The global health crisis has been particularly hard on the travel industry, and perhaps even more so on cruise lines.
At the moment, Disney Cruise Line has currently canceled sailings through August, although the company hopes to resume some operations this fall. Disney also recently announced a new staycation cruise experience in the U.K. However, for the time being, cruises leaving the U.S. are currently grounded and the CDC continues to extend no-sail orders.
According to ABC News, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis recently appeared in public with leaders from Carnival, Norwegian, Disney, and Royal Caribbean. There he spoke out against the cruise ban and threatened to file a lawsuit against the CDC if cruises are not allowed to resume by this summer.
Florida currently has the three busiest ports in all of the U.S., located in Miami, Port Canaveral, and Port Everglades near Fort Lauderdale. DeSantis said that the CDC ban was hurting the state, particularly because cruising has resumed elsewhere in the world.
The CDC has not yet commented on DeSantis’ remarks, but it did issue specific guidelines back in October for U.S. cruises. These guidelines include laboratory testing for crews in U.S. waters, simulated voyages to test cruise ship operators’ ability to mitigate COVID-19 risk, certification for ships that meet specific requirements, and a phased return to cruising.
Royal Caribbean has already made plans to resume sailing in the summer, as early as June. Those cruises will operate at reduced capacity, with vaccine requirements for crew AND guests. as well as with specific face covering requirements. Meanwhile, Disney Cruise has not announced any summer cruise plans but did recently extend its temporary cancellation and payment policies. We’ll continue to monitor the situation, and keep you updated.
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