We have many changes to share with you! Sailing Cruises start June 6.
We are so excited to be sailing on Saturday, June 6 with guests. We are pretty sure we will be limited to just 6 people for at least the first week. Tickets go on sale 6 days before the cruise date you want to sail. (updated 5/29/20)
Governor Hogan has opened up “tour boats” in the latest Executive Order dated May 27, 2020. Since we are still in Phase One, we interpret this to mean we can only take out a maximum of 10 people including captain and crew. Since we are training our new crew (they are awesome) we will have room for 6 guests aboard.
We are hoping when we enter Phase II, that we will be allowed to sail with up to 24 people in zoned seating for 6 separate parties around the boat. Phase II might be in a couple of weeks, we just do not know.
Guests can still only book tickets up to 6 days out. But with greater ticket cancellation flexibility.
Also, there have been many updates to our operating practices that guests should review:
- 6 people? That’s it? Capacity is reduced to 6 people on all of our excursions. This can change at any time.
- Distancing: If necessary each ticket holder can be physically distanced by at least 6 feet.
- Face Coverings: Each guest over the age of 2 must board & disembark with a facial covering. Each crew member will don a facial covering.
- Sanitize, Sanitize. High-touch points of the vessels are sanitized between every sail we operate. It would be good to bring your own hand sanitizer with you, or you can use the hand sanitizer in the bathroom area.
- Symptom Free. Guests and our employees will be turned away if they have apparent symptoms. Additionally, our employees will have temperature checks prior to working daily.
- Everyone is a-ok! You will be self-certifying that your entire party has no COVID-19 exposure, symptoms, or is presently testing positive when you buy the ticket.
- We have a great bar stocked with craft beer, wine, bubbly and more. Bar transactions with be cashless and contactless. We will provide you with a simple web portal to buy your drinks while aboard. You can even add gratuity into the web portal. For those without a smart phone, a tablet will be available for your use.
- Raising the sails and steering the boat will not be able to happen while under the physical distancing rules. We simply can’t have you that close to our crew and captains.
Schooner Woodwind Sailing Cruises will be closely adhering to the guidelines set forth by the Passenger Vessel Association, who cites the CDC guidelines and gives specific guidance to our industry on how to safely operate under COVID-19 conditions.
Additionally, we will be following the State of Maryland Re-Opening Guidelines as they pertain to our industry. Please also note that the guidelines we adopt may be changed over time by governing authorities and we will, therefore, adjust accordingly. For any major changes, our previously booked guests will be notified.
FAQs of our changes:
Do I have to wear a face-covering the entire time?
To protect our employees and guests, all guests and employees must have face coverings with them. Face coverings are required to be worn by staff and all guests over the age of 2 when social distancing is not possible, and people are unable to maintain 6’ of distancing. While the open-air decks of our vessels provide you the opportunity for a fresh air experience, there are other times on the boats while moving around, embarking and disembarking, etc. when the keeping 6’ distance from others is simply not possible especially by our crew working the vessel. We know some guests may find this objectionable, but we believe this is the right way to operate to keep our employees/guests safe and to provide the safest sailing environment in today’s uncertain world.
Will we be outside on the Schooner?
All seating on the schooners is in open-air on deck. There is no seating down below available to guests. Complimentary ponchos will be given out if it starts to rain. Your own gear will far surpass these ponchos. Due to the close quarters below, no guests will be allowed below.
How much space is between me and the next person?
This will vary based on attendees. Do note that facial coverings are required by each guest, capacity is reduced by 50% or more, and private ‘zones’ will be designated. At any point that social distancing guidelines are encroached upon, we ask guests to put on face coverings. Additionally, anytime a guest leaves their designated ‘zone’ we require that they don their facial covering.
Can we move around the boat?
You can go to the bathrooms aboard, but not roaming around the boat, because you will then walk into another group’s zone. You can stand or sit, but you must stay in the area assigned to you when you come aboard.
How many guests will be on the boat?
Starting on June 6, there will only be 6 people. As time goes on, we hope to add more capacity as determined by the State of Maryland. All excursions will be at a 50% capacity or less. Both Woodwinds are certified for 48 guests, will have no more than 24 guests.
How often is the boat sanitized?
The boat is sanitized between every sail, including all high-touch points (handrails, lifelines, doorknobs, cabin tops for seating) and bathrooms.
Can I eat on the boat?
You can bring aboard your own self contained snack or meal. You may not bring alcohol aboard, we have a liquor license, so you can purchase it from us.
Guest Experience during COVID-19 Restrictions:
- Dockside– Boarding Lines will be physically distanced appropriately. When we get into Zone Seating, they will by segmented by zones on the dock. We will be boarding and disembarking in an order and that will facilitate safety and 6-foot distancing.
- You will still check-in at the dock office to make sure you have your QR code ready for scanning before you go aboard. They will direct you where to stand in the boarding queue.
- If you have not purchased tickets ahead of time, customer service will be able to sell you a ticket if available for the size of your group.
- We have added a railing to the ramp to board the vessels in order to reduce hand to hand contact while maintaining boarding safety.
- Aboard- We cannot have guests raise sails or steer the boat because of physical distancing requirements.
- Crew will serve beverages with gloves on.
- No snack service.
- The physical distancing stickers must be shown at all times to ensure guests stay in the zone.
- Cash Tip jar at the end of the trip
- We will send you a questionnaire about your cruise by email. We appreciate any feedback.
- Limited Guest Capacity will affect the following old policies:
- Frequent Sailor Cards will still be “punched”, but will not be redeemable while we have limited capacity.
- Donation vouchers will not be able to be redeemed at this time. All vouchers will be extended for use through 2021.
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