travel requirements for SAUDI ARABIA & red sea cruises

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

BEFORE YOUR CRUISE

It’s every guest’s responsibility to verify the travel requirements before the cruise departure. MSC Cruises has worked with the authorities in all of the regions and countries in which the ships operate to ensure its protocol meets and exceed the required health and safety measures. The below details are subject to change.

COVID 19: MEASURES TO EMBARK 

Before booking your cruise, please check HERE if you are allowed to embark according to your country of residence. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, there might be international travel restrictions depending on your cruise destination and your country of residence.

 

The below requirements are valid for current and following sailings (health and safety measures are subject to change and will adapt according to the evolution of the pandemic).

 

Please note that all Guests ages 2 and older will need to follow all of these requirements to be allowed on board:    

 

Effective as of February 9, 2022 all guests flying to Saudi Arabia can embark their flight only if they provide a negative RT-PCR test taken within 48 hours from the flight departure, this test can also be used for boarding the ship. Alternatively an antigen test taken within 48 hours from flight departure will be accepted by the airline, however it will not be valid for boarding the ship – in which case a negative 72 hour RT-PCR test must be provided to board.   

  

For residents or those staying in Saudi Arabia prior to the cruise, a negative RT-PCR test taken within 72hours prior to boarding the ship will be accepted. 

 

All Guests 12 years and over have to be fully vaccinated. Guests are considered vaccinated if: 

 

within the last 8 months and 14 or more days prior to departure they have completed a full set of vaccine shots with an approved Covid-19 vaccine including Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, or Johnson & Johnson. A mix and match combination is also accepted. Vaccination certificates must be valid for the duration of the entire cruise. 

 

OR

 

14 days prior to departure they have completed a Covid-19 Booster Shot and a full set of vaccine shots with an approved Covid-19 vaccine including Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, or Johnson & Johnson. A mix and match combination is also accepted. Vaccination certificates must be valid for the duration of the entire cruise. 

 

Not following these requirements might result in denied boarding.

 

To note: 

-Guests that recovered from Covid-19 and received only one shot of vaccine are not considered as fully vaccinated. 

-Antigen self-test is not accepted for Embarkation 

 

The original test and vaccination certificate must be presented at the terminal (paper or electronic format) and must be in English. The COVID 19 test certificate must contain: guest’s personal data (verifiable with the other travel documents), date of the test, identification / contact details of the centre that performed the analysis, technique used and negative test result

OTHER TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS

Before booking your cruise, please check HERE if you are allowed to embark according to your country of residence. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, there might be international travel restrictions depending on your cruise destination and your country of residence.

 

A COVID-19 test or Passenger locator form (PLF) may still be necessary for national or international mobility requirement: it’s every guest’s responsibility to verify this requirement before departure. For more information, it is recommended to check your country’s competent authorities official channels.\

 

For itineraries calling Jordan: Italian transit guests going ashore independently or with a bubble tour are subject to a quarantine upon their return.

  

Visas are required for the Saudi Arabia and Red Sea cruises. To obtain a valid visa each Guest must complete an online application here and pay a fee of USD 130. During the visa application process, Guests are required to provide personal details, other relevant information and use a valid passport.

 

For Guests who purchase our fly & cruise package the cost of the VISA is already included in the package price. However, due to technical limitation of the Saudi portal, we cannot provide the Saudi Visa automatically before the cruise. Therefore we kindly ask our Guests to apply for the electronic Saudi Visa here before the cruise following the tutorial here. The cost of USD 130 per passenger will be reimbursed by MSC via a refundable onboard credit during your cruise on MSC Bellissima. Any amount not spent on board will be refunded in cash before disembarkation.
For guests who opt to buy a cruise only they are responsible to obtain their visa and should check with their airlines for more information. All guests from the Gulf Cooperation Council countries are exempted of this requirement. Visa to visit Jordan on one of our shore excursions will be included in the guest’s holiday package, whether it be fly & cruise or cruise only.  
Guests’ passports need to have a minimum of 6 months validity at the time of travel.

All Guests over12 years old must register their vaccination data online at most 72 hours before arrival to Saudi Arabia.

