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Spirit of Discovery - any current onboard reports re Norovirus?


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Thanks for all comments on this post. Feel I am better informed regarding situation on SOD. Really sorry that many passengers have/had the dreaded norovirus & do hope all are symptom free soon. Your advice has been helpful and,  as a passenger who will be boarding on 2 March, its good to know that stringent measures are being enforced. If any of the officers or crew are reading this - Please continue monitoring cleanliness & serving at buffet etc. A couple of days ago I was all for abandoning the trip but feel more positive about it now.

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The captain has made announcement regarding NoroVirus and I appreciate his honesty on this matter, openness in these matters is always welcomed - thank you.

 

".....we have managed to keep the number of cases to around 20 day..." and ".... he thinks this is quite an achievement ...." so what was it before and at its peak? 

 

I dont know how good achievement this is. Done 2 world cruises etc and never known anything like it, but the passengers on those ships where of different demographics (statistical data relating to the population and particular groups within it).

 

Depending how  you calculate the number of days since we left Southampton x 20 = WOW

 

 


 

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18 minutes ago, kathekas said:

The captain has made announcement regarding NoroVirus and I appreciate his honesty on this matter, openness in these matters is always welcomed - thank you.

 

".....we have managed to keep the number of cases to around 20 day..." and ".... he thinks this is quite an achievement ...." so what was it before and at its peak? 

 

I dont know how good achievement this is. Done 2 world cruises etc and never known anything like it, but the passengers on those ships where of different demographics (statistical data relating to the population and particular groups within it).

 

Depending how  you calculate the number of days since we left Southampton x 20 = WOW

 

 


 

He's surely not saying 20 new cases a day, is he?  I suppose 'achievement' can be read two ways!

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Its funny how the captain speaks of NovoVirus.. I mean what is NovoVirus anyways? I heard of CoronaVirus. Are there other viruses on board the ships we dont know about? Please, keep us informed people! I am get more and more scared

Edited by Roger88
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My wife and I are on Spirit Of Discovery on Monday going to the Canaries. We received a letter today saying that the sailing time has been put back to 22;30 to enable the ship to be deep cleaned by a specialist team on arrival into Southampton on Monday morning. 

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So this will be the THIRD consecutive deep clean. They must be bringing outside companies on board, as there is no way they can do it in the few hours between the last passengers getting off and the first of the new passengers getting on.

Incidentally, Norovirus is just one of many various rotavirus infections that cause mega gastric upsets. Just happens to be the name that everybody knows.

If that really is 20 cases of gastric upsets a day - well, I agree - WOW (and not in a good way).

This is really, really unusual for Saga and I can't help but think that it has to be something to do with the ship itself.

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We sail on 10 April, Footsteps of St James.  Contacted Saga yesterday, regarding reported continuation of Nirovirus outbreaks, plus their current standing regarding Coronovirus .

 Nirovirus : A second deep clean with be done on arrival back to Southampton 2nd  March .

Coronovirus : Unless F.O. changes its travel status, all as normal. Extra screening and checks,  common sense on cleanliness etc.

No boarding, full refund if you have travelled in past 30 days to a list of middle/ far east destinations , plus Italy.

 

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48 minutes ago, Littlewh said:

We sail on 10 April, Footsteps of St James.  Contacted Saga yesterday, regarding reported continuation of Nirovirus outbreaks, plus their current standing regarding Coronovirus .

 Nirovirus : A second deep clean with be done on arrival back to Southampton 2nd  March .

Coronovirus : Unless F.O. changes its travel status, all as normal. Extra screening and checks,  common sense on cleanliness etc.

No boarding, full refund if you have travelled in past 30 days to a list of middle/ far east destinations , plus Italy.

 

A second deep clean?

Thought this was the THIRD deep clean. One prior to the current cruise, one prior to the previous cruise, and this one.

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Yes noro virus still going and has not been handled well

the captan announced on the 27th that there were only 20 NEW  cases a day

we were both confined to cabin, sort of better but our digestive system is not right

been living on bread and potato a shame because the food is excellent

I will write a full review of this incident when I get home, this incident has not been handled well compared to other more experienced lines

i don’t think the seriousness of this has been grasped, we have been given a hardback coffee table book about the ship and a bottle of champers as a thank you for our understanding ... totally inappropriate in my opinion

more later retiredbrit

 

 

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A short update, there are a number of entertainers now sick, dance hosts stopped

in the last couple of days the cleaning in the self serve has improved, after prompting by passengers the tables are now washed between passengers sitting down, pots of jam at breakfast removed

as we have been confined and had plenty of time we have drafted our complaint letter for saga, I know noro virus is very common, our complaint is the way it is being handled, not that it’s there. Remember on the cruise before last the spirit was not allowed into Gibraltar. The captain seemed proud that there were 20 new cases a day,

Peoples  cruises are being ruined

retiredbrit

 

 

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51 minutes ago, retiredbrit said:

A short update, there are a number of entertainers now sick, dance hosts stopped

in the last couple of days the cleaning in the self serve has improved, after prompting by passengers the tables are now washed between passengers sitting down, pots of jam at breakfast removed

as we have been confined and had plenty of time we have drafted our complaint letter for saga, I know noro virus is very common, our complaint is the way it is being handled, not that it’s there. Remember on the cruise before last the spirit was not allowed into Gibraltar. The captain seemed proud that there were 20 new cases a day,

Peoples  cruises are being ruined

retiredbrit

 

 

 

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Thanks for your comments. So sorry about the ruined cruise & your illness. Will lookout for your review in due course.

Have you missed out on a few ports? I was tracking the ship & notice ETA in Southampton as 0200 Mon 2 March.  From its current position I cant imagine how its going to take that long.

