Is your Alaska cruise canceled? This small line will give you an extra $500 credit

Feb 24, 2021

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Is your Alaska cruise likely to be canceled due to Canada’s new cruise ship ban? Alaska cruise specialist UnCruise Adventures has an offer for you.

The adventure-focused small-ship cruise company will give you a $500 per cabin discount to take one of its Alaska sailings as an alternative.

The $500 per cabin discount can be combined with the line’s current $600 per cabin discount offer for a total savings of $1,100 per cabin.

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Among caveats: The offer only is available once your existing Alaska sailing on another line is officially canceled and you can show proof of the cancellation.

In addition, for now, bookings must be made by Feb. 28.

Announced earlier this month and effective through Feb. 28, 2022, the Canada cruise ban is effectively a ban on cruises to Alaska, too, for most lines, as most cruise ships must make a stop in Canada during Alaska cruises for regulatory reasons.

Related: The best credit cards for booking cruises

Uncruise Alaska Glacier Bay
UnCruise Adventures offers adventure-focused cruises in Alaska on small vessels that hold just 22 to 86 passengers. (Photo courtesy of UnCruise Adventures)

Most cruise ships are flagged outside of the United States, and by law, such vessels cannot cruise in American waters without stopping at least once per voyage at a foreign port. On a practical level, that means that the Alaska cruises that most lines offer must include a stop in Canada.

UnCruise Adventures is one of the few cruise operators in Alaska that won’t be affected by the Canada cruise ban as it operates U.S.-flagged ships. It is allowed to offer Alaska cruises that take place entirely within U.S. waters and don’t require a stop in Canada.

Related: Canada cruise ban ‘devastating’ for Alaska

Other lines in a similar position include American Cruise Lines and Alaskan Dream Cruises. Both operate U.S.-flagged vessels.

All of the lines that operate U.S.-flagged vessels in Alaska are small lines that operate small ships. UnCruise Adventures operates a fleet of vessels that carry just 22 to 86 passengers each. It’s known for adventure-focused trips into wilderness areas of Alaska that are all about hiking, kayaking, wildlife-watching and other outdoorsy pursuits — a far different type of Alaska cruising than what big-ship lines such as Royal Caribbean and Princess offer.

Royal Caribbean, Princess and all other big-ship lines offering voyages in Alaska operate foreign-flagged vessels that must stop in Canada during Alaska sailings.

None of the cruise lines that operate Alaska trips with a Canada stop have officially canceled their 2021 Alaska voyages. But in recent days, they’ve begun making the trips unbookable at their websites — or removing them from the websites completely.

Related: Cruise ship denied entry to New Zealand to restart cruises

Alaska sailings scheduled for 2021 have become unbookable since Canada’s announcement at the websites of five of the six big-ship lines that operate in the state: Princess CruisesHolland AmericaRoyal CaribbeanCarnival Cruise Line and Celebrity Cruises.

The exception is Norwegian Cruise Line, which continues to show 2021 Alaska sailings as bookable on its website.

The big-ship lines that operate foreign-flagged vessels can’t offer cruises to Alaska without a stop in Canada due to a 135-year-old U.S. law called the Passenger Vessel Service Act.

Unless the law is changed in the next few months, none of the lines will be able to offer Alaska cruises until spring 2022.

The Alaska cruise season typically begins in April and continues through September. UnCruise Adventures canceled most of its 2020 Alaska voyages due to the coronavirus pandemic, but it plans to go ahead with cruises in Alaska this year starting in May — a month later than usual.

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Featured image courtesy of UnCruise Adventures

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