health & safety measures

MSC Seashore | Cruise Ships | MSC Cruises Play

At MSC Cruises your health and safety are of utmost importance to us. Our new operating procedures & travel requirements are designed to exceed guidelines provided by national and international health authorities. We are continuously assessing every step of the way to help ensure a safe, healthy and comfortable cruise experience for you and your loved ones. 

travel requirements & protocol by destination

To view the latest travel requirements and our health & safety protocol, please select your cruise destination below.

faq

We prepared a list of Frequent Asked Quesions (FAQ) to quickly get answers to you for the most common questions

TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS

- Are there any travel restrictions under the new protocol, such as current health status, past medical history or age?

In addition to the Health and Safety measures and travel requirements described on each destination page, the current advice from the World Health Organization, EU Healthy Gateways and other authorities is that COVID-19 is often more severe in people who are older or who have health conditions like lung or heart disease, diabetes or conditions that affect their immune system. Older guests or those with such conditions are advised to consult with a doctor or their local health authorities for guidance before travelling to assess whether they should be travelling at this time. According to the EU Healthy Gateways advisory, anyone over 65 years of age is considered part of a higher risk group.

- Are there any travel restrictions or travel requirements based on destination?

Before booking your cruise, please check HERE if you are allowed to embark according to your country of residence. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, there might be international travel restrictions depending on your cruise destination and your country of residence. 

In addition, travel requirements might be different according to your cruise destination. Please select your destination below.

 

 

CERTAIN RESTRICTIONS APPLY BASED ON DESTINATION.  For more information, guests should check the countries official channel to see if they are allowed to visit the selected destination.

TRAVEL INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS

- Is travel insurance required in order to cruise?

Travel insurance varies by destination.  

For U.S. and Puerto Rico residents departing on cruises from the U.S.:
A travel protection plan with coverage for COVID-19 is highly recommended for guests 12 years and older who are fully vaccinated. 
Children 11 years old and younger are not required to purchase travel insurance.

For international guests departing on cruises from the U.S.: 
Currently, only U.S. and Puerto Rico residents can depart on cruises from the U.S. Please continue to check back for updates.

For ALL guests & all other destinations excluding cruises departing from the U.S.:
A travel protection plan with coverage for COVID-19 is required in order to cruise for all guests 12 years and older. You will be denied boarding if guests 12 years and older do not have a travel protection plan with coverage for COVID-19. 

 

View full details of MSC Cruises Travel Protection Plan with coverage for COVID-19

 

For all guests wanting to purchase their own travel insurance, it is required to provide coverage for COVID-19 protection. Guests that purchase insurance other than the one offered by MSC Cruises must provide proof of their valid travel insurance policy that has a minimum of (a) $25,000 per person in medical expense coverage and (b) $50,000 coverage for emergency medical evacuation, both with no COVID-19 exclusions.  The insurance policy must name the guest as the policy holder or beneficiary.  Guests must bring a printed version of the insurance policy, showing the name of each of the covered guest(s) and a description of the coverage in the policy. This documentation will be reviewed by our staff at the terminal prior to boarding.  Without it, guests will be denied boarding.

 


- What is the MSC Cruises travel protection plan with coverage for COVID-19?

Click here to find more information regarding our Travel Protection Plan with coverage for COVID-19.

- Are children required to purchase travel insurance?

For children 11 years old and younger are not required to purchase travel insurance. Children 12 years and older are required to purchase a travel protection plan with coverage for COVID-19 based on destination. 


For U.S. and Puerto Rico residents departing on cruises from the U.S.:
A travel protection plan with coverage for COVID-19 is highly recommended for children 12 years and older who are fully vaccinated. 

For ALL guests & all other destinations excluding cruises departing from the U.S.:
A travel protection plan with coverage for COVID-19 is required in order to cruise for children 12 years and older. You will be denied boarding if guests 12 years and older do not have a travel protection plan with coverage for COVID-19. 


