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34 minutes ago, uktog said:

On a TV programme here just now fist bumps have been ruled out - elbow bump only according to the experts - no hand to hand contact.  I am assuming Azamara will be updating their onboard guidance for the coming weeks recognising this.

Elbow bumps? Why don’t we just bow?

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21 minutes ago, Mackdogmolly said:

Elbow bumps? Why don’t we just bow?

 

18 minutes ago, Lindy028 said:

Or maybe foot bumps as they are apparently doing inChina.

 

What's wrong with just smiling and saying hello 😀

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There is a report that US VP, Mike Pence is meeting cruise line CEO's at the weekend. Like many on this thread I have an upcoming cruise in the next couple of months so will be hoping that this meeting may provide some clarity. My cruise is in Europe but with Italy now reporting 3000 cases this region is now also of concern.

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As of 1 hour ago:-  Israel: Quarantine Ordered for Arrivals From Germany, France, Spain, Switzerland, and Austria

 

This is the latest from Haaretz news feed, I assume this in addition to other countries and a complete ban on arrivals from China, Italy, Iran and South Korea. This doesn’t bode well for our “Israel Intensive” cruise departing in just under five weeks time from Athens on 14th April. Only a matter of time before the UK is added to this list. Chopping the entire 4 days in Israel will render the cruise pointless. IMHO we will find it difficult reaching Athens. I don’t mean to scaremonger but this is a fast flowing crisis. For hour by hour coverage try the following UK website.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2020/mar/04/coronavirus-live-updates-who-global-recession-fears-update-latest-news

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Just picked up this breaking story regarding MSC Opera in Athens and the Silver Spirit in Myanmar.

 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8074709/2-000-passengers-kept-cruise-liner-latest-coronavirus-scare.html

 

Looks like we will soon have cruise ships on position only cruises. Great for R&R but not great for immersion experiences.

 

 

Thanks for the weblink Vgroom.

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Ive just seen on the Silverseas board that Silverseas are relaxing their cancellation policy. They are allowing passengers to cancel within certain dates and just pay an admin fee 

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I had my agent push Azamara on their cancellation policy.  I am now in a position where I will have to self quarantine 😷after the trip, per my employer, and I'm not really interested in that if it can be prevented - I'd rather just book a different trip on a future date.   I did find these articles today indicating that cruise lines were starting to modify their penalties:  

 

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/cruise-lines-relax-cancellation-policies-201542859.html

 

https://thepointsguy.com/guide/cruise-line-extreme-measures-coronavirus-spreads/

 

And here was the reply from Azamara to my agent - not holding my breath but sounds optimistic 🤞 :

 

"... Our management team is working as we speak on a cancellation reform for voyages on or before April 5, 2020.  We will have this information confirmed tomorrow.  Please let me know if you have any questions."

 

  

Edited by JDClever
typos
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4 hours ago, JDClever said:

Our management team is working as we speak on a cancellation reform for voyages on or before April 5, 2020. 

Which does not help anyone after 5th  April, clearly this situation is not going to resolve within 4 weeks. Come on Azamara your handling if this and lack of a response is shocking, you need to consider putting your guests  not revenue first  as this will reflect badly on future cruises when people consider how this was handled a few years down the line. People don’t forget how they were treated, communication and empathy go a long way and I feel that at present Azamara is showing very little of either compared to other cruise companies who have much bigger itineraries to manage. 

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12 minutes ago, sunlover33 said:

Which does not help anyone after 5th  April, clearly this situation is not going to resolve within 4 weeks. Come on Azamara your handling if this and lack of a response is shocking, you need to consider putting your guests  not revenue first  as this will reflect badly on future cruises when people consider how this was handled a few years down the line. People don’t forget how they were treated, communication and empathy go a long way and I feel that at present Azamara is showing very little of either compared to other cruise companies who have much bigger itineraries to manage. 

Those of us over 65 are high risk for Covid19. We’re booked within the next month.  Azamara can only be expected to deal with the imminent cruises as the situation is developing all the time. 

 

But deal with it they must!!!!

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1 hour ago, cinnamon said:

Those of us over 65 are high risk for Covid19. We’re booked within the next month.  Azamara can only be expected to deal with the imminent cruises as the situation is developing all the time. 

