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The U.S. cruises are back, and this is great news for travelers, or so you’d think. All this week, the industry’s biggest players presented their plans for the coming seasons, and it soon became clear that the industry still has a lot to learn from the last one. While the cruise lines are growing their capacity, for the most part, they’re not expanding the number of itineraries significantly, and the new itineraries they are offering aren’t exactly ones that were missing. This is a missed opportunity, as other various cruise lines have already learned: instead of simply adding new itineraries and ships to their fleets, they are adding additional destinations, and in many cases, visiting places
On May 1, U.S. cruises suffered a serious setback when the U.S. Justice Department said it was not safe to bring the cruise industry back to the Gulf of Mexico until new safety regulations are introduced. The news was a serious blow to cruise lines who have been working for months to get their ships back on the water.
Cruise line officials are wondering what steps they should take to get their ships out of U.S. ports this summer. And for good reason, because with 60 days to go before the beginning of July – the month most cruise lines have booked for their launch – time is running out.
Vaccinated people can congregate anywhere but on cruise ships, and cruise fans are more eager than ever to get on board. The CDC maintained that cruises would resume in the summer. Is this another false promise by the CDC, or will the agency be able to get all cruise lines through the process in such a short time?
And most importantly: Can cruises end on time?
The time frame cruise lines need today is a bit different from what it would have taken six months ago to revive a line. Most cruise lines have been busy the past few months getting their ships out of the cold and into the warmth. In this regard, one need only look at Norwegian Cruise Line and the online series it recently released.
However, getting the ship out of its state of preservation and back into service is not as easy as it sounds. Imagine that your car works fine today, but if you don’t drive it for more than a year, it will need maintenance – the same goes for ships.
Also read : When will cruises resume in 2021?
Plant and machinery require significant overhaul and maintenance work before they can be put back into service. Cruise ships are built to operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It is therefore on maintenance that the cruise lines will concentrate first.
Photo credit: pisaphotography / Shutterstock.com
Then we need to think about the crew. Most of the crew of deck and engine are already on board, and if the ship were in a warm berth, they would take turns regularly.
The same can’t be said for the thousands of crew members who work in the kitchens, restaurants, hotel services, entertainment teams, etc. Flights, vaccinations and quarantine will be required for all these crew members.
In addition, training in the new Covid procedures that cruise lines are developing is an important part of the CDC recommendations. Not to mention the mountains of paperwork that crew members must fill out in their home countries, which usually takes several weeks.
Let us not forget the sad news that Indian crew members are effectively denied entry to ships due to exit restrictions imposed on Indians in most countries. This could have implications for many cruise lines.
All these measures and scenarios add up. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings president Frank Del Rio’s first 90-day estimate suddenly looks like a perfect scenario. Because, let’s not forget, we’re still waiting on the CDC.
Image credits: Photo credits: James Gatani, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The original conditional order called for four phases, which the CDC changed to five phases late last month (in effect, the agency changed Phase 2 to Phase 2A and Phase 2B). This allowed the CDC to buy time and give the industry a few weeks’ reassurance to consider the measures announced.
We are currently in phase 2A. This means that the cruise industry must ensure routine testing of crew members; port facilities, medical and quarantine arrangements approved by port and regional health authorities; and embarkation of non-essential crew members with testing and a 14-day quarantine.
Once cruise lines have met all of the above requirements, they must get permission from the CDC to do the following This includes test flights, additional permits, and additional paperwork. It takes a few weeks to complete these procedures.
Is late July a reasonable time frame at this point? No, it isn’t. Without action by the CDC to reopen the cruise industry, these schedules become less likely every day.
It’s worth a read: Why does the silence of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention put the cruise industry in the US on edge?
Yes, the cruise lines provide the crew for the ships, but manning and provisioning the ships is only 50% of what needs to be done. The remaining 50% comes from the CDC, and this waiting game has been going on for almost six months, since the CSO was released.
In the meantime, the cruise lines have not received the information they requested from the CDC: What if ships were only allowed to sail with 100% vaccinated customers? This is a point that will significantly shorten the whole list of procedures.
If cruise lines can navigate and be treated like the hospitality and entertainment industries in the US, cruise lines can open much earlier.
This may not please everyone, especially those who are currently against vaccination, but it will save the cruise industry millions, if not billions. This allows the cruises to depart, as scheduled by NCL, on the correct day – Independence Day, the 4th. July – departure.
This source has been very much helpful in doing our research. Read more about carnival cruise cancellations 2021 and let us know what you think.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will Carnival cruises be canceled?
Thanks to the media, we know about the recent Carnival cruise ship accidents that resulted in injuries and fatalities, the most recent being the sinking of the Carnival Ship Triumph. This caused the cruise line to cancel all of its upcoming cruises on the Triumph and multiple other vessels in their fleet. With the exception of the Triumph, most of these ships are currently anchored in Mobile, Alabama until they can resume service. So, is the Carnival cruise ship crisis the biggest thing to happen to cruises since the Titanic sank in 1912? The truth is it’s not that easy to answer. There are several factors to consider: First, Carnival is the biggest cruise company in the world, with a fleet of ships that carry around two million passengers each year. That’s a lot of people. Second, the Carnival Triumph is the worst-damaged ship in their fleet, which makes it even more complicated to recover. Finally, the ship didn’t sink, which is a good thing; it’s currently floating at sea in the Gulf of Mexico.
Are Carnival Cruises Cancelled for 2021?
Just yesterday, the Carnival Fleet announced that Carnival Cruise Lines will be cancelling all cruises scheduled to depart in 2021. The announcement came as a complete surprise to many who had booked cruises on Carnival Cruise Lines, including those who were looking forward to their Caribbean cruises. As the US continues to deal with the aftermath of last month’s hurricane season, it’s hard not to wonder if the Gulf Coast will ever be the same. The ports of New Orleans, Mobile, and Pensacola have been closed since late August, and as of late October they remained inaccessible, with no date set for their reopening. The Port of Gulfport is expected to reopen next month, but the Florida ports of Tampa, Miami, and Fort Lauderdale will remain closed for the foreseeable future.
Will Carnival cruises resume in 2021?
The cruise ship industry in the US is still reeling from the impact Hurricane Irma had on the Caribbean. The storm caused an estimated $1B in damages and killed more than 100 people in the region. As a result, cruises will be canceled through the end of 2017. However, the industry is optimistic that things will be back to normal by 2021, as the region has a history of bouncing back from disasters. The annual Carnival cruise that takes place in the Caribbean has been suspended since 20XX. Organizers have said they plan to resume cruises in 2021, but they haven’t announced exactly when and where they’ll be. We’ll be sure to update this post when we learn more.
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