Sunday, August 7, 2022

Cruise Ships That Don’t Require Vaccines

Don't Miss

Disney Unveils The Wish Its First New Cruise Ship In A Decade

Some cruise lines will not accept passengers with mixed vaccinations

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lowered its threshold for cruise ships to meet a highly vaccinated status.

On May 5, 2022, the CDC reevaluated and lowered the cruise ship vaccination status thresholds from 95 percent to 90 percent of passengers under the COVID-19 Program for Cruise Ships.

Cruise lines with ships of any vaccination classification that opted into the COVID-19 program must share the vaccination status of each vessel with the CDC.

The agency posts the information on its website along with the ships color status, which indicates the number of COVID-19 cases reported on board.

The agency also clarified its isolation cabin requirements for ships.

Negative air pressure, for example, will no longer be required for isolation cabins. But predetermined cabins for isolation purposes must be in a separate area from the rest of the cabins.

While the CDC advises passengers to be vaccinated before boarding a cruise ship, it no longer warns against taking a cruise because of the COVID-19 risk.

In late March, the health agency dropped its risk assessment of cruise travel after more than two years of warning travelers against the dangers of contracting COVID-19 on a cruise amid the pandemic.

The removal of the notice didnt mean that the agency considered the activity to be without any risk.

That Cruise Document Doesnt Say What You Think It Says About Vaccination Requirements

Unfortunately, when Maxwell forwarded his paper trail, it was clear that he and his fiance had misunderstood some of the correspondence from Celebrity.

His cruise contract provided a link to the most up-to-date cruising requirements, which didnt support his theory that unvaccinated adults can cruise.

Since June, the Celebrity website has displayed this information on its site.

Fact: All Celebrity passengers 12 and older must be fully vaccinated 14 days before boarding their cruise.

I showed the information to Maxwell and explained that a refund isnt in the cards when a passenger doesnt have the required documentation to cruise.

I asked Maxwell if he had something else that I might use to successfully mediate his request.

Unfortunately, that was a dead-end as well.

Should You Take Your Passport With You On Shore Excursions

Your passport got you onto the ship, but can you get off the cruise ship without a passport or do you need to take it with you on shore excursions?

In general, you are not required to bring your passport with you when you go ashore for the day, either for a tour or to explore on your own. Certain ports are exceptions, such as St. Petersburg, where youll need to go through a passport and visa check.

You might also need a passport for shore excursions that take you from one country to another, such as certain tours on the White Pass and Yukon Route Railroad that takes passengers from Alaska into Canada.

Even though youre not required to take your passport ashore, opinions are mixed as to whether its a good idea to bring it anyway. Proponents say that its best to have your passport in case you miss the ship youll have an easier time getting to the next port of call or back home if you dont need to seek out an emergency passport from the local U.S. embassy.

Opponents argue that the chance of you missing the ship is low, and its more likely that your passport will get lost or stolen while youre exploring in port. In that case, your passport is better left in the safe in your cabin.

Some cruisers take a middle-of-the-road approach, and bring a photocopy of their passport ashore , but leave the actual book on the ship. This way, if something does go wrong, its easier to prove your identity and citizenship.

Recommended Reading: Are There River Cruises In The United States

Can I Go On A Cruise With A Passport Card

Again, it depends on the cruise.

If youre not familiar with a passport card, its a government-issued I.D. that is the size of a drivers license. A passport card is different than a passport book, the multi-page booklets that customs officials stamp as you enter a country.

You can cruise with just a passport card if youre sailing within the Western Hemisphere to the Caribbean, Bermuda, Canada, Mexico, or Puerto Rico, as long as you dont need to take an international flight to get to or from your ship.

Sailing Virgin Voyages Without The Vaccine*

Royal Caribbean wont require vaccinations on U.S. cruises, except in ...

Until recently, Virgin Voyages had a simple policy. As an adults-only cruise line, Virgin required everyone on the ship to be vaccinated. Now that policy has changed to 90% of passengers, allowing 10% of those onboard to sail unvaccinated with an exemption.

Passengers can call the cruise line at 954-488-2955 to ask about sailing without having the shot. There is no mention of needing a reason to be eligible for an exemption.

You can view Virgin Voyages latest policies here.

You May Like: Which Cruise Lines Stop In Sitka Alaska

Can I Go On A Cruise If I’m Not Vaccinated

The requirements depend on the cruise line. Here’s what to know about setting sail without a COVID-19 vaccination.

Jessica Rendall

Jessica is a Wellness News Writer who wants to help people stay informed about their health. She’s from the Midwest, studied investigative reporting at the Missouri School of Journalism and is now based in NYC.

Like many businesses attempting to regain shape as we close out year two of a global pandemic, cruise lines have started setting sail again — with some strict health measures in place. That’s because cruise ships, with their tight quarters, buffet-style living and international travel, can be a breeding ground for the coronavirus.

As is true for most travel restrictions these days, your ability to book a cruise may depend on your vaccination status. If you chose not to get a COVID-19 vaccine, can you still go on your favorite cruise vacation?

