The 115,000 tonne, 290-metre long Azura launched last year in the UK and will be the largest and youngest P&O Cruises World Cruising ship to ever visit our shores.
Carrying up to 3100 passengers, Azura was christened by Australian-based prima ballerina Darcey Bussell who the line hopes will pay a visit when her ship is in town.
Azura, Aurora and Arcadia will collectively make 11 visits to Australian ports from February to March 2013 as part of the largest ever world cruising program for any cruise line.
Travelling almost completely around Australia, Azura will offer shorter sectors expected to be popular with Australian passengers in particular as part of her
110-night world voyage.
Arriving in Fremantle on 17 February 2013, Azura will also visit Adelaide and Melbourne before an overnight stay in Sydney on 25 February. She will then continue onto Brisbane and Cairns.
Carol Marlow, P&O Cruises managing director spoke of the line’s support of the ever growing Australian cruise industry at a trade press conference yesterday.
Approximately 10% of passengers currently travelling on P&O Cruises World Cruising voyages are Australian with Ms Marlow expecting this percentage to double in 2013 with the extended program on offer.
“We concentrate our efforts on bringing in British passengers, Australian passengers and New Zealand passengers onto our ships. There’s only a handful of other nationalities that travel with us, so we concentrate on that great link that we have and have always had since 1853,” Ms Marlow shared.
Northbound line voyages from Sydney to Southampton have proven to be the most popular with Australian and New Zealand travellers in addition to the shorter sectors including Singapore to Sydney and Sydney to Hong Kong.
With sectors starting from $1949 per person, early bird discounts will allow passengers to take advantage of a 10% discount on voyages booked before 31 December 2011 in addition to receiving up to £2200 on board credit per couple.
World voyages and line voyages will go on sale at 5pm 14 July with sector voyages available for sale from 5pm 15 July.