2022 Antartica Jan 19-31

Just got our negative test results, uploaded information for Argentina immigrations, now excited to go! We head out tomorrow as long as flights aren't delayed/cancelled because of weather! Leaving from Virginia Beach, through JFK, to Buenos Aires. I follow Melisa (melicola) on Instagram. She's one of my very favorite Tauck tour directors! She has been posting some amazing Antartica photos and videos! I believe she's on the 1/8/22 trip! Sealord and Landriola, see you soon!

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Comments

  • I just received a distressed email from a friend who is scheduled for the January 19th Antarctica Cruise sailing with Ponant—the cruise has been cancelled. She is beyond herself as she was preparing to depart.

  • I Just checked in with other friends who started their cruise last week. They departed out of Chile. They just responded that today they are sailing through the Drake Passage and scheduled to arrive Antarctica tomorrow.

  • Are you talking about the Tauck Ponant tour, they do take others.

  • Are you talking about the Tauck Ponant tour, they do take others.

    British I hope I haven't caused an unnecessary alarm. I know for sure my friends who left last week out of Chile are on a SilverSeas cruise. I've traveled with both of these friends on Tauck tours. I will check with my other friend-though I am hesitant to ask her anything right now as she is truly distraught about this last minute cancellation.

  • edited January 18

    I'm confused. Silversea is not Ponant. Different company, different ships. Tauck uses Silversea ships for Hidden Peru & Galapagos, but Ponant for Antarctica.

  • I’m confused also. ‘Tauck’s’ January 19 trip is currently scattered at hub airports all over the country … we are in MIA and our traveling companions DrFun are at JFK with DoreenC having cocktails in the Flagship Lounge. None of us have heard anything about cancelations.

  • Doreen, in NY and canceled last week. Just want to let you know the weather for you JFK-EZE is going to be good. Enjoy the cruise!!

  • Rogfam, thank you! We’re excited! Just waiting to board and be on our way!!

  • I'm confused. Silversea is not Ponant. Different company, different ships. Tauck uses Silversea ships for Hidden Peru & Galapagos, but Ponant for Antarctica.

    AlanS I apologize for the confusion. I was responding to British question. She asked if my friend was on a Tauck Antartica
    cruise. My friends who left last week are on the SilverSeas Antarctica cruise which departed from the Chile base. They are crossing the Drake Passage today. They've had a few mishaps with positive tests and needing to quarantine on the boat, but they are still cruising.

    My friend who received a cancellation notice this morning was on a 1/19 Ponant Antarctica cruise scheduled to depart from the Buenos Aires base. I have not reached back out to her to determine if it is a Tauck Antarctica tour or just a Ponant Antarctica cruise. Sad for the last minute cancellation but I'm glad she didn't get all the way to Buenos Aires to find out the cruise had been cancelled.

    I hope all on this forum cruises are a "Go"

  • edited January 18

    Just now Cruisemapper shows Le Lyrial about a third of the way back to Ushuaia (doing 15 knots in rough seas). Most Taucktourians should be Buenos Aires now or arriving soon. While they don't board the ship until 21 Jan, the tour starts tomorrow, so we should know something by later today. PureLuxury has more info- things still appear up in the air.

  • edited January 18

    I am on this Tauck tour and in Buenos Aires with several others. This tour has not been canceled.

  • DoreenC...AWESOME NEWS!!! Bon Voyage! Apparently it was a different sailing that was affected.

  • Dale, Stacy, and Bill are our TDs. Bill was our first TD at Tauck on our first K&T trip. There are 69 on the guest list either here in BA or enroute. The January 19 Tauck/Ponant Antarctica trip appears to be doing OK. We leave Friday morning on a Ponant charter flight to Ushuaia … just learned the ‘h’ is silent.

  • Sounds like oo·swai·uh

  • Have a great time everyone! Dale is such a gem!

  • Sealord. Awesome you are there and on your way. We are on the trip scheduled for February 8th. Can’t wait. Nervous with everything Covid and Omnicron these days. Keep us updated if you can. Safe travels to the 7th continent.


  • We were covid tested yesterday and we were anxiously awaiting the results. One of our number tested positive trying to fly to BA and had to go home. So we got our results today while on tour. There was a huge blast of cheering when we found out that we ‘all’ are going to Antarctica!

