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Post-Corona What Changes Would You Like To See With Cruises?


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Spinning out of another thread here but taking the topic much broader, once we are beyond coronavirus, what changes would you like to see the cruise lines implement going forward to make cruising a more healthy travel experience? What I would like to see...

 

1) Thermal scans at terminals prior to entering security. Those showing elevated body temperatures to be pulled aside and given a quick medical exam. If medical staff feels that passenger is showing fever or other signs of illness then boarding to be denied with full credit for future travel.

 

2) Medical staff also to monitor passengers visually prior to entering security and those coughing and/or sneezing excessively to be pulled aside for questioning and possible quick medical exam. Passengers to advise cruise line in advance through cruise line initiated questionnaire of any ongoing non-viral/bacterial conditions like allergies or emphysema so that cruise line has a record and that could be taken into account during review by medical staff at boarding if pulled aside. If medical staff determines that passenger is showing illness then boarding to be denied with full credit for future travel.

 

3) Same thermal scan and visual monitoring guidelines as 1 and 2 to also be used for passengers returning to ship from any port. Passengers identified to have fever or determined to have illness to be confined to cabin with monitoring and check ups by medical staff. Those who are questionable could continue cruise normally but get check-ins from medical staff for a couple days to make sure nothing has changed.

 

4) If crew or officers observe anyone onboard coughing or sneezing excessively (not a one off situation, something that would make anyone turn their heads to see if the person was okay) they should report that to medical staff who could discreetly pull passenger aside to ask questions and potentially have a quick medical exam done. If medical staff determines that passenger is showing illness then passenger to be confined to cabin with monitoring and check ups by medical staff until they are determined to be well again. Those who are questionable could continue to cruise normally but get check-ins from medical staff for a couple days to make sure nothing has changed.

 

5) No more self-service at buffet including drink stations and condiments. Eliminate any self-service drink stations anywhere else on ship. Install sinks to wash hands at buffet entrances and require passengers to wash hands before entering.

 

6) Change to single use/recyclable menus in all restaurants.

 

7) Have buffet or other casual dining seating areas (like pool grills) with defined entrances managed by a crew member who monitors seating and makes sure cleaning staff sanitize tables thoroughly after each set of guests finish dining. Currently the turn over at buffet tables is sometimes so quick that crew doesn't get the time to clean tables thoroughly before new set of guests have sat down. Not a problem in the restaurants as tables are cleaned between turnover of tables already.

 

#8) Remove all unnecessary "nonsense" items from cabins like cruise line magazines and Kelly Hoppen nick nacks that passengers could touch and might not get thoroughly cleaned between sailings.

 

I know that some people will think that some of these measures are draconian and overreach and will provoke outrage from some, but the sickness on cruise ships was already getting out of control prior to corona. I can't tell you how many cruises I have been on where people were obviously sick with colds, coughing and sneezing repeatedly. I have wound up with some by the time I got home from a couple cruises. I read so often lately about people talking about mini-flu outbreaks on their cruises. On my first Celebrity cruise there was a massive noro outbreak, which thankfully my group avoided but I have gotten it on two other cruises and I practice very good hygiene. Cruising has a really bad image right now because of corona and I think it really behooves the cruise lines to go above and beyond with their health and sanitation protocols going forward. The majority of passengers don't show up to board a ship ill so this won't impact most people, but it will help prevent those who think "it's just a little fever" or "it's just a little cold" from being allowed onboard to infect everyone else or to think twice before even trying to go on the cruise.

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One more...

 

9) All the major ports to have an "emergency pier" that has facilities designed to handle outbreak situations like this for coordinating a medical disembarkation that ships could be taken to in a crisis.

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my thoughts are. 1 it is going to be a longGGGGGGGGGGG time. once a vaccine is found or you have letter from dr that you have survived corona. you will need to show a vaccinated card. no card no entry to ship.only way.... it is not going away. everyone will a vaccination or it will never go away.

