Strike puts paid to Palma’s Magic

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palma.jpgNo sooner has a Greek taxi drivers’ strike ended, than new industrial action is making life difficult for cruise passengers in the Mediterranean.
Striking coach drivers at Palma (above), on the island of Mallorca, have forced at least two ships, carrying about 7,000 passengers between them, to cancel visits to the island tomorrow. The industrial action, over a three per cent pay claim, is expected to continue until Sunday.
Carnival Magic, on a nine-night cruise which began in Barcelona last Friday (August 5) has changed course for Marseille, where it had originally been expected on a day later. It will arrive in Barcelona on Saturday, giving passengers extra time in the city before they disembark on Sunday.
Senior cruise director John Heald, from Margate, has had the task of informing passengers. He says: “We looked at Monte Carlo again but there is no pier available and there are no other ports that would allow us to be back in Barcelona on time Sunday. The options therefore were a day at sea or arrive to Barcelona on Saturday morning, stay all day and night with the ship in full operation except the casino and shops, and then start debarkation as normal Sunday.”
Disney Magic, on a seven-night voyage which left Barcelona last Saturday, is now heading straight for the mainland port and will arrive a day earlier than originally planned.
It’s going to get a bit crowded – Costa Serena (3,000-plus passengers), MSC Splendida (3,500) and Celebrity Solstice (almost 3,000) – are also in Barcelona on Friday.
Thomson Destiny was in Palma today, and the company is doubly vulnerable because it also bases Thomson Dream and Island Escape in the port for turn-rounds. The city’s airport – which today handled about 135,000 arrivals – has been badly affected by the strike.
Dream is dues in port on Saturday, and a Thomson spokesperson said: “This strike may have an effect on transfers to and from the ship. We are working closely with our port agent to put contingency plans in place to ensure there is minimal disruption to Thomson Cruises passengers.”
Royal Caribbean’s Grandeur of the Seas is scheduled to be in Palma on Sunday. A spokesperson told me they were monitoring the situation closely but had not yet decided to make any changes to the schedule.

By | 2017-06-15T16:00:03+00:00 11 August 2011|Cruise Destinations, Cruise News|0 Comments

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John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.

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