Norwegian Cruise Line announced Tuesday that it planned to sail again this summer, with itineraries scheduled from Athens beginning in July and from two Caribbean ports beginning in August.
What You Need To Know
- Norwegian Cruise Line to offer trips from Athens in July, from 2 Caribbean ports in August
- Company says it will require all guests to be fully vaccinated and tested prior to boarding
- The company also seeks permission to resume trips from U.S. ports beginning July 4
- Disney, Carnival canceled U.S. port bookings through June
- Royal Caribbean, MSC cruises currently continuing June bookings
Norwegian says it will offer seven-day cruises to Greek islands from Athens beginning July 25, plus weeklong Caribbean trips beginning from Jamaica on August 7 and from the Dominican Republic on August 15.
Given continued precautions against the COVID-19 pandemic, Norwegian said it would require all guests to be fully vaccinated and tested prior to boarding for those cruises.
“The growing availability of the COVID-19 vaccine has been a game-changer,” Norwegian Cruise Line President and CEO Harry Sommer said in a news release. “The vaccine, combined with our science-backed health and safety protocols, will help us provide our guests with what we believe will be the healthiest and safest vacation at sea.”
Norwegian stopped short of opening cruises out of Florida ports as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues a ban on cruises that originate from the United States. Tuesday’s announcement follows reports that the cruise line seeks permission to resume trips from U.S. ports on July 4.
Disney Cruise Lines has canceled all Disney Dream, Disney Fantasy, and Disney Wonder sailings departing from the United States through June 2021 but indicated that it is continuing to try to work toward resuming operations. European sailings are off until at least September 18, 2021, except for a limited number of short summer sailings for United Kingdom residents, and Disney's Alaska cruise season still is being evaluated.
On Tuesday, Carnival Cruise Line also announced that it has started to notify customers of more cruise cancellations and that it will continue its suspension of cruises from U.S. ports through June 30, 2021. Carnival last month had held out hope of sailing clearance soon from the CDC.
Despite the ban, Royal Caribbean International, and MSC Cruises have been accepting bookings for trips beginning in June out of Florida ports.
In the Norwegian news release, Sommer called it premature to make decisions about health and safety protocols for trips beginning Nov. 1.
“We will continue to evaluate our health and safety protocols and rely on science and our expert council as we make decisions and evolve our policies and procedures,” he said.