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You know...considering all the threads on this virus topic and how much most of us have added to them...this is one of the very best questions IMO......and so relevant.  I've been thinking about how the ships could sanitize completely before we board the first trip out and the next and the next.  In my mind...always.  On the pier, you have such good ideas to try to minimize sickness.  But consider, on the pier someone is not showing signs but is in the process of becoming ill.  The outbreak doesn't happen until 2nd, 3rd, or beyond day onboard.  What will prevent us from contacting any virus, even with your very thoughtful suggestions.  I'm wondering if for a while (or always), the staff now serves table/menu  service in the OV or any restaurant.  This will cost us more, but isn't it worth it? I've long thought it unsanitary in the OV and the tables turning over all the time, with lurkers just waiting for someone to leave their table and no cleanup afterward. 

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With transmission happening up to 48 hours before those that *do* get symptoms exhibiting any and also at any time from asymptomatic patients all those temperature scans/health checks aren't really making you safe. A false sense perhaps.

Edited by twins_to_alaska
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WonderMan3, I wouldn't cruise under those conditions. Not only would make embarkation at every port painfully slow but I would hate the idea of being thrown off the ship at any stop and having my companions trip ruined over some coughs and sneezes.  I would be okay with quarantine so that others aren't negatively impacted.  I also think they need to limit the number of cruise passengers and discontinue all buffets.  It is impossible to maintain any sanitary standards with 3000 + people.  If I cruise again (currently scheduled for Athens to Dubai in October), I will make sure I limit myself to the smaller ships like the Azamara Pursuit.

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I can only see cruises starting up again in 2 scenarios:

 

1) vaccine.  They will require proof of vaccination.

 

2) this goes on for long enough and infects so many people that the vast majority have had the disease and there is some sort of herd immunity.

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Hi, when we were on Celebrity 10 years ago, prior to entering ANY room (Dining rooms/Buffet, Entertainment, Casino, etc) there were 2 staff members at each entrance with hand sanitizers not allowing anyone in until they cleaned their hands.  I think there may have been a flu or norovirus rampant at that time.  I would feel good if they reinstated that idea, no need to actually set up sinks etc.  I also agree with the buffet no longer being self serve anything, including all drink ports on board.

I believe that everyone is now fully aware of the ramifications of someone coughing/sneezing frequently.  I would ask that either the traveler present themselves to sick bay or be "ratted out" (for want of a better word) by their fellow cruisers.  If people know they're going to be screened for temperature,  they are just going to preload with tyelenol and/or ibuprofen,  so that defeats the purpose.  I also agree with the idea "less is more" in the cabins, but i personally always carry wipes when traveling and wipe everything on my airplane, hotel room, and cruise cabin.

We are all going to have to go out into the world once again when this pandemic has waned.  We are all responsable for our own health.  I agree there should be better measures put into place, but as someone else said, draconian measures are way too much.  

This is just my humble opinion...

 

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Some of the suggestions are excellent.  Others may fly, but need some practicality.   With coronavirus, requiring the vaccine would be the best way to go.

 

Thinking of the S class ships and the buffet islands that facilitate serving.   Having a server instead of self service is a health improvement, but it will seriously slow down meal service.  It will make the salad bar a serious pain.

 

We were on an NCL ship that the previous cruise had some norovirus passengers.  The staff was spraying so much sanitizer cleaner in our cabin, my wife had a reaction to the chemical and we had to tell them to stop that.  

 

When we cruise on Royal C. we note that the coffee station is not self service.   It seriously slows down getting you morning coffee.

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Those of you that have been on the Edge will remember that upon entering the buffet area there were banks of sinks for washing hands. Observation was that about half of the cruisers just bypassed, and kept walking. Must be mandatory with staff to enforce sanitary conditions.

 

Hal

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We were on the recent Solstice New Zealand cruise which embarked on March 10.

Thermal scans (#1) were taken upon boarding.

We were very concerned (#5) that people were allowed to self serve at the buffet and we took our own precautions by covering the utensils. 

As it turned out, one passenger with covid19 was removed from the ship by ambulance at Dunedin. Don’t know if he was diagnosed at that time, or later. We heard that he might have died.
We had  three sea days before arrival in Sydney. The captain announced that everyone on the ship was well.

