Finally some good news in the cruise industry!
Today CDC published the “Framework for Conditional Sailing Order for Cruise Ships”, in other words, lifting the No-Sail order starting Sunday, 1st November 2020.
This doesn’t mean that on Sunday everyone will gather around the cruise ship pools waiting for the sail-away but it is a good start to test the new health protocols and prepare to come back.
So when can we sail?
As per CDC there will be several stages in the process of comeback.
“During the initial phases, cruise ship operators must demonstrate adherence to testing, quarantine and isolation, and social distancing requirement to protect crew member while they build the laboratory capacity needed to test crew and future passengers” CDC explained. The next step would be mock voyages and more testing of protocols.
Even so, the CDC still advises against cruise ship travel although in my humble opinion, the chances to get infected walking on the street these days are higher than being on a ship and following strict health protocols.
Are cruise ships ready?
With the new 74 recommendations for preventing and mitigating the spread of COVID-19 the cruise industry declared that it is ready to sail again! Most of these recommendations including testing, face covering and temperature checks have already been in place during crew changeovers and ship lay ups so it is only a matter of time when we will be back onboard.
What are the cruise line executives saying
As per usatoday CEO Carnival Corp. Arnold Donald said in a call earlier this month that “At this time we have every reason to be optimistic that we will be sailing in the U.S. before year end.” Richard Fain CEO Royal Caribbean Group also believes that “It is possible to make it that you are safer on a cruise ship than you are on a Main Street”.
This may not be much at the moment but is a start to recover an industry that has provided jobs so many people worldwide. The people want cruises to start again! The No-Sail ban of the last 8 months has been seen by most to be unfair. I am sure today’s news warms up many hearts in the world.