Cruise Lines Extend the Pause and Adjust Return to Service as CDC Guidelines Are Evaluated


Published: November 27, 2020 - 12:01 AM

Carnival to Return to Service in 2021
Carnival Corp and Select Other Brands Extend Pause until March 2021. Pictured - Carnival Cruises Horizon.

Now that the Center For Disease Control has laid out the criteria for cruise lines to return to service, the cruise lines are discovering that the return to service will not be a slam dunk. Carnival (thru the end of January), Holland America, Princess, Celebrity Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line and others have canceled cruises through March and others cruises have been canceled even further in the year.

In addition, this week the CDC has raised the warning for passengers wanting to cruise from a Severity level of 3 to 4.

"CDC recommends that all people avoid travel on cruise ships, including river cruises, worldwide, because the risk of COVID-19 on cruise ships is very high. It is especially important that people with an increased risk of severe illness avoid travel on cruise ships, including river cruises," the agency said, in a statement on its website.

Holland America and Princess Cruises (both Carnival Brands), for example have decided to cancel all cruises through 3/31/20 as they prepare to meet the CDC guidelines. In addition to the canceled cruises thru March, Holland America and Princess Cruises have decided to cancel cruises longer than 7 days through November 1, 2021. Holland America's Koningsdam, Nieuw Statendam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Noordam, Westerdam and Zuiderdam are all en-route to the United States at this time in preparation for a March return to service.

Carnival Cruises has announced the cancellation of all embarkations from U.S. home ports from Jan. 1-31; Plus the cancellation of all sailings from Baltimore, Charleston, Jacksonville, Long Beach, Mobile, New Orleans and San Diego embarkations through Feb. 28; Cruises from Tampa on the Carnival Legend have been canceled through March 26. The cancellation of cruises longer than 7 days. Reports indicate that the Carnival Horizon, Carnival Breeze and Carnival Vista will be the first ships to return to service.

Carnival is focused on a controlled return to service initially focusing on Miami and Port Canaveral as initial ports - then being followed by Galveston Texas. Galveston cruises has been linked to the Carnival Vista, while Miami and Port Canaveral Cruises will be operated by the Carnival Horizon and Carnival Breeze.

In a related story luxury cruise operator Seabourn Cruises has announced the cancellation of select itineraries on Seabourn Odyssey and Seabourn Quest. Specific details are as follows: The Seabourn Odyssey: with select voyages canceled from January 16, 2021 – November 5, 2021. Seven-day Alaska/British Columbia and the Pacific Coast sailings have not been canceled; The Seabourn Quest: with voyages longer than 7 days and calling on a U.S. port canceled from July 22, 2021 – November 6, 2021.

Disney Cruise Lines has also announced the further cancellation of cruises..... "As we continue to refine our protocols for our eventual return to service, we have decided to cancel all sailings departing through January 2021. Sailings are canceled on-board the Disney Magic, Disney Wonder and Disney Dream through February 1 and the Disney Fantasy through February 6."

P&O Cruises has announced that it will be extending its pause in operations into April 2021 due to “uncertainty around European ports of call.”

Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line are still holding on to their current plan to start controlled cruising from the US starting January 1, 2021. At this point, this seems optimistic, but there is still time for Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line to adjust their plans accordingly.


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