CDC Warms to the Idea of July Cruising

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) may be warming to the idea of the cruise industry restarting in July from the United States, according to a report by USA Today.

“We acknowledge that cruising will never be a zero-risk activity and that the goal of the CSO’s (Framework for Conditional Sailing Order) phased approach is to resume passenger operations in a way that mitigates the risk of COVID-19 transmission onboard cruise ships and across port communities,” said Aimee Treffiletti, head of the Maritime Unit for CDC’s COVID-19 response within its Global Mitigation Task Force for COVID-19, a letter obtained by USA Today.

The report went on to quote a spokesperson noting that cruise lines could begin sailing in mid-July, but also citing compliance with the CSO, which cruise lines have called unworkable. 

It is expected that the CDC will soon simplify the CSO, expediting timelines to approve restart plans.

The USA Today report noted that “ships can bypass the required simulated test voyages carrying volunteers and jump to sailings with paying passengers if 98% of crew and 95% of passengers are fully vaccinated.”

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