JANEEN CHRISTOFF MARCH 10, 2021
American Queen Steamboat Company (AQSC) is setting a high bar for safety when it resumes operations. AQSC is devoted to the wellbeing of its guests and crew, providing secure voyages that allow guests to experience the joy of travel close to home.
The cruise line’s SafeCruise initiative and vaccine requirement starting July 1 sets it apart from much of the competition.
AQSC will begin sailing in April with its enhanced SafeCruise measures in place. These measures include COVID testing, mask-wearing, health screening, temperature scans, reduced capacity and more.
Prior to boarding the ship, all guests will fill out a health questionnaire and take a COVID test during their pre-cruise hotel stay. Luggage will be disinfected prior to boarding, and temperature scans will be completed at the gangway.
Onboard, the crew will ensure public spaces aren’t crowded and that social distancing can be maintained in all areas of the ship, including restaurants, bars and lounges, entertainment venues, pool deck, spa and fitness center.
Public spaces will also undergo rigorous cleaning and disinfecting throughout the day including electrostatic fogging and enhanced anti-microbial disinfection. In addition, guests will find hand sanitizing stations with an alcohol-based sanitizer placed around the ship.
Hospital-grade cleaning will be used to ensure that staterooms are free of germs, and disinfecting wipes will be made available to guests. Guest staterooms will be cleaned and disinfected with electrostatic fogging twice daily.
Ventilation systems on board have also been upgraded to include UV-C light for sanitization.
Masks will be required for passengers and crew in all venues and in situations where social distancing is not possible, including entertainment venues, elevators, shoreside terminals and shore excursion motorcoaches. A mask will be provided in staterooms for all guests.
Dining onboard has been reimagined with safety in mind. All buffet services have been suspended. The cruise line has implemented new food and beverage concepts that include express breakfast and lunch options.
A licensed nurse will also be on board the ship to help with any medical needs, and AQSC has established partnerships in each port in case any guest should require care.
Safety on shore excursions is as rigorous as the measures AQSC has instituted onboard to ensure guest safety and wellbeing. Buses will be sanitized hourly, and hand sanitizer will be available onboard.
Starting on July 1, all guests sailing with AQSC will need to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
Passengers will be required to present verified documentation of their inoculations. Those receiving a two-dose vaccination such as the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccines will need to have completed both doses. COVID-19 vaccinations need to be completed at least 14 days prior to the sail date of the itinerary.
AQSC will also require crew members to be vaccinated and to show proof of vaccination.
Guests who have booked a cruise for a sailing departing from July 1 forward who do not intend to receive the vaccine will be fully refunded.