Poseidon Expeditions - your polar cruise operator

COVID-19 UPDATES

Poseidon Expeditions’ Coronavirus Travel Policy

Updated: April 3, 2020

Because of current global travel restrictions and other coronavirus-related challenges in getting to the Sea Spirit for embarkation, our May 8-20, 2020 British Isles: Legendary History & Wild Nature cruise has been rescheduled to 2021. Please contact your travel manager to transfer your reservation to the 2021 departure. When transferring your May 8 reservation, 100% of the net amount received to-date for the 2020 voyage will be applied to the similar departure in 2021 (May 10 - May 22, 2021). The rate you paid for your 2020 cruise, including any discounts, will remain the same for the transferred booking to 2021. We value your business with us during these unprecedented times, and are also pleased to provide you with a complimentary $250 shipboard credit for your 2021 cruise.

For Summer 2020 cruises beyond the May 8 trip, Poseidon Expeditions remains committed to its published schedule at this time. We have recently adjusted our re-booking, deposit and final payment policy, as detailed below: 

Arctic 2020 Season – Sea Spirit

For new and existing bookings for the Arctic season 2020, the Coronavirus-related conditions noted in our March 25 update are still in effect, with the following exception:

  • When transferring your reservation to a 2021 departure, 100% of the net paid amount to-date will be used in full as a cruise credit for the transferred reservation. The rate paid for the 2020 cruise, including any discounts, will remain the same for the transferred booking to your 2021 cruise of the same length.**
    You will also receive a complimentary $250 shipboard credit.
** Contact your travel manager if your 2020 Arctic cruise is of a different length than the 2021 cruise you will be transferring your reservation to.

Antarctica 2020-21 Season and North Pole 2020 Season: conditions in our March 25 update are still in effect.

March 25, 2020

While Poseidon Expeditions remains committed at this time to its schedule of cruises in the Arctic and Antarctica this season, we have revised our re-booking, deposit and final payment policy accordingly, as detailed below: 

Arctic 2020 Season – Sea Spirit

For new and existing bookings* for the Arctic season 2020, the revised Coronavirus-related conditions below are now in effect:

  • You may rebook or transfer your reservation to a different departure, beginning from 60 and up to 7 days prior to the departure date;

  • No rebooking fees are applied; the net paid amount to date will be used in full as a cruise credit for the transferred reservation, with no portion refundable (regular cancellation policy does not apply);

  • The rebooking is to be made for future Poseidon Expedition cruises during the Arctic season 2021; you may cancel your 2020 cruise, but regular terms and conditions apply;

  • The rebooking or transfer can be made only once; final payment, if not already made, is due 90 days prior to the 2021 departure date;

  • Final payment conditions for 2020 cruises are changed from 90 days to 60 days prior to the departure date; and

  • For new 2020 season bookings the deposit is reduced to 10% from 20% of the cruise fare; 

Antarctic 2020–21 Season – Sea Spirit

For new and existing bookings* for the Antarctic season, October 2020 – March 2021, the conditions below are in effect:  
  • Final payment conditions are changed from 90 days to 60 days prior to the departure date;
  • For new bookings the deposit is reduced to 10% from 20% of the cruise fare;

North Pole 2020 Season – 50 Years of Victory

At the present time, Russia has banned the arrival of foreign nationals into the country until May 1st. Visa applications are not accepted until May 1st as well. We are closely monitoring the situation and will keep you informed about any new conditions.
  • Final payment conditions are changed from 90 days to 60 days prior to the departure date.*  

* The above conditions are applicable for individual bookings only. New and existing group bookings are to be discussed on an individual basis. 


March 20, 2020

Poseidon Expeditions successfully completed its 2019-2020 Antarctic season March 19th, and our next scheduled voyage is the British Isles cruise from May 8th to May 20th.

The COVID-19 pandemic is a global crisis that is evolving rapidly, with new information appearing daily, if not hourly. Our team is following all relevant news and travel restrictions and will continue to update this policy.

However, we also would advise you to monitor advisories for your specific country of residence:
At the present time, all of Poseidon Expeditions’ scheduled 2020 sub-Arctic and Arctic voyages, beginning May 8, remain on schedule and operational. We will continue to closely monitor the situation, and update this page and promptly notify booked passengers as the situation warrants.

Please make sure to check back 30 days before your booked cruise for the most current, relevant information.

Please note that the updated policy for booked travelers will be available early next week.



March 5, 2020

The safety, security and health of our passengers, staff and crew are our top priority. Following the evolving situation of the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), we have adopted this policy for all our voyages until further notice. We would like to share guidelines we are following and the current measures being taken, hoping to provide some comfort and reassurance to our partners and guests regarding this quickly evolving situation.

Our expedition ship Sea Spirit operates cruises in the Arctic and Antarctica and is managed by CMI (Cruise Management International). Working closely with VIKAND, their medical service provider, a leading expert in global maritime medical operations and healthcare, CMI and Poseidon are monitoring all of the relevant information published by the WHO (World Health Organization), CDC (Center for Disease Control) and CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association). The organizations curating responsible polar tourism (IAATO and AECO – Poseidon Expeditions is a member of both) are also recognizing CLIA recommendations as the standard to follow.

