HEALTH AND SAFETY MEASURES

MSC Seashore | Cruise Ships | MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises' top priority continues to be the health and safety of our guests, crew and the communities that our ships visit. 

 

Our industry-leading health and safety protocols were first introduced in summer 2020 and demonstrated our unwavering commitment to the wellbeing of our guests and crew and has since set the standard in the travel industry. 

 

The detailed knowledge we have gained from hosting over one million guests who have enjoyed a relaxing and — above all else — safe vacation at sea, has enabled us to evolve our health & safety protocols. 

 

Our ability to rapidly adapt and evolve while continuing to offer the highest level of preventative health measures, makes cruising with MSC one of the safest vacation options. 

 

CRUISE WITH CONFIDENCE

Putting The Health And Safety Of Our Guests And Crew First
(For Cruises Departing From U.S. Ports)

TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS BY COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE AND CRUISE DESTINATION

For ships departing from U.S. ports, wearing masks and social distancing onboard are optional for fully vaccinated guests and recommended but not required for unvaccinated children.


Masks are optional unless required by local regulation in our terminals. Guests must follow all local mask regulations at public ports of call. Protocols are subject to change.


The exact protocols for Winter 2022/23 Red Sea & Saudia Arabia, South America, and South Africa itineraries are subject to change and will adapt according to the evolution of the pandemic and local requirements. Information will be updated on a regular basis when available.

 

PLEASE SELECT YOUR CRUISE DESTINATION BELOW TO VIEW THE LATEST TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS

Your Cruise Experience

RESTAURANTS AND BARS

  • Self-service at the buffet restaurant is available.
  • For a contactless experience, you can access restaurant and bar menus from your personal mobile device by conveniently scanning a QR code.

ENTERTAINMENT AND 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 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 AND POOLS

  • All open decks will be accessible as well as pools, whirlpools, and the Aquapark
  • Sun beds will be separated in clusters
  • All outdoor furniture will be disinfected after every use and deeper disinfection will take place every night

GUESTS SERVICES AND CUTTING-EDGE TECHNOLOGY

  • 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
  • Visit our Shore Excursion FAQ section for more information

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 AND 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

faq

TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS

- Are there any travel restrictions, 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.

 

 

For countries requiring RT-PCR, NAAT or antigen testing, the test must be taken no more than the designated time based on the destination, sailing days, or vaccination status. 
Example: RT-PCR test must be taken no more than 2 days before boarding the ship. Your boarding time is 5pm on Friday, therefore the test cannot be taken before Wednesday at 5pm. 

TRAVEL INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS

- Is travel insurance required in order to cruise?

For U.S. and Puerto Rico residents departing on cruises from a U.S. port:

 

MSC Cruises encourages but does not require guests to purchase travel insurance either through MSC Cruises or another provider. Guests can purchase travel insurance within 24 hours of making their final payment.

 

View full details of MSC Cruises travel insurance

 

MSC Cruises provides COVID-19 assistance at no extra charge for U.S. and Puerto Rico residents who are fully vaccinated.  Children under the required vaccination age based on the dates above, regardless of vaccination status, traveling with fully vaccinated parents/guardians (with proof of vaccination) also benefit from this assistance.    

 

If you test positive for COVID-19 within 14-days prior to your cruise, you and your traveling party will receive a full refund.

 

If you test positive for COVID-19 at the terminal, you and your traveling party will receive a full refund and assistance, if required, with land-based quarantine.

 

If you test positive for COVID-19 during your cruise, you and your traveling party will receive a pro-rated refund and assistance, if required, with onboard medical care and land-based quarantine.


For U.S. and Puerto Rico residents departing on cruises from a non-U.S. port and non-U.S. residents departing on cruises from U.S. and international ports:

For all new reservations, beginning July 1, 2022, MSC Cruises strongly encourages but does not require guests to purchase travel insurance with COVID-19 protection either through MSC Cruises or another provider. Guests can purchase travel insurance within 24 hours of making their final payment. 

During your cruise, you may be exposed to specific COVID-19 risks that may not be covered by existing insurance policies without COVID-19 protection such as cancellation, interruption, repatriation expenses, quarantine, medical assistance, and related expenses, as well as hospitalization.  If you have no insurance in place, you may be exposed to additional costs that may not be covered by the company.

The insurance should be purchased to cover you and your traveling party from the confirmation date of your booking through the end of your cruise and flight or your Stay & Cruise package.

 

View full details of MSC Cruises travel insurance

EMBARKATION / DISEMBARKATION

- 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. . All guests who have purchased travel insurance with COVID-19 protection will be fully protected. 

- 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 allows guests to receive cruise tickets, travel documentation and mandatory health questionnaires. On embarkation day, guests should arrive at the time indicated on their cruise ticket to facilitate responsible social distancing, with travel documentation, vaccination certificate (must be valid for the whole duration of the cruise), and proof of a negative COVID-19 test. The test must meet stated travel requirements by country of residence and cruise destination (check above Travel Requirements section). 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

- What measures are you taking for the disembarkation process at the end of a cruise?

To ensure that all guests are disembarked safely and efficiently, we are providing detailed, step-by-step information, allocated time slots.

ONBOARD MEDICAL SERVICES

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

The preventative health and safety steps in the protocols 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 protocols, we have a contingency response plan in place with all the relevant authorities in the ports where the ships will call.

 

- 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.

DINE & DRINK

- Will the self-service at buffet be available?

Self-service at the buffet restaurant is now available again.

- Will Specialty Restaurants be open?

Yes, our sought-after Specialty Restaurants 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 their favorite cocktail or aperitif. 

- 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 may continue to enjoy our onboard award-winning entertainment.  Shows and activities will be pre-booked to manage the number of participants.  The wearing of masks is optional.

- 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. 

- 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.

 

*Due to the increased Health & Safety measures in order to grant a safe cruise for all our guests, all Thermal Area experiences are by appointment only.

 

- Will guests be able to use the casino?

The casino remains fully functional under the new protocols 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 will be able to go ashore independently according to local requirements which are continually monitored and subject to change. Guests who are traveling with unvaccinated children are also able to go ashore independently. For the best ashore experience, we recommend all guests explore destinations with the comfort, convenience, and safety of an MSC Cruises Shore Excursion, bookable pre-cruise and on board. 

 

MSC Cruises offers a large variety of shore excursions. More information about the tours is available here.