Ambition is launched in Newcastle

It’s just over a year since Ambassador Cruise Line held the naming ceremony for their first ship, Ambience, at Tilbury with Sally Gunnell as godmother. And this premium value cruise has just held a similar ceremony for their second ship, Ambition in Newcastle (Port of Tyne) where Shirley Robertson OBE was godmother. She was the first woman to win two consecutive gold medals in the Olympics as a member of the British sailing team. Christian Verhounig CEO explained the reason for choosing her, saying the sports men and women at like Shirley have to show serious dedication and effort, which is replicated by the Ambassador Cruise Line’s team working on long-term sustainability. The cruise line aims to operate in the most ocean-friendly and globally conscious way possible.

Leaving Newcastle, Ambition called at Dundee, Shirley’s place of birth, before the maiden voyage headed off for 14 nights on a ‘Hidden Gems of France and Spain’ cruise. A mid-size ship, slightly smaller than Ambience, Ambition takes around 1,200 guests in her 680 cabins.

Ambassador’s COO, Phil Gardener is particularly proud of the regional departures the cruise line is offering: sailing from not only Newcastle and Tilbury, but also Dundee, Edinburgh, Falmouth, Liverpool, Bristol and Belfast. This allows people to arrive at the port and start their holiday, in their cabin perhaps just ten minutes later. No-fly cruises appear to be very popular, given the difficulties at airports in recent months. And indeed, this is bringing new passengers to the cruise line, people who simply do not want the hassle associated with flying.

Popular cruises on Ambition and Ambience include the Norwegian Fjords, around Britain voyages and the round the world journeys. During the 2023/24 season, Ambassador Cruise Line will visit 60 countries, with sailings lasting from two to 120 days. Passengers enjoy the intimate size of the ships, with a maximum of 1,250 guests. And the connection to regional ports has been strengthened through the naming of public areas of the ships, with names like Pendennis, a castle near Falmouth and Angel for Angel of the North near Newcastle.    

Ambassador’s focus on premium value provides a reasonably priced cruise which is appealing to mature travellers, who tend to be more resilient to the current cost of living crisis, having a different outlook on holidays. They’ve been through financial cycles before and can often see their way through them. Holidays are seen as a necessity, not a luxury. Silver travellers want to get away, may be not at the top end of the market rather buying a product that’s well-priced and good value: affordable quality in other words, where the service surpasses expectations. 

In addition to considered spending, customer demand is for shorter cruises of 15 nights or less, which Ambassador offer from all their ports. And for the very important single guests, Ambassador have allocated single occupancy cabins at a single supplement from 30% compared with the equivalent twin fare based on five selected single cabin categories. For sailings of 6 nights or more, there are also a welcome cocktail party and organised get togethers. Pleasingly the cruise line reports that nine out of ten passengers would sail with them again and recommend others to do so; indeed 30% of their first year’s guests have already cruised with them again.   

When asked by Lucy Huxley of Travel Weekly about the delivery of the third ship in the fleet, Christian Verhounig would not be drawn, however it seems unlikely to be called ambivalent, given the current success Ambassador Cruise Line is enjoying.

Find out more

Visit Ambassador Cruise Line and call our Silver Travel Advisors to book your voyage on 0800 412 5678.

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