Cruise lines are certainly doing their best to ensure the well-being of their guests and crew.These measures willboost industry standards and enhance cruising in the future.
Currently the amazing deals that most cruise companies are offering for 2021 and 2022 cruises are a big bonus.
Norwegian Cruise Line and the Royal Caribbean group’s panel of global experts have created scientific health and safety protocols which include advanced sanitation, medical resources, and medical-gradeairfilters. CLIA member cruise lines have also agreed on a series of health protocols.
Read on to see how the cruise industry will keep guests safe.
- High-risk passengers avoided:
Some lines will require guests to take the vaccine before boarding.
At the momentcruise lines such as MSC & Costa are only accepting guests whoare residents of certain countries,.
- Embarkation will be streamlinedto avoidcrowding in the terminals.Online check-in will be compulsory so that guests get boarding passes on their smartphones.
- Screening in the cruise terminals:
Passengers need to complete quick temperature and diagnostic tests before boarding. Theymay be re-tested when boarding again aftershore excursions. Any passenger with a positive result on the COVID-19 antigen swab tests will be taken for a second screening and an advanced test.
- Improved medical resources
Medical units on ships now have testing kits and more medical supplies.There will be a dedicated Public Health officer on each Norwegian cruise ship,and cabins will be allocated for quarantining.
- Physical distancingwill be followed and guests will have to wear masksin public places such as the elevators and theatre.
- Safety drills will not be conducted on deck. Instead, guests need to watch a safety video in their cabins and then scan their keycards at a muster station.
- Avoiding crowds: Cruises will operateat much less than full
capacity so that guests havesufficient space. Only a specified number of guests can use the ship's fitness center, pools, thermal area, and other indoor facilities at a time. Reduced occupancy on ships is a real benefit for guests, resulting in increased privacy and a peaceful ambiance!
- Activities and entertainment will be arranged to follow social distancing and avoidcrowdsin nightclubs and theatres. Theatre shows and certain activities will be repeated more often to give all guests a chance to enjoy them.
Food safety protocols: will include stringentcleaning measures, protective gear for servers, and more hand sanitization stations at all restaurants. Ship restaurants will extend their meal service hours and serve fewer guests at a time. Instead of self-service buffets, staff will serve guests from the sumptuous spreads. Guests could ask to be seated at the same table and to be assigned the same waiter throughout the cruise.
- Kids’ Club will run with a smaller number of kids in each area. They willrequire temperature checks and hand sanitizer on entry.
- Public area sanitation: All cabins, kids’ play areas, and public areas on the ships will be sanitized to meet the new standards. Paraphernalia such as magazines and towel animals will be eliminated from the rooms. Cruise lines are even looking for ways to disinfect luggage before delivering it to the cabins.
- Shore excursions: Only guests who book the cruise line’s shore excursions will be permitted to get off at ports-of-call. These will follow high standards to ensure the following:
- that transportation to and from the ship is sanitary.
- there’s enough space for physical distancing on the coaches and in the touristattractions.
- tour guides and drivers are screened and wear protective equipment
- Guests cannot wander off on their own; those who do this may not be allowed to re-board.
Smaller guest numbers on shore excursions are likely to increase the cost but will result in a better experience.
- Cruise lines may avoid ports where they cannot dock at the pier. Their itineraries will include more stops at cruise lines’ private islands, where they can control most aspects of the shore experience. These exclusive islands offer guests perfect beaches and lots of exciting activities.
- Contact Tracing Bracelets:
These will be the norm and wristbands such as ‘MSC for Me’ will continue to be used for tracing guests if a COVID-19 case occurs.
- Travel insurance will be compulsory for cruise guests. I guess you will agree that travel insurance is a must nowadays!
- Relaxed refund policies: Cruise lines have eased their policies and shortened final payment times to make it easier for guests to book with peace of mind.
- Cruise itineraries in 2021 are changing and most will have a maximum of 7 nights. We’re seeing a move towards small-ship cruising because some travelers find small ships less risky, and these ships can visit smaller, less crowded ports.
Space on popular itineraries is getting tight because many people who had planned to sail in 2020 have already rebooked for 2021 and beyond. The good news for cruisers is that those who received 125 percent credit for their future sailings can now upgrade to better cabins.
- Mediterranean cruises:The first availableones areCosta &MSCcruises departing from Italy in April-May 2021.
- Norway: HURTIGRUTEN is operating Norwegian coastal cruises with reduced capacity in 2021.
- North America: Norwegian cruise line, Royal Caribbean International, and Celebrity cruise line aim to re-start cruising in theBahamas & Caribbean cruises from July2021.
- Tahiti, French Polynesia, and the South Pacific: Paul Gauguin Cruises will sail in this region from June 2021.
- Asia: Royal Caribbean will re-start cruises from Shanghai, Beijing to Japan from May 2021.
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