The cruise industry has proven its ability to operate safely, even as the pandemic continues to affect countries around the world.
So says Royal Caribbean Group CEO Richard Fain, who was asked by Tourism Advisor to describe the key findings from a full year of upheaval in the industry.
In the past eight months, nearly 400,000 passengers have traveled on International Association of Cruise Lines ships, including 100,000 on Royal Caribbean-branded vessels, says Fain, an industry that has proven it can offer safe vacations.
It works. That’s for sure. That’s great, Fain said during the weekly Coffee Talk video presentation for travel consultants, provided by Royal Caribbean’s SVP Sales, Trade Support and Service.
READ MORE: Royal Caribbean summer cruises – what should you know?
Line says vaccines, testing and contact tracing have improved in the five months since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced the 30th. October 2020 conditional swim order (CSO) have developed significantly.
Not enough attention is paid to contact tracing, because if you are ashore and you get sick, the health department will call you and ask who your contacts are. None of us keep such detailed records. But on the ship, we monitor the environment and can identify actual close contacts as defined by the CDC, Fain said.
This is the implementation of the tests and the follow-up of thecontacts.
This means that if a case of COPID is discovered on a ship, the passenger can be quickly isolated to prevent the spread of the epidemic.
It’s the power of controlling and following up on contacts, Fain said. If you get this right, you can conquer all problems.
Mr. Fine particularly criticized the CDC for being so slow to allow industry to begin operations while many hotels, restaurants and venues are open.
READ MORE: Miami mayor urges CDC to resume cruises – but who decides?
The cruise director cited the CDC decision and said the industry initially viewed the decision as very positive from the health agency. But with no new leadership since the CSO, that opinion has changed.
There is supposed to be a four-stage process, but after four and a half months we are still in stage one and we still do not know what stage two will look like. So you see it’s pretty unworkable for us and the CDC. And we think the science is just ahead of the CSO.
According to Mr Fain, failure to release the ship on time amounts to refusal, especially as it can take up to 90 days to render an inactive ship operational.
In recent days, Royal Caribbean has expressed its frustration with the CDC’s pace by announcing summer sailings that bypass U.S. waters and ports, escaping the health agency’s radar.
Royal Caribbean’s Adventure of the Seas will begin a series of cruises from Nassau, Bahamas, in early June, while Vision of the Seas will have its base in Bermuda in late June and will offer itineraries that include a stop on the company’s private island in the Bahamas, Perfect Day on CocoCay.
The company already successfully offers cruises to nowhere from Singapore aboard Quantum of the Seas. She also announced a sailing program from Haifa, Israel, that will begin in May aboard the brand new Odyssey of the Seas.
Will vaccinations become obligatory for cruise passengers?
Asked whether vaccinations will be mandatory for adults when cruises resume from U.S. ports, Fain said decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis.
Negative tests are required for cruises to Singapore, but the Israeli program will be limited to fully vaccinated passengers. Adults traveling to Bermuda and the Bahamas must provisionally prove that they have been vaccinated.
We will change and adapt to the advancement of science, said the CEO of Royal Caribbean. Our new cruises require vaccinations first, but we don’t know how long this will take. That could change tomorrow.
Alaska cruise season remains in jeopardy
When asked if there was any chance of saving anything from this year’s Alaska cruise season, which is in limbo because of the CDC and the current ban on large cruise ships in Canada, Fine didn’t sound too optimistic.
Alaska only has a few months to take advantage as long as the sun shines. We’re working on it with others (to save some of the season), but I don’t feel confident enough to make a prediction.
Bookings for summer cruises out of Nassau started early today, and Freed’s sales manager says they’re coming in at a rapid pace. She also pointed out that the shipping company has blocked a large number of airline tickets to Nassau and Bermuda at very reasonable prices.
Privacy settings,How Search works,how will we dine in the future? thoughts on restaurants post-covid-19,the future of restaurants after covid,how have restaurants been affected by covid-19,future of food industry after covid-19,new normal for restaurants after covid,post covid restaurant ideas,changes in restaurant industry due to coronavirus,changes in restaurants due to covid-19