Guests sailing with MSC Cruises now have more opportunity for a deeper exploration of popular embarkation ports with the line’s new “Stay & Cruise” packages. The pre-cruise packages will first be offered at two iconic Mediterranean ports this summer, and will be coming to three North American embarkation ports later in 2022 and in 2023.
Pre-Cruise Stays in Italy and Greece
The first of these carefully curated packages are being offered for eastern Mediterranean sailings from Venice, Italy and Athens, Greece, prior to 7-night sailings from those ports. Five of MSC Cruises’ ships will participate in this initial program introduction.
“Up to two days spent in the magnificent cities of either Venice or Athens will be a fantastic prelude to our guests’ seven-night cruises in the East Mediterranean and should be especially attractive for those that will fly into Italy and Greece for their summer holiday so that they can really make the most out of their trip,” said Achille Staiano, Vice President of Global Sales for MSC Cruises.
The Stay & Cruise packages include up to two nights’ accommodation in a 4-star hotel with breakfast included, a half-day city exploration excursion around the city, luggage transfers from the hotel to guest cabins onboard the cruise ship, and private ground transportation to the port.
This provides guests with a convenient, stress-free way to enhance their getaway and discover more about the rich culture, history, and vibrancy of these cities.
Furthermore, the hotels will have dedicated MSC Cruises staff on hand at convenient times throughout the day to provide guests with personalized information and “top tips” for getting the most from their city excursion.
The two-day “Venice Viewpoint” package will be available for guests sailing aboard MSC Armonia, MSC Fantasia, MSC Musica, and MSC Sinfonia from the Italian ports of Venice/Marghera, Monfalcone/Venice, and Trieste.
Guests for MSC Lirica’s sailings from the port of Piraeus in Greece can opt for up to two days of the “Athens Attractions” package ahead of their cruise.
Further details about each package are not yet available, but are sure to include local tour guide services and visits to some of each city’s most iconic attractions, “bucket list” items for many travelers.
In Venice, for example, that may include a visit to the famous Rialto Bridge, a romantic gondola ride through the Grand Canal, a tour of the richly historic doge’s palace, or a glass blowing demonstration at the renowned Murano glass factory.
These enhanced pre-cruise packages will be available to book by the end of April either directly through the cruise line’s website or from passengers’ travel agents.
North American Options Coming Later
In addition to the packages available for eastern Mediterranean sailings, MSC Cruises is also planning to offer similar pre-cruise extensions for sailings from Miami and Port Canaveral later this year, with further options from New York expected to be available for the summer 2023 sailing season.
“When we roll out the ‘Stay & Cruise’ program later this year in the USA we’ll see many more Europeans join our cruise ships to take advantage of having a truly memorable time in Miami and Orlando, plus from summer 2023, New York will prove a strong pull for those who want to explore the Big Apple prior to their cruise,” said Staiano.
No date has been announced for when the Miami, Orlando, or New York pre-cruise tour extensions will be available to book, which ships will be a part of the program, or what options will be included in the tours.