travel requirements for SAUDI ARABIA & red sea cruises

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

BEFORE YOUR CRUISE

The below details are subject to change. It’s every guest’s responsibility to verify the travel requirements before the cruise departure. 

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.

 

For current sailings and through the next months, please note that all Guests will need to follow all of these requirements to be allowed on board: 


  • All Guests (2 years old and over) need to provide a certificate of a negative RT-PCR test taken within 72 hours before embarkation. If you embark on your cruise at 15:00 on a Saturday, you should take your COVID-19 test on the Wednesday as of 15:00.

  • All Guests (12 years old and over) have to be fully vaccinated and present a vaccination certificate indicating that complete vaccination / booster has taken place within the last 9 months.

     


    Guests are considered fully vaccinated if they received the full set of vaccine shots more than 14 days before the start of the cruise with an approved Covid-19 vaccine including Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson. A “mix-and-match” combination of the above list of vaccines is accepted.


    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 results certificate or vaccination or recovery 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 results.

 

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 over 12 years old must register their vaccination data online at most 72 hours before arrival to Saudi Arabia.

     

    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. 

 

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 the MSC COVID-19 Protection plan for cruises for the whole Summer 2022 on this website. A proof of the specific COVID-19 coverage insurance policy - which must be in 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

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 / booster has taken place within the last 9 months.
     
  • A proof of COVID-19 insurance clearly showing the COVID-19 risks coverage
  • A 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 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.

 

French residents returning from any country outside the European Community must show a certificate of a negative RT-PCR or antigen test taken within 48 hours prior to arrival. The test can be completed on board at the cost of 80,00 Euros.


Swiss passport holders and residents returning to Switzerland are required to show a certificate or a negative RT-PCR test and submit to additional testing between Day 4 and Day 7 upon returning to Switzerland. Guests are also obligated to notify the Authority of Health in their Canton. The test can be completed on board at the cost of 80,00 Euros.


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, and self-isolate on arrival and until the result of the day 2 test is known.

 

Italian authorities require all international Guests travelling to Italy to show proof of a negative antigen test taken within 24h prior to arrival in Italy or a negative RT-PCR test taken within 48 hours prior to arrival in Italy.


To allow a safe return home to our Guests in compliance with national regulations, 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 the FAQ section.