No more self-service buffets on cruise ships?
Sorry, but in this current world of epidemics and pandemics, you can expect cruise lines to start making some changes to keep their ships cleaner and safer.
No one is accusing cruise lines of putting dirty ships out to see. Far from it. But germs are an invisible kind of dirty, and the Covid-19 coronavirus got all the cruise lines thinking about everything from enhanced cleanings on board to “onboard monitoring of passengers and crew through temperature checks and medical screenings” — as suggested by the U.S. Centers of Disease Control.
This is good news for you, the cruise enthusiast. The cleaner the ships are, the more we all can just relax and enjoy our voyages.
But back to those self-service cruise buffets — the favorite part of the cruise for some people! Rest assured, there’ll still be plenty of food to eat, but you can expect cruise lines to form a plan for cutting down on multiple people touching the same serving utensils.
And that makes sense.
It’ll be the same buffet food, and as much as you want — but without hundreds of different people touching the same serving utensils.
It makes sense, doesn’t it?
So far, as of mid-2020, Dream Cruises and Star Cruises, both based in Asia, are taking the most aggressive stance. They say they will suspend self-service food options. In fact, the cruise lines will post attendants at all food and drink stations — and the servants will wear masks and disposable gloves.
Welcome to the new normal
Here are other changes you can expect:
- Some cruise lines may not allow people 70 or older to cruise unless they present letters from their personal physician indicating they are suitably fit for sea voyages. That’s because virus outbreaks are especially harmful to people 70 and older.
- Quickie health checks just before boarding. Passengers, including people under the age of 70, could be subjected to tests for certain viruses before boarding a ship.
- Super enhanced ship cleaning. Virtually all the cruise lines keep their ships spotless, but now you can expect high-touch surfaces such as handrails, gyms, and elevator buttons to be given even deeper cleanings. The same is true for all cabins, especially bathrooms.
It’ll take a while to adjust to the changes, but for real cruise enthusiasts, there are positives all around. There are fabulous deals to be found after a virus infection has come and gone. Once an all-clear statement has been released by cruise lines you should consider being one of the first people on the next sailing. The ship is sure to be spotless and the deal on your cabin may be awesome.
Here’s what you also may see:
- More three- and five-day cruises than the traditional seven-day cruises. The shorter cruises will be used to attract more people back to cruising.
- Easier cancellation policies in the event of an unexpected virus outbreak. This will increase consumer confidence in the cruise lines.
- Advertising campaigns to make you aware of all the positive changes the cruise lines are making.
The bottom line is that cruises are still a great vacation. No one can say there will not be another virus outbreak, but the cruise lines are doing everything they possibly can to make sure that it doesn’t happen.
We know that planning a vacation post coronavirus may seem like a daunting task but we’re here to help! The Port of Go! Cruise, Destination, and Travel Showcase will make finding your next vacation a breeze. You’ll find exclusive opportunities to meet one-on-one with domestic and international travel brands and discover countless destinations and cultures from around the world.