MSC Cruises announced on Friday, December 10, it had voluntarily suspended all domestic voyages in South Africa with immediate effect until January 8, 2022.
According to the cruise line, the temporary suspension had been dictated by the line’s industry-leading health & safety protocol in connection with the most recent sike in COVID infections in the country.
In a statement, Ross Volk (Managing Director, MSC Cruises South Africa) said they had made the voluntary decision in an abundance of caution towards passengers, crew members, and the communities MSC Orchestra had been scheduled to visit in the coming weeks.
“This is what our health and safety protocol is designed to do, in accordance with the evolution of the pandemic ashore and to ensure the utmost protection to our guests and crew.
“In light of the most recent evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic across South Africa, we have been in consultation with the government’s Department of Health which is working hard to understand the most up-to-date data of the virus and as health and safety is our number one priority our protocol clearly called for a temporary suspension of our forthcoming sailings with immediate effect.”
The decision will also lead to the cancellation of all MSC Orchestra cruises from homeport Durban.
All booked passengers will receive a voucher for a trip later in the season or a refund.
MSC Orchestra is expected to resume operations on January 9, 2022.