River Cruising is a vital part of European tourism. After the full collapse of this industry immediately at the beginning of the break out of COVD-19 in Europe the sector now is working on its exit strategy. For this purpose it released guidelines for a minimum standard for the resumption of river cruises in Europe after COVID-19.
Last week the European Commission presented a package of guidelines and recommendations to help Member States gradually lift travel restrictions and allow tourism businesses to reopen, after months of lockdown, while respecting necessary health precautions. The package also aims to help the EU tourism sector recover from the pandemic, by supporting businesses and ensuring that Europe continues to be the number one destination for visitors.
EBU and IGRC, together representing the major part of the European river cruise industry – welcoming the package by the European Commission – have undertaken to follow up these recommendations.
Today they released their guidelines for a minimum standard for the resumption of river cruises which should allow a harmonised and coordinated recovery from the pandemic and restarting river cruise business in Europe.
These guidelines address all major parts of the business, taking into account the various national restrictions. They include a.o. minimum standards regarding distances, disinfection, hygiene in all areas of the vessel (incl. kitchen and rooms of the crew) and address reporting in case of illness. Aim of these measures is the protection of passengers and crew members under all given circumstances. The measures are strongly related to the hotel business. The guidelines provide the relevant information to the services on shore to prepare for the taking up of the business.
The river cruise sector aims to take up the business as soon as possible, taking into account these high security measures on board.