According to the Singapore Cruise Board, safe cruises are being piloted with enhanced safety protocols for two homeported cruise lines in line with the assessed resumption of economic activities in Singapore during the COVID-19 pandemic from November 2020.
STB said pilot cruises are to commence on November 6 by Genting Cruise Lines' World Dream, while Royal Caribbean International's Quantum of the Seas will commence its navigation in December, to provide time for the operating of enhanced safety protocols.
“This cruise pilot is a valuable opportunity for cruise operators to reinvent the entire cruise experience to regain the confidence of passengers,” said STB chief executive Keith Tan in a statement.
STB develops a Cruise-Friendly certification program that defines strict hygiene and security protocols during the entire passage – from before boarding to after disembarking – to ensure safe cruising.
The STB has confirmed that the pilots are round trips without call ports, sailing up to a capacity reduction of 50% and only open to people living in Singapore.
The government of Singapore will track the results of the pilot cruise carefully in the months ahead, he said.
“As ASEAN’s lead coordinator for cruise development, Singapore remains committed to supporting and growing cruise tourism in the region. We will continue to work with cruise lines and our industry stakeholders to chart a new course for safe cruising,” said Tan.
To prepare for the eventual recovery of the cruise industry, STB has also partnered with Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) and Travel Weekly Asia to hold a series of training webinars for regional travel agents under the ambit of CruiseWorld Asia 2020.
According to STB, travel agents are key to the industry, accounting for about 80 percent of cruise packages sold in the region.
Training sessions will take place in October and focus on strengthening consumers’ confidence to cruise again by raising awareness of cruise lines’ enhanced sanitization measures onboard and rebuilding the demand for the cruise, it said.
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