Costa Cruises has announced it is stopping all calls to Italy until April 3 due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in the country.
Costa Cruises Stops All Visits to Italy
The deadly coronavirus is spreading sharply across Italy and the government has closed the country down to contain and control the spread which is impacting 60 million people.
As a result, Costa Cruises has now stopped all calls to the country until April 3. The Carnival-owned cruise line has reviewed itineraries and has already implemented changes.
Neil Palomba, President of Costa Crociere, said:
“As an Italian company and the only cruise operator flying the Italian flag, we are committed to guarantee compliance with the regulations and support to the Italian authorities and the community in this extraordinary effort to face the current situation of emergency.”
The cruise line which is based in Italy and has ships flying the Italian flag is currently only allowing guests to disembark in Italy on cruises which have already departed. The cruises have been cancelled and the ships are heading directly back to their homeport to make this happen with no excursions or new embarkations.
Costa is informing guests and providing them with a future cruise credit for a booking at a later date when the country re-opens. The cruise line has in fact been working hard on limiting the impact of the virus which is named COVID-19. In the past three days, Costa had already cancelled all outgoing Italian guests departing from cruises outside the Meditteranean such as the Caribbean.
Extra health measures have also been in place for passengers and crew members to limit the risk of spreading the coronavirus. This will no doubt have a huge impact on the cruise industry, especially in the Mediterranean.
As of writing this, there are more than 9,100 cases of COVID-19 in Italy and over 460 deaths. Italy has become the largest outbreak in Europe and authorities have now declared war on it and try to get it under control. The regions of Lombardy and Veneto were the first main regions where the coronavirus started spreading.