View full details of MSC Cruises Travel Protection Plan with coverage for COVID-19

 

EMBARKATION / DISEMBARKATION

- Is it possible to get tested during the cruise to comply with regulations from my travel back home?

For all sailings in the upcoming months, to ensure the highest standards of health and safety and allow a safe return home to our guests in compliance with national regulations, MSC Cruises has organized the possibility for its guests to purchase and perform a RT-PCR test or an antigen test during their cruise.

 

The RT-PCR test will be charged 80 euros. The tests will be organized to comply with the 48 hours or 72 hours test validity to return to your country according to your national regulations. The antigenic test is always available for 25 euros. These tests do not substitute the complimentary COVID-19 tests performed on board to comply with our comprehensive health and safety protocol.

- What will happen if embarkation is denied to a guest for health reasons?

If a guest presents symptoms of illness such as temperature higher than 99.5°F / 37.5°C or there are concerns with their health questionnaire, the guest will undertake a secondary screening, including in-depth interview, a second temperature measurement, a medical examination and, if necessary, a laboratory examination.

If a guest is then not considered fit to travel, they will be assisted in their next steps of a return home or will be potentially being treated in a local medical facility to ensure maximum support and care.

- What safety protocols will be implemented on transfers and shuttles?

We are extending our enhanced health and hygiene measures to all MSC transfers, including:

 

- Cleaning and sanitization of all vehicles before any new group of guests

- Availability of hand sanitization stations and disinfectant mats for footwear

- Appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) for all drivers

- Reduced number of guests with selected seats empty to ensure social distancing

- How are you cleaning and sanitizing the guest staterooms?

According to our enhanced cleaning and sanitation protocols, every guest stateroom will be thoroughly cleaned on a daily basis, with special attention to 40 frequently-touched areas, such as door handles, power switches, control panels, remote controls, desks and bathroom surfaces.


Every stateroom will also go through a deep cleaning at the end of each cruise before the next guests arrive for their cruise vacation.

- How often are you sanitizing public areas?

All public areas and public restrooms will be deep cleaned and sprayed with disinfectant each night, as well as regularly sanitized throughout the day. For example, public toilets will be cleaned every 20 minutes, and all cleaning staff will wear appropriate PPE.

- How will the check-in take place?

Before the cruise, the collection of contact details for each guest is mandatory in case of important updates. Proceeding to the web check-in allow guests to receive cruise tickets, travel documentation and mandatory health questionnaires. On the embarkation day, guests should arrive at the time indicated on the cruise ticket to facilitate responsible social distancing, with travel documentation and health questionnaires. All guests (2 years & older) will undertake a COVID-19 health screening. A newly designed processes for embarkation has been implemented to manage the guest flow, to limit lines and contacts.

Before the cruise, MSC Cruises invites all guests to download for free the MSC for Me* app to start booking additional services, to secure space and to ensure a seamless onboard experience. 

*MSC For Me is only available on select ships

ONBOARD MEDICAL SERVICES

- What happens if there is a suspected case of COVID-19 on board?

The preventative health and safety steps in the protocol are designed to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 transmission on board. In the event that someone should fall sick, we have a fully equipped onboard 24/7 Medical Centre with highly qualified medical staff who are fully trained for COVID-19 treatment and who are supported by a 24/7 ashore medical team. 

 

In case of flu-like symptoms, guests should notify immediately the Medical Centre and free treatment will be provided. If the onboard medical team determines a suspected COVID-19 case, a comprehensive isolation procedure and response plan will be activated in close cooperation with the health authorities.

- Have you agreed with specific ports that they will welcome your ships that have positive cases on board for medical assistance ashore?

Yes. As part of our comprehensive and enhanced health and safety protocol, we have a contingency response plan in place with all the relevant authorities in the ports where the ships will call.

 

- Do you have certified COVID-19 tests on board your ships?

We have COVID-19 testing equipment on board for Real Time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and antigen swab testing.

