Health And Safety

Here at Windstar Cruises, the health and safety of everyone on board is a top priority. We are connected to industry experts and following guidelines by the regulatory authorities in every area of the world. Our team is implementing additional technologies that go beyond these requirements as part of our new Beyond Ordinary Care program.

New COVID-19 Testing Requirement - UPDATED November 10, 2021

In today’s travel environment a number of countries are requiring Covid testing as a condition of entry. As a convenience for our guests, Windstar Cruises has arranged Covid testing facilities onboard our yachts.

All guests will receive a free COVID-19 antigen test at the pier prior to embarkation and a negative result is needed to embark.

On some cruises additional COVID tests may be needed in select ports of call during the cruise to meet local regulatory requirements. PCR tests must be administered by an accredited facility. Home test kits will not be accepted.

Beginning January 1, 2022 Windstar will provide these tests for our guests’ convenience, and this cost will be added to each guest’s shipboard account, $69 per antigen test and $135 per PCR test. In order to provide peace of mind to our guests, the maximum charge per guest will be $249 per person, per sailing (or $199 per person, per segment on Collectors and back to back sailings) to comply with these local testing requirements even if the number of tests required exceeds this pricing.

To ease travel back home at the end of the cruise, guests may also optionally purchase antigen ($69) or PCR tests ($135) in advance or on board to take prior to departure from the yacht to comply with CDC policies currently requiring negative tests prior to flying into the U.S.

A negative COVID-19 PCR test is required by many countries in the Caribbean for entry and to explore ashore on your own. Be aware policies continue to evolve. For peace of mind, we recommend you arrive at the yacht with a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within five days prior to arrival.

This policy is effective for sailings starting Jan 1, 2022 and beyond.

COVID-19 Vaccine Required

At the cruise terminal prior to embarkation, guests will be required to provide proof of a completed current vaccine course (one or two shots, depending on the brand) finished at least 14 days prior to the guest's embarkation date.

Beyond Ordinary Care

A Message On Health & Safety from our President, Christopher Prelog

Pre-Departure & Embarkation

A healthy environment is a collaboration. Guests are asked to wear masks when travelling to the yachts. Windstar will require and administer a free COVID-19 antigen test pier-side prior to embarkation and a negative result is required to board. The test is a minimally intrusive nasal swab (which is less intrusive than a nasopharyngeal swab), unless local health authorities require a PCR test. Social distance will be maintained at embarkation.
The U.S. State Department advises travelers to review the CDC's latest guidance on travel restrictions or research country specific travel advisories on their website. We recommend you check both sources before traveling internationally. The CDC keeps a list of specific groups of people who may be at higher risk of severe illness; check with your doctor before travelling if you fall into this category. Guests are responsible for complying with any COVID-19 test requirement or standard imposed by any country visited during travel. Some countries are requiring travel insurance to cover COVID-19 related costs. Windstar recommends guests research each country and its requirements and highly recommends purchasing travel insurance to cover COVID-19 services.

On Board

A layered approach to cleaning and sanitizing includes an increased frequency of cleaning public spaces and high touch points, hospital grade HEPA filters and UV-C light to disinfect the air, and electrostatic sprayers using a hospital-grade, EPA-approved sanitizing solution on surfaces and in public spaces. Upgrades to the HVAC systems on board the ships include two different components. The first is the installation of HEPA filters proven to filter out illness and allergy causing components. The second component is the UV-C light which is proven to kill many different types of bacteria and viruses, including norovirus and coronavirus. Together, the components filter and sanitize the air for a high level of disinfection of the air supply. Learn more about these HVAC components and the electrostatic sprayers on the blog.

Additional medical staff will be on board. Crew will wear masks and be given a COVID-19 PCR test weekly. Guests will also wear masks indoors and outdoors when unable to social distance. Onboard functions will be conducted without handshakes by our officers and crew, but do look out for our new “Windstar Wave.” Meals will be served by crew, eliminating the need for self-serve buffets. We expect our guests to participate by adopting best hygiene and social distancing practices while on board to keep themselves and the larger community protected.


Enjoy more outdoor dining

  • Tables will be spaced apart for social distancing
  • All restaurants will operate at reduced capacity
  • Crew will serve guests in all venues
  • Outdoor dining options include Candles, Veranda, and new aboard Star Plus Class yachts, the Star Grill by Steven Raichlen
  • Room service available all day including dinner from Amphora, the main restaurant
  • Our Signature Deck BBQ and Beach BBQ will be held (where applicable) with crew serving guests


Shore Excursions

All shore excursions will be vetted by our expert team to ensure best practices in health and safety protocols are followed. Shore excursions will operate at a reduced capacity and masks will be worn according to local regulations and when unable to social distance. For the near term as required by the Cruise Lines International Association, guests will need to book a Windstar shore excursion to go ashore. Changes in shore excursions offered may occur due to evolving regulations and conditions in a destination. Tenders, motor coaches and smaller boats will operate at a reduced capacity and be cleaned between each use. Staggered departures in port will aid in social distancing.


Before Boarding Flights to US

On January 12, 2021 the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that all air passengers entering the United States must present a negative COVID-19 test prior to boarding planes to the United States. The test must be taken within three days of the flight and written documentation of the lab result is to be provided to the airline. If the traveler has been previously infected, they may provide documentation that they have recovered from COVID-19 within the last 90 days. The CDC also recommends travelers be tested again three to five days after arrival
Windstar will offer two types of COVID-19 tests - PCR and antigen - for purchase onboard for those guests who'd like the convenience of taking a test prior to disembarkation and flight home. Note these policies may change.

Windstar will offer optional COVID-19 tests for purchase on board for those guests who’d like the convenience of taking a test on board prior to disembarkation and flight home.