Preparing to sail - before you board.

Correct as of 15 September 2022.

Find out all you need to know to prepare for your upcoming voyage by scrolling down this page, or by selecting the shortcuts below to find the information you're looking for.

Pre-cruise checklist.

Remember to do the following before you travel:

  • Check your details are up to date in My Cunard.
  • Link your booking with your travelling group (if relevant).
  • Arrange appropriate travel insurance and have proof of your policy.
  • Obtain evidence of your Covid-19 vaccination status.
  • Print boarding passes and luggage labels from My Cunard.
  • Pre-book on board activities in My Cunard.
  • Complete the Health Declaration in My Cunard between one and three days before your holiday.
  • For guests visiting Canada, complete a Passenger Locator Form (visit our webpage for guidance on where and how to do this).
  • Organise your Covid-19 test if required, to be taken before arrival at the terminal (please check your embarkation port requirements on our At the terminal guide).
  • We’d like to remind you that it's important to stay up to date with the latest travel requirements relating to all aspects of your holiday. It is your responsibility to organise and complete all documentation and testing requirements, therefore please ensure you are aware of, and compliant with, the latest Government guidance for travelling. This includes travel to your port of embarkation and your return home. The guidance may change with little warning. For the latest government guidance please visit the UK Government website.
  • During your holiday, destinations on your itinerary may have specific documentation, testing or shore experience requirements. For more information please visit our going ashore section.
  • If you live outside of the UK, ensure you’re aware of, and have pre-booked, all Covid-19 tests that may be required when returning home to your country of residence.
  • Pack face masks and hand sanitiser.

If you embark at a port outside of the UK, it’s your responsibility to meet all entry requirements for that country at the time of sailing. We can’t accept responsibility if you’re denied entry to a country because you don’t meet its entry requirements.

Essential documentation.

Some documents needed to board our ships are the same, but some are new or have undergone recent changes. Check the sections below to ensure you have what you need to get through our cruise terminals and begin your voyage smoothly.

Vaccination and testing policy.

We have made some changes to our vaccination policy, and in addition self-testing prior to travel will change from ‘mandatory’ to ‘highly recommended’ for vaccinated guests on the majority of Cunard voyages. Some voyages will have enhanced testing requirements due to the length of cruise, ports of call, or the ship’s onward destination. Only guests sailing on these longer or more complex itineraries, will be required to have an observed or in-person lateral flow/antigen test and provide a fit-to-travel certificate before departure.

To see which category your voyage falls into please check your cruise number here.

Please note, we have only categorised voyages departing up to and including 23 December 2022 at this stage. The vaccination and testing policy for voyages departing after these dates will be published shortly and we will be communicating these details to any booked guests to confirm the requirements.

Standard requirements for the majority of voyages.

Below is our vaccination and testing policy for the voyage numbers listed here.

 

Covid-19 vaccinations required

Covid-19 test recommended

(to be organised by the guest and taken in the three days before travelling to the embarkation terminal)

Fully vaccinated*

(a minimum of 14 days prior to travel)

Plus booster if applicable^

(a minimum of seven days prior to travel)
Guests aged 18 years and over
Children aged five-17 years who are fully vaccinated*
Children aged five-17 years who are not fully vaccinated #
Children aged four years and under

 

#Guests aged 17 years and under are not required to be vaccinated, however guests aged 5-17 years who are not fully vaccinated must take a Covid‑19 lateral flow/antigen test in the three days before, or on the day of your ship’s departure. You’ll no longer need to provide a test certificate for these guests, but you must be able to provide photo evidence of your negative test if asked (simply write the guest’s name and the date of testing on a piece of paper and include in the photo along with the test showing a negative result).

Guests will also be asked to confirm that a test has been taken, with a negative result, as part of the pre‑boarding health declaration at the cruise terminal.

For your voyage all guests aged 18 years and over need to be fully vaccinated* with an approved Covid-19 vaccine a minimum of 14 days prior to travel.

^If more than 270 days (calculated from the last day of the cruise) have passed since the full completion of a vaccination course, a booster vaccine will also be needed and must be administered a minimum of seven days prior to travel.

Guests who have had one booster vaccine, regardless of the date, are considered fully vaccinated. At this time, a second booster vaccination is not required, however, we strongly recommend all guests to have booster vaccinations at the earliest opportunity, should they be available to them, in order to comply with evolving vaccine policies from the countries we visit.

*The definition of ‘fully vaccinated’ is having completed an approved (by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), European Medicines Agency (EMA) or the World Health Organization’s Emergency Use Listing (WHO EUL)) two-dose Covid - 19 vaccination course, or the approved single-dose Janssen COVID19 vaccine (plus a booster if applicable).

Voyages with additional requirements.

Below is our vaccination and testing policy for the voyage numbers listed here.

