Safer together

As we prepare for the safe restart of our expedition cruises, we’ve introduced strict measures on all our Hurtigruten Expedition ships to reduce the risk of COVID-19.

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Norway entry requirements

All travelers entering Norway from 26th November 2021 are required to complete an entry registration via https://reg.entrynorway.no/. This will apply to all guests and crew.

Omicron variant update

Due to the emergence of the Omicron variant, passengers boarding cruises on MS Maud and MS Otto Sverdrup may be denied embarkation if they have visited any of the following countries in the last 14 days:

  • Angola
  • Botswana
  • Eswatini
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • South Africa
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

We also wanted to take this opportunity to reassure you that we have industry-leading mitigations and procedures onboard all our ships to ensure that you are safe and can enjoy your journey with Hurtigruten. Some of the key measures we have implemented are  

  •              All our procedures and onboard preparations are audited by the Ship Classification Society, Bureau Veritas, to ensure the highest level of preparation in our operations
  •              Our medical facilities and personnel are provided by professional 3rd-party medical experts, guaranteeing we have access to the best medical knowledge
  •              All guests and crew are vaccinated 
  •              All crew are tested every week. In addition, all guests must have PCR tests before embarking, a rapid test on the day of embarkation and we have also implemented mid-sailing rapid tests as an additional precaution 
  •              Our procedures are aligned to the EU Healthy Gateway guidelines. An example of the mitigations you can expert include social distancing on all ships, mandatory use of facemasks, large isolation and quarantine facilities onboard, medical screening onboard and use of air purifiers. In addition, our crew are highly trained to deal with outbreaks which we have rehearsed with local authorities where we sail 

Your safety is our highest priority.

Our highest priority is the safety of our guests, our employees, and the communities we visit. We have partnered with health and safety experts to design protocols and procedures to be safer together as we restart our expedition operations.  

We will continuously evaluate our health and safety procedures and update the information on this page. Specific requirements may vary according to the sailing, local requirements, the latest scientific and medical advice, and conditions at the time of sailing. We will inform you of the specific measures in place for your cruise before departure.

All our ships are certified with SafeGuardTM

All our ships must pass stringent tests before we put them into service. That is why our onboard health and safety procedures are certified by Bureau Veritas (BV), the leading independent certification body. BV’s strict and thorough safety audit ensures that every ship complies with industry and international best practices in health, safety, and hygiene. Feel confident when you see the Hygiene Excellence and Safety Label SafeGuard: This means your vessel has met the highest standards to achieve certification. SafeGuard furthermore ensures that best practice guidelines are being followed in regard to hygiene, sanitation, and limiting the spread of infectious diseases onboard.

What we do

Embarkation screening

We have put strict embarkation requirements in place for both guests and crew members. Specific requirements may vary by sailing but may include pre-travel testing, health screening, and requesting proof of vaccination.

New health and safety protocols

In addition to enhanced cleaning and disinfection, we have introduced new protocols that include face mask regulations, capacity limitations, and other measures in line with local requirements.

We carry out continuous monitoring to identify risks and take prompt action.

We regularly monitor the health of our guests and crew during each cruise. If required, we will initiate our robust outbreak prevention and response procedures.

Onboard Medical Center with high-quality care and expertise

We have expanded our onboard medical capabilities. Our expedition ships feature a well-equipped Medical Center staffed with a doctor and nurse, available at all hours.

What you do

Travel requirements

We expect you to follow all applicable travel or quarantine restrictions, both at home and your destination.

Embarkation screening

We will inform you of the embarkation requirements for your cruise in advance. Please ensure that you fulfil all the obligations before you travel. We also ask that you arrive at your assigned check-in time to adhere to social distancing requirements.

Health and safety protocols

To ensure everyone’s safety, you will be required to follow all social distancing, face covering, and handwashing policies during your cruise.

Monitoring and testing

We ask all guests to be alert for symptoms of COVID-19 and follow procedures for informing our staff as soon as any symptoms appear.

Joining your Hurtigruten Expedition

Embarkation requirements

Before your departure date, we will inform you of the latest requirements for your specific sailing. The screening process upon embarkation may vary according to your sailing, local regulations, the latest scientific and medical advice, and conditions at the time of sailing.

Our standard travel documentation is also required for each cruise. This includes a doctor’s approval for remote destinations such as Antarctica, the Northwest Passage, Northeast Greenland, and transatlantic crossings.

