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Cruise Critic News: MSC Cruises Takes Tough Measures to Prevent Potential COVID-19 Passengers Boarding


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(11 a.m. EDT) -- In a move that shows MSC Cruises is taking a zero-tolerance approach to anyone transgressing its strict new health protocols, the line has denied boarding to a family who left an organized shore excursion, as well as a passenger who tested positive for COVID-19 shoreside. The family of four left an organized shore excursion in ...

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Group removed from Grandiosa for not following protocol. No specifics on exactly what they did yet besides leaving a tour group. 

 

https://cruiseradio.net/kicked-off-cruise-line-boots-guests-for-ignoring-new-protocols/?fbclid=IwAR03Mg_LqY5sDbCNiVRk6ue20fLKitlOA83OV0imTlEQeKyc2K0Pl2WmY0M

Edited by BermudaBound2014
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14 hours ago, BermudaBound2014 said:

.....No specifics on exactly what they did yet besides leaving a tour group. 

 

That is specifically what they did, obviously they thought it acceptable to use the MSC excursion as a means to get off the ship and then do their own thing. Plaudits to MSC for swift action.

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Have we heard anything from this "family?" It would not surprise me if they were ringers, providing  MSC a way to get into the news, appear conscientious, and warn other would-be deviants of the consequences of not following the party line. I wonder how many of the other passengers really failed to toe the line, and were either undetected or overlooked?

 

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1 minute ago, latserrof said:

Have we heard anything from this "family?" It would not surprise me if they were ringers, providing  MSC a way to get into the news, appear conscientious, and warn other would-be deviants of the consequences of not following the party line. I wonder how many of the other passengers really failed to toe the line, and were either undetected or overlooked?

 

I guess anything is possible.  Me, I wouldn’t be surprised if the group/family just can’t stand the idea of doing what they’re told and/or reluctantly agreed to but haven’t exactly committed themselves to abide to.

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On 8/19/2020 at 3:53 PM, Geobugs said:

I am worried about the 5 false positive passengers that was denied boarding, but allowed to board at the next port, but no transportation to get there????

The article says they chose to take the next cruise out of Naples.  Not to continue on this one. 

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On 8/20/2020 at 4:31 AM, hamrag said:

 

That is specifically what they did, obviously they thought it acceptable to use the MSC excursion as a means to get off the ship and then do their own thing. Plaudits to MSC for swift action.

 IMHO more detail is needed however this CC post is a good start. 

"The family of four left an organized shore excursion in Naples to explore on their own, directly contravening the line's new conditions of carriage that require passengers to stay with the group. Because they broke the "bubble" onboard, they were subsequently denied boarding, the line said."

 

https://www.cruisecritic.com/news/5540/.

 

So the family did take an organized excursion (per the rules) after all.

 

In what port & on what excursion did this occur?

Did someone not "stay with the group" b/c they had to go to the bathroom? 

 

This event reveals another issue. No more "free time for shopping on your own and lets meet up in the town square to take the bus back to the ship" kind of thing? 

 

 

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41 minutes ago, muffydawg said:

So the family did take an organized excursion (per the rules) after all.

 

In what port & on what excursion did this occur?

Did someone not "stay with the group" b/c they had to go to the bathroom? 

 

This event reveals another issue. No more "free time for shopping on your own and lets meet up in the town square to take the bus back to the ship" kind of thing?

 

You cannot get off the ship unless you are on the MSC excursions. 

 

When doing a mock booking there is currently only one excursion listed for Naples, where the article states the incident happened.  It's called "Panoramic Naples and Parco Virgiliano Tour" and there is no description.  My guess its that it is mainly a city bus tour with a stop and guided walk through the park scenery.  It may be that this is the only one that is offered at the discounted three for €100 rate but I've seen no reports if other "MSC approved" excursions are being offered once booked or on the ship.  So at his point it isn't clear how many excursions are actually offered.

 

I doubt the family is going to come forward and publicly state what they did, but obviously it was enough that MSC felt they endangered other passenger and crew safety.

 

These rules are pretty clearly stated before booking.  I'm sure it has an effect on the number of people who are booking.

Edited by Até
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47 minutes ago, Até said:

 

I doubt the family is going to come forward and publicly state what they did, but obviously it was enough that MSC felt they endangered other passenger and crew safety.

 

 

 

According to the Times today the family claimed they left the group because one of their children felt unwell, but MSC claimed they should have immediately informed the MSC doctor.

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37 minutes ago, Bobal said:

 

According to the Times today the family claimed they left the group because one of their children felt unwell, but MSC claimed they should have immediately informed the MSC doctor.