All guests over12 years old must download and register in the Tawakkalna App (COVID-19 KSA), the official Saudi Contract Tracing app. Geolocalization (with data) must be kept activated all time when ashore in Saudi Arabia. Guests must download the Tawakkalna App in advance of arriving to Saudi Arabia.

 


To ensure peace of mind, MSC Cruises requires all guests to have a specific and mandatory Covid-19 insurance policy to embark, covering against COVID-19 related risks, i.e cancellation, interruption, repatriation expenses, quarantine, medical assistance and related expenses, as well as hospitalization. Before finalizing a reservation, it is possible to add to the cruise on this website the MSC COVID-19 Protection plan to all departures on sales from 2021-2022 Winter season onwards. proof of the specific COVID-19 coverage insurance policy - which must be in one of the following languages English, Italian, German, French or Spanish - must be presented at embarkation or boarding will be denied.

 

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT EMBARKATION

HEALTH SCREENINGS & EMBARKATION CHECKLIST

HEALTH SCREENINGS & EMBARKATION CHECKLIST

 

As per our stringent MSC Health & Safety protocol, all guests both vaccinated and unvaccinated, will need to undergo some Health and COVID 19 screenings including a health questionnaire and a contactless temperature check, at the terminal before boarding. 

For a seamless embarkation process, please make sure to review our Health & safety measures in place in our terminals and to bring: 

 

 A printed copy of the embarkation form (available in your cruise ticket)
 A printed copy of the mandatory health questionnaire duly completed and signed within 6 hours prior to the embarkation (available in your cruise ticket)
 The original COVID 19 test and vaccination certificate (paper or electronic format) must indicate that complete vaccination has taken place within the last 8 months. Those passengers who received the booster vaccine are exempted from the 8 months restriction.
 Proof of COVID-19 insurance clearly showing the COVID-19 risks coverage
 Valid identity document

 

We will deny boarding in case of: 

 Symptoms i.e fever (>37,5 C C / 99.5 F), cough, shortness of breath, chills, muscle/body aches, fatigue, headache, sore throat and loss of taste/smell in the 14 days prior to embarkation
 Potential exposure to a suspected or confirmed case of COVID 19 in the 14 days prior to embarkation
 Temporary travel restrictions based on local circumstances. For example, certain countries may deny visas or prohibit entry based on travel history or nationality
 Failure to provide the proof of the mandatory COVID-19 insurance policy which must be in of the following languages: English, Italian, German, French or Spanish)

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT GOING
ASHORE & TRAVELLING BACK HOME

GOING ASHORE & TRAVELLING BACK HOME

A COVID-19 test or Passenger locator form (PLF) may still be necessary for national or international mobility requirement: it’s every guest’s responsibility to verify this requirement before departure. For more information, it is recommended to check your country’s competent authorities official channels.


Discover in protected excursions: To go ashore during the cruise, MSC Cruises highly recommends to participate in one of or MSC Shore Excursions to ensure the same high standards of health and safety ashore as on board. Guests who are fully vaccinated will be able to go ashore independently and will need to follow the requirements of going ashore according to the countries they will visit. Not all destinations allow independent disembarkation and it may depend on the traveller’s vaccination status. Those Guests who are not fully vaccinated or who have unvaccinated children in their travelling party, will need to go ashore with an MSC Excursion to discover in a protected excursion. More information in the FAQ section.

 

All guests over 12 years old must download and register in the Tawakkalna App (COVID-19 KSA), the official Saudi Contract Tracing app. Geolocalization (with data) must be kept activated all time when ashore in Saudi Arabia. The Tawakkalna App must be downloaded prior to arrival in Saudi Arabia.

 

French residents returning from Green List Countries are not required to show a negative RT-PCR or Antigen test within 48hours prior to arrival. If a test is required by the airline this can be performed on board. French residents returning from orange list countries are required to show a negative 48hours test.

 

UK Residents returning to UK from any cruise destinations must complete a passenger locator form (PLF), book an Antigen or a PCR test to take on or before day 2 upon their return to the UK (Starting from February 11, 2022 the antigen test will not be required).

 

To support Guests in complying with international mobility requirements, MSC Cruises has organized the possibility for its guests to purchase and perform a RT-PCR test or an antigen test during their cruise. More information in theFAQ section.