Puffin trips to Machias Seal Island - more puffins than anywhere in Maine!

 

July 14 update:

We regret to announce that due to the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak, all of our remaining scheduled tours during the month of August have been cancelled.

Along with the previously announced tour cancellations for May, June and July, this now represents the complete loss of our 2020 tour season to Covid-19.

The reasons behind this decision are essentially the same as those detailed in our previous update back in mid June. It's also worth noting that conditions relating to Covid-19 here in Maine have not improved through the summer months as hoped, and in fact cases have been trending upward in many areas of the country.

We are saddened and deeply sorry over the cancellation of our entire tour season – we have arrived at this latest decision only after another lengthy and in depth evaluation of how we might be able to operate while conforming to both the general and industry specific Covid-19 guidance issued by the state of Maine.

However given the many complexities involved, we once again determined that the safest and wisest choice is to remain closed. For those individuals and groups that hold reservations in August, there are two options:

Upon request, a full refund of your deposit or advance payment will be provided to the mailing address we have on file – please advise if your address has changed since your reservation was made.

Optionally, participants may request us to hold their deposit or payment as a credit toward a tour date next year.

We are maintaining a priority booking list for the 2021 season for those individuals or groups who are impacted – we expect to contact those individuals or groups towards the end of 2020 to offer a re-booking opportunity.

Please note we cannot guarantee that we can re-book participants on the exact same date for 2021 but we will do our best to accommodate them on their preferred tour date.

If in the unlikely event we are unable to offer a suitable 2021 tour date, a full refund of any payment credit being held will be provided.

We thank you for your understanding and your support as we continue through these challenging times. We hope you will continue to follow the guidelines as set out by the CDC as well as your own state and local health authorities. We wish you all a safe, healthy and enjoyable summer season and onward.

~  Captain Andy

 

June 12 update:

We are sorry to announce that due to the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak, all of our scheduled tours have been cancelled through July 31.

Arriving at this decision has not been easy and many factors have been taken into consideration.

Both general business guidelines and guidelines for the operation of charter boats have been issued by the state – as expected, they will necessitate reduced tour group sizes and physical distancing, restricted movement aboard the tour vessel, extensive cleaning and disinfecting, along with other significant changes to daily operation.

Further, our particular boat tour format is unique, in that it provides an opportunity for participants to go ashore and view the nesting puffins and other seabirds at close range from enclosed viewing blinds.

This part of the tour itinerary – transferring participants off the tour vessel and landing on the island and back again – is of particular concern as it involves significant close physical and hand to hand contact between participants and crew. Even with reduced group sizes, use of the viewing blinds while maintaining safe physical distancing will be impractical at best.

We deeply regret having to cancel tours – we have arrived at the decision only after a lengthy and in depth evaluation of how we might be able to operate while conforming to both the general and industry specific Covid-19 guidance issued by the state of Maine.

And in the final analysis, given the many complexities involved, we believe the safest and wisest choice is to remain closed. For those individuals and groups that hold reservations in July, there are two options:

Upon request, a full refund of your deposit or advance payment will be provided to the mailing address we have on file – please advise if your address has changed since your reservation was made.

Optionally, participants may request us to hold their deposit or payment as a credit toward a tour date next year.

We are maintaining a priority booking list for the 2021 season for those individuals or groups who are impacted – we expect to contact those individuals or groups towards the end of 2020 to offer a re-booking opportunity.

Please note we cannot guarantee that we can re-book participants on the exact same date for 2021 but we will do our best to accommodate them on their preferred tour date.

If in the unlikely event we are unable to offer a suitable 2021 tour date, a full refund of any payment credit being held will be provided.

We thank you for your understanding and your support as we continue through these uncertain times. We hope you will continue to follow the guidelines as set out by the CDC as well as your own state and local health authorities. We wish you all a safe, healthy and enjoyable summer season and onward.

~  Captain Andy

 

May 28 Update:

Earlier this month, Governor Mills unveiled additional guidance and details on how the state’s economy will gradually reopen in stages. Since then, the guidance has been revised a number of times. Details may be found here.

Based on the guidance, it may be possible that our tours can take place in July and August, however there still are hurdles which must be overcome.

