President Obama has been hinting that he may be about to bring an end to America’s long-standing trade embargo with Cuba, but there’s no sign yet that US-based cruise lines are about to be allowed to add the island to their Caribbean itineraries.
So hats off to Britain’s Thomson Cruises, who have announced that their new ship, Thomson Dream, will be paying regular visits to Havana from December 2010.
The 1,500-passenger vessel, currently sailing as Costa Europa, joins the Thomson fleet in April and will be sailing in the Mediterranean during the summer. A dry-dock refit will precede the ship’s departure for the Caribbean.
The ship will then sail a series of 14-night itineraries which all include calls to Cuba, some of them for three days and two nights in Havana. Other ports of call include Aruba, Barbados, Cozumel, Curacao and Grand Cayman.
Flights will be available from Gatwick, Birmingham and Manchester and fares are expected to start at about £1,600. The cruises go on sale on November 5.
The only other affordable cruises visiting Cuba are on Fred Olsen’s Braemar, which will make four calls in Havana during 2010.