SANTA CLARITA AND SEATTLE — Both Princess Cruises and Holland America Line are giving passengers added peace of mind by extending their flexible booking programs.
Princess is extending its ‘Book with Confidence’ program to summer 2022 sailings, including all cruises departing through Sept. 30, 2022, for all bookings made by March 2, 2022.
The program allows guests the flexibility to change their vacation plans up to 30 days prior to the day of departure, receiving cancellation fees as a future cruise credit to then book another voyage when the time is right.
In addition, Princess will continue to operate vaccinated cruises, as defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for guests who have received their final dose of an approved COVID-19 vaccine at least 14 days prior to the sailing day and have proof of vaccination.
Within the ‘Book with Confidence’ policy, the COVID-19 Protection Program provides reassurance if guests are within 30 days of sailing, all the way through to disembarkation. It’s designed to assist guests if, as a result of being suspected of having or testing positive for COVID-19, or as a result of government travel restrictions put in place within 30 days of embarkation, they may be unable to travel to the cruise embarkation port, may be denied boarding, may be quarantined onboard or disembarked early.
For even greater peace of mind, Princess also offers Princess Vacation Protection that will provide full vacation protection in the form of a future cruise credit or a reimbursement of the normally non-refundable cancellation fees, depending on the reason for changed plans. This program also covers guests during their cruise, including lost or damaged luggage protection, emergency excess medical expenses and emergency evacuation, and trip interruption coverage that provides pro-rated refund if illness interrupts the cruise and extra costs associated with trip delays or interruptions.
For full policy guidelines go to www.princess.com/bookwithconfidence.
HOLLAND AMERICA LINE
Holland America, which returned to cruising in July 2021, is extending its Flexible Cancellation Plan to Sept.30, 2022 as part of its ‘Worry-Free Promise’ to implement best practices for COVID-19 health and safety.
Under the plan, which was originally offered for cruises departing through the end of April, guests who make a new booking by March 31, 2022, for itineraries that depart on or before Sept. 30, can cancel for any reason and receive a Future Cruise Credit in the amount of any cancellation fees that normally would be incurred. Cancellations must be made up to 30 days before departure, plus final payments for cruises through May 31, 2022 are due at 60 days instead of 75 or 90.
In addition, Holland America’s Cancellation Protection Program can be purchased for new cruises or Alaska Cruisetour bookings or existing bookings as long as it is purchased before the date cancellation fees begin to accrue. Offered as a Standard or Platinum plan, guests can cancel for any reason up to 24 hours before cruise departure with Standard, and right up to departure under Platinum, and receive refunds between 80%-90% of eligible amounts paid (cost varies by cruise fare and is non-refundable).
Like Princess, Holland America will continue to operate with vaccinated cruises that include health and safety protocols. These include:
- Guests must have received their final dose of an approved COVID-19 vaccine at least 14 days prior to the start of the cruise and bring proof of vaccination
- Guests must show proof of a negative viral COVID-19 (PCR or antigen) taken within two days of embarkation
- Guests are required to wear masks (surgical or KN95 preferred) in indoor areas (except when eating or drinking or in their stateroom)
- Crew members are vaccinated and are receiving a booster when eligible; KN95 masks are worn by shipboard teams at all times