Another passenger, from Perth later died, and at least eight others were infected, according to the New South Wales health department which phoned us last week.
I wonder how many others might have been infected by touching the utensils at the buffet.
Hopefully, this will not be allowed on any ship in future.

We feel fortunate that our quarantine is just about over, and we have no symptoms.

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Although in the context of Covid 19, I understand the concerns raised and the suggested ideas.

 

This said, travelling for me is supposed to be fun and relax. 

 

If I am going to spend thousands of dollars on a trip, it has to meet these criteria in addition to allowing me to discover new worlds.

 

If the post covid cruising context is the result of extreme measures.... resulting in stress and anxiety.... ( What if I do catch a simple cold, two days before cruising or during the cruise? Will I be expelled? Dropped in the middle of nowhere? ) What if I sneeze due to seasonal allergies? ( Will fellow passengers look at me like I have the bubonic pest?)

 

I am concerned that the measures taken in a post Covid scenario will increase the risk of not being admitted on board, delays during various processes, etc....

 

In short, in my opinion, cruise-lines will have to carefully balance passengers/crews health safety versus travel enjoyment. If stress, anxiety, or formalities are too stringent, cruising or travelling for tourism purposes may become a burden to be avoided.

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Some suggestions are impractical like boarding checks  on boarding & every port.   Others doable with more staff; port staff, medical staff, buffet staff, print shop staff or a major investment e.g. emergency pier at every major port.  

 

The hand washing stations on the Edge are a great improvement and more effective than the hand santiziers. but even with crew reminding  passengers to wash their hands as they entered the buffet some had a excuse not to stop. 

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Wow!!! Look where 

1 minute ago, jelayne said:

The hand washing stations on the Edge are a great improvement and more effective than the hand santiziers. but even with crew reminding  passengers to wash their hands as they entered the buffet some had a excuse not to stop.

Ah those durn water allergies again.

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25 minutes ago, cachouonacruise said:

In short, in my opinion, cruise-lines will have to carefully balance passengers/crews health safety versus travel enjoyment.

After all, just look where the present balance of pax/crew health safety versus travel enjoyment has got us.😀

Edited by OuiOnboard
sp
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2 hours ago, billdddd said:

my thoughts are. 1 it is going to be a longGGGGGGGGGGG time. once a vaccine is found or you have letter from dr that you have survived corona. you will need to show a vaccinated card. no card no entry to ship.only way.... it is not going away. everyone will a vaccination or it will never go away.

 

Well, as long as it doesn't morph into another strain for which then a vaccine is not a guarantee to protect you kind of like with the flu vaccines. God forbid that happens though because then I don't see how life as we have known it could even continue to function since you would always have to be self-isolating to avoid it.

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Years ago we were on a cruise with a Norovirus outbreak. They shut down everything. Guests could not even get their own sugar packet. The waiter had to hand it to you in the MDR.  You wouldn't believe the amount of whining that went on. "They're not putting enough food on my plate!"

Personally, I would love to see food servers at the buffet stations. When we're on-land, whether traveling or at home, we do not frequent buffets. 

 

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2 minutes ago, WonderMan3 said:

Well, as long as it doesn't morph into another strain for which then a vaccine is not a guarantee to protect you kind of like with the flu vaccines. God forbid that happens though because then I don't see how life as we have known it could even continue to function since you would always have to be self-isolating to avoid it.

Or we get a lot of ventilators.....everywhere....with people to operate them.

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2 hours ago, oceangoer2 said:

You know...considering all the threads on this virus topic and how much most of us have added to them...this is one of the very best questions IMO......and so relevant.  I've been thinking about how the ships could sanitize completely before we board the first trip out and the next and the next.  In my mind...always.  On the pier, you have such good ideas to try to minimize sickness.  But consider, on the pier someone is not showing signs but is in the process of becoming ill.  The outbreak doesn't happen until 2nd, 3rd, or beyond day onboard.  What will prevent us from contacting any virus, even with your very thoughtful suggestions.  I'm wondering if for a while (or always), the staff now serves table/menu  service in the OV or any restaurant.  This will cost us more, but isn't it worth it? I've long thought it unsanitary in the OV and the tables turning over all the time, with lurkers just waiting for someone to leave their table and no cleanup afterward. 

