Sunday, October 30, 2005

Princess Announces 2011 Alaska Cruise and Cruisetour Program

Princess Announces 2011 Alaska Cruise and Cruisetour Program

Six Ships to Offer Gulf of Alaska and Inside Passage Sailings; Cruisetour Choices Give Travelers Many Ways to Enjoy the Wilderness; Affordable Options Start at Just $299 for Three Days at Denali

Santa Clarita, Calif. (Vocus) April 30, 2010

Princess Cruises' 2011 Alaska program offers travelers a full range of cruise and cruisetour options whether they want to explore Denali in depth, plan independently, enjoy the attention of an expert guide, or venture off the beaten path. The season opens for sale May 13 with special rates that include adding three days at Denali to a cruise for just $299.

The 2011 lineup will offer passengers the company's hallmark Alaska experience, whether at sea on board amenity-filled ships or on land with Princess' signature wilderness lodges and exclusive Direct to the Wilderness program, where guests step right from their ship onto luxury railcars that transport them directly to the Denali area.

The season includes a total of 104 Alaska departures aboard six ships sailing on three itinerary options during the May to September season. The lineup includes Diamond Princess, Coral Princess, and Island Princess traveling on the line's popular "Voyage of the Glaciers" route through the scenic Gulf of Alaska; Golden Princess and Sapphire Princess sailing the Inside Passage from Seattle, and Sea Princess cruising on 10-day journeys from San Francisco.

The cruisetour program combines a seven-day "Voyage of the Glaciers" cruise with three to eight additional nights on land exploring Alaska's interior. For 2011, travelers can choose from four types of land and sea packages – Denali Explorer, On Your Own, Off the Beaten Path and Connoisseur. All Princess cruisetours include the company's exclusive wilderness lodges, rail or motorcoach travel, plus the top two attractions in the state – Glacier Bay National Park and Denali National Park, where visitors spend at least two nights exploring the wonders of this area.

"Our 2011 program retains all of the classic Princess signatures that make us the clear leader in Alaska, plus some new options,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president. "And visiting the heart of Alaska has never been so affordable with three days at Denali beginning at just $299 more than a cruise alone.”

Cruises – Princess offers three itineraries to the majestic glaciers, historic towns and scenic waters of Alaska with sailings from seven to 10 days.

  •  Voyage of the Glaciers – The line's famed Gulf of Alaska route between Vancouver and Whittier (for Anchorage) features calls at Ketchikan, Juneau and Skagway with daylight cruising in Glacier Bay National Park and the 16 glaciers of College Fjord (or Hubbard Glacier on southbound sailings). Diamond Princess and Coral Princess sail on Saturdays and Island Princess offers new Wednesday departures for a total of 54 sailing choices between May 18 and September 17, 2011.
  •  Inside Passage from Seattle – Golden Princess and Sapphire Princess offer convenient weekend departures on seven-day roundtrip itineraries from Seattle along the scenic Inside Passage with calls at Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway and Victoria, B. C. Passengers will enjoy dramatic glacier viewing in either Glacier Bay National Park (Golden Princess) or Tracy Arm (Sapphire Princess). The two ships will sail on 37 departures between May 14 and September 17, 2011.
  •  Inside Passage from San Francisco – Sea Princess again sails from the "City by the Bay" on 10-day roundtrip cruises. The ship offers 13 voyages from San Francisco featuring the scenery of Glacier Bay National Park or Tracy Arm, stops at Victoria and Juneau, plus two other calls in Ketchikan, Skagway, Haines, Sitka or Icy Strait Point. Departures sail between May 10 and September 7, 2011.

Cruisetours – Princess cruisetours offer passengers a complete land and sea Alaska experience with vacations ranging from 10 to 15 nights. All cruisetour options include at least two nights in the Denali National Park area, stays at Princess' own riverside wilderness lodges, and a seven-day Voyage of the Glaciers sailing including Glacier Bay National Park.

  •  Denali Explorer – Featuring multiple nights at the line's own Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge and/or Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge, these tours also offer the exclusive Direct-to-the-Wilderness rail service between the Whittier cruise terminal and the dramatic Denali National Park area. Most also offer the opportunity to explore Fairbanks or Anchorage.
  •  On Your Own – A new option for independent-minded travelers, these tours offer a more affordable and flexible way to see the Heart of Alaska. Tours do not include any pre-planned excursions, giving travelers time to create their own experience.
  •  Off the Beaten Path – For those who want to explore Denali and beyond, these tours offer options to the Kenai Peninsula with stays at Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge or Wrangell-St. Elias National Park with stays at Copper River Princess Wilderness Lodge. Passengers can even choose to venture to the state's far north into the Arctic Circle and Prudhoe Bay.
  •  Connoisseur – These cruisetour options offer the services of a professional tour director and additional time for passengers to experience the Great Land. Travelers can choose from more of these extended itineraries in 2011, with most meals and enhanced sightseeing options included as well.

Gulf of Alaska cruises and cruisetours for 2011 are available for reservations on May 13, 2010. Launch Fares begin at $649 for seven-day voyages, and $948 for cruisetours.

