Many travelers have been extremely concerned with the COVID-19 (coronavirus) making it’s way to the United States and lots of questions are being asked about whether they should sail or how can they re-book in the event they come in contact with the someone who may have the virus and most importantly, will they get their money back.
Royal Caribbean announced a new policy called “Cruise With Confidence,” that would give consumers more confidence in making new bookings, knowing that they could later adjust their plans without penalty.
This new policy allows guests on Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Azamara and Silversea to cancel up to 48 hours before a sailing. Guests will receive a full credit for their fare, usable on any future sailing of the guest’s choice in 2020 or 2021. The policy applies to both new and existing cruise bookings.
“Our previous policy set earlier deadlines for guests to cancel their cruises, and that added unnecessary stress,” said Richard Fain, the company’s chairman and CEO. “Trying to guess a month or more in advance where areas of concern about coronavirus might be is challenging for medical experts, much less a family preparing for vacation.
“When circumstances are as fast-changing as they have been recently, it’s good to know you have the option to take a rain check,” Fain said. “We think putting more control in our guests’ hands helps them make informed decisions about whether to keep their existing vacation plans or trade out for a more convenient time or itinerary.”
In addition to easing concerns for booked guests, Fain said the policy would also give consumers more confidence in making new bookings, knowing that they could later adjust their plans without penalty.
The policy applies to all cruises with a sailing date on or before July 31, 2020, and will be offered by the company’s global brands: Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Azamara and Silversea. Full details of the “Cruise with Confidence” policy can be found at the respective brand websites.
The cruise line also announced Thursday start taking the temperatures of all passengers using a digital, no-touch thermometer before boarding any ship. If a guest’s temperature is above 100.4°F (38° C), the passenger and their party will undergo a secondary health screening, to ensure no one possibly sick from the coronavirus sets sail.
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