Between December 2015 and March 2016, the cruise line will offer 16 week-long UAE sailings aboard the 2,550-passenger MSC Musica.
As well as offering fly-cruises to the ship’s home port of Dubai – flying from the UK with Emirates – guests will now have the option to start their holiday in Abu Dhabi. Flights will be available with national carrier Etihad Airways from London Heathrow, Manchester and Dublin.
MSC Cruises executive director UK and Ireland Giles Hawke said the new partnership with Etihad Airways was great news since it offers UK cruisers the chance to travel at the weekend – cutting the time they would have to take off from work to just five days.
“Our Dubai, Emirates and Oman itinerary has proved to be immensely popular with since it began in 2011,” he said.
“MSC Cruises is unlike other cruise lines in that we offer multiple embarkation ports on many of our sailings around the world. Being able to offer fly-cruise holidays from Dubai and Abu Dhabi demonstrates our commitment to the destination and our flexibility.
“By flying into Abu Dhabi, guests have the opportunity to make the most of the time in Dubai, which includes an overnight stay.”
As well as being the first cruise line to offer Abu Dhabi embarkations, MSC Cruises’ MSC Musica will be the newest ship operating in the region for winter 2015/16.
Flight options for the Dubai, Emirates and Oman sailings now include Emirates departures from London Gatwick and Glasgow and Abu Dhabi departures from London Heathrow, Manchester and Dublin.
The sailing departs Dubai and calls at Abu Dhabi; Khor Al Fakkan; Muscat, Oman; Khasab, Oman; and Dubai.
Fly-cruise prices start at £749 per person, including return flights with Emirates (to Dubai) or Etihad Airways (to Abu Dhabi), overseas transfers and FREE ‘Fantastica’ onboard experience upgrade (in-cabin breakfast, 24hr room service), based on December 12 2015 departure (December 13 2015 from Abu Dhabi).
Looking further ahead, MSC Cruises is offering both Dubai and Abu Dhabi embarkation for winter 2016/17 when the sailing will be operated by one of its largest class of ships, the 3,274-guest
MSC Fantasia. This tweaked itinerary, including Bahrain for the first time, is included in the new MSC Cruises 2016-2017 brochure now on sale.