Check-in

Check-in procedures have been modified to enable social distancing and the screening upon embarkation. Floor markings will be in place and hand sanitizer will be available. Guests, crew, and check-in staff will be required to wear face masks during the check-in process. Only medical-grade face masks or FFP2 face masks are allowed onboard. We will not accept fabric, homemade, face shields or visors.

To ensure social distancing during check-in, you will be assigned an embarkation time before your departure date.

Life on board

Face masks on board

Currently, you are required to wear a mask in public areas indoors, except when eating and drinking. Outside on deck, you may remove your face mask if social distancing is possible. Policies may vary by destination, according to local requirements.

Only medical-grade face masks or FFP2 face masks are allowed onboard. We will not accept fabric, homemade, face shields or visors.

Social distancing

We plan to sail with a reduced passenger capacity to enable greater social distancing on board. We have also reduced the guest capacities of public spaces like restaurants and lecture halls so that all guests can enjoy our services and activities with peace of mind.

Cleaning and hygiene

We’ve enhanced our standard practices with additional cleaning protocols to reduce the risk of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.

All public spaces are regularly cleaned and disinfected throughout the day and hand sanitizer is available throughout the ship. We have increased the frequency of all cleaning procedures, especially for frequently touched areas.

Guest cabins are cleaned and disinfected daily. Our housekeeping staff are equipped with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and are trained in new methods to reduce the risk of COVID-19.

Expedition lectures and activities

One highlight of Hurtigruten Expeditions is the wide array of expedition activities we provide on board, from lectures to activities in our Science Center. As we restart operations, we plan to offer all of our standard onboard activities.

We have introduced enhanced cleaning and disinfection measures for public areas like the Science Center. Hand sanitizer will be available and frequently touched points regularly cleaned. Lecture hall seating capacities have been adjusted to allow for social distancing. On some ships, we offer streamed lectures for you to enjoy them from the comfort of your cabin.

Dining

We have adjusted our food and beverage services to reduce the risk of COVID-19.

We have reduced seating capacity and extended opening hours in our restaurants to allow for increased distance between tables. Our new reservation system for restaurants minimizes wait times. At restaurant entrances, guests will find hand sanitizer dispensers and undergo a temperature check with a contactless temperature scanner.

We have adapted menus and services to offer individual dishes rather than self-service buffets. We also provide a ‘takeaway service’ for guests who wish to dine in their cabin.

Our Explorer Lounge and pool bars, where offered, will operate via table service only.

Hotel and wellness facilities

Our pool, spa, gym, and other wellness facilities will be open on all ships that feature them. Use of these facilities and certain services may be limited.

We have introduced new procedures in these spaces, including enhanced cleaning and disinfection and limited guest capacity. In some cases, you must make a reservation in advance.

Medical services

Our expedition ships feature a small onboard hospital working 24 hours a day. Every ship has a medical team with a doctor and at least one nurse, supported 24/7 by dedicated land-based experts. Our medical staff can conduct rapid COVID-19 tests on board and are trained in outbreak prevention and response.

Exploring on shore

Activities, landings, and shore excursions

We plan to offer shore excursions, expedition landings, and small-group expedition activities when we restart our expedition cruises. In addition to joining one of our organized activities or shore excursions, we expect that you’ll be able to explore independently in ports (where possible). Specific offerings and availability will depend on your itinerary and conditions at the time of sailing.

We follow all mandates from local governments and communities when exploring on land and adjust our plans and procedures, as needed. In some cases, this may mean restricting certain activities or independent exploration.

Safety measures on shore

We’ve adjusted our procedures for expedition landings and small group expedition activities like kayaking and hiking. These include new cleaning and disinfection measures for equipment and small boats (RIBs), social distancing, and wearing face masks when social distancing is not possible.

We work with our local partners to implement health and safety policies on all shore excursions. These may include limiting guest capacities on excursions and transfers and new cleaning and disinfection procedures.

You will be required to wear a face mask when visiting communities, both with the Expedition Team and on shore excursions. On nature landings and in wilderness areas, you may remove face masks if social distancing is possible.

Only medical-grade face masks or FFP2 face masks are allowed onboard. We will not accept fabric, homemade, face shields or visors.

Embarkation

To reduce the risk of COVID-19, we have strict requirements before embarkation. As we restart operations, Hurtigruten Expeditions plans to require:

  • Proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test completed no more than 72 hours prior to your arrival at the ship
  • Health and temperature screening, including a signed health self-declaration form You may be refused boarding if you have symptoms associated with COVID-19 or have been in close contact with someone who has a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the last 14 days. You may be otherwise subject to isolation, quarantine, or other such restrictions by authorities.
  • Negative COVID-19 rapid test provided upon embarkation
  • Proof of full vaccination for COVID-19, for all sailings with a departure date in 2021 and 2022. Guests must show proof of full vaccination with a vaccine approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). Guests must be also be considered fully vaccinated by the health authorities of each country on their sailing itinerary.

