Cruise with confidence
Keeping you safe aboard our boutique ships
It is over a year since our return to service following the COVID-19 pandemic and as restrictions continue to be lifted worldwide, we have taken the opportunity to review our own COVID-19 measures and have begun a phased reduction in our onboard protocols.
The following changes will be effective for cruises departing from June 19, 2022 up to August 31, 2022.Last updated: June 9, 2022
You require an NHS COVID Pass to travel.
What is an NHS COVID Pass?
The NHS COVID Pass is an official document that shows your COVID-19 vaccination status. It is required to board the ship and to gain entry to certain ports. It includes a square 2D barcode (also known as a QR code) for each dose you have received. These barcodes expire after six months, so it is important to check that they are valid for the duration of your cruise and to renew your pass if required. Your NHS COVID Pass must include valid 2D barcodes to be accepted.
What does an NHS COVID Pass look like?
There are several variations of the NHS COVID Pass and the layout will differ depending on where and how it was issued. However, for it to be accepted, it must contain the following details for each dose received:
- A square 2D barcode – each barcode has an expiry date beneath or next to it. Please check that your barcodes are valid for the duration of your cruise. If not, you will need to renew your pass.
- Your name and date of birth – please ensure that your first name, surname and date of birth match that shown on your passport. If any of the details are incorrect, your GP surgery will need to update them.
- Details of what vaccine you received, when you received it and where.
Example of an NHS COVID Pass.
How to obtain or renew your NHS COVID Pass
You must obtain your NHS COVID pass before starting your journey to the port. You will need your NHS number to hand when applying. Please ensure the first and last names on your COVID Pass match what is shown on your passport. You will need to ask your GP to update their records if this is not the case.
Access your pass electronically using the details below. Each guest will require their own email address to register. You can then either:
- Print a copy and bring it with you
- Save it to your smartphone or tablet device to show at the port
- Download your pass or access it via the NHS App (not the NHS COVID App)
- Download your pass or access it via the NHS Scotland COVID Status App
- Download your pass or access it via the COVIDCert NI App
Order a copy of your pass by post. Please allow enough time for it to arrive and remember to pack it in your hand luggage.
- Call 119 or visit NHS website. Please allow up to seven working days for it to arrive.
- Call 0300 303 5667. Please allow up to 10 working days for it to arrive.
- Call 0808 196 8565 or visit NHS Scotland website. Please allow up to 14 working days for it to arrive.
- Call 0300 200 7814. You will need to verify your identity in person by presenting documents at an appointed time and location. Once identity checks have been completed it may take up to 10 working days for the printed certificate to arrive.
What if I have been vaccinated outside of the UK?
You will need to get official proof from the country in which you were vaccinated to show that you have been fully vaccinated and received a first booster dose using a COVID-19 vaccine approved by the UK Medical and Healthcare Regulatory Authority. More information can be found on the UK Government website.
All Saga guests are required to be fully vaccinated using a COVID-19 vaccine approved by the UK Medical and Healthcare Regulatory Authority, and to have received a first booster dose at least 14 days before departure. If you are eligible for further booster doses, we would encourage you to have them. Our crew are, similarly, all required to be fully vaccinated.
Cruise tickets are not required, but please remember to pack the following documents in your hand luggage as they will be needed to board the ship:
- A valid 10-year passport with at least six months validity remaining. This is required even for cruises around the UK.
- A valid NHS COVID Pass as proof of your vaccination status. If you already have one, please ensure the barcodes are still valid for your cruise as these expire after six months. Please find more information enclosed.
- If you have arranged your own insurance, please ensure that it covers you for COVID-19 and remember to bring your policy documents with you.
Precautions to take before your cruise
To reduce the likelihood of testing positive at the port, we recommend that you minimise social contact with others in the five days leading up to your cruise and we also advise you to take a rapid lateral flow test at home before you begin your journey to the ship. You can obtain these tests from most pharmacies. Please inform us as soon as possible if you are planning to return from an overseas trip in the seven days leading up to your cruise.
We will conduct health screening for all guests prior to embarkation, including:
- Asking about any COVID-19 related symptoms and your travel history in the last seven days
- Lateral flow COVID-19 test at the port
The whole testing process at embarkation will take place in your vehicle and should take no longer than 20 minutes.
You are no longer required to wear a face covering onboard, but we encourage the use of masks when moving between enclosed spaces around the ship. If face masks are required in any of the destinations you visit, these will be provided for you onboard.
Crew in guest-facing areas will continue to wear face masks at all times.
