Silversea will continue to require passengers to be fully vaccinated and take a pre-cruise Covid test for the foreseeable future despite onboard protocols across the cruise sector “unwinding”.
Speaking on a Travel Weekly webcast, Peter Shanks, the line’s UK and Ireland managing director, highlighted how feedback from passengers indicated how they liked the “security” that everybody on board was inoculated against Covid-19.
His comments come days after Silversea’s parent Royal Caribbean Group confirmed it was dropping pre-embarkation testing for vaccinated passengers on short cruises lasting no more than five days.
Shanks said: “We’re seeing some of the protocols unwind but we’re going to be a little bit cautious.
“We’re asking people to be vaccinated. We’re still asking for level of testing because talking to our guests they like the security that we’re all in the same place.”
Like other cruise lines, he said, the “odd” Covid case was still reported on board Silversea’s ships.
But he added: “It’s now managed so well. We’re getting into the running of it.”
On Northern European cruise departures, he said the line remained “very cautious” due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict.
“For obvious reasons, we pulled Russia out for 2024 and we’ll look at it carefully for 2025 as well.”
He predicted Asia would be “booming” in three years’ time, adding that he expected customer demand to be strong for Australia departures this winter.
“We think that 2023, 2024 and 2025 will see strong comeback for Asia once those destinations open up.”
Addressing agents, Shanks added: “If I was pushing something further out, I’d be pushing those Asia, Japan-type destinations in 2024-25.”