According to the Uk government up to 80% of us are like to get the virus,  that’s  not my concern. However we fly to Singapore in just over 28 days to pick up a cruise on 11 the April Knowing what may happen up to 5th April  is not helpful. I don’t want to have a 14000 mile return trip because Azamara are struggling to make any decisions further than the next 4 weeks, and they cancel at the last minute. Other cruise companies are seeming to manage the situation with offers of refunds or future cruise credits for the next six  months not weeks.  Azamara appear to be struggling to communicate let alone make decisions. This virus is not going to go away anytime soon and the situation in the west is going to get a lot worse before it gets better. This is just speculation anyway as there has been no official information from Azamara. It’s just  not good enough. 

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1 hour ago, cinnamon said:

Those of us over 65 are high risk for Covid19. We’re booked within the next month.  Azamara can only be expected to deal with the imminent cruises as the situation is developing all the time. 

 

But deal with it they must!!!!

I totally agree, we are both over 65 and are due to fly out in just over a week for our Quest cruise. There are reports that at least 2 of our ports of call are not allowing cruise ships to dock. How long before the others do the same! As difficult as the situation is, Azamara have been very slow to deal with it compared to other cruise lines, but as you state, deal with it they must, and soon!!!

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3 hours ago, sunlover33 said:

According to the Uk government up to 80% of us are like to get the virus,  that’s  not my concern. However we fly to Singapore in just over 28 days to pick up a cruise on 11 the April Knowing what may happen up to 5th April  is not helpful. I don’t want to have a 14000 mile return trip because Azamara are struggling to make any decisions further than the next 4 weeks, and they cancel at the last minute. Other cruise companies are seeming to manage the situation with offers of refunds or future cruise credits for the next six  months not weeks.  Azamara appear to be struggling to communicate let alone make decisions. This virus is not going to go away anytime soon and the situation in the west is going to get a lot worse before it gets better. This is just speculation anyway as there has been no official information from Azamara. It’s just  not good enough. 

Scheduled to be in London on return from Azamara cruise in time for Wimbleton.  That news from UK government up to 80% of us are likely to get the virus has me very concerned about being in crowds in London even though we are talking about late June, early July.  I am in the high risk category and want to make an informed decision on cancelling   

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Azamara have updated their policy as of today, no changes to cancellation policies:

 

CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) TRAVEL ADVISORY - 5 MARCH

We are closely monitoring global developments regarding the coronavirus, and we are fully focused on protecting the health and safety of our guests and crew.

To comply with guidance from CDC, WHO and other public health authorities around the world, we are implementing several global measures to protect guests and crew. These measures are intentionally conservative and apply to anyone boarding our ships, guests and crew alike. We apologize for the inconvenience created by these precautionary measures.

These temporary safety precautions will remain in place for a projected period of 30 days and will be reviewed daily for revision as conditions warrant. Until further notice, all ships in the Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. fleet will adopt the following health screening protocols:

1. Regardless of nationality, we will deny boarding to:

  • Any person who has traveled from, to or through mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Italy, Iran, or South Korea, within 15 days of boarding.
  • Any person who has come in contact with anyone with 15-day prior travel to mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Italy, Iran, or South Korea. The CDC characterizes contact with an individual as coming within six feet (2M) of a person.
  • Any person who within 15 days prior to embarkation, has had contact with, or helped care for, anyone suspected or diagnosed as having COVID-19, or who are currently subject to health monitoring for possible exposure to COVID-19.

2. Secondary, enhanced health screenings will be performed on:

  • Any person who reports feeling unwell or demonstrates any flu-like symptoms.
  • Any person who has traveled from, to or through select countries impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19) within 15 days of boarding.
  • Any person who is uncertain about contact with individuals who have traveled from, to or through select countries impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19), within 15 days of boarding.

Guests presenting with fever or low blood oximetry in the specialized health screenings may be denied boarding. All guests who are denied boarding due to these restrictions will receive full refunds.

Additional restrictions may be imposed based on local circumstances. For example, certain countries may deny visas or prohibit entry based on travel history or nationality.

We are assessing developments constantly and will update these measures as needed. Please note that there are no voyage changes required at this time. Should we find a need to change we will advise you and your travel partner directly. If you have specific questions, please contact your travel professional or our contact center at 833-292-2292.

