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An Important Day for the U.S. Cruise Industry

It’s Florida’s Governor Rick DeSantis and Attorney General Ashley Moody against the CDC in federal court today. The decision from the U.S. District Judge will be massive for the cruise industry, and not just for Florida, as both Alaska and Texas joined the lawsuit in recent weeks.

Although there has been the usual legal-speak lately, the fact of the matter is that a favorable decision from the judge could mean we could see a far more favorable and speedy return to sailing.

Florida’s Cruise Ports Have Sat Empty for More Than a Year

AG Ashley Moody reiterated the point made so often by her and Governor DeSantis that Florida’s ports have been empty for far too long now. The three largest cruise ports globally, PortMiami, Port Canaveral, and Ft Lauderdale, typically see dozens of cruise ships coming and going each day. These ships provide a significant benefit to the local economy, providing jobs and billions in income each year.

Due to the CDC’s Conditional Sail Order (CSO), the time these ports sit empty is taking longer and longer. The CDC has made it clear they will not be deviating from the CSO. The order applies to any cruise ship that either operates in or plans to operate in U.S. waters.

Worth Reading: Florida Pushes for An Immediate Cruise Restart Through Federal Court

In the meantime, other countries have allowed cruises to take place, in some cases since the end of July last year. Something AG Moody mentioned in a press briefing before the landmark lawsuit:

“Cruises are operating in other countries, and they’re doing so with little to no spread of the virus. We can do that in the United States. To think otherwise is putting the priority of other countries ahead of the United States.”

CDC EntranceCDC Entrance
Photo Credit: Matt Bannister / Shutterstock.com

What is in the Lawsuit?

Attorney General Moody is looking for a preliminary injunction to block all the restrictions on the cruise ship industry.

The lawsuit against the federal government and the CDC calls the CSO “arbitrary and capricious” and asks the judge to “set aside the CDC’s unlawful actions and hold that cruises should be allowed to operate with reasonable safety protocols.”

For now, the CSO remains in place until November 1, 2021. With many cruise lines hoping to start operating in the middle of July, an injunction would be a welcome step for the cruise lines.

Governor DeSantis called out the CDC a few weeks:

“We have one of our major industries that has been idled by the federal government for over a year, the cruise-line industry, we need to get these cruise lines operating again.”

Support has been growing for the lawsuit in recent weeks. This has been the case in particular since the CDC released a new set of regulations it calls phase 2B and 3.

These regulations have been widely received with disbelief and anger from the cruise lines, while other states with major stakes in the cruise industry have recently joined the DeSantis lawsuit. Texas has joined after Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a motion:

“The pandemic showed us that the need for stable and predictable law has never been greater. Government policy should not have the ability to destroy industries and eliminate workforces with the stroke of a pen, the cruise industry needs clearly defined expectations for safe operations and protection from baseless COVID-related claims while the country is reaching new vaccination records.”

While there has been mention of cruise lines requiring passengers to be vaccinated, Gov. Ron Desantis banned “vaccine passports” in Florida. Moody said she’s not involved with that right now, instead she is focusing on the first step which is getting cruise restrictions lifted. Once that stage has been achieved, she’ll focus on how they’ll operate.

Also Read: Why Florida Needs to Fight for Cruises to Resume

Where this will lead, we will hopefully know soon. If anything, the lawsuit will tell the CDC to give the cruise lines the same freedoms and rights given to casinos, amusement parks, and more sectors of the hospitality industry.

Cruise Ship in Miami FloridaCruise Ship in Miami Florida

More Space Than Ever on Norwegian Prima, Debuting in 2022

After the teaser Norwegian Cruise Line was released a few days ago, the cruise line has released the full details on the first of six new vessels. The reveal includes the release of several worldwide itineraries, an in-depth look at the outside decks, suites, and cabins, and the luxury food, beverage, and entertainment options Norwegian will offer onboard.

Norwegian Prima is the company’s first of six vessels that will accommodate 3215 guests at double occupancy, which means guests have wide-open spaces, and, by the looks of it, a beautifully designed vessel for the Leonardo Class of ships, the brand’s first new class of ships in nearly ten years.

Building Prima

Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri has long been building up a name for themselves when building and designing beautiful cruise ships. Norwegian Prima is expected to be sailing in the summer of 2022 and will feature striking hull artwork designed by Italian graffiti artist Manuel Di Rita.

