Despite the successful first cruise during the pandemic by MSC Grandiosa, MSC Cruises delays several MSC Magnifica upcoming cruises.
MSC Magnifica was supposed to return to service at the end of August. But the new first cruise date is now September 26, 2020.
According to a press release from MSC Cruises, the cruise line is experiencing a large amount of cancellations for the upcoming cruises. The itineraries were scheduled to depart from Italy and included three ports in Greece.
Reasons behind MSC’s decision to cancel MSC Magnifica cruises
New coronavirus testing requirements for residents of Italy who have traveled to Greece seem to be the main reason for passengers to cancel. MSC Cruises states, “We are seeing cancellations and a softening in demand since the ship’s itinerary includes as many as three ports in that country. This has led to the decision to delay the restart of the ship by four weeks.”
The cruise line is hopeful that despite the cruises to Greece, reservations will increase soon. Only residents of the 26 Schengen countries are permitted to sail with MSC Cruises. But the current majority of passengers are either Italian nationals or residents of Italy.
As a result of this, MSC Cruises cancels all MSC Magnifica cruise departures from August 29 through September 19, 2020. When cruising resumes, the ship will depart from Bari, Italy on September 26 and adhere to the original itinerary to Greece.
Travelers affected by the canceled cruises have two choices. They can transfer their canceled cruise from MSC Magnifica to MSC Grandiosa now sailing western Mediterranean cruises. Or they can request a Future Cruise Credit for the full amount paid on their canceled cruise and apply it to any sailing until the end of 2021.
MSC Grandiosa departs for 7-night cruises with embarkation in the Italian ports of Genoa, Civitavecchia, Naples and Palermo. The ship includes a port call at Valletta, Malta.