Photograph of the Ocean Diamond vessel. Source: Quark Expeditions.

A Deal to Antarctica Because of 2019 Novel Coronavirus — But Hurry

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At least 2,129 of the greater than 75,748 people in 30 countries worldwide who have been infected with what is known as the 2019 Novel Coronavirus — which is now also known as COVID-19 by the World Health Organization as of Tuesday, February 11, 2020 — have died; and 15 cases of the disease have been confirmed in the United States…

A Deal to Antarctica Because of 2019 Novel Coronavirus — But Hurry

…and although hundreds of hotel and resort properties in China have temporarily closed — and dozens of airlines have either issued travel waivers for passengers to change their itineraries at no cost or temporarily suspended service to China — there is one bright spot to this outbreak which may be of both interest and benefit to you if you have ever wanted to travel to Antarctica.

An e-mail message was sent out yesterday, Thursday, February 20, 2020 by Quark Expeditions with the following announcement pertaining to reduced rates for travel to Antarctica:

You’re probably aware that worldwide efforts to control the spread of the coronavirus have led to travel restrictions for travelers from China, Hong Kong and Macau. Unfortunately, this means one of our Antarctic voyages chartered specifically for a group of Chinese travelers, most of whom cannot travel at the moment, now has unoccupied cabins.

On behalf of our Chinese charter partner and guests, these now-empty cabins are being offered at a significantly reduced rate to travelers like you who have expressed interest in the polar regions and wish to explore the beautiful Antarctic on Ocean Diamond.

The specific expedition is the Falklands, South Georgia and Antarctic Peninsula Charter Voyage, with which you can explore the remote Falkland Islands; the wildlife paradise of South Georgia; and the extraordinary landscape of the Antarctic Peninsula — including penguins, elephant seals, and pods of orcas.

If you are interested in participating as a passenger, you will have to act quickly, as the journey begins with its departure from Argentina on Saturday, February 29, 2020 for 16 days and 15 nights through its conclusion on Sunday, March 15, 2020.

According to Quark Expeditions, the Ocean Diamond vessel “is a modern, stable super-yacht, and is one of the fastest ships in the Antarctic. The ship offers numerous Adventure Options, plus on-board features such as interactions with photography instructors.”

The closest offering to this charter expedition is the Falklands, South Georgia and Antarctica: Explorers and Kings voyage for a duration of 20 days — with prices starting at $13,495.00…

…but the reduced rates — which are only valid for this specific charter voyage and do not include a pre-night stay at a hotel property, transfers, or a parka — are as follows:

  • Twin Obstructed View: $5,280.00 per person
  • Twin Window: $5,500.00 per person


The itinerary — which is subject to change and should be used for illustrative purposes only — is currently as follows as numbered by day:

  1. Saturday, February 29, 2020: Embarkation in Ushuaia
  2. Sunday, March 2, 2020: At sea
  3. Monday, March 2, 2020: Falkland Islands
  4. Tuesday, March 3, 2020: At sea
  5. Wednesday, March 4, 2020: At sea
  6. Thursday, March 5, 2020:  Morning at sea; afternoon and evening South Georgia
  7. Friday, March 6, 2020: South Georgia
  8. Saturday, March 7, 2020: Morning in South Georgia; afternoon and evening at sea
  9. Sunday, March 8, 2020: Scotia Sea
  10. Monday, March 9, 2020: Scotia Sea
  11. Tuesday, March 10, 2020: South Shetland and King George Island
  12. Wednesday, March 11, 2020: Cuverville Island and Paradise Harbour
  13. Thursday, March 12, 2020: Lemaire Channel and Petermann Island
  14. Friday, March 13, 2020: At Sea
  15. Saturday, March 14, 2020: At Sea
  16. Sunday, March 15, 2020: Disembark ship in Ushuaia

Terms and Conditions

Valid on new bookings only, which must be confirmed on the day which the reservation was booked. The full names of passengers must be provided at the time of booking the reservation. Inventory cannot be held overnight. All fares cannot be refunded; and full payment is required at time of booking the reservation.

Rates are per person and cannot be combined with any other offer and no additional price reduction of any kind can be applied — for example, no past passenger loyalty discount, service discount, gift cards or referral discount.

Walk on only rate. Cabin types are based on availability at time of booking and cabin numbers cannot be guaranteed. Quark Expeditions reserves the right to change cabin numbers up until departure.

No cash value. Quark Expeditions has the right to limit, change or discontinue sales at any time without notice. Cabins are limited and subject to availability. Quark Expeditions Standard Terms and Conditions apply.


This may be an excellent opportunity for you to add Antarctica to your list of continents visited for a rate that is uncommon for such a trip — but you must act fast and be flexible enough to travel on the aforementioned dates.

One day, I am going to Antarctica, as that is at the top of my list of places to where I want to travel; but alas yet again, not this time — so I hope that you are able to take advantage of this offer.

Please say hello to a penguin for me if you do go.

This special offer cannot be accessed via the Internet. If you want to know more information, call the following telephone numbers toll-free for further details:

  • North America: 833 333 6353
  • United Kingdom: 44 8082 964580
  • Australia: 800 812 855
  • France: 08 05 08 66 46

Photograph of the Ocean Diamond vessel. Source: Quark Expeditions.

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