The hull art that Norwegian Cruise Line ships are famous for extends to the ship’s forward superstructure for the first time. Each of the six ships is expected to cost somewhere around the $850 Million mark.

The inside and outside areas of the vessel have been designed by a wide variety of design and architectural companies; these include Rockwell Group, SMC Design, Tillberg Design of Sweden, and YSA DESIGN. Various restaurants, staterooms, and public areas were conceptualized and composed by Miami-based Studio Dado.

Giuseppe Bono, CEO of Fincantieri:

“We are very honored to partner with Norwegian Cruise Line for the development of its next class of ships. Norwegian Prima marks the beginning of our collaboration, which will see the delivery of six next-generation vessels that are designed to take guest experiences to a new level focusing on elevated, spacious and thoughtful design.”

Norwegian Prima will be 965 feet long, 142,500 gross tons, and 3,215 guests at double occupancy. However, more than her size and length, what strikes Prima as different than other new ships is the amount of outside deck space she offers.

Render Courtesy: Norwegian Cruise Line

Putting The Guest Factor First

With the Prima class of ships, Norwegian will try to put the guest experience first and foremost, and that is especially clear when one looks at the amount of space available onboard.

Norwegian Prima will offer the highest space ratio of any of the ships in the contemporary and premium cruise offerings. Prima will offer the most suite varieties, the largest three-bedroom suites, and the brand’s largest inside, oceanview, and balcony cabins.

Render Courtesy: Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Prima will have the most outdoor deck space of any new cruise ship, including more total pool deck space than any other ship in NCL’s fleet, as well as multiple infinity pools outdoor walkways allowing guests to take in the sea.

Harry Sommer, President and Chief Executive Officer, Norwegian Cruise Line, said:

“Bringing together our ‘Guest First’ philosophy and our spirit of innovation, Norwegian Prima personifies everything our guests love about NCL and raises the bar. This brand-new class of ships is truly designed to put our guests first. We innovated with purpose and created Norwegian Prima to push the boundaries of conventional cruising, offering our guests more wide-open spaces, thoughtful art and design and world-class service which places our guests at the heart of it all.”

The vessel will also offer “The Haven,” an exclusive and centralized suite complex spanning eight decks of suites and public areas. The ultra-premium keycard-only access ship-within-a-ship concept provides guests with private amenities, dedicated services, and the most luxurious accommodations on board.

Ocean Boulevard

One of the more spectacular areas of the new vessel is “Ocean Boulevard.” At 44,000 square feet long, it wraps around the entirety of deck 8, allowing guests to walk around the entire ship and experience fantastic ocean views while having the choice to partake in numerous exceptional outdoor activities.

Render Courtesy: Norwegian Cruise Line

Global Cuisine with Indulge Food Hall

Inspired by the open-air marketplaces which draws foodies worldwide, the Indulge food hall will be a significant feature on Ocean Boulevard. It will offer diverse menus from various culinary venues and a mix of indoor and outdoor seating.

Render Courtesy: Norwegian Cruise Line

These include 11 venues, including Coco’s, serving artisan sweet treats; Q Texas Smokehouse, boasting delicious American Southern comfort food and barbecue, Starbucks, and many more.

The Concourse, Infinity Beach, Oceanwalk, and La Terraza

Norwegian designed ocean Boulevard to allow guests to spend an entire day here without having to leave. The outdoor walkways and numerous dining options will also feature “The Concourse,” an outdoor sculpture garden valued at over $2 million.

Render Courtesy: Norwegian Cruise Line

Guests also have the option to chill at Infinity Beach, with its two infinity pools located on each side of the ship. Two Oceanwalk glass bridges will give passengers the feeling of walking on air over the water. La Terraza, an open-air lounge, features a quaint retreat for visitors to catch stellar forward-facing sea views.

Itineraries

Itineraries went on sale for Norwegian Prima and include a wide variety of worldwide options. The vessel will undertake several inaugural cruises from July 2022; after that, she will start sailing in Northern Europe from Amsterdam and Copenhagen to ports in Northern Europe, The Norwegian Fjords, and the Baltic Sea.

Related: Norwegian Cruise Line Reveals First Details on Norwegian Prima

From the fall of 2022, Prima will sail on her first Transatlantic voyage from the UK before arriving in New York for her inaugural voyage from a US port. After that, she will spend an entire season sailing from Galveston, Miami, and Port Canaveral, to several ports in the Caribbean.

