Cruise Lines Race to React to Coronavirus

Costa Atlantica

The early 2000s and the SARS virus sent Asia-Pacific operators scrambling to move ships, and the same may be about to play out as a number of brands operating in the Chinese market are reacting to the outbreak of the Coronavirus in China.

In a prepared statement, Astro Ocean Cruises said it is offering full refunds to any passengers that have a fever or have been diagnosed with the virus. In addition, for groups departing from Wuhan, where most cases have been concentrated, refunds are also on the table if guests cannot join the trip due to “pneumonia-related management measures.”

The company also said medical personnel that are unable to travel are also eligible for refunds or have the option to change their sailing to a future date.

Costa also issued a statement, saying it was working with port authorities to strengthen passenger screening procedures for guests that may have a fever.

The Italian brand is also modifying cruise policies to allow for full refunds for guests that have the virus or have a fever; as well as any guest from the Wuhan area; and similar to Astro Ocean, medical staff that cannot travel due to work commitments.

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