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Genting Cruise Lines amlifies Covid-19 hygiene protocols

Genting Cruise Lines (GCL) has announced a slate of enhanced precautionary measures and safety protocols for its Dream Cruises and Star Cruises ships, in a bid to increase safety levels for the cruise industry due to the ongoing Covid-19 situation.

Under the new protocols, guest cabins, public spaces and recreational areas on board will undergo thorough sanitisation and disinfection as well as enhanced hygiene practices. The directive will also clamp down on food and beverage safety as well as crew health.

Additionally, GCL will mandate stringent health screening processes and protocols prior to embarkation and disembarkation. These include temperature screening, pre-boarding health declarations for all guests, and infrared fever screening system at the ship gangway. Guests aged 70 and above are to provide a doctor’s certificate of fitness for travel.

Kent Zhu, president of GCL, shared: “All of Genting Cruise Lines’ ships allow for 100 per cent external fresh air to be filtered and supplied to each passenger cabin as well as on board public areas, ensuring a constant and healthy flow of fresh air throughout the vessels. Besides that, isolated wards are available in the Medical Centre and cabins can be converted into quarantine rooms if required.”

Training for the crew has been underway since the onset of Covid-19. These measures are set to become the new norm for preventive standards for GCL’s fleet when operations recommence.

Michael Goh, president of Dream Cruises, told TTG Asia: “Covid-19 has led many cruise lines such as ourselves to further relook and rethink (ways) to enhance our measures. Genting Cruise Lines will further collaborate with the China Cruise & Yacht Industry Association to contribute to the publishing of a white paper for the cruise industry’s prevention and response plan against Covid-19, providing a comprehensive and unified standard for the cruise industry to ensure the safety and well-being of all cruising guests and crew members.”

In Singapore, a major cruise hub that showed promising growth before the pandemic, GCL is working with Singapore Cruise Centre and Marina Bay Cruise Centre to create additional waiting areas for guests, who will have to undergo staggered times for both embarkation and disembarkation in the future.

The company is also working with Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and the aforementioned cruise centres to map out cruise recovery plans for the country.

Goh expressed: “We understand that the recent publicity centred around cruises may deter new cruisers from making their bookings now. Therefore, it is imperative for us to regain consumer confidence by educating the public and providing a better understanding of the high levels of sanitation standards on board cruise ships.”

He added that GCL has communicated its enhanced measures through its various brands and travel partners’ platforms, and that it will share these protocols with future cruise passengers to provide assurance.

STB is also taking the industry’s downtime to improve cruise training and accreditation for travel agents, which account for 80 per cent of cruise packages sold in the region.

In the meantime, GCL is offering consumers a flexible 48 hours pre-cruise cancellation policy on new and existing bookings made for any Dream Cruises or Star Cruises sailings prior to or on July 31, 2020. Consumers can receive a full refund in future cruise credit to redeem any Dream Cruises or Star Cruises sailing, embarking on or before December 31, 2020.