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MSC Cruises tweaks shore excursion policy for winter cruises

MSC Cruises has confirmed double-jabbed passengers will be able to visit destinations independently from an escorted excursion group this winter.

Previously, the line required passengers to go ashore with a protected MSC Cruises shore excursion group.

Now, only non-vaccinated passengers or those with children in their party are obliged to remain within a protected MSC Cruises shore excursion group.

The updated excursion policy is part of the line’s wider health and safety protocol for this winter.

From November 14, MSC will deploy MSC Magnifica on seven-night Northern European cruises out of the UK. Voyages go on sale on Wednesday (October 6).

Ports of call include Hamburg, Amsterdam from Ijmuiden, Zeebrugge for Bruges and Brussels and Le Harve for Paris.

Extended stays in port of up to 12 hours are planned.

On northern European cruises, passengers aged 12 and above will need to be fully vaccinated and guests aged between two and 11 years old will need to provide proof of a negative PCR or antigen test taken within 48 hours of their cruise departure.

UK and Ireland passengers on Mediterranean cruises will either need to have a negative antigen or PCR test taken within 48 hours of departure or be fully vaccinated in order to embark.

Passengers will only be able to go ashore on an organised excursion. Some will require an official Covid certificate to access some tourist venues such a museums or churches.

The line reiterated that “many of the destinations” it visited requires passengers to have a Covid-19 insurance policy and therefore it is mandatory for all passengers.

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