MSC Splendida, deployed in Asia for winter 2019-20, has repositioned its next three four- and five-night scheduled sailings from Shanghai, China, to Singapore to start its 27-night “Grand Voyage” to the Middle East and Europe for a Feb. 14 departure.
The itinerary changes are a result of the coronavirus health situation in China, although there have been no reported cases among passengers or crew on board MSC Splendida, while it has served the Asia market throughout the winter.
“The decision to reposition the ship from Shanghai to Singapore has been taken in the best interests of the safety and well-being for our passengers and crew, as was the decision to cancel our next three scheduled sailings from China,” said Gianni Onorato, CEO, MSC Cruises. “Many major airlines have cancelled or reduced their flight frequency to China, and the Grand Voyage, a maritime tradition whereby a ship moves from one part of the world to another for a new sailing season, was entirely booked with guests flying from abroad.
With Singapore becoming a new embarkation port, calls to Naha, Japan, and Hong Kong are cancelled, but four additional new ports were added to the itinerary: Langkawi, Penang and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, and Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.
For Grand Voyage passengers who have booked a cruise and flight through MSC Cruises, no further action is required, as customers will be booked automatically on a flight to Singapore. Customers who booked an outbound flight ticket to Asia, but not through MSC Cruises, will need to contact their airline or travel agent for a refund or possible re-protection to Singapore.
Any pre-paid excursions during the Grand Voyage that are cancelled to the ports of Naha, Japan, and Hong Kong as a result of the new updated itinerary will be refunded to the customer’s shipboard account.
MSC Splendida’s Feb. 1, 5 and 9 sailings from Shanghai to Japan were cancelled.
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