press was also in attendance and reported as follows:

Travel Trade Gazette says Hapag-Lloyd Cruises to focus more on the UK market

Travel Weekly gets a reaction from Hapag-Lloyd chief over UK agents’ habit of rebating

Seatrade Insider meanwhile revealed that Hapag-Lloyd Cruises will go more international with its newest ship, the Europa 2, with announcements in both English and German. Hapag-Lloyd presently operates the five-star-plus Europa, rated the best cruise ship on Earth (or should we say water?) for eleven years in a row by the Berlitz Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships, and the top-rated expedition ships Bremen and Hanseatic, as well as the 420-berth Columbus, which will complete her last season in the Great Lakes in 2011.

In spring 2012, the Columbus 2, presently operating as the Regatta in the summer cruise trade to Alaska,will replace the present Columbus and in 2013 the line will introduce the Europa 2, which will be built by STX France, formerly Chantiers de l’Atlantique, at St Nazaire. The same yard delivered the Crystal Serenity in 2003 and the Queen Mary 2 in 2004.

For further information on any Hapag-Lloyd cruise or to discuss possible ship visits please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises International Brochure Now On Line

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-_6xEhjc_YzQ/TWtiihcqPGI/AAAAAAAANHc/5WFuO5EhAtQ/hapag-lloyd-logo.jpgThe January-November 2012 on-line International (English-language) brochure for Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ ms Europa is now available on line through this link (go to the bottom of the page):-

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises International Brochures

Or click on MS Europa 2012 below for the on-line brochure

MS Europa 2012

The fare price inserts for the international market. UK residents are eligible for the Sterling pricing included in the bottom link, while North American residents qualify for the US dollar pricing in the third link.

For further details or to order a hard copy of the Europa 2012 brochure please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk