Island Escape cancels fourth voyage, begins recruiting

Questions remain for small-ship operator's 2022 Kimberley program

Island Escape | Source: Facebook/Island Escape Cruises

The future of Island Escape Cruises’ 2022 Kimberley deployment remains uncertain after the small-ship operator cancelled a fourth scheduled voyage of its only vessel, the super yacht Island Escape.

As exclusively revealed to the trade by LATTE last month, Island Escape Cruises (IEC) axed its 3 July 2022 cruise from Broome at the 11th hour, stranding guests and leaving them wondering what happened. When the next scheduled voyage of the 30-guest vessel on 16 July was terminated the following week, there were growing concerns about the fate of the remainder of IEC’s “sold out” voyages in the Kimberley.

Those two subsequent sailings on the 12-night itinerary, planned for 28 July and 10 August 2022, were also cancelled – the latter confirmed by impacted guests on social media last weekend. Future voyages on the same Kimberley itinerary listed on Island Escape Cruises’ website for 22 August and 4 September still state they only have “limited availability”, but a question mark remains if they will operate.

Image source: Facebook/Island Escape

It’s also unclear if Island Escape Cruises’ 16 September voyage from Broome to Darwin and two Tropical North Queensland 10-night sailings roundtrip from Cairns in October are definitively proceeding as scheduled.

What is certain, however, is that Island Escape Cruises’ are actively seeking to recruit staff for the super yacht, on a Norwegian website.

Offshore and Ship Management (OSM) Maritime is currently listing nine temporary positions to be urgently filled in Australia/New Zealand for the vessel, LATTE can reveal, with deadlines for the roles closing on 31 August. Those roles range from stewards and cooks, to a chief engineer, 2nd officer, chief officer and a master.

Meanwhile, a number of impacted guests who were booked on one of the cancelled Kimberley sailings this week told LATTE they are still awaiting a response from Island Escape Cruises’ directors on the fate of their refunds, weeks after their $12,000-plus per person sailing was shelved.

Additionally, it should also be restated – and as revealed here earlier – an email from Island Escape Cruises’ to guests on cancelled voyages, highlighted travel advisors should not be implicated in the current situation.

“We were unfortunately not able to give prior information to travel agents either, so they are not to be blamed,” IEC management said at the time.

Jobs listing for Island Escape Cruises' super yacht, with applications closing 31 August 2022
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