After that, there will be several cruises to Bermuda and the US before moving to Europe again to start her Northern European season again.

All in all, Norwegian Cruise Line will have a much-anticipated ship on their hands. With this many ships being released in the coming years, Norwegian had to come up with something spectacular, and it seems they have certainly managed to do exactly that!

Norwegian Prima RenderingNorwegian Prima Rendering

First Look at Norwegian Prima, NCL’s Newest Ship Debuting in 2022

Norwegian Cruise Line this morning unveiled their much anticipated new cruise ship that will enter service next year, Norwegian Prima.

Norwegian Prima is the first of six new cruise ships from Norwegian Cruise Line and will be 142,500 gross tons and able to accommodate 3,215 guests at double occupancy. The cruise ship will be a game-changer for NCL, offering guests exciting itineraries, more wide-open spaces, thoughtful and stunning design, a variety of new experiences as well as Norwegian Cruise Line’s exceptional service.

Norwegian Prima will offer the highest staffing levels and space ratio of any new cruise ship in the contemporary and premium cruise categories, delivering an unrivaled guest experience. She will offer the largest variety of suite categories available at sea with 13 suite categories as well as the largest three-bedroom suites of any new cruise ship and Norwegian’s largest-ever inside, oceanview and balcony staterooms, including NCL’s largest-ever bathrooms and showers for standard stateroom categories.

Norwegian Prima will also offer the most outdoor deck space of any new cruise ship including more total pool deck space than any other ship in NCL’s fleet as well as multiple infinity pools and vast outdoor walkways allowing guests to take in the sea, the ocean breeze and a variety of elevated experiences.

Sponsored Links

Furthering the elevated experience that places guests first and understanding the important connection they have with the outdoors and proximity to the sea, NCL reimagined its industry pioneering The Waterfront by doubling the space and adding a greater variety of experiences and dining options than ever before by introducing Ocean Boulevard.

Located on deck eight, Ocean Boulevard at 44,000 square feet long, wraps around the entire deck, allowing guests to walk around the entire ship and experience amazing ocean views while having the choice to partake in numerous exceptional outdoor activities.

As part of the multifaceted experiences offered on Ocean Boulevard, NCL introduced the Brand’s first-ever upscale open-air marketplace with Indulge Food Hall. Created to elevate the guest-sensory experience on Norwegian Prima, Indulge Food Hall offers visitors diverse menu items from a variety of culinary venues as well as a mix of indoor and outdoor seating.

NCL’s first-ever food hall was thoughtfully designed, offering various cuisines and showcasing captivating colors and smells with 11 venues including returning guest culinary favorites Coco’s, serving artisan sweet treats; Q Texas Smokehouse, boasting delicious American Southern comfort food and barbecue; and Starbucks.

Indulge will unveil first-ever dining venues including Seaside Rotisserie, offering a wide array of rotisserie-cooked dishes; Nudls, an emporium serving noodle dishes from around the world, from Italian to Thai cuisines; Tamara, preparing classic Indian dishes and multiple vegetarian food options; The Latin Quarter, serving classic Latin food with a twist; Tapas Food Truck, cooking elevated Spanish-inspired street food; Garden Kitchen, where guest can order customized salads with more than two dozen ingredients to choose from; Just Desserts, featuring classic dessert items such as pies and cakes and Just Ice Cream serving all guest favorite ice cream flavors and over-the-top decadent creations.

Adding to the culinary offerings available on Norwegian Prima’s Ocean Boulevard, the site will host three additional dining venues offering both indoor and outdoor seating including Onda By Scarpetta, Los Lobos and The Local Bar & Grill. Onda by Scarpetta, which debuted on Norwegian Encore in 2019 and also available on Norwegian Spirit, will showcase the rich and bold flavors for which the modern Italian land-based, award-winning Scarpetta restaurants are recognized.

The venue, designed by esteemed design firm Studio Dado, features an elegant atmosphere, modern design and expansive indoor and outdoor ocean views. Los Lobos, the Brand’s premium Mexican restaurant, returns on Norwegian Prima to boast traditional Mexican flavors with modern flair set in a contemporary atmosphere also designed by Studio Dado. The revamped Local Bar & Grill set in an upscale beach club atmosphere will showcase live music where guests can relax and enjoy cocktails and classic Americana cuisine.

