Category Archive News

ByRick Deutsch

Richard Branson’s new Cruise line to cater to adults only

Cruises with a gaggle of kids can make for an unpleasant cruise for older people. Many millennials and grandparents bring kiddies on the more economical trips. Like the Caribbean or end-of-season reduced price re-positioning voyages. The ambient noise level rises to 120 dB with children who have no home training.

In an effort to focus on older, retired people on vacation, the new Virgin Voyages enterprise by Richard Branson, the Brit with the bucks, will roll out a new industry offering. No children. The cut off age is 18.  Branson is trying something new. Heck, there are gay cruises, nudist cruises and eclipse cruises!  Why not target the “adult” market and go after it hard?

The unnamed first ship in the fleet just had its keel laid in the Genoa shipyard; it will roll out in 2020.

Imagine the peace and quiet with a tad over 2,800 pax and no tweens.  The plan is really fuzzy, but Branson hopes to sail first out of Miami (after getting the ship from Italy) and ply the Caribbean.

Artist conceptions are out for what Virgin will call “Lady Ships.” They show silver paint with red highlights. A red-headed mermaid is the logo.

large new cruise sh ip

Richard Branson’s adults only ship

Passengers are not called “passengers” nor “guests”….rather “sailors.”  Aye, Matey.   No word on entertainment or other fun attractions, but “most rooms will have balconies.”  We’ll let you know about any opportunities for enrichment speakers.

I like Branson. He and Elon Musk are doers….ala Tucker and Edison.  Just ‘git ‘er done.

More to read – Learn about our Coaching program for fledgling speakers.

Oh…”Adults only ” is not a wild Club Med type of free for all….no hanky panky on this one.

We specialize in getting speakers on ships for free. Free as in no cost for the cruise. Note – you will pay an agent fee for them to market you..but not another penny to us at SpeakOnCruises. We are not an agency – but we get you ready to sail.  There is a process to getting gigs – and we share it.

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ByRick Deutsch

Evolution of Cruise ship power plants means lower emissions.

The focus over the last couple decades has been on the “carbon footprint” of the hundreds of cruise ships out on the oceans. This has led major cruise lines to focus more on what “comes out the tailpipe.”

Advances in the generation of needed energy at sea are now rolling out. A quick history. The days of the “tall” ships are long gone. The first cross-Atlantic ships were not used to haul people on vacations. They were mail delivery vehicles. The exploding migration to America drove folks to communicate via letters well before the age of the telegraph and radio. British ships were dubbed “RMS” – meaning Royal Mail Ship.

Soon, coal fired steam engines made for quicker mail delivery. The generated steam would expand and turn large cylinders or turbines that led to the propellers at the back. Occasionally, a person or two could take passage for a fee. The idea caught on. An industry was born.  In the early days, the routing was primarily England to New York City.  The Titanic was doing just that when she went down. Long distance boats rides soon caught on and the demand for overseas transportation rose.

Today, over 25 Million passengers enjoy cruising. Most ships are powered via petroleum products. These tend to dump tons of waste into the air (and a lot settles into the ocean). To help the environment, low sulphur fuels and electric propulsion are trending. Nearly $7B is being spent on new ships.

Cruise ship

Cruise ship pollution

Regulators are now watching smokestack emissions. The European and North American Emissions Control Areas (ECAs) encourage low sulphur fuels. Their reach will soon cover international operations. A major issue for ships is the short life of catalytic components. Estimates of replacement of whole units is about a million USD – labor included.

Although not an Elon Musk (Tesla) idea, we are seeing most newer ships outfitted with electric propulsion. 20 million watts generated is not uncommon. This provides a quieter ride with less vibration.  If you’ve ever roomed at the rear (aft) of the ship, you can feel the engines groaning away.

How about hydrogean power?  That means the most abundant element in the universe is used to generate power and the only waste is water. Norway will develop the world’s first hydrogenpowered cruise ship. Viking Cruises is aiming at zero-emission technology.

I don’t want to forget to remind you that SpeakOnCruises can teach you how to get free cruises for two by giving lectures. Our rates are going up – Save $100 by booking before Oct 15, 2017. See HIREUS.

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ByRick Deutsch

Crystal Cruises CEO leaves the #1 rated cruise line

Edie Rodriguez

Edie Rodriguez

In a move that shocked the cruise industry, the CEO of Crystal Cruises abruptly resigned yesterday, Edie Rodriguez has left the company she lead since 201. Under her command, the #1 rated all-inclusive cruise giant was purchased by Hong Kong base Genting.

Ms Rodriquez led a complete transformation of the line fro two stellar ships, the Serenity and the Symphony to an offering that will comprise 3 more ocean liners (one a condo arrangement), 5 river ships, a fleet of yachts and two aircraft.

A 777 is being reconfigured from holding  300 pax to one with almost 90.  It’s focus will be for high rollers to take extended vacations with a theme – like golf courses of the world.  Imagine Scotland on Monday, Pebble Beach on Wenesday.

Crystal has been based in LA for many years but has expanded operations to the Miami area. Key personnel have left the company in the last few years, including the VP of Entertainment, VP of Marketing and the COO.

READ – Genting owns shipbuilding facility

Specific reasons for Ms. Rodriguez departure were not released – but it’s said it was amiable. It’s hoped that more will come out soon.  She has no immediate announcement as to a new position in the industry.

Tom Wolber, fresh from Disney was announced as the new CEO – effective now. While with Disney for 28 years, Wolber  has been President and CEO of Euro Disney and held posts at the Walt Disney World Resort.

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