MSC Cruises has resumed sailing in the Mediterranean on August 16th and has informed passengers that without a chaperone there will not be shore visits.
An accompanied chaperone mandatory for all passengers to leave the boat
Passengers will not be allowed to leave the boat without an accompanied chaperone from the ship. The chaperone will monitor and ensure that travelers are following all health protocols such as face masks and social distancing to prevent the spread of Covid-19. This is potentially uncomfortable, restrictive, and most unique guidelines set for tourists.
In a press release, the company stated: “Guests will be able to enjoy the different destinations the ships visit, but this will be only as part of an organized MSC Cruises excursion that will be delivered with the same high standards of health and safety as onboard.” It also mentioned: “By taking this decision the Company can ensure that every aspect of the guest’s time ashore meets the appropriate standards of health and hygiene from ensuring that transfers are properly sanitized, that tour guides and drivers are wearing PPE, venues, and sites to be visited are pre-screened through to ensuring there are reserved areas for MSC Cruises guests at attractions.”
The CEO of MSC Cruises, Gianni Onorato, on a conference call said that given the disastrous situation of the virus spreading throughout the ships in spring earlier, it is better to be safe than sorry. Onorato also said: “We will make sure (they) are going only to certain places, and they are respecting the social distancing (and) the wearing of masks all the time to reduce the risk of getting the virus while in the ports.”