Guests can also relax at Infinity Beach featuring two infinity pools, one located on each side of the ship and close to the ocean surface, which is an industry-design first that allows pool-goers to take in the vastness of the ocean while soaking in the open air.

The two Oceanwalk glass bridges, also new to the Brand, will provide guests with photographic, breathtaking views that will make them feel as if they are walking on air over the water. La Terraza, an open-air lounge, features a quaint retreat for visitors to catch stellar forward-facing sea views.

To provide guests with an unrivaled experience in luxury cruising, The Haven by Norwegian on Norwegian Prima has been elevated to offer the Brand’s most exclusive and centralized suite complex. Spanning eight decks of suites and public areas, the ultra-premium keycard only access ship-within-a-ship concept provides guests with private amenities, dedicated services and the most luxurious accommodations on board.

For the first time, the Cruise Line relocated all 107 Haven suites to the aft (the rear of the ship) within close proximity of private elevators exclusively reserved for Haven guests. These elevators rise directly into The Haven public areas on decks 16 and 17. NCL evolved The Haven’s design to be more open to the sea than ever before.

For the first time, every public area in The Haven offers stunning sea and destination views. The Haven Courtyard on Norwegian Prima has been transformed into an expansive Haven Sundeck, boasting a stunning new infinity pool overlooking the ship’s wake and a new outdoor spa with a glass-walled sauna and cold room.

Pushing the boundaries of exclusive design within the reimagined exclusive space, all public areas and suites in The Haven have been designed by Piero Lissoni, one of Italy’s preeminent designers. Lissoni provided an elegant and sophisticated design to The Haven Sundeck, The Haven Restaurant, The Haven Lounge & Bar and the Outdoor Spa: Sauna and Cold Room.

Norwegian Prima will sail to Northern Europe and the UK in the summer of 2022. The cruise ship will then sail a series of cruises from New York City, Galveston, and Miami before homeporting in Port Canaveral for the Caribbean season.

In the spring of 2023, the Norwegian Prima will offer cruises from New York to Bermuda before sailing to Iceland and Norway in the summer.

The first cruises on Norwegian Prima are now open for bookings.

Cruise Line Reveals New Health and Safety Measures for August Restart

With Azamara returning to service out of Greece this summer, the former Royal Caribbean-owned cruise line has now released its ‘Explore Well at Sea’ health and safety protocols. All guests will need to be fully vaccinated to be allowed to cruise.

Azamara Health Measures

The boutique cruise line has announced its ‘Explore Well at Sea’ program, which implements new health and safety standards to keep guests and crew members protected during a cruise vacation.

The measures are from the guidance of the Healthy Sail Panel, a group of experts who are leaders in public health, biosecurity, epidemiology, hospitality, and maritime operations.

President of Azamara, Carol Cabezas, said:

“Since we suspended our sailings over a year ago, we’ve had time to develop a strong restart plan and build on our existing health and safety protocols to ensure peace of mind for guests and crew, especially when it comes to traveling within our new world.”

“Cruising is one of the safest places to travel, which is attributed to all the enhanced protocols set in place, and we are extremely fortunate to be guided by the Healthy Sail Panel for a healthy return to service in Greece beginning on August 28, with five back-to-back Country-Intensive Voyages and one classic Mediterranean sailing.”

The measures include pretty much the same as what most other lines are doing, and it’s good to know that Azamara ships will use new HVAC air filtration systems to help stop the spread of any virus. Guests will need to be fully vaccinated to cruise, and the cruise line will evolve the guidelines as the situation develops around the world.

For now, the new health protocols will be implemented when Azamara Quest begins operations out of Athens, Greece, on August 28, 2021. The ship will offer 7-day voyages and a total of 18 late-night stays in port, including Santorini, Rhodes, and Heraklion, Greece.

‘Explorer Well at Sea’ Highlights

Testing & Screening: All guests will be required to be fully vaccinated two weeks prior to sailing, as an added layer of protection to keep guests and crew safe, in addition to providing a negative SARS-CoV-2 test result. Once aboard, complimentary COVID-19 testing and medical evaluations will be available.

Air Filtration: With new HVAC filtration systems, the air indoors aboard each of Azamara’s ships is comparable to the fresh sea air. This advanced filtration system takes in fresh sea air and moves it through a two-stage filter, plus copper coils, to eliminate 99.99% of germs, making the transmission of aerosol particles between spaces extremely low to virtually impossible. 

