(10:30 a.m AEST) — Australia’s P&O and Princess ships are set to be reshuffled to meet increased demand for local holidays at sea, Carnival Australia announced today.
Princess Cruises’ 2,000-passenger Dawn Princess will move to the P&O fleet in May 2017, while Golden Princess will remain in Australian waters throughout 2017 (instead of returning to Japan) alongside Sun Princess and Sea Princess.
P&O Cruises senior vice president Sture Myrmell said Dawn Princess would be transformed and renamed before the transfer, becoming the largest vessel in the fleet.
“This ship is a great addition to P&O Cruises’ fleet, with her larger size opening up opportunities for new onboard product and experiences,” Myrmell said.
The renamed ship will be the sixth in P&O’s Australia-based fleet after two ex-Holland America Line ships, Ryndam and Statendam, are also handed over next month.
Princess Cruises vice president Australia & New Zealand Stuart Allison said the cruise line was pleased to be able to offer locals more itineraries on Golden Princess. The 2600-passenger ship is larger and younger than Dawn Princess.
“One of Golden Princess’ key sailings for the year will be a 75-night Circle Pacific itinerary taking holidaymakers on a roundtrip cruise from Australia to Asia, Alaska and America,” Allison said.
“This will be the first time we’ve offered a world cruise from Australia on a Grand-class Princess ship so we think it will be a winner.”
Carnival Australia CEO Ann Sherry said the move was good news for Australians seeking more choice in cruising from their own backyard.
“These fleet changes will help us further increase the range of exciting cruise options on offer to Australians,” she said.
We’ll keep you posted when we hear more details.