To make things easier for your first night, we will allocate where you will dine and after this you can, of course, dine at your leisure, in the venue of your choice. Speciality restaurants must be booked in advance once you are onboard and this can be done either in person at the restaurant or by telephone.
We ask that all guests wash their hands using the nearest available facilities before entering any dining venues.
The Library space is available, however you won’t find the usual books and board games and, for now, our computers will remain out of use. Please ensure that you bring your own reading material and free Wi-fi is available throughout the ship, so please bring your own laptops, tablets and smartphones. If you need any help with using these, our crew will be more than happy to assist you.
The Card Room
The card room will be open as usual for card games including Bridge.
Multiple venues are available onboard, so you are free to choose where to spend your days and evenings. Every night there will be a show in The Playhouse Theatre, or alternative entertainment can be found in the Britannia Lounge with live performances and music for dancing. Sadly, dance hosts are currently not available.
You can also find entertainment in The Club, The Supper Club and The Living Room, or alternatively you can enjoy the shows from the comfort of your cabin via the TV.
Formal nights & dress codeA big part of the cruising experience is what to wear and we know how important it is for many of our guests. During the day, we would advise casual wear, with the evening dress code starting from 6pm.
Ladies generally choose to wear a smart dress or an elegant blouse or top with trousers or skirt. Gentlemen can wear a smart open neck shirt and trousers. A jacket is optional, and we would ask that polo shirts, t-shirts, shorts and denim are kept for casual wear during the day.
Formal nights are always looked forward to as it gives the ladies the chance to wear an evening gown, cocktail dress, a dress suit, or elegant separates and for gentlemen to wear a smart suit or dinner jacket.
If you do not wish to take part in formal nights, you may dine in The Grill or take advantage of our complimentary room service, and you can enjoy drinks in any of the bars.
Formal nights will take place as follows:
- One formal night for cruises from four to seven nights.
- Two formal nights for cruises of eight to 11 nights.
- Three formal nights for cruises of 12 to 21 nights.
For now, it will not be possible for you to invite visitors onboard the ship while in port.
All of the crew have been fully vaccinated and boosted against COVID-19 and will be wearing face masks at all times in guest areas. For now, the onboard team will be unable to host guests at dinner or other events.
If you receive a positive COVID-19 test result during your cruise
In addition to testing everybody before they embark the ship, we may conduct some testing during your cruise and as required by port authorities for the countries we visit.
In the unlikely event that you receive a positive test result during your cruise, you will be transferred to our dedicated isolation zone with all-balcony guest cabins to isolate for a minimum of five days. If you are asymptomatic, you will be released from isolation on day five. If symptoms persist, you will need to remain in isolation until you are asymptomatic up to a maximum of 10 days.
If you come into close contact with somebody who has tested positive for COVID-19, you will not be required to isolate. Instead, you will be tested and will only then be required to isolate if you receive a positive test result.
Choose from a selection of included and optional shore excursions planned by our expert team. Details will be sent to you no later than two weeks before your cruise departure date.
If you would rather explore ports independently, feel free to speak to the onboard Explore Ashore team, who will be happy to provide travel advice. A shuttle service is included where the town isn’t within walking distance of the ship, with buses running throughout the day.
Please note that some destinations may still have COVID-19 related restrictions in place. We will inform you of these onboard and, if testing is required, we will make the necessary arrangements at no extra cost.
Cruise with confidence thanks to...
- Comprehensive Covid-19 protocols that are being regularly reviewed to ensure we provide a safe environment for our guests and crew on all cruises sailing throughout the year.
- For sailings up to until the end of July 2022, our included chauffeur service will be extended to a private service up to 250 miles each way. This means every guest or ‘bubble’ will be picked up at home and driven to the port, safely and without the need to use any form of shared transport.
- Included travel insurance with up to £5m coronavirus emergency medical and repatriation cover.
- All guests to be fully vaccinated (including a booster dose) for Covid-19 before boarding.
- Fully vaccinated crew.
- Pre-departure Covid-19 testing at the port for guests and crew, along with temperature checks and a full medical screening.
- Additional enhancements to our state-of-the-art air conditioning, which already circulates 100% fresh air in all public areas and cabins.
- Enhancing our already high standards of cleaning throughout the ships, including all public areas and cabins.
- We have doubled the number of medical staff on board, and expanded our medical facilities, including a new isolation area.
- Our ships have been awarded independent Shield+ accreditation to certify that they are operating safely, using only the strictest health and hygiene measures.