AUTHOR The Ecoventura Team
AUTHOR The Ecoventura Team
With the global pandemic creating so much uncertainty regarding international travel, we have put together a summary of FAQs to cover some of the most common questions we are receiving from guests looking to visit the Galapagos with Ecoventura.
For further information, as always please feel free to contact our team and we will be happy to provide assistance.
Q: I want to book a Galapagos cruise in 2021, but I am worried about having to cancel and don’t want to pay any penalty fees. What flexibility do you offer after I put down a deposit?
A: We will provide guests with a Full Cruise Credit (FCC) to reschedule their cruise for any date up to 12 months from their cruise departure, for no penalty, if either of the following conditions are met:
– Ecuador closes its borders or prevents you from entering due to their governmental guidelines and restrictions based on your country of residence.
– Your country of residence prevents you from departing or travelling to Ecuador due to their governmental guidelines.
Note that in all instances we recommend that you purchase comprehensive travel insurance, including a Cancel for Any Reason policy or with cover against Covid-related disruption.
For current special offers and details on booking terms, please visit our website.
Q: Do you have any special offers in place for people looking for a last-minute trip?
A: Yes! We have introduced a series of special offers for those looking to travel within the next few months, including:
– 30% off private yacht charters, a discount never before seen in the history of Ecoventura – see the following Q&A for further details
– Discounts available on 2020 Festive Season bookings (both individual cabins and yacht charters), including waiving the holiday surcharge and the introduction of flexible terms
– Buy one get one half price – 2020 bookings made for two people in a double cabin for departures between 3rd January and 7th March 2021 receive a 50% discount for the 2nd person.
For further details of all our special offers, please visit our website.
Q: How many people do I need to charter a yacht?
A: For those seeking total privacy and their very own space whilst exploring the islands, an exclusive charter is a great choice. We are currently running an unmissable charter promotion featuring a 30% discount – a great value option for any number of guests up to a maximum of 20. Our current charter promotions include the following dates:
– December 6-13 (Itinerary A) and December 13-20 (Itinerary B) 2020: the Charter Rate is $112,700 (regularly $161,000)
– January 3-10 2021 to March 7-14 2021: the Charter Rate is $118,300 (regularly $169,000)
A special feature we can offer is for two of the connecting cabins to be set up as Two-bedroom suites, for an even more intimate cruising experience. Note that the above offers are exclusive of airfare and taxes.
Q: Who is currently allowed to enter Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands?
A: Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands reopened to visitors of all nationalities in July, with new bio-security control regulations in place. International flights are operating regularly into Quito and Guayaquil, whilst Avianca operates Galapagos flights on Sundays into San Cristobal or Baltra for our guests; business class seats can be requested. Arrivals to Ecuador are required to present a negative RT-PCR test taken within ten days of arrival to enter without any quarantine.
For detailed current entry requirements and travel advice for Ecuador and Galapagos please refer to our updated Entry Requirements document.
Q: How Covid-secure are the Ecoventura vessels?
A: The wellbeing and safety of our guests continues to be our top priority. Whilst we have always maintained very rigorous cleaning procedures, they have been enhanced based on biosecurity standards set by the WHO and are further outlined here in our updated Biosecurity and sanitation protocols document.
Social distancing measures have been introduced and crew members are required to wear a mask and appropriate PPE based on their roles and responsibilities. All of our crew are required to provide 3 negative test results prior to boarding; Fast Test 1, Fast Test 2 (48 hours later) and, prior to boarding, a negative PCR test. All crew members have received additional training related to our enhanced sanitation protocols, and are monitored on a daily basis for any Covid-related symptoms.
Guests will receive a personal alcohol-based disinfectant, and hand-sanitization stations and additional signage have been set up throughout our vessels. The Galapagos National Park requires that all visitors wear a mask while on any shore excursions or during transportation between Islands. We have also amended our itineraries to avoid visits to inhabited islands, whilst our captains are in constant contact with other vessels to avoid grouping in any particular location.
Q: What wildlife experience can I expect when traveling to Galapagos next year in the Spring or Summer?
A: With minimal tourists traveling to the Galapagos since March 2020, nature has taken a break and guests will be rewarded by being able to see the Galapagos as they were 20 or 30 years ago. Sign up for our newsletter at the bottom of our homepage to receive your invitation to NATURE TALKS, a series of webinars hosted by Ecoventura; hear from our naturalist guides who bring the Galapagos wildlife to life through inspiring stories and discover why there is no better time to visit the Galapagos. For those interested in watching the latest of our NATURE TALKS webinars, click here.
Visiting the Galapagos on a luxury small-ship cruise offers a more secluded vacation by its very nature. With fewer visitors and a reduced guest-to-guide ratio of only 8 maximum, our guests will have the islands and wildlife all to themselves as they find themselves surrounded by a profusion of wildlife with barely any other visitors or boats in view.
Q: Has the guest experience been affected by the introduction of new safety and biosecurity measures?
A: We guarantee to provide the same luxurious experience we have always provided to our guests on our Ecoventura yachts. Whilst we recognize that the new measures put in place to protect the health and safety of our guests and crew has inevitably led to some changes, we believe that the overall experience remains as memorable as ever, and comments from guests since the changes have been implemented certainly suggest that they agree.
All guests are required to wear a mask in public areas of the vessel and to maintain a social distance of at least 6 feet between themselves and other guests and crew members. Our waiting staff wear masks and gloves when serving guests, whilst menus are now available only in digital form via guests’ smartphones. The good news is the quality of our Relais & Chateaux-worthy food has not suffered; in fact, our chefs have been busy updating the menus to include even more healthy and sustainably-sourced gastronomy.
Our guides and crew (not to mention the wildlife above and below the waves!) are ready and waiting to make your next trip to the Galapagos one to treasure forever, and we are confident the experience is as unique and unforgettable as it always has been!
Please feel free to contact us with any additional questions you may have and we look forward to welcoming you on board soon!