The embarkation screening process and specific requirements may vary by sailing, based on regional requirements, the latest scientific and medical advice, and conditions at the time of sailing. Specific requirements for future sailings will be announced closer to the departure date. We are still developing our plans for our Antarctica expedition cruises as the situation evolves. We will share more information as soon as possible.

Our standard documentation is still required for each expedition cruise, including a doctor’s approval for remote destinations including Antarctica, the Northwest Passage, Northeast Greenland, and transatlantic crossings.

Guests will be assigned an arrival time to check in to the ship. Floor markings will be in place to help maintain physical distancing and hand sanitizer will be available. Guests, crew, and check-in staff will be vaccinated and required to wear face masks during the check-in process.

At this time, we require guests to bring proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test no older than 72 hours. We also require a negative rapid test conducted during the embarkation process. The rapid test will be provided at embarkation.

Specific requirements may vary by sailing, based on regional requirements, the latest scientific and medical advice, and conditions at the time of sailing.

On board

Face masks are currently required for guests and crew in several situations during your cruise. Guests and crew are required to wear masks in indoor public areas, except while eating and drinking. Outside on deck, you may remove your face mask if social distancing is possible.

We will continuoulsly evaluate our mask policies as our overall health and safety procedures evolve. Policies may vary by destination, according to local requirements.

Only medical-grade face masks or FFP2 face masks are allowed onboard. We will not accept fabric, homemade, face shields or visors.

Hurtigruten Expeditions operates relatively small ships. During regular operations, our largest ships have a maximum capacity of around 530 guests. At this time, we are operating with reduced capacity on all of our ships to enable better social distancing.

Capacity restrictions vary based on the ship and may vary according to the sailing as we adjust our policies to regional requirements.

We plan to sail with reduced passenger capacity. We have also reduced the capacity of guests in public spaces such as our restaurants and lecture halls to limit crowding.

We’ve made several adjustments to our regular food and beverage service to reduce the risk of COVID-19, while still ensuring our guests enjoy our delicious onboard meals. We will continue to update these services and procedures according to our continually changing health and safety procedures.

New procedures include:

  • Reduced seating capacity and extended hours of operation in our restaurants, to enable greater distance between tables
  • New reservation system to minimize waiting lines
  • Adapted menus and services to offer individual dishes rather than self-service buffets
  • Takeout service for guests who wish to dine in their cabin.

Our Explorer Lounge and the pool bars, where offered, will operate with table service only.

At restaurant entrances, guests will find hand sanitizer and undergo a temperature check with a contactless temperature scanner. As always, our kitchens follow the highest hygiene and quality standards. We frequently clean and disinfect touchpoints in our restaurants and kitchens.

We plan to have these facilities open on all ships where they are available. Use of these facilities and certain services may be limited as we start up operations.

We have introduced new procedures in these spaces, including enhanced cleaning and disinfection procedures, and limits to guest capacity. In some cases, guests will need to book reservations in advance to reduce waiting in lines and maintain physical distancing.

We plan to offer our standard onboard expedition activities, including our Science Center and lectures, as we restart operations.

New procedures have been introduced in these public spaces, including enhanced cleaning and disinfection procedures and limits to capacities in areas such as our lecture halls. Hand sanitizer will be available and frequent touchpoints regularly cleaned.

Seating capacity in the lecture halls have been adjusted. On some ships, we offer streaming of lectures to guest cabins.

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, we have enhanced our standard practices with additional cleaning protocols based on the latest technology and medical and scientific advice.

We regularly clean and disinfect all public spaces throughout the day. We have increased the frequency of all cleaning procedures, especially for frequently touched areas.

Guest cabins are cleaned and disinfected daily. Our housekeeping staff are equipped with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and have been trained in new procedures to help reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.

Our expedition cruises sail with a small medical facility that is available any time of the day. Every ship has a medical team with a doctor and at least one nurse, supported 24/7 by dedicated land-based experts. Our medical staff are able to conduct rapid COVID-19 tests on board and are trained in outbreak prevention and response.

On shore

In ports where this is possible, we plan for guests to be able to explore on their own, in addition to joining activities or optional shore excursions organized by Hurtigruten Expeditions. In certain circumstances, exploration on your own may be restricted due to local requirements and/or conditions.

