DUBAI, ABU DHABI & QATAR CRUISES
TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS FOR U.S. RESIDENTS


PRE-CRUISE REQUIREMENTS

 

FULLY VACCINATED GUESTS & CHILDREN 2 - 11 YEARS OLD

Before booking your cruise, please click HERE to check if your country of residence is allowing guests to cruise in your selected destination.

 

VACCINE REQUIREMENTS:

All guests 12 years and older must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 at the time of embarkation. To be considered fully vaccinated:

  • Your final dose in a 2-dose initial series of the Pfizer, Moderna, Astrazeneca, Sinopharm, Sputnik V, Covishield, or Sinovac/Covaxin vaccine or a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine must be completed within 9 months / 270 days (12 months for those guests who received a booster vaccine with Pfizer, Moderna or Astrazeneca) and at least 14 days prior to departure.
  • If your final dose was administered 270 days or more prior to the final day of your cruise, you must also complete a booster dose at least 14 days prior to departure.   
  • Guests must present their original vaccination card or certificate reflecting all required doses at the pier upon check-in.
  • A “mix-and-match” combination of the above list of vaccines is accepted. 
  • All guests embarking on a cruise regardless of their nationality must present a vaccination certificate indicating that complete vaccination / booster has taken place within the last 6 months.
  • The vaccination certificate must be valid for the duration of the entire cruise.
  • Any guest who received a 2nd vaccine dose or booster more than 9 months before the cruise (therefore, with an expired vaccination validity) but has recovered from COVID-19 within 9 months, will be allowed to embark. Guests must provide an official and verifiable laboratory test result as evidence of the past infection. 
  • To note: guests who recovered from COVID-19 and received only one shot of vaccine are not considered fully vaccinated. Sputnik/Sinopharm/Sinovac are conditionally approved vaccines in Qatar. Guests with two shots of a conditionally certified vaccine must carry a serology antibody test with a positive result within 30 days upon arrival to Qatar;  without the anti-body test, they won’t be allowed to embark or go ashore. Guests who have received two doses of a conditionally approved vaccine followed by one dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine and after 14 days from the last dose will be considered fully immune (no need to show the Serelogy Antibody). 
  • An antigen self-test is not accepted for embarkation.

 

COVID-19 TEST REQUIREMENTS:

  • All guests (2 years old and older), including local residents and guests staying in the U.A.E. prior to the cruise, need to provide a certificate of a negative RT-PCR test taken within 72 hours before embarkation. Guests must bring the valid negative test certificate with them to the terminal. If you embark on your cruise at 15:00 on a Saturday, you should take your COVID-19 test on Wednesday as of 15:00. 
  • An antigen self-test is not accepted for embarkation.
  • Quarantine upon arrival is mandatory for nationalities and guests arriving in Qatar from countries on the red list. All other countries are exempt from quarantine. For more information click here
  • The original test and vaccination certificate must be presented at the terminal (paper or electronic format) and must be in English. The COVID-19 test certificate must contain the guest’s personal data (verifiable with the other travel documents), date of the test, identification / contact details of the center that performed the analysis, technique used, and negative test result.   
  • Guests embarking in Doha (Qatar) must submit a certificate of a negative RT-PCR test taken within 48 hours from departure time to flight to Doha.  Guests must bring the valid negative test certificate with them to the terminal.
  • Other requirements such as a COVID-19 test, or a Passenger locator form (PLF) may still be necessary for national or international mobility requirements: it’s every guest’s responsibility to verify this requirement before departure. For more information, it is recommended to check your country’s competent authorities’ official channels.

Click here to review & accept terms & conditions and confirm that you will be fully vaccinated at the time of your cruise.

 

TRAVEL INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS:

  • All bookings are required to purchase travel insurance with coverage for COVID-19. If purchased from MSC Cruises, this must be purchased prior to making final payment on your booking. You must either purchase insurance through MSC Cruises or present at the pier documentation of sufficient coverage purchased from another provider, or you will be denied boarding. Proof of the specific COVID-19 coverage travel insurance policy - which must be in one of the following languages English, Italian, German, French or Spanish - must be presented at embarkation or boarding will be denied.

 

All guests’ passports must have a minimum of 6 months validity at the time of travel.

 

FOR GUESTS EMBARKING IN ABU DHABI: Effective from December 30, vaccinated people entering Abu Dhabi will need to show green status on the Al Hosn app : https://alhosnapp.ae/en/home/

U.A.E: A COVID-19 test is required to fly to the U.A.E.
QATAR: Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and European Union (EU) nationals and residents are no longer required to register online in the Ehteraz website before entering the country or flying to Qatar. It is however mandatory to to download the Ehteraz APP which is required for all guests on their cell phones. The Ehteraz APP will be activated when guests landed in Qatar via Mobile Data. All non GCC and EU guests going ashore must register in the Ehteraz website. Guests will receive a confirmation through email which will be checked by the port authorities upon arrival. Guests will need to upload a copy of their passport and a copy of their vaccine (if they are vaccinated with the conditionally approved vaccines, they will need to upload the anti-body test result). Registration can be done 72 hours before arrival. Guests will only be able to go ashore in Qatar if they are taking part in an organized MSC Shore Excursion.

 

Quarantine upon arrival is mandatory for nationalities and guests arriving in Qatar from countries on the red list. All other countries are exempt from quarantine. For more information click here

 

For itineraries calling in Qatar, to go ashore it will be possible only with an MSC organized excursion (to go ashore guests will be required to show vaccination certificate + cruise card).

