Since MSC Grandiosa resumed sailing on the 16th August we’ve had lots of requests asking what life onboard is like with the new health & safety protocols and exactly how they are being implemented.
Designed to prevent and mitigate the risk of transmission during an MSC Cruises holiday, the Health and Safety Operating Protocol includes a series of precautionary measures and response planning.
Prior to embarkation guests need to submit to a three-step health screening: a temperature check, a health questionnaire and a COVID-19 swab test. Depending on the screening results, and according to the guest’s medical or travel history, a secondary health screening or testing takes place. Guests who tests positive, display symptoms or a temperature are denied boarding.
The use of new cleaning methods, hospital-grade disinfectant products and the sanitation of the air on board with UV-C light technology that kills 99.97% of microbes are all part of the elevated sanitation and cleaning measures.
The reduction of capacity of guests on board allows for more space for guests, approx. 10 m² per person based on 70% overall capacity. Venue capacity is reduced and activities are modified to allow for smaller groups. Pre-booked services and activities also help to manage guest numbers and social distancing aboard. When social distancing isn’t possible, guests need to wear a face mask, for instance in the lifts. The face masks are provided daily to guests in the cabin and are also available around the ship.
Guests receive a complimentary MSC for Me wristband to facilitate a contactless experience and contact tracing.
The ship has enhanced medical facilities and services with highly qualified staff trained, the necessary equipment to test, evaluate and treat suspected COVID-19 patients and the availability of free treatment. Dedicated isolation cabins are available to enable isolation of any suspected cases and close contacts;
As part of the ongoing health monitoring guests and crew have their temperature checked daily either when returning from ashore or at dedicated stations around the ship. Visiting ports is only allowed as part of an organised MSC Cruises excursion. This means that MSC Cruises can protect the health of guests whilst ashore with excursions that are delivered with the same high standards of health and safety on board. All transfers are properly sanitised and there is adequate space on the busses. Tour guides and drivers also undergo health screening and wear appropriate PPE.
If a suspected case is identified, a contingency response plan is activated which means the person and close contacts are put into isolation and may be disembarked according to local and national regulations.
Below is a video illustrating what to expect when sailing on board MSC Grandiosa. The video covers everything from the embarkation process, to onboard facilities and what is available, to testimonials from guests who have sailed with MSC Cruises since the new protocols were put in place.