Saga has become the first cruise line to be awarded with a health accreditation by Lloyd’s Register, the maritime safety experts, for Covid-19 health assurance.
The company said that the move was a crucial step ahead of the planned return of sailings in Spring next year.
Lloyd’s Register has awarded Saga the Shield+ accreditation, the highest category of health assurance they have. The framework is designed to give customers greater confidence in how operators can handle infectious diseases, such as Covid-19 and norovirus.
The accreditation means that Saga has met every category set by the UK Chamber of Shipping in its Covid Secure Cruising guidance.
Nick Stace, Saga’s CEO of Travel, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded the highest health and safety accreditation from Lloyd’s Register for our two ships – the newest on the seas. We have been working with the government, all the relevant authorities and our peers in the cruise industry to put in place all the measures needed to ensure a safe return to cruising. At Saga we believe that our ships offer one of the safest places in the world to see the world.
“This important step removes one of the last barriers to a safe return for cruising. We know there is considerable pent up demand from our customers for cruising. In our most recent round of cancellations, more than 80% of guests immediately rolled their booking over to a new cruise and our guests tell us they are ready to sail. Being the first cruise operator to achieve Lloyd’s Register’s Shield+ accreditation is testament to the work done by all our Saga colleagues and brings us one step closer to welcoming our guests back onboard our ships in the safest capacity possible.”
Joep Bollerman, Lloyd’s Register’s Global Passenger Ship Manager, said: “We are delighted to award our first ever Shield+ certification to Saga. Our new standards are based on medical science from the global health industry, including guidance from the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in line with the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA). Shield+ provides a detailed survey and inspection regime of the key areas where health risks are elevated, which helps operators like Saga maintain the highest health standards at sea.”