Companies credit enhanced protocols for successful re-entry
By Patti Pietschmann, Travel Diva
A Linkedin post proudly announces that PONANT’s return to the seas has proven without incident. Its yacht-size ships are sailing with fewer passengers and strictly-enforced COVID19 protection protocols.
Meanwhile, MSC says its European voyages are also faring well with no outbreaks. The cruise line resumed operations with it spectacular MSC Grandiosa in the Mediterranean on August 16. The ship is currently making her fifth successful cruise.
The company credits its diligent protocols such as universal COVID-19 testing for guests prior to embarkation, mask-wearing, rigorous health screening of crew members and on board sanitization precautions. On October 19 the MSC Magnifica kicks off itineraries in both the Eastern and Western Med.
Costa Cruises update
Costa Cruises is also experiencing a successful re-start. According to Carnival, that owns the line, Costa’s voyages since early September on the Deliziosa and Diadema sailed without incident. Costa Smeralda is sailing in October and Costa Firenze hits the waters in December.
Carnival-owned AIDA Cruises plans to resume operations on Oct. 17. It kicks off with AIDAblu sailing a weekly seven-day itinerary from Rome and La Spezia visiting multiple Italian ports. Then in November by two ships will be sailing in the Canary Islands. Come December another pair of ships will sail in the western Mediterranean and United Arab Emirates.
Both brands are resuming cruise operations with enhanced protocols developed in coordination with national and global health authorities, and modeled after shoreside health and mitigation guidelines as defined by each brand’s respective country and approved by the flag state, Italy.
River Cruises also announce success
River cruise operators are also boasting about successful re-entry voyages. And Pavlus has a ton of choices for you at the best fares on them planet. Check it out here.
Alas Americans must wait a little longer
The bad news is that Americans are unable to get on any of these ships unless they happen to be living abroad. The cruises are only for international residents. But there is mumbling that more foreign ports will be opening up to US visitors. We just need to get this Covid19 under control. And that means masks, social distancing, good hygiene and other CDC recommendations.
But with the glass half-filled, all this bodes well for the future of cruises. It appears that safety protocols are working and keeping crew and passengers safe from the coronavirus. Which means it could be just a matter of time before all ships are free to return to the seas.