 

Covid-19 vaccinations required for voyages with enhanced requirements

Covid-19 test required

(to be organised by the guest and taken within 2 days before travelling to the embarkation terminal)

Fully vaccinated*

(a minimum of 14 days prior to travel)

Plus booster if applicable^

(a minimum of seven days prior to travel)
Guests aged 18 years and over
Children aged five-17 years who are fully vaccinated*
Children aged five-11 years who are not fully vaccinated #
Children aged four years and under

 

#Guests under 12 years of age who are not fully vaccinated may be required to take an additional test at the terminal.

We still require all guests aged 12 years and over to be fully vaccinated*, with a recognised COVID-19 vaccine, a minimum of 14 days before travelling.

^For guests aged 18 years and over, if more than 270 days (calculated from the last day of the cruise) have passed since the full completion of a vaccination course, a booster vaccine will also be needed and must be administered a minimum of seven days prior to travel.

Guests who have had one booster vaccine, regardless of the date, are considered fully vaccinated. At this time, a second booster vaccination is not required, however, we strongly recommend all guests to have booster vaccinations at the earliest opportunity, should they be available to them, in order to comply with evolving vaccine policies from the countries we visit.

Guests under 12 years of age do not need to be vaccinated but please note the testing requirements above.

Guests aged four years and under remain exempt from all pre-travel vaccination and testing requirements.

*The definition of ‘fully vaccinated’ is having completed an approved (by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), European Medicines Agency (EMA) or the World Health Organization’s Emergency Use Listing (WHO EUL)) two-dose COVID19 vaccination course, or the approved single-dose Janssen COVID19 vaccine (plus a booster if applicable).

Pre-embarkation testing.

A Covid-19 test organised and taken before embarkation may be required. As these requirements vary by embarkation port please visit our At the terminal page for further details.

At the time of travel, some ports of call may stipulate specific vaccine or testing requirements for guests going ashore that differ from this policy. Please visit our Port A-Z guide for the latest information regarding going ashore at the ports we visit.

Medical requirements.

Unfortunately, we are unable to accept guests who test positive for Covid-19 within 10 days of travel. We are also unable to accept guests who have the following medical requirements:

  • Supplementary oxygen (including via oxygen concentrator).
  • Mechanical ventilatory support (except for overnight CPAP for sleep apnoea).
  • Dialysis.

 

If any of these medical requirements apply to you, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 0344 338 8641 (local call charges apply).

Stay well before your voyage.

To limit your chances of becoming unwell before sailing, we recommend you take the following precautionary measures:

  • Limit close interactions to guests you are travelling with.
  • Keep a physical distance of at least 1.5 metres (5 feet) from others when in public.
  • Wear a face mask while in public and during travel.
  • Avoid contact with anyone who’s unwell, and their close contacts.
  • Avoid places which may be crowded such as gatherings, indoor public spaces and public transport.
  • Wash your hands regularly or use hand sanitiser when handwashing facilities are not available.
  • Cough or sneeze into a tissue or bent elbow, and not into your hands. Throw used tissues in the bin and wash your hands afterwards.
  • If you are travelling to the ship with others outside your group, such as by coach or train, we recommend that you wear a face mask and socially distance.

     

If you experience a high temperature, a new continuous cough, shortness of breath or a new loss of taste or smell within 10 days before your holiday, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 0344 338 8641 (local call charges apply).

Pre-book dining and activities.

To help us manage social distancing on board, you may be asked to book select activities and dining venues on your voyage. You can do this once on board by calling our dedicated reservation line from your stateroom telephone, by visiting the Purser’s Desk in the Grand Lobby or by using our digital planner, My Voyage, from an internet-enabled device.

You can also use My Cunard to book shore experiences, purchase drinks packages and more, before you step on board. Log in to My Cunard to see the full range of personalisation options for your holiday.

What to pack.

In addition to your usual voyage essentials – comfortable shoes for exploring, a great holiday read, a fabulous black-tie outfit for Gala Evenings – you’ll also need to remember a face mask (as you may be required to wear this in select areas of the ship). You may also wish to pack hand sanitiser, although we’ll have plenty on board for you to use, as well as masks too if you happen to need a new one while with us.

We have a chargeable laundry service and self-serve launderettes on board, in case you’d like to refresh your wardrobe during your holiday, or if you’re travelling roundtrip you can take advantage of unlimited luggage allowances. If you prefer not to transport your own luggage, you can have it sent directly to the ship with our White Star Luggage partner, Luggage Forward.

Fly-cruises.

If you’re catching a flight as part of your holiday, you will need to familiarise yourself with the airline's protocols and entry requirements for the country you’re visiting. You’ll also need to ensure your luggage adheres to their on board allowances. Please check your flight operator’s website for more information via the list below.

Alternatively, you can have your luggage shipped directly to/from home with our White Star Luggage partner, Luggage Forward.

More on preparing to sail.