Royal Caribbean Swiftly Completes First CDC ‘Test Cruise’ with Volunteers

Royal Caribbean International’s Freedom of the Seas was back in Miami on Tuesday following the completion of its test cruise, a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) requirement if a cruise operator wants to sail with less than 95 percent vaccinated passengers.

The Sunday-to-Tuesday sailing on the Freedom of the Seas saw the ship dock at Perfect Day at CocoCay, as the vessel sailed round trip from Miami. 

Volunteers aboard included about 600 Royal Caribbean staff members, and the CDC was onboard too, according to Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley.

‘The CDC sailed with us. (We had a) wrap up meeting this morning and looks like all is good,” he said. “Now waiting for official process and feedback from the CDC over the next few days.”

If all goes well, the Freedom should receive a COVID-19 Conditional Sailing Certificate, allowing it to operate from the United States with less than 95 percent vaccinated passengers.

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