It’s been an up and down week for the cruise industry. News of effective vaccines had people excited, but cruise lines aren’t even close to taking on passengers again. Carnival Cruise Line affirmed as much this morning with the announcement that they have once again pushed back their timeline for a restart. The cruise line has cancelled all cruises from U.S. ports until February, putting a damper on cruisers who had hopes of setting sail in January.
All with cancelling all embarkations from U.S. homeports in January 2021, Carnival also cancelled all cruises from Baltimore, Charleston, Jacksonville, Long Beach, Mobile, New Orleans and San Diego through February 28, 2021. Carnival Legend will sail from Tampa beginning in March.
Check out the post below:
Important update regarding early 2021 U.S. sailings. pic.twitter.com/Dra9jpXgCj
— Carnival Cruise Line (@CarnivalCruise) November 18, 2020
It seems likely that Carnival took a look at the lengthy list of requirements set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and decided that 60 days would not be enough time. Not only do cruise lines need to establish accurate testing sites on board and at embarkation ports, but they also need to train their employees on proper testing procedures and protocols. Then they need to establish via test cruises that they can operate a ship without disruption from COVID-19.
A slow and steady approach seems the most likely as failure to comply with the CDC’s regulations would set cruising back significantly. The CDC may request at any time “operators must make their properties and record available for inspection to allow CDC to ascertain compliance with this framework.” This includes ships, terminals, vehicles, equipment, communications, manifests, passenger lists and all employee and passenger health records. The same page also goes on to say that cruise lines may use the services of professionally licensed and accredited third-party auditors to help them meet the new requirements.
Were you scheduled to cruise in January? Let us know in the comments!