Africa cruise ship travel to resume after 18 months

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Shipping & Logistics

Africa cruise ship travel to resume after 18 months


Tourists disembark from the MS Voyager which called at the port of Mombasa on its return trip from Zanzibar to Seychelles with a total of 687 passengers and 452 crew members. It is the first cruise ship in 2016. PHOTO | WACHIRA MWANGI | NMG

Summary

  • South Africa will be the first country to take advantage of MSC Cruises travel starting next month.
  • The company said it would reconfirm the cruise schedule planned for the 2021/22 season and offer new cruise dates in due course.
  • Last week, the South African government released cruise regulations that require, among other things, cruise ship crews to screen all passengers for symptoms of Covid-19 when they board.

The first cruise ship to take passengers to Africa is set to resume in November after an 18-month hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, signaling the resumption of the travel sector.

The world’s largest family cruise liner, MSC Cruises has announced the resumption of operations on the continent after various port states relaxed Covid-19 containment measures.

South Africa will be the first country to take advantage of MSC Cruises travel starting next month.

Kenya plans to open its 1.3 billion shillings cruise ship terminal that has been idle at the port of Mombasa with six cruise ships due to call this year due to the pandemic.

In a statement, MSC Cruises said the cruise line management experience gained since the company resumed operations in Europe in August will help ensure smooth sailing in Africa and more so in South Africa as the top country. of the continent to resume. cruise trip.

“We will share with them the large amount of data that we have accumulated and the knowledge that we have learned since we resumed safe navigation in August 2020 for the Mediterranean cruises we have sailed in the UK, in Europe, North America and the Middle East, which has allowed tens of thousands of people to spend a moment of relaxation, fun and safety with us at sea after the Covid-19 pandemic, “the statement said. .

The company said it will reconfirm the scheduled cruise schedules for the 2021/22 season and come up with new cruise dates in due course as it seeks to return to the mainland.

“We are now looking forward to welcoming our South African guests on board in the near future for a wonderful vacation with a health and safety protocol that has paved the way for the global cruise industry. We are delighted that the new measures allow cruise ships to operate in accordance with national health protocols, ”the company said.

Last week, the South African government issued cruise regulations that require, among other things, cruise ship crews to screen all passengers for symptoms of Covid-19 upon boarding, and also perform check-ups. antigen testing. The screening will continue throughout and each time you enter an entertainment venue or dining room.

Regulations require that a passenger who exhibits a symptom of Covid-19 be taken to a special isolation cabin, while contact tracing is initiated.

There will be a similar check every time you disembark during a voyage, and again when you return to the ship.

Any excursion or boarding must also be staggered, to maintain social distancing measures, and can only take place outside of curfew.

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