Cleaning Protocols: Advanced cleaning protocols and guidelines approved by the CDC and recommended by the Healthy Sail Panel will be followed. Every nook of the ships, from bow to stern, will be regularly cleaned and sanitized. New standards include enhanced team member training, use of EPA-certified disinfectants, and techniques like electrostatic spraying. 

Medical Capabilities: An enhanced medical facility will be found on board each Azamara vessel, with more equipment, a dedicated infectious control officer, and new isolation staterooms to provide comfortable and complimentary care. New agreements will be in place with local governments, hospitals and transportation partners to ensure guests a safe return home. 

Azamara Cruise shipAzamara Cruise ship

Carnival Cruise Line’s Update on Possible Restart This Summer

Carnival Cruise Line has given an update on summer cruises for 2021 and has canceled additional sailings as they work towards restarting sailings.

Carnival Cruise Line hopes to begin operating cruises on three cruise ships from Florida and Texas, including Carnival Vista and Carnival Breeze from Galveston, and Carnival Horizon from Miami.

Also, if the cruise line can find a solution to allow cruise ships to visit Alaska, Carnival Miracle will assume some of Carnival Freedom’s departures from Seattle.

Given that there is still some uncertainty in Carnival Cruise Line’s ability to operate these cruises, guests booked on those sailings who wish to make alternate summer vacation plans may cancel without penalty by May 31, 2021 and receive a full refund.

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Carnival Cruise Line is cancelling sailings on all other cruise ships through July 30, 2021. Guests whose cruises are cancelled are eligible for a future cruise credit (FCC) and onboard credit (OBC) or a full refund.

“We continue to have constructive discussions with the CDC but still have many questions that remain unanswered. We are working diligently to resume sailing in the U.S. and meet the CDC guidelines,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “We sincerely appreciate the continued patience and understanding of our guests and travel advisor partners and will share additional information as quickly as we can.”

Separately, late last week Carnival Cruise Line notified its guests that Carnival Splendor’s pause out of Sydney was extended another month, as it cancelled sailings from August 19 to September 17, 2021.

Carnival Cruise Line Releases Update on Restart and Cancellations

Carnival Cruise Line has provided a major update on its plan on restarting operations out of the U.S., including further cancellations across the fleet. It comes as the cruise line continues to work on a possible restart in July.

Carnival Cruise Line Update

There is no doubt that resuming operations out of the U.S. is tricky, including for “America’s Cruise Line,” Carnival Cruise Line. The Miami-based cruise line now aims to restart with just three ships from Florida and Texas in July, which was hinted at after most bookings were removed from bookings earlier in May.

The cruise line will start with Carnival Breeze on July 15 and Carnival Vista on July 3 out of Galveston in Texas, and Carnival Horizon out of PortMiami in Florida on July 4. These will be the first three Carnival ships to resume operations in July.

For Carnival Horizon, it does depend on whether sailings longer than 7-days will be permitted. If that is not the case, then 6- and 8-day sailings after and including July 10 will be modified to week-long cruises instead. Guests will be notified of any changes.

It does mean that all other departures from the U.S. are now canceled through July 2021. The other ships won’t restart until August at the very earliest and a lot does also depends on the US Centers for Disease Control and its Conditional Sailing Order.

Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line, said:

“We continue to have constructive discussions with the CDC but still have many questions that remain unanswered.  We are working diligently to resume sailing in the U.S. and meet the CDC guidelines.”

“We sincerely appreciate the continued patience and understanding of our guests and travel advisor partners and will share additional information as quickly as we can.”

There is still hope to save the Alaska season, and Carnival is looking for a solution for ships to visit the region. If this is the case, Carnival Miracle will assume some sailings from Carnival Freedom’s departures out of Seattle, Washington.

Carnival Cruise Line Suspensions and RestartCarnival Cruise Line Suspensions and Restart

Is Mardi Gras Canceled Again?

The further cancellations include the Mardi Gras, the first Excel-class ship in the fleet and still waiting to make her debut since being delivered towards the end of 2020. We’ve reported extensively constant setbacks for the ship, originally scheduled to start sailing on August 31, 2020.

