A cruise liner bound for Belfast in May has had its itinerary changed to avoid two upcoming port calls in Italy, following that country’s extraordinary national lockdown measures to control the coronavirus pandemic.
However, with quarantine extended to the whole of Italy by its government this past Monday (9 March), MSC Cruises has rerouted the ship to instead dock in Marseille in 28 March and Barcelona on 29 March.
The MSC Splendida is expected to arrive in Belfast Lough on Friday 1 May via Hamburg.
The Belfast Telegraph also reports that a major cruise operator hit hard by Covid-19 outbreaks, and which was due to bring 5,000 people to Belfast on Friday 8 May, has suspended operations for the next eight weeks.
Princess Cruises, whose Diamond Princess in Japan and Grand Princess in California were subjected to quarantine, also operates the Regal Princess — which is at present approaching Cozumel in Mexico to end its current voyage.