If you are unaware of the Hurricane situation in the Atlantic at the moment, then you may well have been on another planet as it has dominated the News for the last week or more.
Firstly, I would like to say like many that my heart goes out to the victims and their families and to the many people that have had their lives turned upside down by the ferocity of Hurricane Irma. Especially as Hurricane Jose is hot on its tail.
As a cruise specialist, this is obviously causing issues for myself and my customers as cruise lines cancel and divert ships to avoid the storms.
Is it hurricane season? The answer to that is yes. Hurricane season runs roughly from June to November. Are many cruises usually affected by the Hurricane season? The answer is no, as most cruise lines divert or re-schedule ports if any ships are possibly going to be affected by storms.
If you book to sail at this time of year you need to be aware that statistically although very slim odds, your travel plans may have to be changed by the cruise lines if a Storm warning occurs and as they will not put passengers and ships in harm’s way and quite rightly so you should be aware that this is the risk you take for travelling to this area in Hurricane Season.
This year however this particular series of storms has taken everyone by surprise with the strength and devastation it has caused and is still causing.
You can try to up your odds if you have to travel at this time of year by going to destinations that lie on the outer reaches of the Hurricane Zone, such as Trinidad and Tobago, Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao. Select a cruise which is going to the Southern Caribbean or increase your odds further by choosing a different part of the world to travel to on your cruise if you must travel June to November.
I am sure you are asking yourself What happens if my ship gets caught up in a Hurricane at Sea?
Modern Cruise ships are equipped with state of the art monitoring technology to keep a constant eye on the weather. If there is any sign of a storm brewing they can re-direct the ships to different ports or take different routes to avoid them. If some how they were taken by surprise by a storm, although it is not likely to be a hurricane as these are picked up on radar long before they become an issue, ships typically travel 10 to 12 knots faster than a storm so can if required out run it. You can still experience rough seas on the edge of a storm as many may remember from the experience of Anthem of the Seas last year. So, you may well still require your sea sickness tablets.
If you are concerned as you have a cruise booked please make sure you contact the Company you have booked with in the first instance. Monitor updates and stay in touch if you’re worried. If there is something to know specifically about your cruise your agent will contact you.
Can you cancel or get compensation for changes or cancellations? Generally, most cruise policies will not permit you cancel the cruise and as changes to itineraries due to bad weather are a matter of safety most will not offer compensation for keeping you safe. However, each case is individual so again you would need to contact the company or agent you booked with.
For the latest on Hurricane Irma Click here: