Viking Cruises lifts onboard & pre-cruise COVID testing

   June 17, 2022 ,   Cruise Industry

Effective immediately, Viking Cruises will no longer conduct daily onboard COVID tests. The line will also stop requiring pre-cruise COVID testing in destinations where it is not mandated.

This does not include cruises sailing from U.S. & Canadian ports.

The company is the first in the cruise industry to stop pre-cruise COVID testing, even if it is not in all destinations.

COVID vaccine requirements remain in place.

The announcement comes after the CDC eliminated mandated COVID tests in order to return to the U.S. by air.

Viking chairman Torstein Hagen said they had been more conservative than other cruise lines but were pleased that the CDC had lifted the requirement for testing of those who were traveling back to the U.S. That, in turn, allows them to stop testing guests on their river, ocean and expedition vessels.

According to the cruise line, medical personnel will continue to provide COVID testing if a passenger reports symptoms, requests a test, or if his/her medical team deems a test necessary. Until now, Viking, which has full PCR labs on all of its cruise ships, was conducting daily tests as a way to stop the spread of the virus. 

As for pre-cruise testing, the cruise line states on its website:

“Viking highly recommends, but no longer requires, a pre-departure COVID-19 test – unless one is required by the destination. As of June 10, 2022, select ocean voyages on the Viking Orion and expedition voyages on the Viking Octantis in the United States and Canada will continue to require a pre-departure COVID-19 test.”

Viking does not list which destinations do/don’t require pre-cruise testing on its website but announced it was in the process of notifying passengers about the changes.