Virgin Voyages has cancelled its December sailings, with the line looking set to make its debut in January 2021 – almost a year after it had initially been due to start welcoming paying guests.
The line’s first ship, Scarlet Lady, is now scheduled to depart Miami on its first itinerary on 3 January, a five-day Dominican Daze sailing calling at Puerto Plata and The Beach Club at Bimini.
Virgin made the disclosure in a note to guests and agents this week, and has pledged to protect agent commissions.
Scarlet Lady had initially been due to debut in March, just as the coronavirus crisis struck. It has since returned to Europe.
The move comes in expectation of an imminent update from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on whether it will extend its current no-sail order beyond 31 October, with several lines already having pre-empted an extension.
Virgin said it was working closely with the industry and the CDC on "the right time" to start sailing again.
The line is yet to welcome paying guests, despite several preview voyages.
Scarlet Lady is the first of four ships the line plans to operate, with the second – Valiant Lady – expected in May next year.