Genting Cruise Lines President Kent Zhu has suggested that “cruise bubbles” between regions that have the coronavirus under control could be the way to get the industry sailing again after a months long shutdown due to the pandemic.
Zhu’s comments came as Genting’s Dream Cruises relaunched operations Sunday out of Taiwan aboard the Explorer Dream, which is sailing two and three-night journeys out of Keeling, calling at Penghu, Matzu and Kinmen islands as part of its Taiwan “Island-Hopping” itineraries.
“The restarting of the cruise industry is a remarkable achievement which was made possible by the Taiwan authorities’ swift and effective handling of the COVID-19 crisis and their foresight in resuming the tourism industry to benefit all the ports, the economy and the lifestyle of the people of Taiwan,” Zhu said at a ceremony marking Explorer Dream’s “Island Hopping” itineraries created specially for the Taiwan market.
“Looking forward, we believe the development of cruise bubbles between Taiwan and neighboring regions that also have their pandemic situation under control, such as the outlying islands of Japan, can further initiate the next phase in the re-establishment of international tourism and spur the economic recovery for a post COVID-19 world.”
‘Cruise bubbles’ – Explorer Dream
Explorer Dream sailed with just over a third of its 2,800 passenger capacity with some 900 guests on the island-hopping tour.
Prior to the journey all crew were quarantined for 21-days and tested for COVID-19.
Passengers were screened for temperature prior to embarkation and were required to maintain social distancing. our. Spa and buffet service were canceled and dining tables were separated by screens.
The ship also underwent a thorough deep cleaning in accordance with EU standards and to ensure the seamless execution of preventive measures both on board and on shore, the crew participated in an outbreak simulation drill under the guidance of the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control and with consultation by medical experts from the Taiwan Public Health Association.