Southampton-based Cunard extends pause in operations until March

Credit: ITV News Meridian

Southampton-based cruise company Cunard has extended its pause on all sailings, resulting in thousands of cancellations.

Cruises were due to resume in November this year, however sailings on Queen Elizabeth have been pushed back to March 2021.

Meanwhile, cruises on Queen Mary 2 won't take place until April 2021, and not until May 2021 for Queen Victoria.

The luxury cruise company says it comes as a result of a continuing impact of Covid-19.

It says with ongoing uncertainty over the re-opening of ports and countries on Queen Elizabeth's intended routes next year, it is 'not practical' to continue as planned.

Queen Elizabeth is the most recent ship to join the Cunard fleet. Credit: Peter Byrne/PA Archive/PA Images

As a result, Queen Elizabeth’s sailings that were due to depart between 26 March and 13 December 2021 will be cancelled.

This includes all sailings around Australia, Japan and Alaska.

Cunard has apologised to customers and says it will be crediting guest accounts with a 125% Future Cruise Credit (FCC) on bookings.

They will then have until 31 December 2021 to make a new booking.

Alternatively, customers can fill in a form to apply for a refund.