The CDC’s Conditional Sailing Order transitioned to a voluntary program on January 15, effectively meaning that it’s now up to cruise lines to opt into its guidelines set for COVID-19 health and safety.
After a turbulent time for the cruise industry, it’s viewed as a positive move that the order didn’t get extended again and brings to light how far cruising has come from the CDC’s initial No Sail Order.
“Cruise is the only segment of travel and tourism that requires, prior to embarkation for both passengers and crew, exceedingly high levels of vaccination — approaching 100% compared to only 63% on land in the U.S. — and 100% testing of every individual — over 20 times the rate in the U.S.,” said Cruise Line International Association (CLIA) in a statement responding to the news.
CLIA’s statement continued: “When cases are identified as a result of the high frequency of testing onboard, cruise ship protocols help to maximize onboard containment with rapid response procedures designed to safeguard all other guests and crew as well as the communities that the ships visit. Further, cruise is the only sector that continuously monitors, collects, and reports case information directly to the CDC.”
Major cruise lines are still expected to comply with the CDC’s guidelines on a voluntary basis going forward.
As the industry gains momentum, Canadian Travel Press looks ahead to four innovative new ships debuting this year.
For the full story, check out the latest issue of CANADIAN TRAVEL PRESS.