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Society autumn cruising with Louis Cruise Lines
Step aboard modern cruising history with this superbly priced back to back itinerary aboard 2 of the ships which really began the modern cruising revolution.
Our itinerary begins with Aquamarine. One of Royal Caribbean's original trio of ships, delivered as Nordic Prince, she was so popular that she was lengthened after just 9 years in service. From 1995 she began a 2nd successful career with Airtours as Carousel. Since 2005 she has been Aquamarine.
Then we will spend 4 nights aboard the Aegean Pearl. Originally one onf NCL's famous 'White Wedge' ships, MS Southward, she was later a firm favourite with Airtours as their Seawing.
See below for a Q+A on what to expect on an OLS group cruise.
This year we are using the following agent. Please remember to quote OLS when booking so that they will know you are part of our group.
88 York Street, London W1H 1QT, England
Tel: +44 (0)20 7723 2450 UK: 0800 526 313 Fax: +44 (0)20 7723 2486
OLS Group cruises - what to expect.
A group cruise with the Ocean Liner Society is a fantastic way to try a different ship, meet some fellow ship lovers and generally make sure that the society part of our named is fully lived up to. The Ocean Liner Society likes to organise at least 1 group cruise per year to make this happen. When we do so we want to make sure that everyone has a good time but in doing so, it is important that everyone knows what to expect. Here are some pointers
How do we choose the cruise?
The OLS committee meets several times per year and each meeting discusses options. We are looking for something which is a bit different than the usual trip. You won’t find us booking a P&O trip from Southampton for instance. As you would expect of shiplovers, the choice is primarily done starting with the ship. Then we look at the itineraries and try to find the most interesting. We are generally looking at something around 7 days duration, with a preference for a European departure point. Obviously we are looking for something which looks sensibly priced, you won’t find us proposing a luxury world cruise for instance. We have recently cruised with Pullmantur (Oceanic and Sky Wonder) and Phoenix Reisen's Maxim Gorky in 2008.
Who do we book with?
Given our choice of ships, these are often not ships which can be booked in an average high street travel agents. Therefore we choose specialist agencies who are able to get our groups on the ships we want. Its important to note that the Ocean Liner Society itself is not a travel agent. We won’t directly take your bookings or your money. We will provide you with the details of the cruise and the agent appointed, together with a price list which is as upto date as can be. Your booking would be direct with the agent. It would be subject to normal rules of that agent and cruise line. This includes things like prices, any supplements and changes in itinerary and cancellation costs.
Are there any special activities as part of the cruise?
Any special activities are usually spontaneous. On previous trips there have been special talks, behind the scenes tours etc. All of these are subject to the willingness of the operators, and participants. We can guarantee that we would ask for bridge visits, engine room visits etc. But we cannot guarantee they would be granted.
What about port calls and excursions?
One great thing about going with a group of ship lovers, is that there is usually someone who knows something about the ports and their attractions. We have not in the past organised any special excursions, however in most ports groups head off to do things together.
Why do I need to register with the Society for a group cruise?
If you let us know you are coming, we can make sure with the agent that our bookings are handled together. This means any special perks, events or information get to everyone. We will also have an email list of people going so that we can share thoughts and ideas on getting there and back, ports of call and whether anyone wants to bring along some material for a talk or similar. This is spontaneous, comes from the community going and is of course not guaranteed.
How will I get to the cruise?
Simple – you choose. We don’t want to dictate anyone’s arrangements. Some will take their car, or the train, or the plane direct to the port, others may travel by a more circuitous route. Its up to you as individuals. The society will share ideas and provide pointers, but your arrangements outside the cruise are yours to make.
How will I find out about cruises?
Several places – the OLS website, the email newsletter, ask at the monthly meeting, visit the OLS stand at the ship show, and most importantly in the ‘Engine Room’ section of Sea Lines. We won’t be writing to you as individuals (that costs money from your subscriptions that we would rather spend on producing a great magazine and having monthly talks). We won’t bombard you with junk mail, or harangue you into going. But we do hope you’ll join us.
Some of our cruises are on ships where the language isn’t English onboard. We will make sure you know this when you book.
Travel insurance, vaccinations, visas etc. Like any group trip, these are the responsibility ultimately of each individual traveller. We can provide links to guidance, but we’ll leave the rest up to you.
That’s it really. OLS group cruises, are for a group of ship lovers and their family who fancy trying something different together. They’re not high pressure sold, over organised or bossy. You can do your own thing if you want to, whenever you want to. But past trips have been great fun so do think about it.