August 8, 2020 - Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman of MSC Cruises, thanked the MSC congregation for their "unbroken support" with warm, unctuous words. At the same time, he announced the resumption of cruises. What does the MSC cruise concept look like in relation to the corona pandemic?
MSC plans to resume two-ship cruises in the western and eastern Mediterranean. As soon as the final approvals are in place, the flagship of the MSC fleet will operate, which was christened in Hamburg MSC Grandiosa, the western Mediterranean. The MSC Magnifica will sail the Eastern Mediterranean with stops in Greece and Malta. MSC presents a concept with a wealth of innovations. We summarize the essentials.
MSC Magnifica in Copenhagen
- MSC will initially only accept guests who are based in the Schengen countries.
- A fixed time window for arrival controls the flow of guests. Before embarkation has a universal health check of the guests. Essential features are a COVID-19 smear test, a temperature control and a health questionnaire. Passengers who tested positive are denied access to the ship.
- New hygiene measures are taking effect: disinfectants of hospital quality and disinfection of the air on board with UV-C light technology, which kills 99,97% of microbes, are used.
- The plan is to reduce the total number of guests to 70 percent of the ship's capacity, social distancing and a reduction in event space. If distance compliance is not an option, e.g. B. in elevators, guests are required to wear face masks. Masks are placed in the cabin every day and are available everywhere on board.
- The shipping company is introducing improved medical facilities and services, and throughout the cruise the Health situation permanently monitored.
- Are in the resumption of operations Shore excursions are only possible as part of an organized MSC Cruises excursion.
The development at MSC remains to be seen. The shipping company accompany the best wishes. In the recent past, however, it was reported that COVID-19 cases broke out on board ships believed to be safe (Hurtigruten), that crew members tested positive for the virus before starting their first voyage (AIDA) and that premium ships were on short voyages without going ashore Sailing seas (TUI Cruises). None of this corresponds to the essence of the “cruise product”.