Ambassador Cruise Line partners with marine conservation charity ORCA and launches first cruise “Anti-Whaling” campaign
- Ambassador will host two ORCA Ocean Conservationists on 11 sailings in 2022 & 2023
- The cruise line will encourage guests not to consume whale meat
- There will be no Destination Experiences to Oceanariums
Ambassador Cruise Line has announced today its partnership with marine conservation charity, ORCA*. The partnership includes the launch of the first ever cruise line “Anti-Whaling campaign”.
Christian Verhounig, Chief Executive Officer at Ambassador Cruise Line has formally written to the Faroese Prime Minister, Bárður á Steig Nielsen, stating that if there are recurring incidents of the dolphin hunt that took place in September 2021, he will reconsider the cruise lines position and planned three future sailings to the Islands.
Ambassador will also be monitoring the outcome of the review planned to be undertaken by the Faroes Government with respect to their Commercial Whaling policy and will reserve the right to cancel such ports of call if it is deemed that activity in the destination contradicts the cruise line’s pledge.
Christian Verhounig, said, “We at Ambassador feel incredibly passionate about supporting this cause. This joined up approach with ORCA demonstrates our committed action in addressing this issue of unnecessary dolphin hunts and commercial whaling and to encourage change.
“This approach has been developed taking expert advice from our new partner, ORCA who we are extremely proud to be working with, and from other global experts. We are particularly confident that this represents the best approach to maximise the impact and we hope our campaign will result in a measurable effect on the commercial whaling industry and that the incident that took place on 12 September 2021 will never happen again.
“Tourism is one of the key drivers of commercial whaling and consuming whale meat poses a significant human health risk. In all of our communications to our cruise guests we will advise them to avoid consuming this product in destinations that they visit. We have also taken the decision not to include any excursions to Oceanariums or experiences that involve captive marine mammals.
“We also have confidence that if activities take place which force us to reconsider our sailings and change our itineraries, our booked guests will understand and fully support our decision.”
This pledge will include ORCA placing two Ocean Conservationists onboard Ambience in 2022 and 2023, on 11 sailings, a large proportion of Ambassador’s voyages, totalling over 200 days. These Ocean Conservationists will visit countries such as Iceland, Greenland and sail the Iberian coast, Black Sea and Irish Sea. During their voyages they will collect important scientific data in key areas, as well as delivering an enhanced onboard experience for guests so that they can deliver unforgettable wildlife experiences to all guests.
Two of the 11 cruises will be Ambassador’s multi-generational cruises in the Summer 2022 where ORCA will be providing a multi-generational focussed education programme, working with families to teach them about the marine environment and involving them in some conservation projects on the ship..
ORCA will also have a permanent presence on Ambience with a dedicated enrichment area which will include a range of fun and exciting activities about whales and dolphins, including:
- Educational material focussed on whales and dolphins, including the ORCA OceanWatchers app so guests can try their hand at being an Ocean Conservationist
- Models of whales, dolphins and porpoises, and replica whale and dolphin bones
- Information about ORCA’s conservation programmes and how they are working to protect whales and dolphins around the world
Steve Jones, Head of Partnerships at ORCA said: “ORCA are incredibly excited to be involved in this partnership with Ambassador Cruise Line and are proud to be part of such an ambitious and impactful programme. The work we will be doing together will have a direct impact on protecting whales and dolphins, and after spending a lot of time with the team at Ambassador it’s clear that they care passionately about protecting the marine environment. This new partnership shows the positive impact that businesses can have, and we can’t wait to get started when Ambience sets sail in 2022.”
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* ORCA are a charity entirely dedicated to studying and protecting whales, dolphins and porpoises in UK and European waters.
About Ambassador Cruise Line
Ambassador Cruise Line is a brand-new premium-value cruise line. It is the first new British cruise line to be launched since 2010. Its purpose is to inspire and delight every guest to enjoy an authentic cruise experience effortlessly, and sustainably.
Ambassador’s extremely experienced management team is led by Chief Executive Officer, Christian Verhounig supported by Chief Commercial Officer, Christopher Coates, Chief Technology Officer, Gary Hides, Chief Marketing Officer, Gordon Nardini and Chief Financial Officer, Simon Weeks.
Through funds managed by Njord Partners LLP, London, the company is fully equity-financed (no financial debt). The Chair of the Board of Directors is Gordon Wilson who has over 30 years of experience in the global travel industry. This includes his role as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Travelport until July 2019. He is a member of the Supervisory Board of BCD Holdings which owns global corporate travel management company, BCD Travel. He has been appointed to the Chair of the Board of Interactive Investor, the second-largest direct-to-consumer investment platform in the UK.
Ambassador will sail for the British market from London Tilbury on an ex-UK no-fly range of voyages that are adult-focussed and primarily aimed at the 50-plus market. The first ship, Ambience, will sail in Spring 2022 and is designed to carry up to 1,400 guests in 798 cabins. After completing its inaugural season in Spring 2023, the cruise line plans to extend sailings from additional regional ports. Ambassador is based in Purfleet, Essex.
Ambience’s inaugural voyage will be a short break cruise to Hamburg on Wednesday 6 April 2022.
Further press information from Jules Ugo, Hollie Thomson and Lydia Matthews at [email protected]
ORCA contact details
Steve Jones, Head of Partnerships, [email protected], 07955 658894/02392 832565
The Ambassador partnership pledge with ORCA includes:
- A brand-wide anti-whaling policy, making it clear that Ambassador Cruise Line is opposed to all commercial whaling
- Formal notice to the Faroese Government urging them to end the dolphin hunt during the upcoming review
- A review of all of proposed Destination Experiences for guests in Iceland, Greenland, Norway and the Faroes and pledge to remove any activities that incorporate any form of whaling or offer the option to consume whale and dolphin products (e.g. restaurants serving whale meat), including not offering any experiences to Oceanariums (experiences that have captive marine mammals)
- Our commitment to send booked guests pre-cruise communications advising them not to consume whale and dolphin meat during their trips, outlining the fact that tourism is one of the key drivers of whaling and making them aware of the significant human health risks in consuming whale meat
- Incorporating onboard educational activities on sailings, about the whaling industry, the impact it has on the marine ecosystem and address myths surrounding the industry