The largest-ever ship constructed for Carnival Cruise Line was previously scheduled to kickstart her service on July 3, 2021, as one of the first ships in the fleet to resume operations. At the moment, the earliest Mardi Gras cruise is showing only for October 2 out of Port Canaveral. With the ship in huge demand, it could just be that those earlier departures are sold out.

Carnival had previously suspended all U.S. operations through June 2021. Much now depends on the CDC if the three Carnival cruise ships will actually resume in July.

Carnival Cruise Line Plans Return

This news comes as the cruise line plans its service return, and things are already starting to happen. Recently Carnival Breeze and Carnival Vista returned to Galveston to begin crew vaccinations. Even though Carnival Sensation is not among the earliest ships to resume, she’s also set to arrive in Galveston today. On Friday, she will arrive in Mobile, Alabama, for crew vaccinations.

A lot still needs to be resolved on guest requirements with the health and safety measures that have not yet been announced. Cruise lines are still working with the CDC on a safe return and the hope is that this could happen in July.

Carnival Cruise ShipsCarnival Cruise Ships

Norwegian Cruise Line Launching New Ship Next Year, Norwegian Prima

Norwegian Cruise Line is launching a new cruise ship that will begin sailing next summer and will be a first-in-class ship designed with you in mind.

Norwegian Cruise Line's Leonardo Class Cruise ShipNorwegian Cruise Line's Leonardo Class Cruise Ship

An artist rendering of Project Leonardo from Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line will make a formal announcement about Norwegian Prima on May 12, 2021 when they release details about the cruise ship.

Norwegian Prima will sail to the Caribbean, Bermuda, and Europe in 2022 and is the first cruise ship in Project Leonardo from the cruise line.

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Leonardo class ships are a new class of ship from Norwegian that are expected to be in the 140,000 gross ton range.  NCL currently has six of the ships on order with one being delivered each year from 2022 to 2027.

Cruise Fever will have all details on this exciting new ship from Norwegian Cruise Line when they are announced tomorrow.

Carnival Cruise Ship to Arrive in Mobile, Alabama

Carnival Sensation will be arriving in Mobile, Alabama, on Friday, as confirmed by Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson. The Fantasy-class ship is not yet resuming operations but will be there for crew vaccinations.

It comes as Carnival Cruise Line recently started vaccinating crew of the Carnival Breeze and Carnival Vista when they made a much-anticipated return to the Port of Galveston in Texas over a week ago.

Carnival Sensation to Arrive in Mobile

For the first time since cruise operations were first suspended more than a year ago, a Carnival cruise ship will be returning to the Alabama Cruise Terminal in Mobile. However, it won’t be the ship that was originally expected.

Related: Things to Know About the Mobile Cruise Terminal in Alabama

Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson announced on Tuesday in a City Council meeting that the Carnival Sensation will arrive at the port on Friday. The plan is for 110 crew members to receive their first dose of the vaccine. It follows two other ships that have started having crew vaccinations at the Port of Galveston.

Carnival Fantasy, Port of MobileCarnival Fantasy, Port of Mobile
Photo By: Carnival Cruise Line

In a local news report, Mayor Stimpson said in the meeting, “We’re pretty excited about that. It’s a big deal, they’re coming here to be vaccinated. My understanding is that three weeks later the ship will come back in for the crew members to be re-vaccinated.”

It’s a major step forward for cruise operations out of the State of Alabama and makes sense as Carnival Sensation will be based from the port once cruises resume. Sister ship Carnival Fantasy was originally set to homeport out of Mobile but was sadly sold for scrap in 2020. Carnival Cruise Line was then planning on shifting Carnival Fascination from Puerto Rico to Mobile but then that she was sold.

Carnival Sensation is actually arriving in Galveston, Texas, on Tuesday afternoon and, according to the Cruise Ship Tracker, is currently in the Gulf of Mexico waiting to enter the port. From Galveston, she is then expected to make her way directly to Mobile for the vaccinations.

Mayor Stimpson has urged the public to head down to the Gulf Quest maritime Museum or the Cooper Riverside Park at around 9:00 AM on Friday to welcome the Carnival cruise ship’s arrival.

Also Read: Things to Know About the Carnival Sensation Cruise Ship

Carnival Sensation is now the second oldest ship in the fleet and joined the fleet in 1993. She’s 70,367 gross tons with a guest capacity of 2,052 at double occupancy along with 920 international crew members.

