MSC Cruises Announces Adjustments To Cruise Operations

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MSC Cruises ocean cay credit ap images for MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises looks ahead and reconfirms March-November 2021 program as it extends shorter-term halt of cruise operations through July 31, 2020

  • Summer 2021 will see MSC Cruises’ full fleet of 19-ships in operation, including two brand-new vessels currently still under construction MSC Virtuosa and MSC Seashore
  • Company to resume shorter-term operations for winter 2020/21 season in phases and by region only when the time will be right and following guidance from the relevant national and international health and other regulatory authorities
  • MSC Cruises to announce shortly the support of a new operating protocol focused on health and safety, covering the guest cruise experience from booking to disembarkation 
  • As part of its resumed operations, in Spring 2021 MSC Divina will begin cruising from Port Canaveral in Florida – a new easily accessible homeport for MSC Cruises

Geneva, Switzerland (June 4, 2020) – As the world continues to face the challenges of the pandemic and with significant travel restrictions still in place in many regions, today MSC Cruises announced that it will further extend the temporary fleet-wide halt of its cruise operations through July 31, 2020. MSC Cruises USA guests impacted by the July 11-July 31, 2020 canceled cruises will automatically receive a 125% Future Cruise Credit of the original cruise fare paid by June 19 to be used on a sailing on or before December 31, 2021.

In addition, for all guests currently booked with MSC Cruises USA between August 1 through October 31, 2020, their bookings will now be eligible for Cruise Assurance, due to a new extension of the program, which will allow them to cancel their sailing up to 48 hours prior to departure and reschedule their cruise with a 100% Future Cruise Credit good for any ship and any itinerary on or before December 31, 2021.

Today, the Swiss-based cruise line also reconfirmed its March – November 2021 program, which will include two new ships currently under construction and a series of new or enriched itineraries and homeports, including a new home for MSC Divina in Central Florida.

Gianni Onorato, CEO, MSC Cruises, “While today we have taken the difficult decision to further extend the halt of operations of all our ships, it is important that we also look ahead as we know that our customers are dreaming of travel and are wanting to plan their holidays for next year. For this reason, we have now also confirmed our March – November program for 2021.”

“Shorter-term,” added Mr. Onorato, “Our ships will return to service only when the time is right, in phases and by region, and following guidance from the relevant national and international health and other regulatory authorities and the support of a new operating protocol especially focused on health and safety, which we will announce soon. This way, gradually, all of our ships will return to sea between then and the beginning of our summer 2021 season.”  

Below are key highlights of MSC Cruises Spring-Summer-Fall 2021 program, which features all 17 vessels currently part of the Company’s fleet as well as the two new ships currently still under construction, MSC Virtuosa and MSC Seashore, for a total of 19.

MSC Cruises’ program offers guests choice and flexibility, with something for everyone to book with confidence.

  • A cruise length to suit every style from short-cruises of 3- or 4-nights, standard 7-night cruises to longer cruises of 9-, 11- and 14-nights
  • With 19 ships to choose from, guests can opt for more classic, charming ships to larger and modern ships with an abundance of outdoor space
  • An unparalleled number of embarkation ports so that guests can find the one that is most convenient for them

In addition to a tempting array of destinations, MSC Cruises’ ships offer rich and enjoyable onboard experiences with an award-winning family offering, world-class entertainment, and refined, international dining experiences all on board glamourous, modern ships with comfortable and spacious staterooms, plenty of public spaces and cutting-edge technology. For those looking for personalized service and more private facilities, the MSC Yacht Club is available on Fantasia, Meraviglia and Seaside class ships. 

Sun-soaked Caribbean and The Bahamas

Known as “the ship for all seasons,” MSC Meraviglia will offer 7-night cruises from Miami, Florida departing every Saturday, while the classic and charming MSC Armonia will offer new 3- and 4-night getaway cruises, also from Miami, departing on Mondays and Fridays and calling at Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve.

New for next summer, the elegant MSC Divina will sail for the first time from Port Canaveral, Florida – a new homeport for MSC Cruises – and offer a mix of 3-, 4- and 7-night cruises departing on Sundays and Thursdays. With this new easily accessible homeport, MSC Cruises’ guests will now have the option of exploring the Orlando area pre- or post-cruise and extending their vacation experience.

Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve will remain a key highlight of cruises in the Caribbean, with all three ships calling at the private island destination in The Bahamas. Exclusive to MSC Cruises’ guests, the private island — located just 65 miles from Miami — is surrounded by 64 square miles of marine reserve, offering guests a unique opportunity to discover local marine life, soak up the spirit of Bahamian culture and reconnect with themselves and each other. 

