Cruise ships have been a hard sell in recent years, after norovirus and a myriad of ‘viral’ issues, but just as the industry was turning a corner toward a new generation of traveler, it became known as the petri dish of the world, all over again. In response to covid-19 concerns, the Centers For Disease Control has passed an order banning all cruise ships in or out of the USA, for at least 100 days…
100 Day USA Ban For Cruise Ships
The United States Center For Disease Control (CDC) has issued a 100 day “No Sail” ban on cruise ships in US waters. Ships moored in US waters will be assisted in medical evacuations for staff in the interim, but as far as passengers go, there’s no in, and no out.
“This order ceases operations of cruise ships in waters in which the United States may exert jurisdiction and requires that they develop a comprehensive, detailed operational plan approved by CDC and the USCG to address the COVID-19 pandemic through maritime focused solutions, including a fully implementable response plan with limited reliance on state, local, and federal government support.”
Any and all disembarkation from ships in the interim will be coordinated with the US Coast Guard, CDC and other government agencies. The order stipulates that even beyond 100 days, nothing will change until comprehensive plans are drawn up by cruise operators to address concerns of safety training, virus prevention and other measures.
From the shores of Japan to the coast of the United States, cruise ships have been among the most severe and fast breaking sources of covid-19, creating political footballs for nations unsure how best to deal with sick passengers returning.
Many believe close quarters, larger scale gatherings and other factors make it virtually impossible for anyone to avoid an illness once on board, and until concerns can be alleviated, they won’t be sailing anywhere in US waters.
The CDC has updated guidance on what measures are available for for stranded travelers, including repatriation efforts to return anyone stranded abroad to their country of citizenship. If a cruise was on your to-do list later in the year, you might want to look at options outside of the United States.