It has been over a year since cruises have been able to depart on sailings with passengers aboard.
Due to CDC guidelines that prohibit sailings, the Disney Cruise Line has now canceled select sailings through October 2021, and other cruise lines have faced similar suspensions. But, a recent letter from the CDC to the cruise industry may mean that they will be able to return to sailing sooner than expected.
According to USA Today, the CDC has clarified requirements for cruise lines to return to sailing which may enable sailings to begin again in mid-July. Whether a cruise line can resume sailing at this time will depend on the pace at which they work to comply with the CDC’s Framework for Conditional Sailing Order that lays out health and safety guidelines.
The CDC had previously provided additional guidance to the cruise industry earlier this month on April 2nd, and the new clarifications now add to that. The new guidance now includes that:
- Cruise lines can bypass the CDC’s required simulated test voyage with volunteers by having 98% of the crew and 95% of passengers are fully vaccinated.
- The CDC will now review and respond to simulated voyage applications within 5 days.
- New guidelines for testing and quarantine periods for passengers will be updated to align with the current guidance for fully vaccinated people from the CDC.
- Cruise lines can now enter into a “multi-port agreement” if all authorities agree and sign documentation.
- Those who are exposed to or get COVID-19 during the cruise will have updated quarantine guidance from the CDC.
If cruise lines are able to comply with these new regulations and provide the CDC with all required documents and measures, then they may resume sailings this summer. We will continue to track the story as it develops, so stay tuned to AllEars for the latest.
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