CDC: Don't Take a Cruise Right Now

Royal Caribbean, Norwegian cancel sailings among new COVID surge
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 8, 2022 6:30 AM CST
CDC: Don't Take a Cruise Right Now
In this March 23, 2018, file photo, the Symphony of the Seas is seen at the Saint Nazaire port in France.   (AP Photo/David Vincent, File)

If you've got tickets for an upcoming cruise, better check with your cruise line. This week, two major operators canceled near-future sailings amid the latest COVID surge, starting with Norwegian on Wednesday, reports USA Today. "Our first priority is the health and safety of our guests, crew, and the communities we visit," Norwegian said in a statement announcing the nixing of various sailings through April on eight of its ships: the Getaway, Pearl, Sky, Jade, Star, Sun, Spirit, and Pride of America. Royal Caribbean followed suit on Friday, announcing three of its ships—Symphony of the Seas, Jewel of the Seas, and Serenade of the Seas—will pause various cruises through March.

In addition, RC's Vision of the Seas, which is currently being used as a quarantine hub for infected crew, will see its return to cruising postponed until March 7. "Despite stringent health and safety measures, including vaccination and testing requirements for guests and crew, and extensive contingency planning, we have had to move forward with this decision," a company spokesperson says.

Meanwhile, the CDC is warning people away from taking any cruise right now, whether travelers are vaccinated or not, as the agency notes that 90-plus cruise ships—every cruise ship sailing with passengers in US waters—has documented COVID cases on board, reports the Washington Post. The agency says that case numbers surged from 162 during the first two weeks of December to more than 5,000 in the final half of last month. Per Tuesday's update, every ship with passengers now meets the threshold to trigger a COVID investigation from the CDC. (More cruise lines stories.)

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