Passengers seeking an alternative and more unique mode of travel compared with traditional cruise liner services can now look forward to sailing onboard one of Austral Asia Line’s modern heavy lift vessels. The newly introduced AAL passenger service caters to passengers seeking to see the Asia Pacific regions while experiencing life onboard a cargo ship.
Two 31,000 deadweight A-Class vessels have been picked to offer such service – AAL Newcastle and AAL Hong Kong. The service will start in the middle of July onboard AAL Newcastle departing from Melbourne and middle of August onboard AAL Hong Kong departing from China. Both vessels are currently employed on the Australia East Coast and New Zealand service and cover the following ports: Brisbane, Newcastle, Melbourne, Lyttelton, Wellington, Tauranga, Tianjin, Qingdao, Shanghai, Inchon, Pusan and Khaosiung. They may also call Mackay/Townsville, Nelson and Napier on inducement basis. The liner service covers the full rotation in approximately 93 days but the duration and ports called can vary based on various circumstances. Passengers have an option of completing a full round voyage or alternatively selecting their desired embarkation and disembarkation ports (subject to visa and local regulations).
“Although AAL used to offer a passenger service on a similar route over 10 years ago, this was stopped when the AAL services were operated with long term chartered tonnage. Now that AAL has successfully completed its new building delivery program with parent company Schoeller Holdings, and operates group tonnage, we are proud to be in a position to offer this service again. There has been a lot of demand in the past years for passengers to join our new fleet, as the route covered from Australian East Coast to China, Korea and Taiwan, via New Zealand is an attractive one, offering a variety of countries and cultures, and the nature of our operations (project and breakbulk cargoes) allows sufficient time in port for our passengers to explore” says Christophe Grammare, Managing Director of AAL.
Passengers can expect to see firsthand life onboard a merchant vessel while enjoying the sights and ports along the way. While onboard the vessel, passengers have a choice of either a double bed cabin or an Owner’s suite which includes a private day room. They may also get a chance to see various areas of the vessel under supervision and permission of the Captain and officers as well as enjoy the vessel’s swimming pool and passenger lounge equipped with a library of books, board games and tea/coffee facilities.
Austral Asia Line appointed Hawke’s Bay Travel Center & Freighter Travel (NZ) and Freighter Expeditions as the travel agents. The two companies are responsible for the inquiries and bookings of the AAL passenger service. Interested passengers are encouraged to get in touch with the respective travel agents for further information about sailing onboard one of the AAL vessels.
|Hawke’s Bay Travel Centre & Freighter Travel (NZ)||Freighter Expeditions|
|Contact Person: Hamish D Jamieson
248 Kennedy Road, Napier, New Zealand, 4110
Phone: +64 6 8437702
Fax: +64 6 8437684
|Contact Person: Julie Richards
Level 4, 332 Kent St, Sydney, NSW, Australia, 2000
Phone: +61 2 8270 4899
Fax: +61 2 9290 1306