CDC extends 'no-sail' ban for cruise ships through the end of October

ByJeff Ehling KTRK logo
Thursday, October 1, 2020
CDC extends 'no-sail' ban for cruises through the end of October
What will cruises look like once the ban is lifted? Here's Norwegian and Royal Caribbean's joint proposed plan.

There will be no cruise ships sailing in or out of the U.S. for at least another month.

The Centers for Disease Control has extended the coronavirus-related ban on cruises until the end of October.

While the country still deals with COVID-19 restrictions and lockdowns, the cruise industry is looking to get back to business once the ban is lifted.

Norwegian Cruise Line says it will not cancel any more cruises. The company, along with Royal Caribbean International, says it has a plan to keep travelers safe.

The two cruise ship companies recently submitted their plan to the CDC.

The plan includes installing medical grade air filters that remove more than 99% of airborne pathogens to all cruise ships.

Ships will be disinfected before each voyage per the CDC's guidance.

RELATED: US cruise lines vow 100% COVID-19 testing in plan for resuming sailing

Cruise terminals will be sanitized and cleaned, and companies will use electrostatic spray technology in the cleaning process.

The cruise lines say there will be fewer people on each cruise to promote social distancing and embarkation times will be staggered.

On board, there will be expanded medical facilities with COVID-19 testing kits and more medical personnel.

As for ports of call, expect some big differences there too.

"You are going to have to take an excursion that is set up by the cruise line because they do not want to take a chance of the virus coming back on board," Chuck Flagg with Cruise Planners said. "You don't have to take an excursion."

If you are planning to take a cruise, book now, because the limited capacity will mean fewer available cabins.

Cruise Planners also advises travelers purchase the "cancel for any reason" insurance.

It will add a few bucks to the trip, but it's worth it if something happens.

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