Princess Cruises announced on Friday that it’s extending its pause on operations again, cancelling all cruises scheduled through March 2021.
Noting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) ‘Framework for Conditional Sailing Order’ relaased in October, the company took another step back amid a tumultuous year.
‘Princess Cruises is extending its pause in global operations to allow time for the estimated preparation needed for completing required activities prior to sailing and taking into consideration the temporary seven-day cap on itineraries that call at a U.S. port,’ the company said in a statement.
Princess Cruises announced on Friday that it extended its operations after the CDC released new guidelines
All cruises longer than seven days sailing in and out of United States ports through November 1, 2021 will be impacted, according to Princess Cruises
In addition to cruises docked through March 31, 2021, all cruises longer than seven days sailing in and out of United States ports through November 1, 2021 will be impacted.
Princess Cruises’ revelation came after at least five people tested positive for coronavirus on Sea Dream 1, a luxury yacht company that docked the infected ship in Barbados to quarantine crew and guests.
And that Royal Caribbean Cruise Line has acquired 100,000 volunteers who signed up for a ‘test voyage’ to prove guests are safe from coronavirus spread.
Five people aboard the SeaDream 1 have tested positive for COVID-19, just one day after the liner’s first case was announced
Travel YouTubers Ben and David were among those aboard the ship. In a Twitter post, the two confessed to ‘feeling slightly anxious’ as the number of cases rose
Earlier this year, an outbreak on a Diamond Princess ship departing from Japan resulted in 169 confirmed cases.
Princess Cruises added on Friday that cruises departing in and out of Japan have also been halted through June 25, 2021.
‘We are focused on preparing our ships to meet the CDC health and safety requirements for our eventual return to service,’ said Jan Swartz, president of Princess Cruises.
The Carnival Corp company assured that guests with cancelled trips can request refundable Future Cruise Credit or a full refund at their online forum.
The full refund must be submitted by December 31, 2020, or guests will be automatically registered for the Future Cruise Credit.
After Princess Cruises released its statement, the Carnival Corp’s stick tumbled on Friday morning and continued into the afternoon.
Shares were priced at $17.45 after a four per cent drop. They amassed to $18.18 the day before, following a steep decline in February with the coronavirus.
This week, Carnival Cruise Line announced that it also cancelled all US cruise trip through January 31, 2021. Royal Caribbean Group stopped sailings through the end of this year.
Fears that cruise ships, once again, emerge as coronavirus spreading grounds were renewed last week because of Sea Dream 1, the first ship to set sail since the start of the pandemic.
Many guests aboard Sea Dream 1 were bloggers and travel writers invited to review the trip, which was intended to install more confidence in the cruise industry amid the pandemic.
Canrival Corp’s stock shares tumbled slightly on Frday after Princess Cruises announced its extended pause
Gene Sloan, a travel writer with The Points Guy who is on the ship, said on Thursday that Captain Lund later announced that there was ‘preliminary evidence’ of a sixth case but a second test was required to confirm.
The ship’s 53 passengers – 37 Americans and 16 others from the UK, Austria, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Germany – as well as non-essential crew are quarantining in their cabins after the cruise was halted and the ship returned to dock in Barbados.
Those on board had been required to undergo a ‘gauntlet’ of tests ahead of the cruise to create a ‘COVID-free bubble’ and it is not yet clear how coronavirus came to be on the vessel.
Guests have been tested for the virus by both the ship’s doctor and authorities in Barbados since returning. With the exception of the five confirmed infections and two potential cases, Sloan reported that all other passengers and crew had tested negative as of Friday.
Meanwhile, at least 100,000 people have signed up for Royal Caribbean’s ‘test voyage.’
The Royal Caribbean volunteers’ Facebook group has already amassed almost 48k members
‘We are going to be doing a series of sailings using our employees and other volunteers to test out the protocols and make modifications,’ Vicky Freed, Royal Caribbean’s senior vice president of sales, trade support and service, told Cruise Industry News.
‘As many know from reading the CDC conditional sale order, we will be operating trial sailings with volunteer guests,’ wrote Bayley on November 12.
‘It has been so gratifying to receive literally thousands of emails and calls offering to volunteer. To make things easier and keep everyone up to speed, we’ve set up a Volunteers of the Seas group!’
Details about when the test voyages will begin or where they’ll travel to has not been disclosed.