On nature landings or in \wilderness areas, guests may freely explore within the landing area designated by the Expedition Team.

Guests will be required to wear a face mask when visiting communities, both with the Expedition Team and on optional shore excursions.

On nature landings and in wilderness areas, face masks may be removed, if social distancing is possible. Face masks are also required on small boats (RIBs) when physical distancing is not possible.

We continuously evaluate our mask policies as our overall health and safety procedures evolve. Policies may vary by port, according to local requirements.

Only medical-grade face masks or FFP2 face masks are allowed onboard. We will not accept fabric, homemade, face shields or visors.

We are working with our local partners to implement new health and safety protocols on all activities on land. These may include adjusting guest capacity on excursions and buses to enable physical distancing, implementing new cleaning and disinfection procedures, and other changes to services and experiences.

We’ve adjusted our procedures for expedition landings and small-group expedition activities such as kayaking, hiking, and snowshoeing. These include new cleaning and disinfection measures for equipment and small boats (RIBs), social distancing, and masking when social distancing is not possible.

We will follow all requirements from local governments and communities when exploring on land, and adjust our plans and procedures as needed. In some cases, this may mean restricting certain activities.

As we return to operation, transfers buses will operate at reduced capacity to enable physical distancing. We have implemented new health and safety procedures with our suppliers. In addition, buses will be sanitized regularly.

COVID-19 Vaccination

Due to the emergence of the Onicron variant, passengers boarding cruises on MS Maud and MS Otto Sverdrup may be denied embarkation if they have visited any of the following countries in the last 14 days:

  • Angola
  • Botswana
  • Eswatini
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • South Africa
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe.

Yes. Hurtigruten Expeditions will require proof of vaccination for COVID-19. This policy applies to all Hurtigruten Expeditions sailings with a departure date in 2021 and 2022.

For all Hurtigruten Expedition Cruises in 2022, we require that all guests (including children under the age of 18), be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 with a WHO-approved vaccine. In addition, the vaccine and vaccine certificate must comply with the local regulations in the area of the cruise.

Regulations and travel restrictions are continually evolving. Guests are responsible for ensuring that they are considered as fully vaccinated by the health authorities of each country on the sailing, regardless of whether they plan to disembark.

Hurtigruten Expeditions reserves the right to deny embarkation to guests who do not meet the current regulations of each country on the sailing at the time of embarkation.

Hurtigruten Expeditions will continue to monitor local requirements and the latest scientific and medical guidance for future expedition cruises. If unvaccinated, travelers should consult a medical professional for health information and guidance regarding COVID-19 vaccination.

As of November, 2021, this policy applies to all Hurtigruten Expeditions sailings with a departure date in 2021 or 2022. We will continue to evaluate our policies and procedures for future Hurtigruten Expeditions sailings.

Our vaccine requirement does not apply to our Norwegian Coastal Express cruises.

For all Hurtigruten Expedition Cruises in 2021 and 2022, we require that all guests (including children under the age of 18), be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 with a WHO-approved vaccine. In addition, the vaccine and vaccine certificate must comply with the local regulations in the area of the cruise.

Hurtigruten Expeditions will continue to monitor local requirements and the latest scientific and medical guidance for future sailings to evaluate which vaccines we accept. Unvaccinated travelers should consult a medical professional for health information and advice regarding vaccination.

Regulations and travel restrictions are continually changing. Many countries have different policies on whether combining vaccines is considered full vaccination or not. In some cases, only specific combinations of the vaccines are accepted as full vaccination.

Guests are responsible for ensuring that they are considered fully vaccinated by the health authorities of each country on the sailing itinerary, regardless of whether they plan to disembark. Hurtigruten Expeditions will deny embarkation to guests who do not meet the current regulations of each country on the sailing at the time of embarkation.

Regulations and travel restrictions are continually changing. We understand that some countries currently consider individuals who can document recovery from COVID-19 to be fully vaccinated with only one dose of a two-dose vaccine.

Guests are responsible for ensuring that they are considered fully vaccinated by the health authorities of each country on the sailing itinerary, regardless of whether they plan to disembark. Hurtigruten Expeditions will deny embarkation to guests who do not meet the current regulations of each country on the sailing at the time of embarkation.

Approved forms of proof of vaccination will be confirmed before your departure date. Proof of vaccination will be required upon embarkation and may need to be presented during your expedition cruise if requested by medical staff and/or public health authorities.

