When the cruise industry restarts in the United States, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) appears to be requiring all passengers to wear masks, via a new order that goes into effect at 11:59 p.m. ET on Feb. 1.
The order was issued late Friday and will require face masks to be worn by all passengers on public conveyances traveling into or within the United States,
“Requiring masks on our transportation systems will protect Americans and provide confidence that we can once again travel safely even during this pandemic,” said the order, which was signed by Dr. Martin Cetron, director of the CDC’s Division of Global Migration and Quarantine.
“Therefore, requiring masks will help us control this pandemic and aid in reopening America’s economy.”
Passengers may take the mask off to eat, drink or take medications for brief periods, as well as for communication purposes. Children under the age of two are exempt, as are those with a disability who cannot safely wear a mask.
Cruise lines operating in Europe and elsewhere already have mask requirements aboard in all public areas, and in some cases provide fresh face masks to guests on a daily basis.