COVID-19 – 29 July 2020 Update
Dear Travel Partner,
THE BLUE TRAIN SUSPENSION UPDATES AMIDST COVID-19 LOCKDOWN
The Blue Train has started preparing for operation in the era of COVID-19. In March 2020, the luxury train announced a suspension of its services in accordance with the South African government’s national lockdown. This suspension was extended to 31 July 2020 after the government’s Adjusted Risk Strategy for Economic Activity in April 2020.
The nation entered Level 3 Lockdown from 01 June 2020, and restrictions in this level still include travel bans (international and inter-provincial). As a result, The Blue Train will further extend its suspensions to 30 September 2020. Resuming operations is dependent on further pronouncements from the government of South Africa, but in the meantime, The Blue Train is getting ready for operation in a COVID-19 era. Several health and safety precautions are being put in place to ensure that when we resume travel, The Blue Train is COVID-19-fit (a comprehensive safety and hygiene protocol document will be shared with the industry in due course, upon approval by the relevant inspection authorities).
During the process of preparing The Blue Train, the team will continue to comply with the government’s directives of regular COVID-19 symptom checks, full use of personal protective equipment and social distancing to ensure the safety of all involved.
At the commencement of the suspension of services in March 2020, The Blue Train apprised its booked, paid and confirmed guests of changes to the cancellation policy to accommodate resultant travel disruptions. These changes remain in place with the following amendments, and give guests who were to travel on The Blue Train from March 2020 to 30 September 2020 the following options:
- Ticket Transfer: The transfer of tickets to friends and family who can travel from 01 October 2020 to 31 December 2021 – SHOULD COVID-19 REGULATIONS ALLOW BY THEN
- Postponement: The option to postpone travel to any date that falls within 01 October 2020 to 31 December 2021 – SHOULD COVID-19 REGULATIONS ALSO ALLOW BY THEN. Only ONE postponement will be allowed.
- Cancellation: The last option is to cancel confirmed bookings that are fully paid and receive a full refund.
All the above options will not incur any penalties.
At this stage, for transfers, postponements and cancellations of travel after 31 December 2020, The Blue Train’s Standard Terms and Conditions will apply.
Guests who are booked but are yet to pay and therefore are unconfirmed will incur applicable costs commensurate with the ticket cost as per the date of postponement. Any costs or expenses incurred as a result of the postponement such as flights, accommodation, transfers, excursions and other costs, would be at the customers’ expense.
The duration of the suspension will be reviewed at the end of September 2020, pending further pronouncements by the government of South Africa on the national response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our service offering is a flagship South African tourism experience and our drive is to ensure that when travel and tourism activities resume, The Blue Train will be ready to afford our guests the perfect experience of South Africa’s finest luxury rail experience.
Guests who require more information on these changes and how they potentially affect their travel plans can contact The Blue Train’s reservation team at the Pretoria office on +27(0)12-334-8459 or the Cape Town office on +27(0)21-449-2672 or on email firstname.lastname@example.org
Kindly advise whether we should postpone the booking to a later date or release the booking.
Please see below booking details and feel free contact us should you need any further information
We thank you for your continued support and understanding in this regard.
We wish you, your family and loved ones good health, safety and benevolence during these wearisome times.
Assuring you of our best attention at all times,