Additional information about Princess Cruises is available through a professional travel agent, by calling 1-800-PRINCESS, or by visiting the company's website at http://www. princess. com.

About Princess Cruises in Alaska:
One of the best-known names in cruising, Princess is a global cruise and tour company operating a fleet of 17 modern ships renowned for their innovative design and wide array of choices in dining, entertainment and amenities, all provided in an environment of exceptional customer service. Princess is a leader in Alaska vacations, offering immersive land/sea vacations that feature the state's "must see" attractions, including Glacier Bay National Park and Denali National Park. Princess owns and operates five wilderness lodges nestled in scenic riverside locations throughout the state, as well as a fleet of deluxe motorcoaches and glass-domed Princess railcars – giving travelers the opportunity to combine cruise, rail and lodge options to see all the best of Alaska. The company is part of Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE:CCL; NYSE:CUK).

Princess Cruises is a proud member of World's Leading Cruise Lines. Our exclusive alliance also includes Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America, Cunard Line, Costa Cruises and The Yachts of Seabourn. Sharing a passion to please each guest and a commitment to quality and value, World's Leading Cruise Lines inspires people to discover their best vacation experience. Together, we offer a variety of exciting and enriching cruise vacations to the world's most desirable destinations. Visit us at http://www. worldsleadingcruiselines. com.

Princess can also be found on:
Facebook: http://www. facebook. com/PrincessCruises
Twitter: http://twitter. com/PrincessCruises
YouTube: http://youtube. com/princesscruises
Flickr: http://www. flickr. com/photos/princesscruises

For further information contact:
Julie Benson, 661-753-1530
News, background information and photography are always available in our newsroom at http://www. princess. com/news.

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Iceland Tour Guides See Silver Lining Around a Cloud of Ash

Iceland Tour Guides See Silver Lining Around a Cloud of Ash

While the Icelandic volcano is causing problems for air travelers, several of ToursByLocals' tour guides in Iceland are seeking to profit from it while giving travelers a unique experience. They've developed tours that offer travelers a chance to see the erupting volcano up close and witness its affect on the local people.

Vancouver, Canada (Vocus) April 23, 2010

While the recent eruption of Eyjafjallajökull in Iceland is wreaking havoc for millions of would-be air-travelers throughout Europe, Iceland tour guides are euphoric. Of course they aren’t spending their time in an airport departure lounge – they’re too busy getting as close as they can to one of nature’s grandest spectacles. And inviting travelers to join them.

While getting to Iceland from Europe is a challenge, it is still open for North American travelers and of course, those people still waiting in Reykjavik to catch a connecting flight to Europe.

One of the guides offering these tours is long-time resident of Reykjavik, Tony Brackley. He is an avid nature photographer, and also works as a tour guide with ToursByLocals. When Eyjafjallajökull started erupting last week, Tony put his passion for photography and adventure travel together to create a Photographer’s Volcano Tour (http://www. ToursByLocals. com/IcelandVolcano). He exorts those thousands of frustrated travelers currently stuck in Reykjavik to see the silver lining in their situation: “Get out of the airport, get out of your hotels: this is a chance to see a landscape changing before your eyes!” Tony will take small groups of people to the best vantage points for witnessing and recording the spectacular active volcano.

Other tours on offer include one from highly rated ToursByLocals guide Stefan Valsson. His 12 hour “Volcano Aftermath” (http://www. ToursByLocals. com/VolcanoAftermath) tour includes a visit to other highlights on the spectacular South Shore of Iceland. As well as seeing the volcano itself, you’ll see how it has affected the life of Icelanders living in the region.

If you’d like to see the volcano from the air as well as the ground, you could take a driving and hiking tour (http://www. ToursByLocals. com/IcelandEruption) from ToursByLocals licensed guide Guðrún Sigurðardótti. This tour offers hiking to get the best view and an optional 1 hour helicopter flight over the affected area.
Cost of these small group, private tours ranges from $390 USD to $800 USD for the ground portion. On a ‘per person’ basis, this works out to only $100 per person. The helicopter option for up to 4 people would add $2,700 USD.

ToursByLocals President, Paul Melhus, expects additional tours to be available soon when more of the company’s Icelandic guides realise that the source of so much global inconvenience also doubles as a stupendous tourist attraction.

If, as many experts predict, the volcano remains active for the next couple years, Melhus expects these tour offerings could become one of the region’s most popular tours for the adventurous, socially responsible travelers who use ToursByLocals.

About ToursByLocals
Launched in November 2008, Vancouver-based ToursByLocals connects travelers with local guides. Using internet technology, the company help travelers make a secure connection and transaction with knowledgeable local guides in any part of the world.

ToursByLocals is committed to promoting ethical tourism. By growing a global network of independent tour guides, ToursByLocals empowers these individuals to be in business for themselves, while giving travelers a more authentic experience of local culture through the private tours offered by these guides.
Travelers who want to travel in a socially responsible way now have the option of hiring one of 600 independent local guides in over 73 countries (and growing) through ToursByLocals. com (http://www. toursbylocals. com).

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