These are the practices currently implemented:

1.       Embarkation policy for passengers, staff and crew

Anyone who...

  • Has traveled from or through South Korea, Iran, Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and any municipality in Italy subject to lockdown measures, or

  • Is currently subject to health monitoring for possible exposure to Coronavirus or who has been in contact with or helped care for anyone suspected or diagnosed as having Coronavirus,

... within 14 days prior to their embarkation (the period of incubation), even without presenting relevant symptoms, will not be permitted to board the ship.

In addition, anyone presenting a temperature above 38°C (100.4°F) at the mandatory pre-screening prior to embarkation and are considered a risk by the ship’s doctor and captain will also be denied boarding. The risk will be assessed in line with our internal protocol and reviewing the information provided in the compulsory health questionnaire, associated symptoms, recently frequented geographic areas, etc.

What this means for some passengers: unfortunately, those fall under the conditions above will be denied boarding the Sea Spirit.

2.       Preventative measures

Mandatory pre-screening procedures and questionnaires are now in effect for anyone coming on board. Our passengers, staff, crew and all ship visitors will be subjected to a medical questionnaire, travel history and pre-boarding medical screening. Non-essential external visitors to the ship are kept to a minimum.

Our medical staff doing the assessments have been vetted and approved by VIKAND and have all the diagnostic tools available to detect relevant signs of illness. The procedure will take approximately 3-5 minutes per person. It will include revisiting the filled-out questionnaire and checking the person’s temperature, throat and oxygen saturation.

In case any relevant symptoms are detected, specifically, a temperature above 38°C (100.4°F), the person will be forwarded to the local hospital for a more detailed examination. It might include a blood test, an X-ray and a C-reactive protein test. Unfortunately, Poseidon Expeditions will not cover any expenses for testing and possible treatment of passengers in local hospitals. These expenses may be reimbursed by your insurance company. Please make sure to check this before leaving home.

Anyone presenting a temperature above 38°C (100.4°F) at the mandatory pre-screening prior to embarkation and are considered a risk by the ship’s doctor and captain will be denied boarding.

These measures are mandatory. While they may seem inconvenient for some passengers, they in fact are implemented to help ensure the safety of all other passengers and crew aboard the Sea Spirit. Those who fail to participate in the screening will not be allowed to board.

3.       Management on board

In addition to the medical screenings for all passengers, staff, crew and visitors, and other measures prior to embarkation stated above, the ship has implemented Level #2 for Outbreak Prevention. These Level #2 practices have been recommended by the CDC as a preventative measure for COVID-19. They include:

  • all cleaning is to be raised above the standard levels and thoroughly checked,

  • increased sanitizing of all contact surfaces such as handrails, tables, chairs, etc., in all public spaces and cabins,

  • Chlorine levels throughout the ship are increased to 1000 ppm.

Our staff and crew are keeping the vessel in complete compliance with all recommendations.

4.       Port access and itineraries

We maintain close contact with health professionals and clinics in the ports, the port authorities and the government administration in the countries that we visit. We are continually assessing and modifying policies and procedures as developments emerge.

Our expedition team is continuously monitoring all of the itineraries and upcoming ports-of-call in order to assure a great cruise experience for our passengers. Should any ports issue restrictions, or if any areas included in the itinerary are deemed as potentially dangerous, we will be sure to make adjustments. So far, none of the itineraries have been affected.

5.       Updated policy for booked travelers

Passengers who are denied boarding the ship due to reasons described in the embarkation policy above can use their NET paid cruise fare not earlier than 14 days prior to their scheduled embarkation as a credit toward another departure offered by Poseidon Expeditions.

International passengers using a connecting airport in one the above mentioned countries and regions, including any Italian airport, or transiting via these airports to the ports of embarkation for their scheduled Poseidon cruise, must rebook their flights avoiding these airports. Failure to comply is no grounds for any cruise credit or reimbursement.

Those passengers who live in a country, whose nationals are banned from entering the country of the embarkation or disembarkation ports of their scheduled Poseidon cruise, may use their net paid cruise fare as a credit toward another departure offered by Poseidon Expeditions if these restrictions are still in place 14 days before departure.


Thank you for taking the time to review this important information. As there will be further developments in the matter, Poseidon Expeditions will continue to update this policy in order to further mitigate risk. We wish you safe travels and we are always available to address any questions or concerns.

Relaxed Reservations Policy for New 2021 Arctic and 2021-22 Antarctic Travel

While much of our attention is on the near-term and getting through the worst of COVID-19 travel bans and restrictions, we’re hoping that the new reservation policy below will help you start planning your future polar trip aboard our 114-passenger Sea Spirit.

With this in mind – and to further encourage you to reserve the departure date and cabin category that most suit you – we’ve relaxed our preliminary hold and deposit policy for all 2021 Arctic and 2021-22 Antarctic voyages **:

  • We will hold all new reservations free of charge for 2 months.
  • A reduced deposit of just 10% is required at the end of the two month period to confirm the reservation.
  • Final payment isn’t due until 90 days prior to the departure in 2021-22.

Note: great early booking savings remain in place for all 2021 Arctic and 2021-22 Antarctic voyages through October 31, 2020.

** This offer is valid for any new reservation for any departure during the Arctic 2021 season or the Antarctic 2021-22 season, based on availability.


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