Virgin Voyages was supposed to officially open this month with a celebration in New York and Miami. Grand opening events and the initial voyage were supposed to take place later in March. However, the declaration of a pandemic has caused Virgin Voyages to postpone these celebrations.
The coronavirus pandemic, or COVID-19, has been rapidly spreading around the globe and has disrupted cruise lines, airlines, as well as other forms of travel. Two cruise ships from Princess Cruises have already been stricken with passengers having COVID-19, and this has placed a lot of pressure on the cruise industry to take precautions to help stop the spread of the virus.
Virgin Voyages just had its test voyage that included 850 passengers. A rep from the company stated that all passengers were healthy and that there were no COVID-19 cases associated with the ship. However, the cruise line has decided to postpone its launch so that it can debut in better times.
At this time, Virgin Voyages is planning for the launch of its cruise line with celebrations in July and the first cruise taking place on August 7. The company feels that by this time, the brunt of the pandemic should be over.
All passengers that were booked on voyages before the August 7 launch date are being offered a full refund and a 25 percent additional credit towards a future cruise. If these passengers forego the refund and rebook their cruise instead, Virgin Voyages will apply a 200 percent credit to their account. That's not all, those who make their rebooking will receive a $500 onboard credit.