Safer together

We have introduced measures on all our Hurtigruten Expedition ships designed to reduce the risk of COVID-19.

Your safety is our priority

The safety of our guests, our employees and the communities we visit is our priority. We’ve partnered with experts in health and safety to design and implement protocols and procedures across our expedition fleet. *  

We continuously evaluate our health and safety procedures and update the information on this page. Therefore, the procedures are subject to change.  Specific measures may vary per sailing, local regulations, updates in scientific and medical advice, and the conditions at the time of sailing. We will do our best to inform you of the specific measures in place for your cruise before departure.  

        Third-party certification

When we relaunched our operations in 2021, our onboard health and safety procedures were third-party accredited by Bureau Veritas (BV), a leading independent certification body. BV conducted a strict and thorough safety audit regarding hygiene, sanitation and limiting the spread of infectious diseases on board.   

What we do

Embarkation screening 

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

Health and safety protocols 

In addition to enhanced cleaning and disinfection, we’ve introduced specific COVID-19protocols, including face mask regulations, capacity limitations and other measures. 

Continuous monitoring to identify risks and take action 

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

Onboard Medical Centre with high-quality care and expertise 

We’ve expanded our onboard medical capabilities. Our expedition ships feature a well-equipped Medical Centre 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 you may be subject to, whether at home or your expedition destination.

COVID-19-rejsekort

Brug vores interaktive kort til at holde dig opdateret om, hvilke områder der er åbne i forhold til at rejse og få detaljer om eventuelle, potentielle indrejsekrav.

 

Please note that our embarkation procedures and requirements may be stricter than national regulations. Therefore, it’s important that you read the information below, where we provide an overview of our procedures and requirements.   

Monitoring and testing

We ask all guests to be alert for symptoms of COVID-19 and follow procedures for informing our crew if you develop any symptoms.  

Joining your Hurtigruten Expedition

Embarkation requirements

Below you can find the key embarkation requirements for your cruise. The embarkation screening process may vary per sailing due to different local regulations, updates in scientific and medical advice, and the conditions at the time of sailing. Instructions from local health authorities and changes in legislation may also impact our procedures and how we handle specific cases. Before your departure date, we will do our best to inform you of the latest requirements for your cruise if material changes are made before the sailing.  

Vaccination for expedition cruises 

For all Hurtigruten Expeditions Cruises in 2022, we require all guests aged 5 years and over to have completed their primary vaccination series  against COVID-19 with  WHO-approved vaccines. You are considered to have completed your primary vaccination series 14 days after receiving the final dose of a WHO-approved vaccine. Please note: A primary vaccination series refers to the initial number of doses required. It does not include booster doses. For example, the primary series of Moderna or Pfizer consists of two doses.

For all European sailings, guests who completed their primary vaccination series more than 270 days ago must present proof of a booster shot. For all North American sailings, guests who completed their primary vaccination series more than 150 days ago must present proof of a booster shot. The vaccine and vaccine certificate must comply with the local regulations in the area of the cruise. 

Regulations and travel restrictions are constantly changing. You’re responsible for ensuring that you’re considered fully vaccinated by health authorities of each country visited during the sailing, regardless of whether you plan to disembark.    

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

Hurtigruten Expeditions will continue to monitor local requirements and scientific and medical guidance for future expedition cruises.   

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

You should seek health information and advice from a medical professional regarding vaccination.  

This vaccine requirement does not apply to Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express voyages.  

At check-in and embarkation 

Our check-in processes have been modified to enable embarkation screening. You will be assigned an embarkation time before your departure date **. We have strict requirements during embarkation to reduce the risk of infection, including: 

  • Health and temperature screening **, including a signed health self-declaration form. You may be refused boarding if you have symptoms compatible with COVID-19, have been in close contact with someone who has a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the last 14 days, or are otherwise subject to isolation, quarantine, or other such restrictions by authorities.    

Show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination (see above).

Test requirements may depend on where you are travelling from:  

If you're travelling from a European port, all guests aged 5 years and over you will take a mandatory lateral flow/antigen test at the port. If the test result is negative, you will be allowed to board.  The test costs 65 EUR and is charged to your onboard account. Onboard credits can be used to pay for the test. 

All guests aged 5 years and over will take a mandatory lateral flow/antigen test at the hotel. If the test result is negative, you will be allowed to board.  The test costs 30 EUR and is charged to your onboard account. Onboard credits can be used to pay for the test.

