Marella Cruises is retiring its 34-year-old vintage cruise ship Marella Dream

Marella Dream will follow Marella Celebration into retirement, Marella Cruises has announced.

The UK cruise line announced the sale of Marella Dream as part of a series of cost-cutting measures amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Marella Dream has sailed with Marella Cruises for the last ten years

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Like other cruise lines, Marella Cruises is looking to increase the efficiency of its ships ahead of an expected resumption of cruises next year that will require reduced capacity and social distancing on-board.

The 1986-built Marella Dream is ill-suited these requirements and will go the same way as her former fleet mate Marella Celebration, which was sold by Marella earlier this year.

While both vessels had been ear-marked for retirement by 2024, neither was meant to leave the cruise line so early. Marella Cruises sent Dream into dry dock earlier this year in anticipation of another few years of service.

However, the coronavirus pandemic and global cruise shutdown accelerated the cruise line’s fleet retirement plans, just as it did at Carnival Corporation, which is selling 18 ships, and Royal Caribbean, which has said it is considering doing the same.

Marella Dream went into dry dock earlier this year for a refresh

All scheduled cruises for Marella Dream from October 26th, 2020 onwards have been cancelled, while all cruises scheduled for 2021 will instead be sailed by Marella Discovery.

Marella Discovery will be repositioned from Port Canaveral, Florida to Palma, Mallorca in Spain to operate Marella Dream’s Mediterranean itineraries.

As a result, Marella Cruises confirmed that all US cruises for the brand will be cancelled in 2021.

Marella Discovery at the Dubai Cruise Terminal – Discovery will take over Dream’s itineraries in the Med

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“With the ongoing travel restrictions for UK cruise lines still in place, we’ve taken the difficult decision to reshape our cruise programme for the upcoming seasons,” said Chris Hackney, Managing Director of Marella Cruises.

“That means an early retirement for Marella Dream after ten years of service and the redeployment of Marella Discovery from the US to Europe,” he added. “We appreciate the continued uncertainty surrounding travel and, to give our customers added peace of mind, we’re offering increased flexibility to amend their cruises to any TUI holiday on sale for free.”

“We know our customers look forward to their holidays with us – maybe now more so than ever – so this means customers can still plan and get excited for their dream holiday at a later date,” he said.

“While the current circumstances have meant we’ve had to make changes to our programme, there’s still a range of amazing itineraries for customers to enjoy.

“We’ve been working hard to implement new health & safety measures to protect customers and crew while they’re sailing with us and we can’t wait to welcome our customers back onboard soon,” said Hackney.

TUI UK, part of the TUI Group, which owns Marella Cruises, has also rolled out a new feature on its website called Where Can I Go On Holiday?, it uses the latest UK and European travel advisories to give customers safe holiday options during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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