MSC Makes Adjustments to World Cruise

MSC Poesia

MSC Cruises is offering compensation for the guests onboard its 2024 World Cruise aboard the Poesia following several itinerary changes.

Initially set to transit the Suez Canal and the Red Sea after visiting the Holy Land, the 121-day voyage had to be rerouted due to different conflicts in the region.

According to a statement distributed onboard, passengers will receive a 500 euro refund per adult guest in the form of an onboard credit “as a gesture of goodwill.”

MSC is also offering Future Cruise Credit equal to ten percent of the cruise fare paid for the affected part of the itinerary.

“We are aware that some of our guests have expressed disappointment for the itinerary changes that we had to perform,” the company said in the letter signed by Poesia’s Captain Roberto Leotta.

“I want to address these concerns and explain the hard choices that we had to make to go ahead with our 2024 World Cruise,” he added.

“As you know, the conflict in Israel fundamentally altered the geopolitical landscape across the East Mediterranean and the Middle East. When the hostilities started in October, we first adjusted the itinerary to offer you a safe and carefree cruise experience through the Suez Canal,” Leotta continued.

“However, as the crisis extended to the Red Sea with attacks against cargo ships, it became clear that we had to avoid the region and follow an alternative route along Africa’s west coast to proceed,” he added, noting that other cruise lines also redeployed ships away from the region.

“Our company worked relentlessly with immigration, customs, and port authorities at new destinations to secure berthing permits, obtain visas and other formalities. A process that takes up to 12 months was completed in just a few weeks,” Leotta noted.

He also said that MSC kept the guests informed of the itinerary changes as soon as they were confirmed, either directly or via travel agents.

“Since then, we had to deal with last-minute operational challenges at some of the new destinations in our itinerary, including additional requirements imposed,” Leotta added, noting that calls in Senegal and Kenya were either cancel     ed or shortened to avoid triggering yellow fever vaccination requirements at other ports.

“In other cases, we were able to keep destinations in our itinerary thanks to our relationship with local authorities, but we had to change the date, like in Durban. As it may happen in any sailing, we also had to cancel one call due to adverse weather – Portuguese Island,” he explained.

“Considering the challenges caused by these external factors, we are thrilled that our diligent efforts have allowed us to proceed with our 2024 World Cruise,” Leotta added.

Although the issues are out of MSC Cruises’ control, he continued, the company is “naturally disappointed” that they have affected the guests.

“Recognizing the impact that this situation had on your experience, as a gesture of goodwill and for the visas you purchased for the cancel     ed ports, we will proceed to refund EUR 500 per adult guest, in the form of onboard credit,” Leotta said.

“We are also delighted to offer a Future Cruise Credit equal to ten percent of the cruise fare paid for the first leg of the World Cruise,” the captain added.

“We sincerely hope that you will accept this gesture, even if the issues that we encountered are beyond our control. We are doing everything in our hands to offer you a truly unique experience      despite the setbacks that have impacted our sailing,” he concluded.

The MSC Poesia kicked off its worldwide adventure in Italy earlier this year. The 121-day itinerary was initially scheduled to visit 52 ports across 31 countries.

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