Onboard Health Protocols

Azamara takes your and our crew’s health and well-being very seriously, which is why there are many protocols and procedures which have been elevated and introduced to ensure we keep everyone onboard healthy including:

  • Implementation of travel restrictions preventing guests and crew coming from or transiting through areas of high risk of infection/exposure from boarding a vessel. Azamara is proactively checking for any guests/crew who could be at risk of denied boarding and helping adjust plans as needed.
  • Performing enhanced screening at the embarkation port, including the following:
    • Thermal scans for all embarking guests, crew and visitors. This check involves a non-contact device which detects body temperature in a few seconds. Anyone presenting a temperature of 100.4 F/38 C and above will go to secondary screening.
    • Secondary screening is carried out for anyone found to have a temperature of 100.4 F and above as well as guest or crew who have been in or traveled through other areas impacted by COVID-19 in the previous 15 days. This screening involves some questions, a temperature check and a blood oximetry check. The oximetry check involves placing your finger in a small plastic device for a few seconds to measure the level of oxygen saturation in the blood. If temperature is 100.4+, oximetry is <95% and it is not related to pre-existing conditions, they will be denied boarding.
  • Providing hand sanitizing gel at boarding and throughout the voyage in all public areas and encourage guests to sanitize often. We routinely maintain an elevated standard of sanitization during the first 24 hours. This involves not allowing self-serve in the buffet and continuous sanitization of high contact areas (e.g. stairway railings, public door handles, elevator buttons and public restrooms). Given the current conditions we are maintaining the elevated sanitization protocol throughout all sailings until further notice.
  • Circulating 100% fresh air into all guest cabin areas – no recirculation.
  • Access to a 24-hour medical facility onboard with a doctor and nurses ready to provide medical care. Azamara is providing complimentary consultation at this time should guests or crew experience flu-like symptoms.
  • Working with our tour operators to sanitize transportation vehicles and provide Purell wipes for all guests.

While Azamara is committed to doing all possible to maintain the health and well-being of guests and crew at the forefront of all we do. The best way to avoid illness is to wash your hands with water and soap for at least 20 seconds and avoid touching your face. We hope to see you onboard enjoying a healthy and enjoyable voyage soon!

 

 

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2 minutes ago, cinnamon said:

Hmmmm. No mention of cancellation policy changing. 😟

Exactly, really so disappointed with this, we will seriously consider who we book future cruises with in the light of this. 

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No info whatsoever for people who have cruises where ports are closed, I really have no interest in seeing Sri Lanka from the deck only. Very disappointed if this is the best Azamara can do and before people jump on my post to say this is four weeks away, seriously! are the numbers worldwide rising or falling at the moment? 

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1. Regardless of nationality, we will deny boarding to:

  • Any person who has traveled from, to or through mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Italy, Iran, or South Korea, within 15 days of boarding.
  • Any person who has come in contact with anyone with 15-day prior travel to mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Italy, Iran, or South Korea. The CDC characterizes contact with an individual as coming within six feet (2M) of a person
  • Our cruise leaves out of Civitavecchia Italy May 4. How does anyone board in Italy?
  • Clarification would be nice.
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1 minute ago, momof3runners said:

Any person who has come in contact with anyone with 15-day prior travel to mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Italy, Iran, or South Korea. The CDC characterizes contact with an individual as coming within six feet (2M) of a person

It strikes me they haven’t a clue what they are doing, the last time I looked Civitavecchia was in Italy. The response is pathetic. 

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I was previously not immediately concerned by this but now I am.  I have a cruise in May that visits Italian ports.  I appreciate it is May, two months forward but the Chief Medical Officer for England and Wales is now of the view there is a nine week period from now when the impact will be felt in the UK.  They have changed the guidance in the UK and the rules in relation o self isolation are extended to the whole of Italy.  Therefore, in addition to still being unable to work in China (fully understood) I am now looking at three cruises and wondering if they are even an option

Looking at the way forward, to me there are two issues

1.  Where will the ships go particularly Journey

2.  What is the guest cancellation policy.

It seems that Azamara are combining the two whereas it would be easier for guests if the communication was unbundled as other lines (eg Viking) have done and communications about changes to cancellation policy are separated from changes to itineraries.  Maybe we could move on better if that was what happened 

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