AS CRUISE SHIPS BECOME LARGER, they also become greener. This movement to make cruising eco-friendly comes at a time when cruise ships draw fire for their negative effects on the environment. A typical cruise ship with 3,000 passengers aboard puts out 1 million gallons of gray water; 210,000 gallons of sewage; 25,000 gallons of oily bilge water; and 50 tons of garbage and solid waste on a 10-day voyage. By one estimate, a medium-sized ship emits the same volume of air pollutants as 5 million cars going the same distance. Air quality on deck can reach the same unhealthful level as that measured on the streets of the world’s most polluted cities.
No wonder cruise ships are making strides to become greener, even though they make up less than 1 percent of the world’s 50,000 commercial maritime vessels. A new generation of passenger ships (an estimated 87 new cruise vessels come on line by 2026) will add the latest in eco-technology, and current fleets, from engine room to stateroom, are becoming far less polluting than ever before.
Holland America Line is among the leaders in securing a green card for cruising. An environmental officer sails aboard every vessel, and the staff is eco-educated. Two systems are in place to treat bilge water; towels are reused; bathrooms are equipped with low-flow faucets and showerheads; cleaning supplies are nontoxic; cabin windows are tinted to curb the use of air-conditioning; silicon paint on the hulls reduces drag; and, where provided, ships plug into less-polluting power stations when in port. Holland America also installed special computer programs to help prevent collisions with whales.
Likewise, Celebrity Cruises crushes glass; recycles aluminum and tin; and on the 2,852-passenger Solstice, 216 solar panels and 7,000 LED lights cut energy demands in half. Disney Cruise Line recycles 280 tons of water from its air-conditioning system to do laundry and swab the decks. Royal Caribbean Cruises eliminated disposable utensils, excess packaging and plastic water bottles. Lindblad Expeditions, a leader in small ship eco-touring, supplies its dining rooms with locally sourced, sustainably harvested seafood. Carnival Cruise Line installed recycling bins and sends its replaced furniture, appliances and linens to charities rather than landfills. And for its cruises in Africa on the Zambezi Queen, AmaWaterways relies on battery power at night, with hot water provided by a solar heating system.
The future looks even greener. Eco-minded passengers who drive hybrid vehicles on land will soon be able to vacation at sea on hybrid cruise ships. Hurtigruten’s newest vessel, the 530-passenger Roald Amundsen, will be the first of its kind powered by fully electric hybrid technology, promising periods of completely emission-free sailing. And Ponant promised to put the world’s first electric hybrid-powered icebreaker cruise ship into operation in 2021.
Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.
Southwest Airlines is adding new flights to, from and within Hawai’i, beginning mid-January 2020. The airline will add a new daily service between Sacramento International Airport and Honolulu (HON), plus new non-stop flights between Oakland (OAK) and San Jose (SJC) and both Kauai (LIH) and the Island of Hawai’i (KOA).
The Luxury Collection welcomes its eighth property in China with the opening of Na Lotus Hotel, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Nanning. The property is situated in the capital of the Guangxi Province, in a high-rise landmark building in the business district.
United Airlines announces a number of new routes.
WalletHub compared the 100 largest U.S. cities across 24 key metrics to determine the best destinations for an upcoming Oktoberfest celebration. The brand’s study found the estimated cost for an American to attend Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany, is $5,000. Munich boasts a $1.43 billion annual economic impact on Munich. During Oktoberfest, nearly 2 million gallons of beer are consumed and more than 510,000 whole roast chickens eaten.
TAP Air Portugal is adding 15 new weekly flights from the United States and Canada by summer 2020, a new record for the carrier of 71 weekly flights between North America and Portugal.
Qantas will start using a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner on its Sydney–Santiago route starting in late June 2020.