Sorry, your December MSC cruise has been cancelled

12 December 2021 - 11:14
The MSC Orchestra will no longer be sailing from Durban this December after the steep rise in Covid-19 infections in the country.
The MSC Orchestra will no longer be sailing from Durban this December after the steep rise in Covid-19 infections in the country.

MSC Cruises has cancelled all December voyages in SA due to the sharp rise in Covid-19 infections.

The Swiss-Italian global cruise line announced on Friday it was suspending all its domestic sailings in the country with immediate effect. MSC Orchestra will resume cruises on January 9.

“The temporary suspension was dictated by the cruise line’s industry-leading health and safety protocol in connection with the most recent and sudden evolution, particularly in the past week of the pandemic ashore in the country, that puts the health and safety of its guests and crew as its utmost priority,” MSC said in a statement.

All guests who have booked with the MSC from the port of Durban will receive a voucher for a voyage later in the season or a refund.

MD of MSC Cruises SA Ross Volk said the cancellation was in line with their safety protocols.

“We made this voluntary decision in an abundance of caution towards our guests, our crew and the communities that MSC Orchestra was scheduled to visit in the coming weeks.

“This is what our health and safety protocol is designed to do, in accordance with the evolution of the pandemic ashore and to ensure the utmost protection to our guests and crew.  

“In light of the most recent evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic across SA, we have been in consultation with the government’s department of health which is working hard to understand the most up-to-date data of the virus and as health and safety is our number one priority, our protocol clearly called for a temporary suspension of our forthcoming sailings with immediate effect.  

“We now also await eagerly for any additional guidance from the SA government for its citizens so that we can also reflect any new measures into our own health and safety protocol.   

“We understand that our decision will be very disappointing to those guests that will have their voyages cancelled but I hope that they will understand that it was made with their wellbeing in mind, as the health and safety of our guests, crew and communities we visit is our number one priority.”

The cruise line resumed its sailing operation in SA on December 6 after a 20-month hiatus when MSC Orchestra departed from Durban for a 4-night cruise.

According to the statement on Sunday, the approval to sail was granted by the departments of health and transport and SA Maritime Safety Authority.  

MSC Cruises has 12 ships at sea operating regular cruises in Europe, North America, South America, and the Middle East.  



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