Dream Cruises has officially ended its seven-month hiatus of cruising in Taiwan today with the resumption of the Explorer Dream’s Super Seacation itinerary out of Keelung, where guests of the inaugural sailing will enjoy a two-night cruise to Hualian in celebration of the New Year.
“We are pleased to see the Explorer Dream setting sail once again from Keelung today, taking guests on a spectacular cruise to catch the first sunrise above the horizon in 2022. On behalf of Dream Cruises, we would like to thank the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, as well as the Ministry of Health and Welfare, for their advice and guidance over the past months to ensure that stringent preventive measures and health protocols are in place for safe cruising, which are indispensable to the restart of Explorer Dream’s Super Seacation itineraries,” said Vice President for Sales for Taiwan at Dream Cruises, Sally Riu.
“We are also excited to announce our line-up of thematic cruises next year, including for the Lunar New Year celebrations and the widely acclaimed Around the World on Dream Cruises series, featuring an immersive experience of food, culture and snap-worthy decorations that are inspired by popular travel destinations. Food lovers can look forward to new dining options at sea that are curated by talk-of-the-town restaurants, such as The Dining Place at Taipei Marriott Hotel and Hutong Yakiniku,” Riu added.
The Mayor of Keelung, Lin Yu-chang, also arrived at the cruise terminal to greet cruising guests of the New Year sailing. According to a press release, he welcomes the new preventive measures for safe cruising, which require all cruising guests to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and to undergo mandatory PCR testing.
The restart of the Explorer Dream’s operations in Taiwan has also boosted local tourism and propelled the resumption of multiple operations in the industry.
“With ongoing restrictions and uncertainties on international travel, the pent-up demand for domestic travel in Taiwan has been on the rise. Cruise travel offers a real getaway journey to domestic destinations, complemented by the offerings of a floating resort at sea that provides total peace of mind with stringent preventive measures that exceed the usual standards on land, which can cater to those who are looking for a truly hassle-free and worry-free holiday,” said the General Manager of Lion Travel Service Co. Ltd, Andy Yau.
As the first cruise ship to resume cruises in Taiwan, the Explorer Dream is also the first to resume cruising in Asia with no COVID-19 related incidents to date. From July 2020 to May 2021, over 90,000 guests have already been onboard and experienced a Super Seacation with the Explorer Dream.
Due to the local COVID-19 outbreak in May this year, domestic cruising in Taiwan has been suspended and during the seven-month hiatus period, Dream Cruises has been working closely with the Taiwan authorities to ensure the safest environment for both guests and crew upon resumption of cruise operations.
Prior to the official restart of the Explorer Dream’s sailings in Taiwan, Dream Cruises has evaluated and enhanced the ship’s preventive measures and health protocols, in compliance with all regulations stipulated by the Taiwan authorities. Newly implemented regulations include requiring all cruising guests (some age restrictions apply) to be fully vaccinated with a government-approved COVID-19 vaccine at least 14 days before their cruise departure date. All guests must also present a negative PCR COVID-19 test result at the cruise terminal of the departure date with test specimen collected within one or two days before the departure day.
The Explorer Dream is also equipped with a 24-hour medical center managed by a professional medical team of doctor and nurses, complete with negative-pressure isolation wards and eight PCR testing machines, including six newly added VitaPCR PCR Instruments that allows rapid and timely detection of infectious diseases including COVID-19 in 20 minutes.
During the initial restart period for the Explorer Dream, the ship capacity will also be reduced providing optimum space for social distancing during cruises and it will be mandatory for all guests to download the ‘Taiwan Social Distance’ App and to turn on their Bluetooth at the cruise terminal and on the ship.
To safeguard the well-being of guests, thorough sanitization and disinfection and enhanced hygiene practices for guest cabins and crew member quarters, public areas and recreational facilities, along with safe food and beverage handling procedures will continue to be maintained; all crewmembers are also fully vaccinated onboard the Explorer Dream.