In my humble opinion, if the children didn’t feel well, they should’ve informed the excursion guide immediately who would’ve known what to do. The family just took off on their own without telling anybody. That makes me think that they fully intended to ditch the tour and assumed that the cruise line wouldn’t be as strict as they were. The “children not feeling well” explanation sounds like an excuse after being caught. 
 

I’m actually surprised that more passengers didn’t try to pull that stunt. 

Edited by Tapi
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53 minutes ago, Bobal said:

 

According to the Times today the family claimed they left the group because one of their children felt unwell, but MSC claimed they should have immediately informed the MSC doctor.

 

So they wandered off in a place they were not familiar with in search of a Doctor?  On foot? Wouldn't your first reaction be to tell the tour operators?

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2 hours ago, muffydawg said:

 IMHO more detail is needed however this CC post is a good start. 

"The family of four left an organized shore excursion in Naples to explore on their own, directly contravening the line's new conditions of carriage that require passengers to stay with the group. Because they broke the "bubble" onboard, they were subsequently denied boarding, the line said."

 

https://www.cruisecritic.com/news/5540/.

 

So the family did take an organized excursion (per the rules) after all.

 

In what port & on what excursion did this occur?

Did someone not "stay with the group" b/c they had to go to the bathroom? 

 

This event reveals another issue. No more "free time for shopping on your own and lets meet up in the town square to take the bus back to the ship" kind of thing? 

 

 

Wow, excellent questions. Have taken 100s of tours over the years, innumerable episodes of peeling off from the group to find a WC. And no more browsing in shops to find the best pottery? That cute bistro, etc.? Would we be relegated to the artificial, highly controlled shopping areas that have become so common? What will that mean for the economies of the many places that depend on cruise tourism? 

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48 minutes ago, Tapi said:

In my humble opinion, if the children didn’t feel well, they should’ve informed the excursion guide immediately who would’ve known what to do. The family just took off on their own without telling anybody. That makes me think that they fully intended to ditch the tour and assumed that the cruise line wouldn’t be as strict as they were. The “children not feeling well” explanation sounds like an excuse after being caught. 

 

30 minutes ago, KennyFla said:

 

So they wandered off in a place they were not familiar with in search of a Doctor?  On foot? Wouldn't your first reaction be to tell the tour operators?

 

Sorry guys I think you misunderstood me. Just stating what I read and definitely not agreeing with it. Perhaps I should have put the 🙄 emoji. Or added 'yeah right, using the kids to get sympathy' 😁

 

They got what they deserved IMHO

Edited by Bobal
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2 hours ago, Bobal said:

According to the Times today the family claimed they left the group because one of their children felt unwell, but MSC claimed they should have immediately informed the MSC doctor.

I couldn't access the article, but interesting that the family made a statement.  I've seen a few articles that claim the family went sightseeing on their own.  I was actually somewhat surprised MSC kicked them off.  New guests were embarking in Naples so why couldn't MSC just put them through the embarkation process again and charge them for the tests?  With newly embarking passengers already getting on the ship at the port I really don't see the difference.  The excursion is listed as only 3.5 hours but it's possible it was too late to go through all that when the family returned to the port.  I think either something more devious happened or maybe MSC just wanted to make an example of them.  Based on your reported MSC response it seems to me MSC may possibly have felt the family was attempting to have a sick child looked at without the MSC doctor/staff finding out.  I'm sure there will be no shortage of speculation.

Edited by Até
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My speculation is that the family didn't want to stay on the tour but that was the only way to go ashore, so they took it and then peeled off from the group when they could, thinking they could just link up at the end of the tour. Have done this myself many times--including telling the tour leader my plan, and arranging when to rendezvous (have even signed waivers from time to time saying they didn't have to wait for me).

 

But NOW, for MSC--and the other lines--it would be a nightmare to try to maintain the bubble if people violate the policy--never mind contact tracing & all. So they have to strictly enforce the policy and thereby discourage "creative" solutions that can literally kill people.

Edited by sofietucker
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On 8/24/2020 at 9:12 PM, Até said:

I couldn't access the article, but interesting that the family made a statement.  I've seen a few articles that claim the family went sightseeing on their own.  I was actually somewhat surprised MSC kicked them off.  New guests were embarking in Naples so why couldn't MSC just put them through the embarkation process again and charge them for the tests?  With newly embarking passengers already getting on the ship at the port I really don't see the difference.  The excursion is listed as only 3.5 hours but it's possible it was too late to go through all that when the family returned to the port.  I think either something more devious happened or maybe MSC just wanted to make an example of them.  Based on your reported MSC response it seems to me MSC may possibly have felt the family was attempting to have a sick child looked at without the MSC doctor/staff finding out.  I'm sure there will be no shortage of speculation.

Ate ... The family were on the same excursion as an Italian friend who sailed on the ship, they made their own way back to the ship hence the reason for them being denied boarding once back in Naples.

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