Carnival Sensation Cruise ShipCarnival Sensation Cruise Ship

What One Cruise Line Is Doing to Keep Guests Safe on Cruises

Azamara, a boutique cruise line with a focus on Destination Immersion experiences, has unveiled their plan on how they will keep guests safe when they resume cruises this summer.

The cruise line is implementing new health standards on their cruise ships by launching their “Explore Well at Sea” program. Azamara took guidance from the Healthy Sail Panel so they can offer a safe and healthy cruise experience.

Here are the highlights of Azamara’s “Explore Well at Sea” program. The cruise line will continue to evaluate these protocols and update them as public health standards and the global situation evolves. Booked guests and travel partners will be advised of the latest requirements prior to voyage departure.

Testing & Screening: All guests will be required to be fully vaccinated two weeks prior to sailing, as an added layer of protection to keep guests and crew safe, in addition to providing a negative SARS-CoV-2 test result. Once aboard, complimentary COVID-19 testing and medical evaluations will be available.

Sponsored Links

Air Filtration: With new HVAC filtration systems, the air indoors aboard each of Azamara’s cruise ships is comparable to the fresh sea air. This advanced filtration system takes in fresh sea air and moves it through a two-stage filter, plus copper coils, to eliminate 99.99% of germs, making the transmission of aerosol particles between spaces extremely low to virtually impossible.

Cleaning Protocols: Advanced cleaning protocols and guidelines approved by the CDC and recommended by the Healthy Sail Panel will be followed. Every nook of the ships, from bow to stern, will be regularly cleaned and sanitized. New standards include enhanced team member training, use of EPA-certified disinfectants, and techniques like electrostatic spraying.

Medical Capabilities: An enhanced medical facility will be found on board each Azamara vessel, with more equipment, a dedicated infectious control officer, and new isolation staterooms to provide comfortable and complimentary care. New agreements will be in place with local governments, hospitals and transportation partners to ensure guests a safe return home.

“Since we suspended our sailings over a year ago, we’ve had time to develop a strong restart plan and build on our existing health and safety protocols to ensure peace of mind for guests and crew, especially when it comes to traveling within our new world,” said President of Azamara, Carol Cabezas.

“Cruising is one of the safest places to travel, which is attributed to all the enhanced protocols set in place, and we are extremely fortunate to be guided by the Healthy Sail Panel for a healthy return to service in Greece beginning on August 28, with five back-to-back Country-Intensive Voyages and one classic Mediterranean sailing.”

The New Reality for Carnival Cruise Line Crew Members

Carnival Cruise Line has detailed new health and safety procedures for crew members who are set to join a carnival cruise ship. The new instructions begin before departing the home country and details the new reality while working onboard.

Before Joining the Carnival Ship

Crew members who are set to join a Carnival ship have received details on the cruise line’s protocols to protect against COVID-19. This comes as Carnival works on restarting operations this summer out of the U.S. Crew Center first reported the letter to the crew.

The process starts before a crew member even departs their home countries with a 14-day quarantine before departure. 72 hours before flying off to the ship, there will be a need for a PCR test.

Worth Reading: How to Social Distance Effectively on a Cruise?

In the letter, Carnival says that the cost of the test will be reimbursed once onboard, so they will need to keep the receipt. The PCR test, which is the only acceptable test, needs to show a negative result. The result will need to be on hand 24 house before the flight departs.

Carnival Cruise Line states in the letter:

“All around the world, there have been changes to the way we dine, shop, travel, and socialize. Living and working on board is no exception. These updated measures have been designed to help ensure everyone’s health and safety.”

“Please review the information below carefully as you will be asked to confirm your understanding and comply with these policies and procedures should you choose to accept your contract. If you do not feel safe or comfortable complying with these policies and procedures, you may reject the notification at the end of this letter to decline your upcoming contract.”

Crew Only SignCrew Only Sign
Photo Copyright: Cruise Hive

Once on the Cruise Ship

Once crew members are on board the vessel, the next phase of procedures will then begin, and the crew must complete another 14-day quarantine which includes a set of guidelines as follows:

  • During our initial start-up, all team members will be assigned to a single cabin.
  • All meals will be delivered to your cabin.
  • Self-monitor your health and immediately report any symptoms of respiratory illness to the medical staff.
  • Adhere to twice-daily temperature and respiration checks conducted by the medical staff.
  • Pay attention to announcements and instructions from the leadership team.
  • Complete any unfinished courses in GLADIS.
  • Also use this time to stay in touch with family and friends, exercise in your stateroom, meditate, read and participate in activities to stay physically and mentally active.
  • If you are a smoker, we encourage you to quit. If you must smoke, you may do soon the cabin balcony on. Smoking on your balcony is only allowed while you are in quarantine. Once out of quarantine, you may only smoke in the designated smoking areas.

