Dear Small Ship Enthusiasts,
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step - in our world, a nautical mile, - as we lift our anchors on July 24th 2020 and set sail returning to the roots of our Greek heritage.
Following a carefully crafted step-by-step safety & comfort protocol we return to the seas responsibly in our homeland Greece that handled the health crisis in an exemplary way, praised by media worldwide allowing Greece to once again raise her flag with pride, compassion, and hope for all. For the families that have been directly affected by this horrible crisis we send you our warmest wishes and are here for you holding your hand in spirit.
Since our inception in 1949 we have weathered a lot and have grown stronger and wiser with each passing storm… and for that we are grateful, because history is written with both achievements, but also with challenges. We believe that travel is more than just a luxury, but a way of life; a public function necessary for our growth and evolution, and at times like these… for inner healing; so we invite you to join us once again with the safety and compassion of our family of guests, crew & communities we visit at the core of all that we stand for.
Our 24-cabin M/S Galileo will be our first yacht to resume sailing in Greece with her first cruise departing on July 24, 2020 and weekly through end October 2020.
Please review our updated safety protocols detailed hereunder and let us know if we can address any of your questions or concerns.
We will be continually monitoring the situation to provide you with timely updates on our future cruise operations.
We look forward to welcoming you back on board our small ships.
The Variety Cruises Family
PRECAUTIONARY MEASURES ON OUR YACHTS, SO YOU CAN TRAVEL WITH CONFIDENCE
With the consultation of The World Health Organization (WHO), we have adopted the below measures and sanitation protocols on board our small ships since the beginning of the outbreak. Up to today, and following these protocols across our fleet, we have not had a COVID-19 case on board our yachts.
Policies currently in place include:
A.MANDATORY PRE-EMBARKATION SCREENING
We have implemented pre-cruise screening for all guests and crew. This includes:
All passengers and crew will be screened prior embarkation and every morning during the cruise for:
a) Body temperature
b) Blood oxygen content
c) Infectious antibodies
Boarding will be denied to any guest or crew who has, within 14 days of embarkation:
B. WHILE ON BOARD /DURING THE CRUISE
General Hygiene Practices & Standards
Food Hygiene Practices & Standards
C. CREW MEMBERS
Practices & Standards
Some measures will remain in effect in certain countries and are subject to change at any time as we evaluate the situation and continue to consult with local health authorities as well as the WHO.
For frequently asked questions and information regarding COVID-19, please visit the following websites:
SEYCHELLES - Department of Health – Seychelles http://www.health.gov.sc/-World Health Organization (WHO)
Variety Cruises is suspending some of the scheduled cruise operations in Greece, the Seychelles, Spain& Portugal, Bali- Indonesia and Croatia due to the Covid-19 epidemic.
The safety and well-being of our passengers and crews is our priority, therefore, effective today April 6, 2020 we are suspending some of our cruises operation as shown below.
Also, given the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19), we have updated our Booking Terms and Conditions and Cancellation policies to adapt to the constantly evolving pandemic situation world-wide and also to reflect the recent European Laws voted in most European countries including Greece where Variety Cruises is based. These altered conditions will take precedence over our Terms & Conditions as of March 14, 2020.
Updated booking Terms & Conditions
For scheduled cruises departures impacted:
Ø Greece – Cycladic Jewels program on M/S Galileo: All sailings until May 31
Ø Greece – Cycladic Jewels program on M/S Panorama: All sailings until May 31
Ø Greece – Classical Greece program on M/Y Harmony G: All sailings until June 18
Ø Seychelles – on M/Y Pegasos: All sailings until June 30
Ø Bali & East Indonesia on M/S Panorama II: All sailings until July 10
Ø Adriatic Sea – on M/Y Callisto: All sailings until July 31
Ø Spain & Portugal – on M/Y Harmony V: All sailings until August 15
If you were booked on any of the above impacted programs, you will be entitled to re book your cruise later in 2020 or in 2021 or choose any Variety Cruise program world-wide and sailings until April 30, 2022. In all cases your initial cruise fares and payments received will be used as a credit towards the cruise fares for the cruise program and cabin category rebooked.
For Not impacted scheduled cruise departures
Why is my cruise suspended?
The safety of our travelers, staff, and the communities that we visit is our priority. As the scale of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic became better understood, we knew that as a responsible cruise company that we needed to temporarily stop sailing in all destinations where a Variety Cruises ship is deployed. With the increasing number of travel restrictions globally, flight suspensions it was obviously impossible to operate our cruise even though our vessels are all ready and operational, so we suspended a number of sailings in 2020. We are constantly reviewing this and will provide updates on this page if the suspension period has to be extended.
My cruise departure has been suspended; how will I be compensated?
The cruise fares paid for your reservation constitute a credit to be used against the cruise fares for any scheduled cruise program you will choose. For guests who do not want to rebook for a future date at this time, we offer a credit voucher valid for redemption towards any of our scheduled cruises departing by April 30, 2022 latest. We encourage you to use your credit voucher and book your preferred scheduled cruise program / date as early as possible as availability might be limited for some programs.
I booked my Variety Cruises cruise through a Travel Company, what should I do?
All of our travel agent partners have been notified of the suspension of our scheduled cruises. We recommend that you contact your agent directly to assist you with your rebooking arrangements.
If your travel agency is temporarily closed, you will still need to contact your agent directly to assist you with your travel arrangements.
Why have the booking conditions changed?
Given the unprecedented impact of COVID-19 we have been adapting our booking conditions and cancellation policy regularly in response to the evolving nature and scale of the pandemic. Our operation depends on external factors such as Government Directives, Airlines operation in the different countries that we operate. In addition, the European Community - Variety Cruises is a Greek corporation – have issued Travel Laws which allow Travel and Cruise businesses to issue credit vouchers valid for 18 months. We are extending the rebooking period to 24 months to further assist our passengers. Last, we have come up with new booking conditions for new reservations to give confidence to our customers when booking a new cruise.
My sailing with Variety Cruises is not impacted at the moment. How does this affect me?
At this stage, we plan to operate all non-impacted 2020 sailings. We will contact booked customers with updates should changes occur.
What about new Reservations?
In this troubled period, we want to give to give our customers the confidence to start booking cruises again without thinking about the present crisis. To that effect deposits made to confirm NEW RESERVATIONS MADE AS OF APRIL 6, are fully refundable up to 30 days before any sailing departing by end February 2021.
Dealing with your questions
We are experiencing significant volumes of calls and emails as we try to contact our passengers directly or through their travel company via email as soon as possible.
We are grateful for your support through this challenging time and appreciate your understanding while we go through this global crisis.
Reminding our contact details:
This Travel Advisory supersedes all previous versions and will be updated as required.