All guests aged 5 years and over must show proof of a negative antigen/lateral flow test taken within 72 hours before embarkation. The test certificate must be issued by a lab or test provider.  

If you are a resident of Longyearbyen, you will be tested on the pier before embarkation. 

If you’re embarking in Canada or the USA, all guests aged 5 years and over  will take a mandatory lateral flow/antigen test at specific test centres in Vancouver, Anchorage or Seward. If you embark in Nome, you will take a COVID-19 test in Vancouver before boarding the charter flight to Alaska. If you embark in Cambridge Bay, you will take a COVID-19 test in Edmonton before boarding the charter flight to Cambridge Bay. The test costs 75 EUR and is charged to your onboard account. Onboard credits can be used to pay for the test.

 

Test requirements for sailings in West Africa will be published closer to departure.

You cannot travel if you test positive or inconclusive. If your result comes back positive, we are, of course, happy to rebook you to a future sailing.    

To show proof of recovery from COVID-19, guests must present a certificate of a positive PCR or lateral flow/antigen test dated no less than 10 days and no more than 90 days before embarkation. Such guests will then be exempt from the testing mentioned above. Please note: We require all guests to comply with our vaccination policy, even if they have recovered from COVID-19. 

You may be required to submit certain forms during the embarkation. You’ll receive more information in the travel documents, which are sent to you 3-4 weeks before your expedition cruise.    

Our standard forms are still required for each expedition cruise, such as a doctor’s approval for remote destinations including Antarctica, Northwest Passage, Northeast Greenland and transatlantic crossings.    

Denial of boarding – exclusion policy  

During the embarkation process, you may be denied boarding if you do not fulfil the requirements in our procedures. We particularly draw attention to the following:  

  • Guests who do not comply with the vaccination policy will be denied embarkation to the vessel.  
  • Guests who test positive for COVID-19 or have inconclusive test results will be denied embarkation to the vessel. The same applies to guests who have been in close contact with an infected person.   
  • Following a medical assessment, guests may be denied embarking the vessel if they experience new onset symptoms of the following:     

    • Cough 
    • Shortness of breath 
    • Difficulty breathing 
    • Fever or chills 
    • Loss of taste or smell 
    • Vomiting or Diarrhoea  

Life onboard

We look forward to welcoming you on board! 

We monitor the health of everyone on board throughout the cruise. Around the ship and at the entrance of our restaurants, we have installed contactless temperature scanners to screen guests daily. We also operate regular health and temperature screening of the crew.  

Face masks onboard

We currently require all guests aged 6 years and over and crew to wear an FFP2 (without an exhalation valve)/N95/KN95 face mask when moving around the ship and during embarkation and disembarkation**. We do not accept fabric, homemade, face shields or visors.  

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 high touch 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 of the highlights of a Hurtigruten Expedition is the wide array of expedition activities we provide onboard, from lectures to activities in our Science Center. We’ve introduced enhanced cleaning and disinfection measures for public areas such as our Science Center. Hand sanitizer will be available and touch points are regularly cleaned.  

Hotel and wellness facilities

Our pool, spa, gym, and other wellness facilities are open on all ships where they’re available. Use of these facilities and certain services may be limited.   

We’ve introduced procedures in these spaces, including enhanced cleaning and disinfection and limited guest capacity. In some cases, you’ll need to make a reservation in advance.  

Medical services

Our expedition ships feature a small onboard hospital available at all hours. 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 a rapid or PCR COVID-19 *** test on board and are trained in outbreak prevention and response.  

 

Testing

You may be required to be tested on board during the cruise. Additional testing may be required, for example if a positive case is detected during your cruise.  

Please note: You’re responsible for making sure that you comply with all entry requirements.

Positive cases, isolation and quarantine

Guests are requested to self-isolate in their cabin and call reception immediately if they experience any COVID-19 symptoms, such as a cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fever or chills, new loss of taste or smell, vomiting or diarrhoea. Our medical staff will conduct a rapid COVID-19 test on board if guests or crew develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19. If required, we have robust procedures in place for outbreak prevention and response.  

Because the COVID-19 pandemic is developing, we are assessing our procedures for isolation and quarantine. Our procedures are based on local legislation, medical advice and risk assessments. The isolation and quarantine periods may be reduced or removed and may vary depending on the location of your expedition cruise. 

