Life at Sea, a cruise line that promised a three-year voyage to 375 ports in 135 countries, was canceled at the last minute after several departure delays, according to multiple reports.
The ship was supposed to leave Istanbul, Turkey, on Nov. 1, but it was delayed a few times before finally being canceled, USA Today reports.
A Florida couple who sold their home and paid $85,000 to the cruise line found out about the cancellation on Nov. 17, after they had already arrived in Istanbul expecting to board the ship on Nov. 11.
The company said they planned to sail on the MV Gemini, but later decided to try and buy a larger cruise ship from AIDA Cruises. Celestyal Cruises bought the larger ship instead.
MV Gemini cruise ship that was supposed to set sail in November (Life at Sea Cruises)
"While we're in talks to acquire a similar vessel, if the December 1st sail is jeopardized, we offer alternative departure dates or expedited refunds," Vedat Ugurlu, CEO of Life at Sea’s parent company Miray Cruises, told USA Today. "Although we could use our current vessel, the Gemini, we remain committed to delivering the promised larger, newer vessel."
But the company’s COO Ethem Bayramoglu later clarified: "In case we weren’t clear, the Life at Sea cruise trip is cancelled."
The three-year voyage was set to begin on Nov. 1 in Istanbul, Turkey, with pickup stops in Barcelona, Spain, and Miami, Florida.
It promised visits to 375 ports across 135 countries, which amounts to more than 130,000 miles of travel across the seas. The price tag was $29,999 a year, or about $90,000 for the entire trip.
The Florida couple who sold their home to sail the world remain in Istanbul, waiting for a refund.