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Coronavirus: CLIA postpones annual conference

CLIA, 2023 Sustainability report

The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) has postponed its 2020 annual conference due to coronavirus.

It was due to take place in Southampton from 26-28 April.

CLIA UK & Ireland director, Andy Harmer, said: “With hundreds of delegates in attendance, the CLIA Conference is the UK’s largest travel agent event and is extremely important for the cruise sector.

‘We take our responsibility for the health and safety of our delegates, as well as the crew and passengers on board the ships we visit, very seriously. With that in mind, it is with a heavy heart that we must postpone this year’s conference until further notice.

“The team at CLIA deeply regret these circumstances however, as always, our number one priority is health and safety. We would like to thank our agent members, cruise lines and sponsors who supported this year’s conference. We look forward to seeing you all at future CLIA events.”

The event was due to include ship visits, a trade fair and a full day of business sessions, followed by a gala dinner with entertainment.

MSC Cruises’ executive chairman, Pierfrancesco Vago was announced as one of the conference’s keynote speakers.

P&O Cruises’ Britannia and MSC Cruises’ MSC Meraviglia were also due to be in port for ship visits.

The news comes as two cruise lines, Princess Cruises and Viking Cruises, announced the suspension of sailings.

Princess Cruises has paused global operations of its 18 ships for voyages departing from 12 March to 10 May while Viking has suspended its ships until 1 May.

Princess has had two ships under quarantine due to the coronavirus, Grand Princess and Diamond Princess. All passengers have now disembarked both ships.

In light of the coronavirus, many cruise lines are altering their cancellation policies to 48 hours before departure to give passengers greater flexibility when booking cruises.

For the latest advice on coronavirus, visit

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