Costa Cruises is preparing to gradually restart operations Sept. 6 after getting the go-ahead to cruise by the Italian Government this week.
The Carnival Corp.-owned line said it is ready for the responsible restart of cruises, and will work closely with officials to adhere to the government’s new protocols, which will be released soon.
In the coming days, Michael Thamm, Group CEO Costa Group and Carnival Asia, said Costa will be working closely with national and local authorities, ports and terminals, RINA and internally onboard ships to adhere to the protocols issued by the Italian Government, “so we can all together guarantee a smooth, well organized and safe restart of our cruises, both on board and ashore.”
The first ship to set sail will be Costa Deliziosa on Sept. 6, offering weekly cruises from Trieste, followed by Costa Diadema on Sept. 19, operating seven-day cruises in Western Mediterranean from Genoa to experience the best of Italy and Malta. Further details on the Costa Deliziosa and Costa Diadema itineraries will be announced in the coming days.
The company will extend the pause of its cruise season until Sept. 30, 2020, with the exception of these departures, as the gradual implementation of these protocols is completed on board and ashore.
“The gradual restart of our operations will give relief to the local economies in port communities and to the whole ecosystem of almost 5,000 suppliers and business partners, and over 7,500 travel agents, in Italy, who have been suffering from the pause of our activities.” said Thamm.
“The resumption of our operations in this phase is also a great responsibility towards our guests, our crew members and the residents of the communities we visit.”
Costa last week introduced a new health and hygiene protocol, including reduced capacity, the safety of crew members as they return to work on board, the booking process, embarking and disembarking operations in port, life and medical care on board and shore excursions.
There will be health screenings with temperature checks for guests, carried out at every access and exit to the ship in all the ports of call included in the itinerary.
Physical distancing will be respected upon arrival in each cruise terminal, with similar measures for shore tours, which have been redesigned with small groups of people and staggered departures, with sanitization of buses before and after each use.
Entertainment programs and catering will be also rearranged in compliance with the new safety standards and have been modified to allow more shows during the day for smaller groups of people.
As for catering, self service restaurants will not be operated and all meals will be served by the Costa staff.