 

Oh, even with my suggestions it is certainly not going to stop everything. But it could definitely help. Changes related to dining and specifically the buffet could definitely minimize the spread of norovirus. We know this since a number of these actions are what the cruise lines already do when there is a noro outbreak.

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13 minutes ago, OuiOnboard said:

After all, just look where the present balance of pax/crew health safety versus travel enjoyment have got us.😀

 

I agree that the cruise industry did not shine during this Covid Crisis. 

 

This said, many other private corporations/not for profit corporations such as airlines, airports, churches, restaurants, parks, beaches etc. did not shine either. Furthermore, many national, regional and local governmental agencies did not put their best foot forward. 

 

In short, in my opinion, it is unfair to judge the cruise industry in a negative light, while the Covid 19 issue is a universal issue. Most involved entities were well intended and did their best to protect. Unfortunately, the 100% virus proof vest has not yet been invented.

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3 minutes ago, jmb4534 said:

Years ago we were on a cruise with a Norovirus outbreak. They shut down everything. Guests could not even get their own sugar packet. The waiter had to hand it to you in the MDR.  You wouldn't believe the amount of whining that went on. "They're not putting enough food on my plate!"

Personally, I would love to see food servers at the buffet stations. When we're on-land, whether traveling or at home, we do not frequent buffets. 

 

 

Yes, my first Celebrity cruise on Equinox had a major noro outbreak. The changes to dining like the self-service in the buffet was an adjustment of course but it was really a minor inconvenience. The staff honestly seemed more stressed out over it than the guests.

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1 minute ago, cachouonacruise said:

 

I agree that the cruise industry did not shine during this Covid Crisis. 

 

This said, many other private corporations/not for profit corporations such as airlines, airports, churches, restaurants, parks, beaches etc. did not shine either. Furthermore, many national, regional and local governmental agencies did not put their best foot forward. 

 

In short, in my opinion, it is unfair to judge the cruise industry in a negative light, while the Covid 19 issue is a universal issue. Most involved entities were well intended and did their best to protect. Unfortunately, the 100% virus proof vest has not yet been invented.

 

Actually it is fair. The cruise lines have been dealing with a viral issue for years now, norovirus. We have even seen a few outbreaks of flu/respiratory ailments. And yet we only ever seem to see changes (like the self-service in the buffet) as a temporary reaction, not an ongoing way of operating.

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2 hours ago, twins_to_alaska said:

With transmission happening up to 48 hours before those that *do* get symptoms exhibiting any and also at any time from asymptomatic patients all those temperature scans/health checks aren't really making you safe. A false sense perhaps.

 

It certainly wouldn't catch everyone at boarding which is why I suggested the thermal scans at embarkation at ports during the cruise as well. Some cruise lines were doing temperature checks at ports in the closing weeks before the suspensions.

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I suggest that the menus in specialty restaurants be projected on to a screen where all can see, or more than one screen in different positions.  No paper menus at all. I believe that on the ships that utilize the app, menus are displayed there now.

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1 hour ago, babydrum said:

WonderMan3, I wouldn't cruise under those conditions. Not only would make embarkation at every port painfully slow but I would hate the idea of being thrown off the ship at any stop and having my companions trip ruined over some coughs and sneezes.  I would be okay with quarantine so that others aren't negatively impacted.  I also think they need to limit the number of cruise passengers and discontinue all buffets.  It is impossible to maintain any sanitary standards with 3000 + people.  If I cruise again (currently scheduled for Athens to Dubai in October), I will make sure I limit myself to the smaller ships like the Azamara Pursuit.

 

It really wouldn't slow anything down. The thermal scan machines are used at some airports and you just walk past/through like a metal detector. Most people would pass with no issue. Those who don't would be pulled out of line and dealt with separately. Yes, it would slow things down for you if you were detected to have a fever or cold symptoms, but that's exactly what the process would be designed to catch. And I never suggested throwing anyone off the ship mid-cruise. I said to confine people to their cabins until they recovered, just as they do already for ill passengers. I would be all for reducing passenger numbers, but of course if they do that, prices will have to go up.

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