For sailings departing in 2021 and 2022, we are only able to accommodate guests who are considered fully vaccinated by the health authorities of all countries on their sailing. This applies to guests of all ages, whether or not they plan to disembark.

Guests who are not able to be vaccinated are encouraged to contact Hurtigruten Expeditions to discuss options for rebooking to a future departure date.

As of July 1, 2021, COVID-19 vaccination is required only for guests on sailings with a departure date in 2021 and 2022. Please contact Hurtigruten Expeditions as soon as possible to learn about your options. 

If your booking was made prior to the adoption of this policy on July 1, 2021, and you are unable to be vaccinated in time for your departure date or provide the required proof of vaccination, please contact Hurtigruten Expeditions to discuss your options for a refund or rebooking to a future departure.

We have made arrangements to offer COVID-19 vaccines to all Hurtigruten Expeditions crew members. As we restart operations, all of our ships will be sailing with fully vaccinated crew and guests.

In addition, our crew members will follow a number of stringent protocols at embarkation and during our cruises, including testing, quarantine, social distancing, and regular monitoring while on board.

General

We expect Hurtigruten Expeditions guests to act with respect to fellow travelers, to our employees and partners, and the communities we visit.

Guests must comply with all applicable travel or quarantine restrictions in place at the time of sailing, in addition to the protocols Hurtigruten Expeditions has implemented.

Our latest embarkation requirements can be found on our website. The specific requirements for your sailing will be shared with you before your departure. These requirements may include testing, a mandatory health self-declaration form, and other screening procedures to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.

Hurtigruten Expeditions will continue to monitor local requirements and the latest scientific guidelines as they continue to evolve. All of our health and safety protocols, including embarkation requirements, will be adjusted to the conditions at the time of each sailing.

All guests are required to follow our embarkation requirements.

These requirements may include testing for COVID-19, a mandatory health self-declaration form, and other screening procedures to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. All of our health and safety protocols, including embarkation requirements, will be adjusted to conditions at the time of each sailing.

Yes, at this time, face masks will be required for our guests and crew in several situations during your cruise.

Guests are required to wear masks in indoor public areas, except while eating and drinking. Outside on deck, you may remove your face mask if social distancing is possible.

When visiting communities, guests must wear a face mask. On nature landings and in wilderness areas, face masks may be removed if social distancing is possible.

We will continuously evaluate our policies for face masks as our overall health and safety procedures evolve. Policies may vary by destination, according to local requirements.

Only medical-grade face masks or FFP2 face masks are allowed onboard. We will not accept fabric, homemade, face shields or visors.

In addition to screening upon embarkation, we monitor everyone on board throughout the cruise. We have installed contactless temperature scanners around the ship and at the entrance to our restaurants for daily guest screenings. We also regularly screen the health and temperature screening of our crew.

Our medical staff is able to conduct rapid COVID-19 tests on board. Guests may be required to take a COVID-19 test during the cruise. This could occur if required by local authorities or if a guest experiences symptoms of COVID-19.

Guests are requested to self-isolate in their cabin and call reception immediately if they experience any COVID-19 symptoms, including cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fever or chills, new loss of taste or smell, vomiting, or diarrhea. Our medical staff is able to conduct rapid COVID-19 tests on board. If required, we will initiate our robust outbreak prevention and response procedures.

If guests receive notice through contact tracing of having been in close contact with a person infected with COVID-19, they must self-isolate in their cabin and call reception immediately. Our medical staff is able to conduct rapid COVID-19 tests on board. If required, we will initiate our robust outbreak prevention and response procedures.

We understand that some guests may currently need a negative COVID-19 test to return home or continue international travels after a voyage. We do conduct COVID-19 tests onboard as part of ongoing health monitoring and our outbreak prevention and response plan. However, at this time we do not provide test documentation for guests’ onward travel unless you’re sailing on MS Fram or MS Roald Amundsen to Antarctica.

Travel restrictions around the world are constantly evolving, and as we plan for the restart of our operations, we are considering these needs and our options to support them.

 

 

We’ll be continually updating our measures according to the latest medical and scientific advice and technology available.

As we restart expedition operations in destinations around the world, our health and safety protocols may vary from sailing to sailing, based on the evolving requirements of local authorities and communities.

We are currently refining our health and safety procedures for the upcoming Antarctica season and the unique requirements of operating in this destination. This will likely involve additional mandatory measures, especially given that hotels, transfers and charter flights are involved.

Guests will continue to receive travel documents three to four weeks before departure. These travel documents will include important information about embarkation, arrival and departure, and health and safety procedures.