Princess Ships returns to US ahead of restart
The Diamond Princess and the Sapphire Princess are back in the United States. After several years of sailing in Asia and the Pacific, the ships are currently sailing to Los Angeles before restarting service in North America.
Out of service since early 2020, the Diamond Princess will be the first to arrive on August 4.
The 2004-built cruise ship will welcome guests Sept. 1 for a series of sailings from San Diego.
The schedule includes cruises to the California coast, Baja Peninsula, Sea of Cortez and Hawaii, marking the first time the ship has sailed from a US port since 2013.
In November, the Diamond also offers a 20-night Central America cruise that includes visits to Mexico, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama and Guatemala.
The Sapphire Princess, meanwhile, is scheduled to arrive in Los Angeles on August 20. Following the restart of Princess Cruises, the ship will resume service on September 24.
Also out of service since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2,600-passenger ship offers four- to 15-night cruises to Mexico, Hawaii and the California coast from its homeport of Los Angeles. The program marks the ship’s return to the United States after an eight-year hiatus.
In December, the Sapphire heads to South America for a series of cruises in Patagonia, Antarctica and the Falklands.
After being initially laid up in Southeast Asia, the two ships had been anchored off Cyprus since mid-2021.
With the resumption of service from the Diamond and Sapphire, the entire Princess Cruises fleet will once again be sailing with guests.
After a 16-month operational pause, the high-end brand welcomed customers for the first time in July 2021 for a shortened summer season in Alaska.
A few days later the company also returned to the UK before relaunching service to the West Coast in September 2021 and the Panama Canal in October 2021.
In recent months, 13 Princess cruise ships have also returned to service, bringing the business back to other regions such as Australia, the Mediterranean and the Caribbean.