P&O Cruises Removes Pre-Boarding COVID-19 Testing for Selected Sailings

According to a statement sent to booked guests, P&O Cruises is dropping the pre-boarding COVID-19 testing for some sailings onboard the Iona.

“As the health protocols for COVID-19 continue to evolve across the world, P&O Cruises will be changing its policy on Iona to remove the pre-departure testing for all guests,” the company said.

Initially, the requirement change will only apply to five select sailings onboard the 5,200-guest cruise vessel.

Passengers will no longer need to present a negative test result during the check-in if boarding the Iona on June 25, July 2, July 9, July 16 and July 23.

According to P&O, the cruises were selected due to their shorter duration and regular week-long itinerary.

“You can rest assure that the protection of your health and well-being is, as always, very important to us and we still have a number of protocols in place to help you relax and enjoy your holiday,” P&O added in the statement.

Based in Southampton, England, the 183,000-ton ship is currently offering cruises to the Norwegian Fjords.

The seven-night voyage features visits to Olden, Geiranger, Hellesylt, Haugesund and Stavanger.

To be able to cruise, all guests aged 12 and over are still required to be fully vaccinated with an approved COVID-19 vaccine a minimum of 14 days prior the travel.

A booster vaccine is also mandatory for guests aged 16 and over if more than 270 days have passed since the full completion of the vaccination course. The additional shot must have been taken at least seven days before the cruise.

P&O also “strongly recommends” all guests to have a second booster vaccination if available to them.

Earlier this month, Viking became the first major cruise operator to drop the pre-boarding COVID-19 testing requirement.

Citing changes in CDC guidelines for air travel, the luxury brand announced the end of the measure – which had been in place since its fleet resumed service in mid-2021.

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