Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) announced today (Aug. 5th) that its ocean-going cruise line members have agreed to voluntarily suspend U.S. cruise operations until at least Oct. 31st, 2020.
"Despite the valuable alignment between CLIA’s previous voluntary suspension to September 15th and the CDC’s current No-Sail Order date of September 30th, we believe it is prudent at this time to voluntarily extend the suspension of U.S. ocean-going cruise operations to October 31st, CLIA wrote in a statement on behalf of its members.
"This is a difficult decision as we recognize the crushing impact that this pandemic has had on our community and every other industry. However, we believe this proactive action further demonstrates the cruise industry’s commitment to public health and willingness to voluntarily suspend operations in the interest of public health and safety, as has occurred twice prior. CLIA cruise line members will continue to monitor the situation with the understanding that we will revisit a possible further extension on or before 30 September 2020. At the same time, should conditions in the U.S. change and it becomes possible to consider short, modified sailings, we would consider an earlier restart."
According to CLIA’s most recent Economic Impact Study, cruise activity in the United States supports nearly half a million (421,000) American jobs and generates $53 billion annually in economic activity throughout the country.
Each day of the suspension of U.S. cruise operations results in a loss of up to $110 million in economic activity and 800 direct and indirect American jobs. The impact of the suspension is particularly profound in states that depend heavily on cruise tourism, including Florida, Texas, Alaska, Washington, New York and California.
Carnival & Celebrity respond
Carnival Cruise Line has informed guests and travel advisors that the company has cancelled all cruises scheduled to embark between Oct. 1st and Oct. 31st.
Guests are being offered an enhanced value package of a future cruise credit and onboard credit, or a full refund.
"If conditions in the U.S. change and short and modified sailings are possible, the industry may consider an earlier restart, and we would consider that as well," Carnival wrote in a statement. "In the meantime, we will continue to work with public health and government officials to finalize enhanced health and sanitation protocols and procedures that will guide our eventual return to service."
In a post made on the Facebook group “CELEBRITY CRUISES - AGENTS”, Mathieu Robert, BDM of Celebrity Cruises, indicates the Royal Caribbean group will extend the suspension of all departures until October 31st, 2020 , as well as the departures mentioned below:
- All departures from October 1 to 31, 2020.
- The Celebrity Silhouette, November 8, 2020.
- The Celebrity Silhouette, November 20, 2020.
- The Celebrity Infinity, November 16, 2020.
“We are working directly with our customers and travel partners to remedy this disruption to their vacation and sincerely apologize for any inconvenience,” he adds. “We would like to reiterate that passengers affected by this situation will be eligible for Lift & Shift, 125% credit or a full refund."
For more information about the cruise industry’s response to COVID-19, visit the CLIA COVID-19 Resource Page.
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