Cruise Ships With Fewer Passengers??
This week, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line announced a series of enhanced health and safety protocols in preparation for when its cruise ships resume operations from 25 July.
Among the new measures, the cruise line has said that it will be closing two-passenger stateroom decks and limiting the number of in-use staterooms to reduce cruise ship capacity by 40 per cent.
These protocols have been introduced to “encourage social distancing and provide one of the highest guests to space ratios in the industry”, according to the cruise line.
As well as reducing the number of passengers, other new measures being introduced by Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line for its cruise ships include protocols for guest accommodations, common areas onboard the ships, recreational facilities and food hygiene. All guests will be required to practice social distancing from valet parking to terminal check-in and all terminal staff members will be required to wear masks and remain behind safety plexiglass. Passenger luggage will be disinfected prior to onboard delivery and touch-free temperature checks and pre-boarding health declarations will be mandatory for all guests.
All guests will be required to check-in online and will receive designated arrival times at cruise terminal to streamline embarkation and minimise crowds in the port.
All cabins and public areas will be sanitised with hospital-grade disinfectants, and vacant cabins will be fogged.
Self-service buffet stations will be suspended, and all food and drinks will be served by crew members wearing face masks, hats, aprons and gloves. Tables and seating areas will be spaced t0 keep guests six feet apart.
Tour buses for excursions will also be reduced to 50 per cent capacity and sanitised frequently.
In the casino, the number of players per table will be restricted, with slot machines positioned to separate players.
Isolation wards will be created in the ships’ medical centres to treat passengers concerned they may have been exposed to coronavirus (Covid-19).
CEO of Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line, Oneil Khosa, said: “As things begin to return to normal after months of quarantine, we can all use a quick getaway. When we return, our onboard experience may look a little different to our guests.
“The wellness of our passengers and crew members remains our top priority, and as such, passengers can expect enhanced sanitisation procedures from embarkation to disembarkation so that they can enjoy a relaxing, safe, stress-free getaway. We look forward to welcoming everyone onboard soon!”
It remains to be seen whether all ocean cruise lines will follow the same health & safety protocols as laid out by Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line.
WTTC has said it is working closely with leading cruise body CLIA to devise the new protocols, which will be for both ocean and river cruises.
In an interview with our sister title Cruise Trade News, CLIA UK and Ireland director Andy Harmer explained that the cruise sector is working through an industry restart and plan and while it is a “complicated business”, he is confident that the industry will be able to adapt to the changes.
Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line sailings will resume onboard Grand Celebration on 25 July and onboard Grand Classica on 2 October.
In addition, the cruise line’s popular Cruise & Stay Program, which allows guests to extend their stay in the Bahamas for up to four nights at one of the company’s resort partners, will also be available for bookings beginning 2 October.