  • Am hoping and praying for all of you to remain Covid free. I was one of the ones quarantined near beginning of Boreal trip that just ended. The crew ended up having about 50 positives. My understanding is they sent a new ship in for you.we had Bill in K and T also, in 2014. He is a fabulous guide. enjoy.

  • edited January 22

    We were always on Le Lyrial. Now on Medivac back to Ushuaia. One of our number had medical emergency during night. Will do a drop off and immediately back to sea.

  • All three Ponant Antarctica ships are in Ushuaia today.

  • What, no medevac via helo?

  • A boat picked them up as we approached Ushuaia. We immediately turned around and headed back out to sea. They have changed the routing to avoid missing anything.

  • I wondered if a (pilot) boat would be out to pick them up so you wouldn't need to dock. In the Navy that would have been an all day 'Sea and Anchor detail!

    Pedal to the metal? At a blistering 15 kts?

  • Actually, I just looked. The ‘normal’ speed has been 14.7 knots. We are now doing over 16 knots. Wow! When I cruised on the Enterprise any speed above 35 knots was classified … a blank off plate covered the speed on the INS data on the PLAT (ready room video) when they went through 35.

    We now have our Ponant Parkas (really nice), and the boots have been issued, and we have vacuumed our expedition clothes as a ‘sanitation’ measure for the environment. As our Doctor companion said, “it’s like getting under a table during a nuclear attack.” But, we do what we have to do. (;-)

  • I am hoping that all passengers on these tours have a great time, but I must give you a word of caution and a tale of woe. I was on the 1/2/2022 Tauck tour that did depart as scheduled. The first week was great. Dale was a good tour director , the landings were wonderful and the weather perfect. Then came Covid. We were tested on 1/10/22 and I tested positive-completely asymptomatic. We were quarantined to our cabin. I was traveling with my young adult kids who tested negative but had to be quarantined. They were tested 1/10/ 1/11, 1/12 and 1/13 and were negative. I tested negative 1/12 and 1/13. We were allowed out of cabin last day for afternoon and evening. We were tested again that evening as part of Argentina requirements. My son tested positive (no symptoms). My daughter and I were negative. None of us were allowed off ship the next morning. It was pretty tough to watch the rest of the group and the tour director leave as we stood on our balcony. There were 30 passengers (out of 77) who were not allowed off. We wanted PCR tests which were eventually done and the results the next day were that all 30 PCR were positive for passengers and 40 crew. We then spent the next week quarantined on the 6th floor of the ship anchored in the bay of Ushuaia. None of the passengers were sick. The crew kept having more positive results. The ship and the government argued back and forth about the quarantine length and everyone had to do 7 days based on their positive result date. That caused a lot of confusion because some people ended up being quarantined as long as 11 days. The crew did their best but it was boring and frustrating. The ships started moving crew around on the 20th so that 2 ships are considered positive and quarantined in bay. We just made it home exactly one week late after a few more airport hassles. On the plus side, we were never ill at all and made some new friends. On the minus side, we missed a week of work each, had to make arrangements for pets and parents that were not anticipated, and have canceled any plans to leave the country at the current time. We did hear from our insurance company through Tauck repeatedly. We also heard from Tauck home office-Marguerite who was so friendly and caring but unable to really do much. This was our 6th Tauck tour and we loved Antarctica but the end results here were so upsetting .

  • Cruisemapper shows L'Austral and Le Boreal are sitting off (anchored off?) Ushuaia. Sealord and Le Lyrial are steaming towards Antarctica and about a quarter of the way to Half Moon Island, ETA 1000 24 Jan. Wem3212 said "The first week was great . . . .the landings were wonderful and the weather perfect." wem3212 also said, "We just made it home exactly one week late after a few more airport hassles."

  • WEM-how long was it before you heard from insurance people? I was positive and quarantined with my negative husband on 1/8 trip. The doc would not retest me. Luckily our quarantine ended on the last day so we could leave the ship. L’Boreal didn’t have too many sick passengers but crew was slammed-approx 50, maybe more. I totally understand tours are in business to make money but in hindsight Antarctica should probably have been cancelled for Jan. I followed SteveandCathy’s trip and was so happy it was uneventful and was optimistic our trip would be the same.

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