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Nov. 24 update: MSC extends vaccination mandate fleetwide, Genting Dream capacity going up, Amsterdam outlook

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MSC's vaccination mandate now extends to MSC Fantasia, here, and MSC Grandiosa, both operating in the Mediterranean this winter
Here's a quick read of some of today’s coronavirus-recovery cruise news. This will be updated throughout the day.

MSC extends vaccination mandate fleetwide

With COVID-19 cases rising in some European countries, MSC Cruises will now require all passengers 12 and older to be fully vaccinated and present a negative test taken within 72 hours before embarkation.

These measures have already been in place for voyages in other regions — Northern Europe, North America, South America, South Africa and the Middle East — and now winter Mediterranean sailings have been added. The new requirements extend to passengers booked on MSC Grandiosa and MSC Fantasia starting Dec. 4.

Full vaccination means receiving the full set of shots more than 14 days before the cruise starts. Travelers who will not be fully vaccinated in time for their departure may opt to postpone their voyage or request a refund.

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Genting Dream has been sailing from Hong Kong since July 30

Genting Dream increasing capacity from Dec. 1

Dream Cruises’ Genting Dream will expand its passenger capacity from 50% to 75%, with effect from Dec. 1.

Over 2,500 passengers will be able to sail as a result. 

‘We would like to thank the Hong Kong authorities for providing us with this stamp of approval on the effectiveness of our health and hygiene protocols,’ remarked Kent Zhu, president, Genting Cruise Lines. 

‘Since we resumed cruises on July 30, 2021, we have welcomed over 70,000 passengers on Genting Dream without any COVID-19-related incidents and we are grateful to the residents of Hong Kong for putting their trust in our hands,’ he concluded.

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Amsterdam Cruise Port sees 'promising' 2022 river business

Amsterdam Cruise Port's 2022 river bookings are 'promising for a return to a normal season' with 2,517 reservations requested. So far 2,404 are confirmed and 112 are on a wait list (mainly in April).

A final list is expected to be published Nov. 26. Confirmed reservations may be canceled without charge until Feb. 1.

Concerning oceangoing cruises, the Port of IJmuiden and Felison Cruise Terminal served a number of ships over the past year and facilitated the return to service for some. Located seaside, saving fuel for operators and avoiding locks, IJmuiden was used for many technical and service calls.

Notably, Holland America Line's new Rotterdam was at IJmuiden four days to prepare for its trans-Atlantic crossing to Florida. All embarking crew got their COVID-19 vaccination at the Felison Cruise Terminal.

Passenger service began with Spirit of Adventure's maiden call. The first call of 22 visits by MSC Magnifica is planned for November, so the 2021 season flow into 2022 without a winter break. IJmuiden still has availability for 2022.

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