Ambassador delays second ship’s inaugural season to accommodate refugees

Ambassador Cruise Line ship Ambition
By Linsey McNeill
16/08/2022
Home » Ambassador delays second ship’s inaugural season to accommodate refugees

Ambassador has delayed the launch of its second cruise ship, Ambition, after reaching a deal with the Scottish Government to accommodate Ukraine refugees.

The ship, to be docked on the River Clyde in Glasgow, will provide accommodation for up to 1,750 people.

It will be in Scotland for six months from September after which it will go into soft refurbishment of the public areas and cabins.

The cruise line said this means that Ambition’s inaugural season will be delayed until mid-May 2023, two months later than planned.

Ambassador said in a statement posted online by cruise blogger Dave Monk: “We are working internally to ascertain the impact of this across our scheduled itineraries and will communicate further details in due course.”

It said guests on sailings up to 11 May 2023 have been contacted directly, adding that guests on sailings after 11 May are ‘currently’ unaffected.

Ambition will join MS Victoria, which is currently docked in Edinburgh where it is providing accommodation for 1,600 to 1,700 refugees.

However, there have been concerns from human rights campaigners that cruise ships don’t provide suitable housing for refugees. Chief Executive of Positive Action in Housing Robina Qureshi told local media: “When you see people on these ships, they are looking very stressed and children are bored.

“Our concern is that people should not be living there for months on end, because it will lead to depression and issues that we have seen amongst other refugees and asylum seekers.”

But Neil Gray, Minister with Special Responsibility for refugees from Ukraine, said the arrival of the MS Victoria I had been ‘well received’ by the people on board.

In a post on social media, Ambassador said it hopes guests are ‘able to understand our wishes to help with this cause’.

It declined to say how much the Scottish Government has paid to rent the ship.

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