New York (AFP)
Three cruise industry giants will return to the seas in a matter of weeks, and Norwegian Cruise Lines will be the latest to announce that its U.S. ships will set sail from early August.
After a year of crushing losses, Carnival and Royal Caribbean said late last week that their first post-pandemic cruises would depart in July, after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) earlier this month gave the green light to allow travel with passengers and crew who have received Covid-19 vaccinations.
“We have been waiting for a very long time to announce a resumption of cruising from the United States. We are so proud to be sailing for the first time in over a year from our special home port of Seattle to the breathtaking state of Alaska, ”Harry Sommer, Head of Norwegian Cruise Line, said in a statement. .
Cruise operations were suspended on March 14, 2020 when the CDC issued a “no-navigation order” to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Several ships already had deadly epidemics on board.
Some cruise ships resumed operations in Europe and elsewhere last year, but the ban remained in place in the United States.
The three companies will offer trips from Seattle to Alaska as inaugural cruises.
Norwegian said that “all crew and passengers must be fully vaccinated to embark.”
Carnival said its trips will be available to customers who have received their final dose at least two weeks before, and that Royal Caribbean will also require vaccinations for all passengers over 16, and after August 1 for all those in over 12 years old.
Norwegian will offer week-long trips starting August 6, while Royal Caribbean will leave port first with a similar trip on July 19, and Carnival’s Holland American Line will begin July 24.
“It’s been a tough year for everyone, but people clearly have pent-up demand for cruising, and we can’t wait to get back to what we do best,” said Royal Caribbean Managing Director Richard D. Fain , in a press release last week. .
Disney Cruise Lines announced in early May that all trips had been canceled until the end of July, but refused on Monday to provide details to AFP on the resumption of navigation.
© 2021 AFP