Well, they will certainly have the high seas to themselves.
Genting Cruise Lines has announced that its Dream Cruises brand will resume operations in Taiwan in July. Genting claims it will be the first in the world to do so, after cruise lines internationally suspended service earlier this year due to the global outbreak of COVID-19.
The Asian cruise line announced Monday that its Explorer Dream ship will set sail again from July 26, departing from Keelung and making stops on the Penghu, Matzu and Kinmen islands for two to three-night excursions on the islands.
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"After months of detailed planning with the authorities to ensure the safety and health of guests and crew, we appreciate Explorer Dream's approval to resume cruise operations in Taiwan," said Tan Sri KT Lim, President and CEO of Genting Hong Kong, in a statement. statement. "Dream Cruises will be the first cruise line in the world to start sailing after the global cruise industry closed due to the pandemic."
Genting described Taiwan as the "ideal destination" to resume operations, citing the low number of coronavirus cases in the country, compared to global statistics.
The cruise line said it has reviewed and improved all health, hygiene and operating protocols in recent months to create the "safest environment" for those on board, from implementing social distancing measures in its restaurants, entertainment and public spaces up to the creation of "100 percent fresh air ventilation" in staterooms and operations across the ocean liner.
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Per Taiwanese regulations, the Explorer Dream was also thoroughly cleaned before resuming navigation, and its crew will be quarantined for two weeks before the ship reaches Keelung on June 30. Then, with negative nucleic acid tests, the crew will be isolated for another seven days on the Explorer Dream, for a total of 21 days of "comprehensive preventative procedures" before leaving for work on July 26.
What's more, both guests and crew must comply with the health control steps and guidelines before boarding and disembarking, comply with the rules of social distance on board and observe best hygiene practices on the ship. Guest cabins, crew quarters, and public spaces will be completely sanitized and disinfected, while new safe food and beverage handling practices will be implemented.
In other cruise news, Carnival Cruise Line and Norwegian Cruise Line have extended their travel suspension until September 30 in response to the ongoing outbreak.
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