While the bar of four million refugees was exceeded last week according to United Nations accounts, the Holland America Line cruise line has decided to reserve one of its liners to accommodate populations and is relying on the goodwill of its customers to agree. to postpone their trip to another ship.
Cruise ships, which are regularly under fire for their damaging impact on the environment, have found a new role in this changing world in recent weeks. With war hitting Ukraine, these behemoths of the seas are now becoming refuges for those in need.
In the port of Rotterdam, which was preparing to resume service after a long period of interruption due to the health crisis, Volendam would take its 1,432 passengers to Norway, as well as the British Isles and Iceland. Ultimately, travelers will board another ship. The nearly 240-metre-long ship is to provide shelter for men, women and children fleeing the conflict in Ukraine for the next three months. They receive three hot meals every day, while the on-board crew remains present to provide them with all the necessary care for their well-being. The 1,500 Ukrainians receive a key to a cabin, have an internet connection and have access to all public areas of the Volendam†
Usually, the boat entertains its passengers with a myriad of activities, including concerts given in a room equipped with a giant LED screen for total immersion in sound.
The travel program Volendam has therefore been canceled and will not resume until early July.
This is not the first initiative of its kind in the cruise world. In Marseille, the Méditerranée, a ferry operated by the Corsica Linea company, welcomed nearly 1,700 Ukrainian refugees on March 29.
(ETX Daily Up)