Guests can spend a full day enjoying two miles of pristine beachfront across eight world class beaches with a wide selection of ocean discovery activities like deep-sea fishing, snorkeling adventures, stand-up paddle boarding and kayaking. In the evening, the island comes alive with a spectacular lighthouse show, an authentic, high-energy Junkanoo parade and dancing under the stars with live music from Bahamian artists and DJs. 

*Note, with the new 2021 Caribbean deployment, MSC Cruises has also canceled some previous existing itineraries. Please see here for details. 

Iconic Seaside Class Ships Set to be Sun-Kissed Stars of the Western Mediterranean

MSC Cruises’ three innovative, award-winning Seaside-class ships, designed to bring guests closer to the sea, will all be deployed together for the first time in the Western Mediterranean for Summer 2021. These ships – MSC Seaside, MSC Seaview and MSC Seashore – have been designed for the warmer weather with more generous outdoor space and are the perfect ships for guests who want to enjoy the sunshine and stunning ocean views in this popular cruise region.

MSC Seashore will now come into service August 1, 2021 due to the delay caused by the temporary closure of the shipyard as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and for this period, MSC Fantasia will temporarily cover her itinerary (with guests receiving a shipboard credit of €100 for this change). MSC Seashore will have the highest ratio of outdoor space per guest of any ship in MSC Cruises’ fleet and will offer the popular ‘Six Pearls’ itinerary calling the Italian cities of Genoa and, visits to Pompeii, Naples; Messina, Sicily; Valletta, Malta; Barcelona, Spain and Marseille, France.  

She will be joined by sister ships MSC Seaside and MSC Seaview in their Genoa homeport and operate ever-popular 7-night cruises that sail the world’s most glamorous sea. The Company will also return to Tunisia in August when MSC Fantasia performs 7-night cruises from Genoa calling at Marseille, Barcelona, the port of La Goulette in Tunis, Palermo and Civitavecchia. 

Nine to 12-night cruises will also be available from Genoa, Italy in late summer to Morocco, the Canary Islands, Madeira and Portugal, Greece and Israel with MSC Poesia calling in the beautiful port of Haifa.

Enriched Eastern Mediterranean Itineraries

New for summer 2021, MSC Lirica will be deployed from Venice, Italy and will also offer embarkation in the northern Italian port of Trieste with a stunning itinerary calling Zadar, Dubrovnik and Split in Croatia; Kotor, Montenegro and Corfu in Greece.

In addition, MSC MusicaMSC OrchestraMSC Opera and MSC Sinfonia, will offer 7-night itineraries also departing from Venice and calling the Greek islands, Montenegro and Croatia.

Inspirational Range of Itineraries in Northern Europe

From May 8 the brand new state-of-the-art MSC Virtuosa will spend her first summer season with 7- to 14-night cruises from the German port of Kiel, alternating between the fjords and the Baltic capitals, with all itineraries offering embarkation in both Kiel and Copenhagen, Denmark.

The famous fjords of the Norwegian west coast and the Baltic Capitals can also be enjoyed on a 7-night to 14-night (back to back) itinerary available on MSC Splendida and she will also offer longer 10- and 11-night cruises to the Baltic capitals or North Cape.

MSC Magnifica will homeport in Southampton, UK and offer 7-night itineraries to the magical fjords of Norway, 14-nights to the Baltic capitals or the Mediterranean in mid-August, 12-nights to the Canary Islands and a 7-night cruise calling the “Northern Pearls” of Hamburg, Germany; Rotterdam, the Netherlands; Zeebrugge, Belgium and Le Havre, France.

MSC Preziosa will offer from 9- to 14-night itineraries from Hamburg with destinations in Ireland, Iceland and North Cape and Spitzbergen in Norway.

For additional details and detailed updates, guests should contact their travel advisor or visit MSC Cruises’ website www.msccruises.com.  

All information believed to be accurate as of the date of issuance.  It is the reader’s responsibility to verify its continued accuracy, as all information is subject to change. 

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Sheri and her family are California based cruise content creators focused on providing practical tips and advice to new and seasoned cruisers. CruiseTipsTV’s audience enjoys following Sheri and her family as they travel the world by ship creating travel films. Sheri has visited destinations like Japan, Mexico, Alaska, Europe and the Caribbean, and has experienced 33 cruises on 6 cruise lines. She was named one of Porthole Cruise Magazine’s 10 Travel Influencers Changing How We Vacation in 2018 and 2019. Sheri has been quoted in the New York times, CNBC, Forbes, Prevention, and Business Innovator Radio. Her YouTube Channel, CruiseTipsTV has over 85,000 subscribers and 15 million views.