Can a gay cruise keep 5,500 people safe amid Covid?

Of the 2,700 rooms sold, Mr Campbell said only 35 had been canceled since January 1.

For guests unable to travel due to government restrictions or closures, Atlantis is showing more flexibility and issuing credits for future cruises, Campbell said. Due to the rapidly changing circumstances of the pandemic, he said, the company is addressing cancellation requests on a case-by-case basis and trying to accommodate as many people as possible.

“We are here to take care of people and we do our best,” he said. “But if someone comes to us and just says they want their money back, because they don’t feel comfortable going on a cruise, we recommend that they get travel insurance ‘cancel for any reason’ whether it be “.”

Since restarting operations in the United States in June, many cruise lines and tour operators have adopted flexible cancellation policies, offering credits or refunds to customers who wish to change their itinerary due to the coronavirus.

Prior to the pandemic, Atlantic Events welcomed over 25,000 guests each year, hosting specialist gay and lesbian events on cruise ships and resorts around the world. Last year it was forced to cancel or postpone several events, including its 30th anniversary cruise.

“We have gone almost two years without income and we are a self-funded small business. It was a huge challenge to survive,” Mr Campbell said.

Although the company is not offering refunds, it says the health and safety of its guests is a top priority and that it will enforce Royal Caribbean’s health and safety protocols, which include a face mask mandate. indoors, except while eating and drinking and in crowded spaces outdoors. . Royal Caribbean officials say that while the Omicron variant has increased cases aboard its ships in recent weeks, most infections have been mild and have not resulted in serious illness. Still, with a growing number of crew and passengers contracting the virus, the cruise line, like other cruise lines, canceled several trips this month in what it called “a lot of caution” due to “continuing developments related to Covid”. terms.”

Passengers booked on the Atlantis cruise are keeping a close eye on the Celebrity Millennium cruise ship, which was chartered this week by another LGBT travel company for a seven-night Caribbean cruise. This ship’s capacity is much smaller, at 2,218 passengers, but coronavirus cases have been reported to the CDC and have reached their threshold for investigation.