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Carnival Will Maintain US Homeports, Uncertain on Vaccine Mandate

THERESA NORTON | TravelPulse.Com

Troy Warren #travel-all


Carnival Cruise Line is not developing plans for voyages entirely outside the U.S., as some other lines are, President Christine Duffy said in a new video.

She also said a decision has not been made regarding a vaccine requirement and is hopeful cruising will restart in the U.S. by summer.

“Here at Carnival Cruise Line, we currently do not have any plans to move our ships away from their U.S. homeports,” she said. “I have always said Carnival Cruise Line is America’s cruise line. We sail from 14 U.S. homeports, 50 percent of our itineraries are less than seven-day sailings and a significant number of our guests drive to their Carnival cruise vacation. We also sail more families and children than any other cruise line and, as you know, so far the vaccines are not approved for anyone under the age of 16.”

Carnival is instead focused on restarting from the U.S.

“As more Americans are vaccinated, our focus is on securing a decision that will allow for a resumption in cruising from our U.S. homeports consistent with the expected return of other forms of travel for the summer, but with the promise that all Americans who want to vaccine will have access to one by the end of May,” she said. “We are optimistic that we will see travel resume in time for summer.”

She then makes the point many others have.

“If it’s safe to fly on an airplane, stay in a hotel or resort, or visit an amusement park, it should be safe to cruise on a ship with the additional health and safety protocols that we have in place,” Duffy said. “We are all extremely anxious to resume cruisingwhen the time is right and hopefully from the U.S.”

The video was posted on the Facebook page of Adolfo Perez, Carnival’s senior vice president of global sales and trade marketing. Numerous travel advisors posted reactions.

“Thanks for posting this,” one agent wrote. “It’s encouraging news, especially for those who will not be getting the vaccine for whatever reason. I hope their final decision is NOT to mandate it once sailing begins again. Many people have medical or religious reasons for not wanting the shot.”

Another posted: “We have rebooked ours three times and booked a family reunion in November as well! We are so ready. Some of the family have shots already and then some have said they would cancel if shot was mandatory! Keeping fingers crossed! I am a TA so no shot would be better for my commission LOL.”

Another travel agent offered her idea.

“There will always be controversy about the vaccine and whether to make it mandatory or not. Cruise lines should not require it but leave it up to the individual to decide if they want an extra layer of protection when cruising. That being said, EVERYONE who chooses to cruise should definitely be allowed to cruise. If you have been vaccinated you must show proof at embarkation and if you are not, the cruise lines should require passengers to produce a recent negative PCR COVID test within 24 hours to five days before your cruise date. No rapid tests allowed as they are not reliable. Cruise lines should require one or the other but not both. Perhaps, children under the age of 16 should be excluded. Just my thoughts.”