Currently, we operate with the following standards:

  • Guests who show symptoms and test positive for COVID-19 will isolate in their cabin for 6 x 24-hour periods from the time of their positive test.
  • However, guests in isolation will take a lateral flow/antigen test on day 3 and 4. The guest can leave isolation on day 4 if both tests return a negative result.
  • Close contacts do not need to quarantine. However, they are required to take one lateral flow/antigen test per day for five days after being deemed a close contact.

Alternatively, guests who test positive or are defined as a close contact can choose to leave the ship at their own expense. 

Positive COVID-19 guests and close contacts with symptoms   
If your isolation period is scheduled to end in US waters, the following procedures apply:

  • Guests who test positive for COVID-19 and close contacts who show symptoms will move to a single isolation cabin where they’ll stay for 5 x 24-hour periods from symptoms onset.
  • Asymptomatic guests who test positive for COVID-19 will isolate for 5 x 24-hour periods from the date of their first positive test.  

Guests can only leave isolation on day 5 if the following criteria are met:

  • They are fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication
  • Other symptoms have improved
  • They receive two negative antigen/lateral flow results, with at least 24 hours and no more than 48 hours between tests.
  • If either test taken during isolation returns a positive result, the guest will continue to isolate. They will isolate until day 10 or until two consecutive negative test results (with at least 24 hours and no more than 48 hours between tests) are received, whichever comes first.

Upon leaving isolation
After leaving isolation, guests are required to follow certain rules until the 10th day after symptoms onset or testing positive (whichever is applicable):

  • They must dine in their cabin
  • They must continue to wear a well-fitting mask when outside of their cabin

Asymptomatic close contacts
Asymptomatic close contact will not have to quarantine. However, they are required to take one lateral flow/antigen test per day for five days after being identified as a close contact. They must also dine in their cabin and wear a face mask at all times, including in a shared cabin and while outdoors. Asymptomatic close contacts can join excursions provided they wear a face mask at all times. 

Close contacts   

  • A close contact does not have to quarantine, provided they test negative with one lateral/flow antigen test, as all guests and crew are vaccinated.  
  • The test should be conducted as soon as possible after the guest is identified as a close contact. 

Positive COVID-19 test result 

If your isolation period is scheduled to end in Canadian waters, the following procedures apply: 

  • Guests who test positive for COVID-19 will move to a single isolation cabin where they will stay for a minimum of 10 x 24-hour periods from symptoms onset.   
  • To leave on day 10, the guest must be fever-free without the use of fever-reducing medication.  

Exploring on shore

Activities, landings and shore excursions 

We plan to offer shore excursions, expedition landings, and small group expedition activities. In addition to joining one of our organised activities or shore excursions, you’ll be able to explore independently in ports where this is possible. Specific offerings and availability will depend on your itinerary and the conditions at the time of sailing.   

We’ll follow all mandates from local governments and communities when exploring on land, adjusting our plans and procedures as needed. This may mean some activities or independent exploration are restricted in some cases.  

Safety measures on shore

We’ve adjusted procedures for our expedition landings and small group expedition activities. These include new cleaning and disinfection measures for equipment, buses and expedition boats. We work closely  with our local partners to implement health and safety policies on all shore excursions. These may include limiting guest capacities on excursions and transport and new cleaning and disinfection procedures.   

When visiting communities, either with the Expedition Team or on a shore excursion, you’re required to wear a face mask. On nature landings and in wilderness areas, you may remove your face mask if physical distancing is possible.   

Disclaimer

* Even with infection control procedures, there are some unavoidable risks to passengers and property associated with expedition travel. These may, for example, include illness or disease caused by exposure to viruses, bacteria or pathogens, including the coronavirus, despite screening and testing and other steps taken by us to reduce these risks.  

If someone on board a ship tests positive for COVID-19 and/or develops symptoms of COVID-19, local authorities may require a 7-day or longer quarantine of all individuals on the ship, either on board or at another location. Hurtigruten Expeditions has no control over such requirements and must adhere to orders made by the local authorities.  

Hurtigruten Expeditions is not liable for any claims, demands, and/or damages arising from, or relating to, any exposure to the coronavirus and/or the contraction of any illness or disease as a result of any such exposure, including but not limited to COVID-19, by passengers or any other person. 

**Not applicable to expeditions on board MS Santa Cruz II
***PCR testing is not available on board MS Santa Cruz II.