MSC Cruises has shown just how serious it is about health and safety, removing a family from its ship who broke its coronavirus rules.

The cruise line is operating a select sailing in the Mediterranean aboard its new ship MSC Grandiosa, which was open to residents of Schengen countries only.

Action was taken after a family broke the cruise line’s strict health and safety rules, which included not wandering off on land excursions.

MSC Cruises Naples
The incident happened on a land excursion in Naples

To ensure the safety of passengers, limit contact and manage the spread of the virus, MSC is only allowing guided land excursions. This means passengers stay in a ‘ship bubble’ and don’t come into contact with anyone else not on board the ship.

However, the unnamed passengers decided to break the rules when in Naples, Italy, wandering off from the rest of the group to explore the city on their own.

The passengers were then not allowed to re-embark the ship, for fear of endangering other passengers and crew, the line has confirmed.

MSC Grandiosa is the first major ocean ship to sail in the Mediterranean in almost five months, following the coronavirus pandemic.

After approval from the needed ports, MSC Grandiosa set sail on western Mediterranean cruise on Sunday (16 August), at 70 per cent capacity with 2,500 passengers on board.

The ship left from the Italian port of Genoa on a seven-night sailing calling at Civitavecchia (Rome), Naples, Palermo and Malta.

Sadly, the sailing was not available for British or Irish passengers, instead only open to residents of EU countries.

“In line with our health and safety protocol, developed to ensure the health and wellbeing of our guests, crew and the communities we visit, we had to deny re-embarkation to a family who broke from their shore excursion while visiting Naples, Italy,” said a spokesperson for MSC Cruises.

“By departing from the organised shore excursion, this family broke from the ‘social bubble’ created for them and all other guests, and therefore could not be permitted to re-board the ship.”

The cruise line stated that other health and safety measures include transfers being properly sanitised, social distancing, tour guides and drivers undergoing health screenings and the wearing of PPE.