 

- How do you monitor the health of guests onboard?

All MSC Cruises’ ships are equipped with state-of-the-art medical services and an increased number of qualified medical staff onboard, supported by dedicated 24/7 ashore Medical Team. We continuously monitor the health of our guests and crew with contactless temperature checks during the cruise; in case of flu-like symptoms, guests should immediately notify the Medical Centre and free treatment will be provided.

For all sailings in the upcoming months, guests may need to undergo an additional swab test during the cruise whilst on board, on top of the existing pre-boarding COVID-19 testing. When required, the test is mandatory.

SOCIAL DISTANCING

- Will social distancing rules be applied onboard? 

We have redesigned activities, adapted our services and reduced venue capacity to ensure that our guests can easily adhere to current social distancing recommendations, both onboard and ashore.  

Guests will be reminded of social distancing guidelines at the time of booking and during their cruise through signage, public announcements, in-stateroom TV and staff engagement.

 

- Will guests be required to wear a mask?

MSC Cruises will organize activities to ensure that guests can practice responsible social distancing. Face masks will be required when in public areas, however masks do not need to be worn when seated in restaurants, bars, lounges, and when sitting on the sun deck.

Face masks will be available throughout the cruise. We also advise all guests to wear a face mask when traveling to and from the port and in the terminal, in compliance with local regulations.

DINE & DRINK

- How will the Main Dining experience change?

Our main restaurants will continue to serve our guests with a wide array of inspiring dishes and high-quality cuisine. We are modifying the seating layout to enable safe physical distancing, and guests will have the same table and waiter throughout their cruise for extra peace of mind. 

 

We are elevating our strict food safety protocols by enhancing the cleaning and sanitizing of all venues, providing appropriate protective equipment to all servers and increasing the number of hand sanitization stations at all restaurants. 

 

Face masks do not need to be worn by our guests when seated in the restaurants, but only when entering the venue.

- Will the self-service at buffet be available?

The buffet will now be plated and served by our crew until further notice.

- Will Specialty Restaurants be open?

Yes, our sought-after Specialty Restaurants will be open while operating at a reduced capacity to comply with the precautionary health and safety measures. Reservations are available at the time of booking to help guests secure spaces and save money compared to onboard prices. Book your specialty dining prior to your cruise and save up to 35% vs. onboard prices.

- Will there be any changes to the bars and lounges?

Our bars will be open and ready to serve our guests with their favorite cocktail or aperitif. To ensure we comply with the current social distancing recommendations, our staff will deliver drinks at the table and we will limit the capacity of each venue. Face masks do not need to be worn by our guests when seated in bars and lounges, but only when entering the venue.

 

- How can I pre-book my drinks or restaurants onboard?

You can save time by personalizing your cruise even before getting onboard. Login on our website and you can easily add drink packages or dining experiences to your cruise and take advantage of our pre-booking discounts!

- How I can get the restaurants and drinks menu at bars and restaurants?

For a contactless experience, guests will access restaurant and bar menus from their personal mobile device by scanning a QR code while on board. Before the cruise, MSC Cruises invites all guests to download for free the MSC for Me app (available on select ships) to browse all the onboard restaurants, bars and lounges and to ensure a seamless onboard experience like making restaurant reservations.

 

ENTERTAINMENT, SERVICES & EXCURSIONS

- Will guests still be able to enjoy the theater shows and other activities? 

Guests will enjoy our onboard award-winning entertainment but with a few changes:

- We are reducing the capacity of the theater to allow for empty seats between guests
- The entertainment program will be extended so that all guests can enjoy our award-winning shows 
- Shows and activities will be pre-booked to manage the number of participants 
- Guests will be required to wear a face mask while in the theater

- Will the Kids Club be open and what kind of kids’ activities will be available?

Our Kids Club and family activities will welcome kids and parents in a healthy and safe environment fun and enjoyable experience.

