South Africa’s luxurious rail service, The Blue Train, is set to resume private charter services this month and will restart leisure travel and a full schedule from 1 November 2020, dependent on further pronouncements from the government. The move comes as the country moves to alert Level 2 in response to the pandemic.
During lockdown, The Blue Train has devised new COVID-relevant hygiene protocols, ensuring safe travel in a COVID-19 era. These protocols ensure that there is adherence to the highest level of hygiene for the safety of guests.
“We are pleased to be opening up operations as the country settles into Level 1 of the risk-adjusted response to COVID-19,” said Vincent Monyake, Executive Manager of The Blue Train.
“While we are excited that tourism is opening up, we are cautious about how we are proceeding, having implemented a stringent hygiene protocol. Our protocol ensures that over a number of days before travel, we will be in touch with guests and pre-screen them numerous times prior to their departure date. We want our guests to know that they are safe with us, to have the confidence to step onboard The Blue Train and let go of any anxieties, and truly surrender to the luxury of slow,” Monyake added.
Private charters are available for both business and leisure travel to any destination in the country that falls within the working railway network.
Ready experiences include:
- A lunch or dinner charter: Pretoria Circle Route
- An overnight “trip to nowhere”: Pretoria
- A two-night trip: Pretoria – Sun City – Pretoria
- A two-night trip: Pretoria – Durban – Pretoria
- A two-night trip: Pretoria – Kruger National Park – Pretoria
- A two-night trip: Pretoria – Magaliesberg – Pretoria
“At the beginning of the lockdown, we offered our guests and clients options of cancelling their bookings or deferring them to later dates of travel. As a result, some dates of departure have very low occupancy levels, which necessitates for cancellation of these departures and consolidation thereof with other departures. Our sales team will advise our clients accordingly and timely of these amendments. For now, The Blue Train is ready to operate its private charters,” concluded Monyake.