 

Guests who will disembark in Qatar are required to download the Ehteraz App. The app can be downloaded at any time, but it can only be activated once guests arrive in Doha (please find instructions below on how the app can be downloaded and activated). Guests going directly to the airport after disembarking the ship must have a valid 48-hour PCR test or a 24-hour antigen test prior to arriving in Qatar for all flight destinations requiring it. For guests with a post-cruise stay in DOHA only a 48-hour PCR test will be accepted.


Guests going ashore in Doha must participate in an MSC Cruises shore excursion effective Jan. 6th onward, until further notice. You will not be allowed to disembark unless you have purchased an MSC Cruises shore excursion.

 

View our FAQs for additional details regarding Vaccine, COVID-19 Testing, and Travel Insurance requirements.

TERMINAL & EMBARKATION REQUIREMENTS

FULLY VACCINATED GUESTS & CHILDREN 2 - 11 YEARS OLD

As per our stringent MSC Health & Safety protocol, all guests both vaccinated and unvaccinated, will need to undergo some health and COVID-19 screenings, including a health questionnaire and a contactless temperature check, at the terminal before boarding. 

For a seamless embarkation process, please make sure to review our Health & safety measures in place in our terminals and to bring:

 

  • Printed copy of your embarkation form (available in your cruise ticket)
  • Printed copy of your mandatory health questionnaire duly completed and signed within 6 hours before embarkation (available in your cruise ticket)
  • The original COVID-19 test and vaccination certificate (paper or electronic format)
  • Proof of COVID-19 insurance clearly showing the COVID-19 risks coverage
  • Valid identity document

 

We will deny boarding in case of:

 

  • Symptoms i.e fever (>37,5 C C / 99.5 F), cough, shortness of breath, chills, muscle/body aches, fatigue,  headache, sore throat, and loss of taste/smell in the 14 days prior to embarkation
  • Potential exposure to a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 in the 14 days prior to embarkation
  • Temporary travel restrictions based on local circumstances. For example, certain countries may deny visas or prohibit entry based on travel history or nationality.
  • Failure to provide the proof of the mandatory COVID-19 insurance policy (which must be in one of the following languages: English, Italian, German, French or Spanish)

ONBOARD, ASHORE & DISEMBARKATION REQUIREMENTS

ALL GUESTS

    ONBOARD REQUIREMENTS:

    In accordance with local regulation of the countries on the itinerary, face masks are required when in public areas indoors. However, masks do not need to be worn when seated in restaurants, bars, lounges, and when sitting on the sun deck. When ashore, guests must follow any local regulations which are subject to change.

     

    If you become symptomatic during your cruise, you will be required to take a RT-PCR test on board (covered by MSC Cruises).

     

    More information can be found in the FAQ section.

     

    SHORE EXCURSIONS:

    Guests will be able to go ashore independently according to local requirements which are continually monitored and subject to change. Guests who are traveling with unvaccinated children are also able to go ashore independently. 

    For the best ashore experience, we recommend all guests explore destinations with the comfort, convenience, and safety of an MSC Cruises Shore Excursion, bookable pre-cruise and on board. 

     

    More information can be found in the FAQ section.

     

    DISEMBARKATION REQUIREMENTS:

    A COVID-19 test, or Passenger Locator form (PLF) may still be necessary for national or international mobility requirements. It’s every guest’s responsibility to verify these requirements before departure. For more information, it is recommended to check your country’s competent authorities' official channels.

    Transit guests in Dubai who embarked in Doha will need to take a local UAE PCR test on arrival to Dubai. There is no requirement to wait for results before going on an excursion.

     

    Guests going directly to the airport after disembarking the ship must have a valid 48-hour PCR test or a 24-hour antigen test prior to arriving in Qatar for all flight destinations requiring it. For guests with a post-cruise stay in DOHA only a 48-hour PCR test will be accepted. 

     

    For itineraries calling in Qatar:

     

    For itineraries calling in Qatar, to go ashore it will be possible only with an MSC organized excursion (to go ashore guests will be required to show vaccination certificate + cruise card).

     

    Guests who will disembark in Qatar (staying in Qatar or going directly to the airport) are required to download the Ehteraz App. The app. can be downloaded at any time, but it can only be activated once guests arrive in Doha (please find instructions below on how the app can be downloaded and activated, registered into Ehteraz Portal via “(https://www.ehteraz.gov.qa/)” and download the required official documents to receive a pre-approval letter from the portal via email.

     

    Guests will be able to receive this letter via email while they are in Abu Dhabi or Sir Bani Yas where FREE Wi-Fi is available.

    • If guests did not receive a pre-approval letter, they must have their vaccination certificate, copy of passport, cruise card, ONLY for guests who are vaccinated with conditional approval.
    • Guests must also provide a certificate of a negative RT-PCR test taken within 72 hours or a negative antigen test taken within 24 hours prior to the arrival at port and their cruise card.

     

    Important information regarding the app. Ehteraz (Qatar)

     

    The app. is only required for those guests who will disembark in Doha (Qatar). Guests can download and register in advance, but the app. can only be activated once in Qatar with a Wi-Fi connection from an IP address in Qatar or when turning on data roaming. If the international SIM card is not working, guests can purchase a local sim card available at the terminal at a cost of $24 USD to activate the Ehteraz app.

     

    French residents returning from Green List Countries are not required to show a negative RT-PCR or Antigen test within 48 hours prior to arrival. If a test is required by the airline this can be performed on board. French residents returning from orange list countries are required to show a negative 48-hours test. 

     

    It is the responsibility of each guest to ensure they are in compliance with any local regulations related to COVID-19 testing when returning to their final post cruise destination.