New measures include reduced capacity, a streamlined registration process, contactless temperature check and hand sanitizer provided upon entry. We're adding new exciting activities and family game shows that will be available for booking up to one day in advance. Toys and water will be provided by our staff, while we'll keep out personal belongings as an additional safety measure.

Onboard services are subject to changes based on local regulations or other restrictions, in the context of the COVID-19 situation. Please note MSC Babycare (dedicated to babies and toddlers under 3 years old) will be temporarily unavailable onboard our ships.

- Will you still have Spa and Fitness services available to guests? 

MSC Aurea Spa and Fitness facilities and services will be available* with enhanced health and sanitation measures, extended opening hours and reduced capacity in public spaces. Onboard services are subject to changes based on local regulations or other restrictions, in the context of the COVID-19 situation. 

For their health and comfort, guests will pre-book spa treatments, fitness sessions and thermal area visits by phone. 

Fitness machines and equipment, spa areas and treatment rooms will be thoroughly sanitized after each use as well as deep-cleaned and disinfected every night. 

All Spa staff have been trained on rigorous health and sanitation measures and will wear appropriate protective equipment.

 

Book now your spa services today.

 

*Depending on ship-class, the following experiences will be closed until further notice: Steam Rooms, Heat Baths Whirlpools, Ice & Snow Experiences. The Saunas, Salt Relax Room, Harmonic Relax Rooms, Experience Showers, Heated Loungers will remain open to our guests.  

 

- Will guests be able to use the casino?

The casino remains fully functional under the new protocol with added sanitation and social distancing measures in place, including frequent sanitizing of chips, replacing playing cards on a regular basis and a reduced number of seats at gaming tables.

- Will there be any restrictions to visit some ports?

Guests who are fully vaccinated will be able to go ashore independently and will need to follow the requirements of going ashore according to the countries they will visit.  To go ashore during the cruise, MSC Cruises highly recommends to participate in one of or MSC Shore Excursions to ensure the same high standards of health and safety ashore as on board. Not all destinations allow independent disembarkation and it may depend on the traveler’ vaccination status. Not fully vaccinated Guests will not be allowed to go ashore unless they purchase an MSC Excursion. Those Guests who are not fully vaccinated or who have children in their travelling party, will need to go ashore with an MSC Excursion to discover in a protected excursion. For example: A family of four, two adults and two children under 11 years old: All guests will be required to participate in an MSC Excursion for not fully vaccinated guests.

 

For cruises in the Mediterranean it will be possible to go ashore only by participating in one of MSC Shore Excursions to ensure the same high standards of health and safety ashore as on board.

 

MSC Cruises offers a large variety of shore excursions. Some excursions are available only to Guests holding the EU Digital Covid Certificate/Green pass or, from extra Schengen countries Travelers, the equivalent COVID certificate, while other excursions are open to those not in its possession, guaranteeing in both cases the highest health and safety standards. More information about the tours are available here. Please note that Guests holding the EU Digital COVID Certificate/Green pass or the equivalent COVID certificate (for extra Schengen countries Travelers), travelling with children over 12 years who do not hold an EU Digital COVID Certificate/Green card or the equivalent COVID certificate (for extra Schengen countries Travelers), will be considered as Guests not holding the EU Digital COVID Certificate/Green pass or the equivalent COVID certificate (for extra Schengen countries Travelers), for excursions purposes: children will be requested to do the free covid test on board to participate to the excursion (or the booked excursion will need to be changed for another tour not requiring the green pass).

The EU Digital COVID Certificate / Green Pass is a digital certificate with a QR code issued by countries in Europe to show the following:

• The person has been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, taken at least 14 days beforehand, using a vaccine recognized by the European Medicines Agency (EMA)
• The person has recovered from COVID-19 within the last six months
• Someone who has a negative result for a molecular or antigen test performed in the last 48 hours

The copy of the EU Digital COVID Certificate / Green Pass or, from extra Schengen countries Travelers, the equivalent COVID certificate (digital or paper format), and a personal ID or passport, must be shown during the tour at all required entry checks.  

