Cruising and COVID 19


What your family needs to know for cruising after the pandemic

When the pandemic first started no one knew a whole lot about it, and in an unfortunate coincidence, there were cruise ships that had infections on board and spreading before anyone knew that one could spread it without being sick. Cruises worldwide were shut out, no one wanted ships to come into port, which caused further loss of life because people could not get proper care.

The cruise industry is about so much more than the ships. There are the people who work on the ship, both the ones you see and the hundreds you don’t see that make a ship run. There are all of the vendors that provide provisions, supplies and entertainment for the ships. There are people who work the ports on many levels, from security to loading and unloading. There are the hotels near ports that rely on cruisers for their bookings. Then there are the people like us, travel agents who really only want to make sure that your family has the adventure of a lifetime.

While airlines, trains, theme parks, hotels and so much more tourism has been allowed to function with mitigation plans, for whatever reason the CDC has made it so hard for cruise lines to return to business that we have lost at least 18 months of cruising.

During this time, we have largely been taking a “wait and see” approach. As parents of two high risk kids, we have taken a cautious approach to promoting or encouraging travel.  With the rollout of vaccines along with CDC guidelines to resume sailing, we have a high degree of confidence that ships will be sailing safely very soon. 

There is a lot of misinformation out there about what will and won’t happen. The cruise lines, in conjunction with doctors, the CDC, the government and CLIA (Cruise Line International Association), have been working on guidelines for safe cruising.

Here’s what we know:

  1. Many lines are starting to cruise from foreign ports in the Caribbean as soon as June.
  2. Many lines are already cruising in other areas (Singapore, northern Europe) successfully.
  3. While they were out of commission, they went under a lot of improvement for HVAC and cleaning procedures.
  4. There are extensive plans and procedures in place for if someone contracts COVID while at sea and what they have to do.
  5. You will be required to wear a mask on the ship for the foreseeable future.
  6. You will be required to take a test before you board for the foreseeable future.
  7. Cruising will be different. Things like self-serve food, large shows and other inside venues will look different. There will be fewer people and fewer choices when it comes to cabins. (All the more reason to book early!)
  8. Canada has banned ships until February 2022, which has killed the Alaska season for another year unless they can find a work around for the Passenger Vessel Services Act.

And what we don’t know:

  1. Some lines have been floating the idea of requiring vaccination or proof of recovery before sailing. We don’t know how this will affect families wanting to sail, since nothing is official yet.
  2. The CDC has not completely released their guidelines yet, so there may be requirements for quarantining after return or limited ports of embarkation.

While we are confident that cruising will return safely, we are continuing to monitor the situation are here to answer your questions. We will always be truthful and will put you and your family first.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us!

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