If you’re an adult in the US, the answer is probably not, unless you’re one of the few people with a medical or religious exemption .

Before you book — and especially if you’re looking at cruises months ahead — it’s important to consider the spread of COVID-19 in countries or ports where your ship will stop, and that’s regardless of your vaccination status. It’s also important to consider who’s coming with you. Children as young as age 5 are now able to get vaccinated, so your ability to cruise may depend on whether you’ve chosen to get your child vaccinated.

Cruise Lines That Dont Require Pre

If you’re going on a cruise these days, you’ll probably need to get a pre-departure negative Covid-19 test.

Some cruise lines have dropped the requirement to get a negative test, but most still require one to ensure everyone boarding the ship likely doesn’t have an active infection.

U.S.-based cruise lines are required by the CDC to ensure all of its cruise ship passengers get a negative Covid test before embarkation. Some lines operating in Europe have begun to drop the pre-cruise test, but this is the exception.

It remains uncertain if pre-cruise testing will go entirely away, or if a change will happen sooner or later. The cruise industry has less clout within government than other forms of leisure travel that enjoy a great deal more public pressure on their side.

Covid protocols have been changing since cruise ships restarted cruises, which has steadily seen primarily protocols eroding away in conjunction with falling covid cases counts and less fatal variants.

Heres the current list of cruise lines that do not require a pre-cruise Covid test to sail.

Also Check: Are Singles Cruises Worth It

Cruise Lines Requiring Vaccine

At the moment there are five cruise lines that have issued a vaccine mandate for cruise passengers. However, America Queen Steamboat and Victory Cruise lines are essentially the same company.

Were seeing a growing number of lines issue the vaccine requirement as the rollout continues to be a success across the United States. More and more people are being vaccinated which can help bring the cruise industry back to life.

The situation in the U.S. remains at a pause, with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention not yet allowing cruise lines to resume operations. Cruise lines prepare for their return, guided by the CDCs framework on the Conditional Sailing Order. However, no sign of test sailings just yet, and cruise lines are awaiting further technical guidance on a safe return.

The Biden administration is looking at opening up limited international travel from mid-May, but that all depends on the vaccine rollout. How that could impact the CDC decision on cruises remains unknown.

Also Read: How Important a Vaccine Could Be for Cruises in 2021

For now, cruise operators are planning how they can keep passengers and crew safe for when operations do resume, and a big part of that is now a vaccine requirement, as seen in the following list :

Virgin Voyages Welcomes Unvaccinated Passengers

Norweigian Cruise Line to require COVID-19 vaccines, Ziprecruiter CEO says ‘Employers are desperate’

The three major cruise lines sailing from U.S. ports — Royal Caribbean International – Get Royal Caribbean Group Report, Carnival Cruise Lines CCL, and Norwegian Cruise Line NCLH — still require pre-cruise covid tests taken no more than two days before your cruise and that all guests ages 12-and-over provide proof of vaccination.

Also Check: What Cruise Lines Sail From Jacksonville Florida

Dont Bother Booking A Cruise If Youre Not Fully Vaccinated Heres Why

Well, that didnt take long. The first wave of unvaccinated and partially vaccinated passengers whove been denied boarding their cruise ships has washed ashore.

As the cruise industry begins to return to the waterways, mass confusion about the requirements for cruising has ensued. One of the first casualties of this chaos was Joshua Maxwell and his fiancee. They showed up at the dock earlier this month, planning to set sail on Celebrity CruisesEquinox. Unfortunately, they werent fully vaccinated, and the cruise line rejected the couple and sent them home.

The twist? Maxwell says vaccination requirements confused cruise line employees, too. As a result, he says the duo were allowed to board the ship and settle into their cabin before being forcibly removed by security hours later.

So whats going on here?

Maxwells unpleasant tale should serve as a warning to would-be passengers everywhere. If youve got an upcoming cruise, make sure youre fully vaccinated, or you wont be cruising anywhere but back to your house.

Fact: You Must Prove Youre Fully Vaccinated To Cruise In 2021

Maxwell says he was stunned that the cruise line could kick them off the cruise and abandon them. But regular readers of our site know that he shouldnt have been surprised. Over the years, weve covered many cases where cruise lines have summarily removed passengers from their ships, with no follow-up.

Maxwell called Celebrity immediately and demanded an explanation and a guarantee of a refund. Then his shock turned to rage when the representative explained that there would be no refund.

The agent pointed out that all guests over age 12 must be fully vaccinated at least 14 days before sailing. Partial vaccinations do not qualify for cruising on Celebrity.

Convinced that the cruise agent was wrong about the vaccination requirements and his refund eligibility, Maxwell next submitted his request for help to the Elliott Advocacy team.

Recommended Reading: Do Cruise Ship Passengers Need Visas

Unvaccinated Adults And Vaccine Exemptions

Most major cruise lines require proof of vaccination for all passengers age 12 and up, and some require them for kids as young as 5 years old . Last week, Disney Cruise Line became the first cruise line to require passengers as young as 5 to be vaccinated for sailings starting Jan. 13.