 

This is a regulation coming from the local authorities and MSC Cruises is not responsible if access is denied at one of the venues on the selected tour. Every port of call offers also a variety of excursions that do not require the EU Digital COVID Certificate (Green Pass) or, the equivalent COVID certificate (for extra Schengen countries travellers). Guests not in possession of a valid certificate can change excursion but availability is limited for some tours. Alternatively, Guests can contact the MSC Excursions office on board during the cruise: a free test will be arranged.

ONBOARD EXPERIENCE

  • Restaurants & Bars
    • To maintain health and safety standards, MSC Cruises has adapted processes for ordering, preparing, delivering, consuming and paying for food and beverage service
    • A new seating layout allows for social distancing, and all meals and drinks will be served at your table
    • Self-service at the buffet restaurant will be temporarily unavailable, and the food will be plated and served by our crew
    • For a contactless experience, you can access restaurant and bar menus from your personal mobile device by conveniently scanning a QR code
    • You will be required to wear a mask throughout the cruise while indoors and in public areas. Mask use is not required outdoors but is recommended as well as when social distancing is not possible outdoors.
  • Entertainment & Activities
    • Newly designed onboard activities and entertainment for smaller group sizes have been created
    • A wide array of activities including shows, entertainment and the Kids Club will be available by reservation at no extra charge
    • The capacity of the theater will be reduced to ensure responsible social distancing and the entertainment schedule will be extended so you can still enjoy a great variety of award-winning shows
    • All recreational and sporting equipment, fitness machines, toys, games and Kids Club equipment will be disinfected after each use


  • Outdoor Areas & Pools
    • All open decks will be accessible
    • Pools, whirlpools and the Aquapark will be available with reduced occupancy for social distancing
    • Sun beds will be separated in clusters
    • All outdoor furniture will be disinfected after every use and deeper disinfection will take place every night

     

  • Guest Services & Cutting-Edge Technologies
    • Download our app MSC For Me (or use our interactive touchscreens and in-stateroom smart TV onboard) to easily find information while avoiding queues*
    • Remote desks will be available on embarkation day for in-person questions
    • You should always call before going to any desk for information
    • Cashless payments will be highly recommended



    *MSC for Me digital channels (mobile app, in-stateroom smart TV, interactive touchscreens) is available on MSC Meraviglia, MSC Bellissima, MSC Grandiosa, MSC Seaview, MSC Seaside, MSC Splendida, MSC Virtuosa and MSC Seashore and MSC Magnifica (limited version).


  • Shore Excursions
    • To go ashore during your cruise, we highly recommend you participate in one of our MSC shore excursions to ensure the same high standards of health and safety ashore as on board
    • Select destinations will not allow guests to go ashore independently and will require guests to participate in an MSC shore excursion. Please note, guests may also be required to show proof of vaccination and/or the EU digital COVID certificate (if traveling through Europe). Visit our Shore Excursion FAQ section for more information
Experience, Bella | MSC Cruises

Enhanced cleaning & disInfecting

  • Elevated Standards of Cleanliness
    • New cleaning methods including the use of hospital-grade disinfectants, electrostatic sprayers, increased cleaning frequency and a focus on high-traffic, frequently-touched areas
    • Staterooms cleaned daily, with additional deep sanitation at the end of each cruise
    • 100% fresh, external air supplied to all staterooms and public spaces, with no re-circulation
    • Hand sanitizer dispensers available around the ship
  • Enhanced Medical Supplies & Services
    • Fully equipped Medical Center, including COVID-19 testing equipment, ventilators and increased number of highly trained staff on board
    • Comprehensive isolation and quarantine procedures and a response plan in place with local authorities that will be activated in case of suspected or confirmed COVID-19 situations

CRUISE WITH CONFIDENCE