AIDA Cruises cuts steel for second LNG-powered mega ship

Germany’s largest cruise line AIDA Cruises has cut the first steel for its second LNG-powered mega ship at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Germany.

A sister ship to AIDAnova, the still-unnamed new vessel is due for delivery in 2021, while a third is on order for delivery in 2023.

AIDA Cruises is doubling-down on its commitment to running its fleet on cleaner fuels, with AIDA President Felix Eichhorn saying during the steel cutting for the new ship that the cruise line plans to make LNG a primary fuel source.

The new ship will be a sister to AIDAnova

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“By 2023, around half of all AIDA guests will be sailing on our state-of-the-art LNG ships that stand apart with many further technical innovations for greater efficiency, less fuel consumption and conserved resources,” he said.

Earlier this week, AIDA Cruises was awarded the Blue Angel, the German Federal Government’s ecolabel for AIDAnova’s environmentally friendly ship design, and by the end of 2020, twelve of fourteen AIDA ships will have shorepower plugs, according to the company.

“At the same time, we are offering our guests on-board our ships an extraordinary variety of individual vacation options, innovative entertainment and culinary concepts that provide lasting impulses to the vacation market in Germany,” Eichhorn added.

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AIDA Cruises is exploring the use of fuel cells, batteries and liquefied gas from renewable sources in cruising. The company plans to test the first fuel cell unit on-board an AIDA vessel in 2021, it said in a release.

The new 183,900-gross ton cruise ship will carry 5,400 passengers and will be built on the same platform as AIDAnova, which is itself a sister ship to several other LNG-powered cruise ships being built for lines across the Carnival Corporation fleet.

Costa Smeralda and Carnival Cruise Line’s new ship Mardi Gras will also be LNG powered and will have the same design, while Princess Cruises has ordered two of the vessels at a slightly smaller gross tonnage of 175,000.

The British cruise line P&O, also owned by Carnival, has ordered two 183,900-gross ton mega cruise ships to be powered by LNG. The first of which, P&O Iona, is due for delivery in 2020.

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