The Cruise Lines International Association has recently confirmed that it will adopt a new set of health protocols. This is in tandem with a phased-in, highly controlled resumption of operations in North America.
The trade body said this was a critical next step, with sailing beginning in Europe
The new regulations will make sure that all passengers and crew are tested for COVID-19 as they board. Where physical distancing cannot be maintained, masks have to be worn at all times.
Air management and ventilation strategies have also been looked at to increase fresh air onboard. Shore excursions will only be permitted according to the cruise operators’ prescribed protocols. Cruise lines have the right to deny re-boarding to any passengers that do not comply with the rules.
Kelly Craighead, CLIA, President, said, “We recognise the devastating impact that this pandemic has had on economies throughout the world. This also includes nearly half a million members of the wider cruise community and small businesses in the Americas. We are working with public health experts and governments. We are confident that these measures will provide a safe pathway for the return of limited sailings from the United States before the end of this year.”
Cruise activity in the United States has supported over 420,000 American jobs
According to the latest economic impact study from CLIA, cruise activity in the United States has supported over 420,000 American jobs. It has also generated USD 53 billion annually in economic activity throughout the country before the pandemic. Each day that the cruise operations remain suspended, there is a loss of up to USD 110 million in economic activity. 800 direct and indirect American jobs have also been lost in the process.
In a statement, Carnival Corporation welcomed the move, “Across the industry, we are engaged with some of the world’s top medical experts and scientists. They are providing valuable insight to inform the ongoing and evolving development of new and enhanced protocols. These are based on the latest scientific evidence and best practices for protection and mitigation. The cruise industry will continue to share learnings and best practices while working together as one united industry focused on the well-being of guests, crew, and the communities we visit.”