While travel bans continue to keep European river lines that
cater to Americans largely grounded, operators are using the extended pause to
update and improve health safety protocols for protecting guests and crew from
Covid-19 when they start sailing again.
Uniworld Boutique River Cruises CEO Ellen Bettridge said her
company is contracting with ACT.Global’s CleanCoat
to blanket their ships with antimicrobial coating that kills
bacteria and viruses.
Bettridge said the company is now working on a plan to have
all surfaces on the company’s ships treated with the long-lasting non-toxic,
odorless coating that some hotels have begun to deploy.
Lindblad Expeditions has been using it on expedition ships
since mid-2018. Since then, Bettridge said, Lindblad has “seen a dramatic
reduction in norovirus.”
AmaWaterways, meanwhile, said it will be adding public
health officers to its ships.
The latest announcements are in addition to the
comprehensive health and safety
protocols such as masks, social distancing, smaller groups, health
questionnaires and temperature checks that cruise lines and other travel companies
have implemented in accordance with guidance from CLIA, the Centers for Disease
Control, the World Health Organization and local and national governments.
“We will always go over and above any guidelines that are in
place to ensure the comfort and safety of our guests and crew,” said Kristin
Kart, co-founder and executive vice president of AmaWaterways.