The two most significant hurdles are the ongoing 14 day quarantine requirement for visitors coming into Maine and whether or not all of the expected guidelines for safety (including reduced group sizes and distancing, cleaning and disinfecting, etc.) will be feasible for our type of tour operation. Specific operational guidelines and checklists for charter boat businesses are supposed to be released by the state sometime in June.

We want to stress that we will be starting up our tours only if we are sure that we can do everything necessary to keep our tour participants and our crew healthy and safe.

We hope to have a clearer picture of our plans for the remainder of our summer season by early to mid June. We will continue to post updates concerning the status of our tour operation for the rest of the summer season as more becomes known.

Once again, wishing you good health, stay safe and continue to protect yourself and others. Follow the guidelines as set out by the CDC and your own state and local health authorities. We are all in this together!

~  Captain Andy

 

April 29 Update:

Much has changed in the past 24 hours.

On Tuesday afternoon, the Governor of the state of Maine, Janet Mills, announced a “Stay Safer at Home” Executive Order, which outlines how the economy of the state will reopen.

The order envisions the state’s economy to restart in four gradual stages – the details can be found here.

Under the Governor’s plan, outdoor recreation businesses, including charter boats and boat excursions, will not be permitted to operate until July 1.

Given these guidelines, we are left with no choice but to cancel our scheduled tours for the month of May and June.

Individuals and groups with tour reservations during this time will receive a full refund of their tour deposit or payment. E-mail notifications will be going out to all who are impacted, starting with reservations for May and early June and continuing with reservations for mid and late June.

We are saddened beyond words to make this announcement but we do accept it is a necessary step to protect the health and safety of everyone.

If you have a tour reservation in May or June, we ask for your patience as we begin to process by hand the large number of bookings involved.

Please reach out to us if you have any questions and check this update page regularly for additional information on our summer tour schedule.

We wish each of you good health, stay safe and continue to protect yourself and others. Follow the guidelines as set out by the CDC and your own state and local health authorities.

And, as we said last month, we encourage you to be kind to one another – kindness will be sorely needed in our community during the months ahead!

~  Captain Andy

 

April 28 Update:

After careful and thorough review of both the current conditions in our community as well as the conditions we expect to face over the next several weeks, we have made the difficult decision to cancel our scheduled tours for the month of May.

Individuals and groups with a tour reservation in May will receive a full refund of their tour deposit or payment.

We have not arrived at this decision lightly – rather it is made based on the critical need to safeguard the health and welfare of our tour participants, our crew and our community.

We continue to monitor all developments as related to the Coronavirus outbreak and will base any further changes to our tour schedule as circumstances warrant.

We regret having to make this decision and we thank you all for your understanding as we face this difficult period together. Please check back for further updates as more information becomes known.

We encourage all of you to continue to follow the guidelines as set out by the CDC as well as your state and local health authorities.

Stay well!  ~  Captain Andy

 

March 20, 2020

A message to those with tour bookings for the upcoming summer season:

Like everyone, we are following the news and official sources of information on the Coronavirus outbreak. Clearly, there is great uncertainty on how the outbreak will progress, what areas will feel the greatest effects and for how long the virus will impact our lives.

Given this uncertainty, we have no choice but to adopt a wait and see approach to our 2020 summer tour season. For those of you that have a confirmed booking on a tour, we understand it would be helpful have additional information now. However the reality is we just don’t know at this time how this global crisis will affect our tour operation.

Since travel plans for many are likely to be impacted over the next few months, some of you may be considering cancelling your tour booking. We will of course refund any tour deposit or payment that has been received.

We will continue to follow all developments and we will post additional information once more is known. Our priority, first and foremost, is to protect the health and safety of our tour participants and crew, as well as the community at large.

You are welcome to contact us with any questions that you may have. We thank you for your interest in our tours and for your understanding as we negotiate the weeks and months ahead.

We hope and pray that each of you will stay safe, protect yourself and others, follow the guidelines as set out by the CDC and other authorities. And lastly, be kind to one another!

~  Captain Andy

 

BOLD COAST CHARTER CO.
P.O. BOX 364
CUTLER, ME  04626
207-259-4484
e-mail: info@boldcoast.com

 

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