While some cruise lines state they’ll accept medical exemptions, others do not, and it also might depend on the port. Carnival, for example, says it’ll accept some vaccine exemptions from those ages 12 and younger, as well as adults who have “” that they can’t be vaccinated — but only at their Florida, Texas, Louisiana, Maryland, South Carolina and Alabama ports until the end of March 2022. COVID-19 vaccine exemptions at Carnival’s Long Beach, California port will only be accepted for kids under age 12 and when “required by US federal law” due to religious beliefs or medical reasons.

How long will the vaccine requirement be in place for cruise passengers? That’s hard to say because it depends on the state of the pandemic at any given time. It also varies based on different rules for cruise ships or territories, and evolving guidance from the CDC.

The testing and masking requirement specifics may differ by cruise or length of sail, but everyone age 2 and older should be prepared to be tested for COVID-19 before boarding, or during the journey when applicable, regardless of vaccination status.

What To Know Before You Cruise

Cruises 2021: CDC says vaccinated passengers don

Vaccine and pretrip testing requirements can be confusing, especially if you are cruising internationally. Cruise lines have their own rules countries have their own rules. And the rules are constantly changing.

Before your trip, you will need to review your cruise lines health and safety protocols. In most cases, you will be expected to arrive at your ship with a negative COVID test resulteither a PCR test or tele-health-monitored antigen test, paid for by you. The cruise line may also require a test at the pier, paid for by the cruise line.

Unvaccinated children have more stringent requirements that may include a series of tests both precruise and on the ship.

Don’t Miss: Must Haves For Alaska Cruise

Too Close To The Elevators

Choosing a cabin close to the elevators might seem like a great idea after all, you wont need to walk very far up or down the long hallways to snag an elevator.

Think again! Elevators are typically places of congregation for people. Starting early in the morning, dont be surprised to probably hear people talking while waiting for the elevator. Late in the evening, you can also hear people coming back to their cabin after a night of partying! Not to mention the elevator ding every time someone presses the buttons.

You should also consider that people will always be walking by your room during all hours of the day when you are close to the elevators.

Try to choose a cabin thats further down from the elevators to avoid unnecessary noise and traffic near your cabin.

What To Know In General About Vaccine Rules And Cruising

Before we get into how to sail, there are some general things you should know regarding vaccinations and cruises.

First, in general cruise lines do require most passengers to have the shot. So no matter which line you sail, your fellow passengers will almost all be vaccinated. And before you think this is just the cruise line rules in action, realize that many countries have rules regarding who can visit their country based on vaccine status. That impacts the policies cruise lines put in place.

However, there are some exceptions regarding who has to have the shot.

For one, cruise lines have more relaxed rules for children under 12 years old. Its common across cruise lines to allow passengers under 12 to sail freely without needing vaccination. So if you are sailing with a smaller child that you dont want to be vaccinated, then thats normally not an issue.

In addition, some lines offer exemptions for passengers that are older than 12 that have medical or religious beliefs that prevent being vaccinated. So if you qualify on one of these grounds, its more likely youll be able to sail.

Finally, at this time cruise lines sailing vaccinated cruises typically put the level at 90% of passengers. So while 90% of eligible passengers need the shot, they do allow 10% to sail without. This 10% includes all passengers aged five years old and up .

You May Like: What Are The Best Cruises For Adults

What Other Documents Do I Need To Go On A Cruise

If youre traveling internationally, a passport might not be the only document you need. Certain destinations, such as China and Russia, may require visas for arrival into the country by air or independent exploration ashore.

In some cases, where youre arriving in a country by sea , the cruise line will handle visa procurement for you. This is often the case for Mediterranean cruises that visit, but dont embark or debark in, Egypt.

Its the passengers responsibility to check with the appropriate government agencies and their cruise line to determine what documentation is required.

Where Do The Major Three Cruise Lines Stand On Vaccine Requirements

Florida’s governor Ron DeSantis says cruise lines, other businesses cannot require proof of vacc…

Find where Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line currently stand on vaccine requirements for guests.

In the mass of news reports coming out in recent weeks, its easy to lose track of what cruise line requires a vaccination or which does not. The three biggest cruise lines have been busy ironing out their vaccination requirements.

Yet, Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, and Norwegian Cruise Line all have different mandates. There are even requirements for different ships sailing in different regions of the United States and worldwide.

We shed light on what each cruise line requires and which ships do or do not require a mandatory vaccination to be able to sail onboard.

Recommended Reading: What Cruise Lines Go To Bermuda From Boston

What Vaccines Are Required To Travel On A Royal Caribbean Cruise

All guests must ensure that they are medically and physically fit for travel. The Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization provide guidelines as to which vaccinations are required in each country. In many cases inoculations are recommended, but in some circumstances, they are required. We recommend that you check with your health care professional or a Travel Medicine Specialist certified by the WHO for guidance. Other informational resources can be accessed on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention traveler’s health website or by calling toll-free FYI-TRIP and on the World Health Organization website.

If you are looking specifically for COVID-19 vaccination requirements, please visit our FAQ.

More articles

Popular Articles