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Viking Cruises cancels all cruises until May 1 due to virus pandemic

PortandTerminal.com, March 12, 2020

Viking Cruises announced it is cancelling cruises through April 30, becoming the first major cruise line to take such drastic measures in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

LOS ANGELES – Cruise line Viking has decided to temporarily suspend ocean and river cruise operations until May 1, 2020, in response to the coronavirus situation.

Viking is the first cruise line to take this difficult but responsible decision and should be commended for their industry leadership.

Not all cruise lines are acting as admirably as Viking is in the face of this growing crisis. Yesterday we reported that a whistleblower at Norwegian Cruise Lines has said that they have been instructed to downplay or even lie about the seriousness of coronavirus to keep sales levels up.

LEAKED EMAILS: Norwegian Pressures Sales Team to Lie About Coronavirus

Viking embarkations scheduled to take place between March 12 and April 30 will be cancelled.

The announcement was made on March 11 in a video and a letter sent from Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen to currently booked guests.

“I am sure you recognize that COVID-19 has made travel exceedingly complicated. An increasing number of ports, including Venice, Monte Carlo and Bergen, have temporarily closed to cruise ships,” Hagen said.

“In recent days we have had an experience where a river cruise guest in Southeast Asia was exposed to COVID-19 while in transit on an international airline. While this guest is not exhibiting symptoms, she has been placed in quarantine. Separately, the remaining 28 guests will also be quarantined.”

“I am writing today because the situation has now become such that operating as a travel company involves significant risks of quarantines or medical detentions,” he explained.

The move comes as the cruise industry is facing hard times caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Many cruise companies have canceled scheduled sailings and changed their policies due to coronavirus fears.

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