FCO Advises Against Cruise Ship Travel

P&O Cruise Ships Laid Up Off Weymouth
P&O Cruise Ships Laid Up Off Weymouth

The UK Government has today updated its travel guidance regarding cruise ship travel.

The new hardened advice warns all people against cruise ship travel at this time. Since March the advice was for those over 70 not to travel on ships.

The government announced today that: “The Foreign & Commonwealth Office advises against cruise ship travel at this time. This is due to the ongoing pandemic and is based on medical advice from Public Health England.

“The government will continue to review its cruise ship travel advice based on the latest medical advice.

“If you have future cruise travel plans, you should speak to your travel operator, or the travel company you booked with, for further advice.

“The Foreign & Commonwealth Office continues to support the Department for Transport’s work with industry for the resumption of international cruise travel.”

Earlier this month, the government relaxed its policy on international travel, eliminating the need to quarantine for 14 days after visiting a list of certain countries.

Positive news relating to the start-up of cruises from the UK was announced by Hurtigruten this week, with plans to sail short break British Isles cruises in September. Saga also revealed it was considering starting scenic coastal cruises around the UK. However the latest FCO advice looks set to disrupt these plans at re-introducing cruising on a small scale.

Commenting on the latest advice, P&O Cruises President, Paul Ludlow, said: “We acknowledge the FCO’s guidance and P&O Cruises had already extended the pause in operations for all sailings up to October 15, 2020.

“Our current focus is to work in partnership with public health agencies at the highest level as well as Department for Transport; EU Healthy Gateways and CLIA, the industry governing body. We will follow applicable guidelines to further enhance our already stringent measures to keep our guests and crew healthy and well and we will not resume sailings until this framework is in place. This will include rigorous protocols pre-boarding, on ship and in the destinations we visit.

“Confidence in cruising is strong and we are seeing increasing demand from our guests, who we look forward to welcoming back on board when the time is right.”

It is not known how long these new restrictions will remain in place for.