Is the weather so bad or are there mechanical issues slowing the ship down?

 

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We missed the last port Kalvag, because the captain said we wouldn’t make southampton in time,   the  weather is a bit bumpy but not too rough.

before dinner we were doing 11 knots -not as fast as I would have thought possible.

just now we are not shown on the tv navigation page at all

i notice the chairs and tables on the balcony have been lashed down, we will undo them tomorrow as we spend a lot of time on our balcony

retired brit

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So sorry to read about your problems on ship. It does sound like they are nowhere near as experienced as other cruise lines in dealing with these situations. There is a yellow warning for tonight and tomorrow for high wind and rain which may be the reason for your early departure for Southampton.  Safe journey home, looking forward to your full review although with trepidation as we are going on her middle of April. 

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This is just my opinion (based on my own experience)

Until very recently it always seemed that the ship made important decisions after discussing with Saga head office.

It now feels that head office are making all the decisions, the ship may ask and suggest but no longer has the same control over it's own destiny.

The impression I get is that the next cruise must depart as close as possible to time, come what may, which in turn gives the impression of being more interested in keeping shareholders happy than upholding the reputation as an experienced and competent cruise line.

This opinion was already based on my own experiences, and the way these consecutive gastric outbreaks are being handled has not done anything to change it.

I value efficiency highly, and after years of recommending Saga I now regard them as no better than any other line, and worse than some - which is sad.

 

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Middle of April should be enough time for management to get their act together and control this outbreak 

But I feel that until they stop blaming passengers and carry out a proper deep clean they will never control the outbreak.

Seniors have the hand washing routine drummed into them from an early age. I am sure the majority of passengers boarded virus free, as it hadn’t been properly cleaned, they picked up the virus on board.

The ship rocks more than I expected, but the food generally is the best we have had on getting on for 50 cruises (this is our first on Saga). Excellent range of wines including an excellent Australian Chiraz.  The troops on the ground are excellent especially Maureen and Mike in the grill

the cabin furnishings are good, we are in a deluxe twin on deck 10, which is 50% wider that a standard twin

The extra space was welcome when we were restricted to our cabin, would we come on a SAga ship again, I doubt it. I will expand on this later

retired brit

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Hi nosaphire

you are spot on.

i hope you write to saga when you get home, we have our letter drafted and our agent is standing by.

We had booked this itinerary on spirit of adventure for February next year, on the strength of our experience on Discovery and the way the outbreak has been handled, we have cancelled Adventure and our agent will book another cruise line

retired brit

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We are not on this cruise, our cruises both had a really nasty chest infection that was running like wildfire around the ship. Luckily, we were only mildly affected both times.

We had three cruises booked on the SoD, all booked before the ship entered service - 2 in 2019, one long back-to-back June this year.

The first one was such a shambles we wrote and cancelled the one for this year - knowing we would lose the deposit.

Never heard anything back, had to telephone to make sure they had cancelled it.

Yes, it was cancelled - did we know we would lose the deposit? That was it.

Totally disinterested. So we also cancelled three advance registrations (they are refundable, but we still had to chase that).

The second was the Christmas and New Year cruise, and had we not already cancelled this year's one, we certainly would have done after that. That was an even bigger shambles.

We believe from reports elsewhere that we are not the only ones who have cancelled, maybe if they get enough bad feedback and/or cancellations they will stop burying their heads in the sand and start getting back to the competent Saga they used to be before the new management in head office.

It is a shame, because they have some brilliant customer-facing crew on board, who work their socks off to keep passengers happy (although, to be fair, most cruise lines have good crew) - it is the senior management who are the problem.

We have two cruises booked this year on the Adventure, both booked before way before the SoD started, and we still cannot make up our minds whether to cancel and lose the deposits, or to sail and see if they have learnt anything from their mistakes on the SoD. 

 

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Sorry to hear about your previous cruises, Saga are charging premium cruise line fares, but not offering premium cruise service.

we have now booked 2021 northern lights cruise on P&O Aurora, we have mini suite at about half the price of the deluxe balcony cabin we are currently in

retired brit

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On board now. The Captain indeed said 20 new cases per day. He said today that the number had dropped and he believed it was because we have been at sea for 5 days and no shore trips! The virus is still active,people confined on our corridor and still incidences of public vomiting.

Most hygiene principles have been enforced since we boarded. The staff began by being very strict on hand washing. All open public toilets have been supervised. There were no books in the library. No receptions. Indoor pool and hot tub area closed. Golf simulator closed.These were soon increased around the 15 new cases per day mark. No self service coffee and tea stations. The self service laundry was closed. No room service for the healthy.
On the plus side the room service staff are excellent but obviously overworked. I and my pristine clean hands caught the virus after 10 days and they were so cheerful with us. The medical staff were very good. The food is good, all praise to the executive chef. Will write more when I get back.

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Hmm. Is the reduction to 15 cases a day something to be proud about, or to worry about why it is still happening at all?

Still find it hard to believe that ALL of it is ALL down to passengers bringing new cases on board at each port. If so, why was the same problem not on their old ships? Yes, there were cases of vomiting bug, but isolated cases, well managed and kept under control - so unless you saw the cabin being attended by masked and gowned crew, nobody even knew about it. Certainly did not cause all facilities to be closed off.

Hope that Saga will offer some form of compensation to passengers on this cruise, not least because much of the on-board facilities that are expected are not available.

 

 

 

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Had  breakfast, soon going to our designater area to wait our call.

every cabin door has a list of the deep clean procedure, including “fogging”

of course I have photographed it,!!!

at last tables in the grill bing sprayed before the next person uses it

why did it take an argument for then to start doing it

retired brit

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