Also Read: Carnival Cruise Line President Releases New Update for the Crew

General Life On and Off Duty

It’s looking like the crew life on board will not be as it once was and there are a lot of changes across dining, living spaces, services, and recreation. However, Carnival is still keeping many things in operation to help crew enjoy their time working on the ship including the crew lounge.

Cruise Ship BalconyCruise Ship Balcony

Face Masks

  • Face masks must be worn at all times (on and off duty) when indoors, and outdoors when physical distancing cannot be maintained.
  • Face masks are not required indoors only in the following instances:
  • While eating and drinking seated at a table with your cohort. (team members who work in your same department).
  • When inside your own cabin.
  • All team members who have high volume contact with guests will be tested for COVID-19 weekly on board the vessel. All other team members will be tested monthly.

Team Dining

  • You will eat all your meals with your cohort at a specified time in a designated team dining room.
  • All meals will be served assisted buffet style.
  • Due to new health and safety protocols for guests and crew, guest area dining privileges are suspended.
  • Depending on your assigned ship, take-out purchases from specialty dining and the Pizzeria will be delivered to a specified crew area.

Recreation

  • The crew gym will be closed at this time. However, you may enjoy the guest gym during posted hours as long as you are seated with your cohort.
  • The crew lounge will be open with limited capacity. Bar seating will not be permitted.
  • A satellite bar station for nonalcoholic purchases including water, sodas, and snacks will be available.
  • A coffee shop will be available in the crew lounge (subject to ship).
  • Fun Team activities will be advertised in the monthly crew activities calendar.
  • The crew open deck(smoking and non-smoking area) will be available.
  • Access to guest areas will be limited to only those team members who are on duty.
  • A bi-monthly company newsletter will be printed and distributed on board to keep you informed of what’s happening around the fleet.

Retail and Services

  • The crew launderette will be open 24 hours except for one hour each day for deep cleaning.
  • The Learning Resource Center will be open during posted hours for computer-based learning and general inquires.
  • The HR Director and HR Service Office will be available during posted hours for general inquires and team members are encouraged to call them if they have any questions.
  • The crew barbershop will be open during posted hours.
  • Pop-up stores for crew sales will be placed on I-95.
  • The 24-hour social media plan and internet vouchers will be made available to you during the ramp-up at no charge.
  • You may have packages delivered to the ship in homeport.

Physical Distancing

  • Once you begin work, it’s essential to adhere to proper physical distancing guidelines, as follows:
  • Keep approximately 2 meters (6feet) or more apart from others while working, socializing and eating.
  • Avoid gatherings such as parties end events where physical distancing cannot be maintained.
  • Avoid physical contact with other people including shaking hands, giving hugs and cheek kissing.
  • Follow the floor markings or signs used to facilitate physical distancing.
  • Where essential tasks require more than one person, the team will be kept as small as possible and if work requires people in close proximity, the number of work partners will be minimized.
  • When physical distancing while working is not possible, avoid facing each other. Instead, work side-by-side or back-to-back.

Important Health Guidance

  • As you may not be able to get prescription medicines, we strongly recommend you bring extra two month’s supply of your regular medications.
  • Carry disinfectant wipes with you so you can clean seats, handrails, and other common surfaces you may touch.
  • Wash your hands frequently for 20 seconds and use hand sanitizer often.
  • Avoid touching your nose, eyes, and face. Sneeze/cough into your elbow and dispose of any tissues promptly.

The newly updated procedures for the crew come as Carnival Cruise Line prepares on resuming operations this summer. When that will be, remains to be seen and mainly depends on the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We do know that the cruise line has already started vaccinating crew members at the Port of Galveston, an important factor for resuming operations.

For now, Carnival Cruise Line has suspended operations from the U.S. through June 2021. It’s currently unclear which ships will resume first and the situation remains very fluid. Currently, Carnival has not yet released the health and safety procedures for guests.

Carnival Cruise Line Crew MemberCarnival Cruise Line Crew Member