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SS Future Re-Open Plan: Timing, Testing Needs??!!


TLCOhio
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On 9/10/2022 at 10:52 AM, tosteve1 said:

Greece has its own, more restrictive requirements, as well! Hoping they change before our October 12 cruise from Athens on Spirit.

 

Yes, great comments and follow-ups regarding the changing and somewhat crazy variety of rules and requirements for those needing to navigate as they do upcoming travels and cruising, etc. 

 

From the Wall Street Journal this past weekend, they had this headline: Cruises’ Covid-19 Rules Are All Over the Place" with this sub-headline: "As more travelers sign up for vacations at sea, vaccination and testing policies vary from company to company.

 

Here are some of their some story highlights:Figuring out the rules for boarding a cruise ship requires serious navigation these days.  Many major cruise lines recently loosened their pandemic rules around testing and vaccination requirements in a bid to get more passengers aboard. Travel advisers say the policies are moving closer to prepandemic norms, and some voyagers are pouncing on the opportunity to once again set sail. Yet, the rules still vary widely depending on the cruise line and destination. Before passengers embark, they need to wade through the fine print to book the trip that best fits their comfort levels and appetite for predeparture hurdles.

 

Here is a key point from their reporting: "The biggest change is that more cruise lines are allowing greater numbers of unvaccinated travelers. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd., Carnival Corp. and Royal Caribbean Group are among those that permit unvaccinated travelers to board."

 

Is it good or bad that the cruise lines are being "looser" in allowing more unvaccinated passengers on the ship?  Does that increase the risks for us older travelers who want protection and less dangers for catching Covid?

 

Then, there are still the questions as to any requirements to take Covid-19 tests before departure?  Things are better, but still confusing and changing?

 

Full story at:

https://www.wsj.com/articles/cruises-covid-19-rules-are-all-over-the-place-11662890825?mod=hp_featst_pos4

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Early 2020, many visuals and details from New Zealand/South Pacific in going from Auckland to French Polynesia.  This includes Bora Bora, Fiji, NZ experiences, etc:  Live/blog;

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2735732-live-terryohio-“new”-regatta-south-pacificnz-pix’s/

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I don't think you are more in danger if people near you are unvaccinated. I think it means that they are in danger, if they catch Covid, of it being more serious for them, than it would be for us who are vaccinated. I guess cruise lines (and the whole tourism industry) wants to widen the number of people going on holiday!

 

I still think having had to pay for a test in a strange city before we got on our Alaska cruise was a complete waste of time and money. Because we met some people who had been on a small Lindblad / National Geographic ship (also with the pre-test) and they said lots of people had caught it on their ship! I guess that was the close confinement there? I was not aware that anyone had it on our Silver Muse.

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7 hours ago, TLCOhio said:

Is it good or bad that the cruise lines are being "looser" in allowing more unvaccinated passengers on the ship?  Does that increase the risks for us older travelers who want protection and less dangers for catching Covid?

 

I agree with @worldtraveller99. In the early days of Covid vaccines, vaccinated people were less likely to get the virus and transmit it to others — so it made solid sense to try to limit ships to only vaccinated passengers. But as the virus has changed over the past two years, the vaccine no longer prevents people from catching the virus or transmitting it. (Or it does so only slightly.) The primary reason for being vaccinated against the current strains of the virus is for your own safety — keeping symptoms minor or non-existent, rather than life-threatening, for most people.

 

When we decided to go on our first post-Covid cruise last summer, it was in large part because of the reassurance we felt that the cruise line required every passenger and crew member to be vaccinated. On that first cruise, we were surprised to feel freer and safer than we had at home going to stores or restaurants. And we definitely would not have gone on that cruise had the cruise line not had a vaccination requirement.

 

Now, more than a year later, whether all passengers are vaccinated or not seems to make no significant difference to us as passengers; we're just as likely to catch the virus from someone who is vaccinated as unvaccinated. I think there's a greater risk for the cruise line, because someone unvaccinated who gets Covid runs a much greater risk of falling seriously ill or requiring hospitalization; I guess they figure they can offload such passengers relatively quickly without adversely impacting other passengers and crew onboard. Thus the upside to the cruise line of being able to get anti-vax customers to book cruises again is greater than the risk of having seriously ill passengers who need to be offloaded. 

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1 minute ago, Gourmet Gal said:

It will be interesting to see if onboard Covid cases increase due to the majority of passengers coming aboard without testing.  The vaccines must not be protecting all that well from getting infected.

 

This is an interesting thought.  Maybe another step towards the day when this darn virus will become a nuisance and like some other illnesses are?  There are those who get a flu shot and still develop flu symptoms.  

 

I look forward to the day--doubt it will come very soon--when a Covid vaccination will be part of one's string of vaccinations and required.  

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2 hours ago, Gourmet Gal said:

It will be interesting to see if onboard Covid cases increase due to the majority of passengers coming aboard without testing.  The vaccines must not be protecting all that well from getting infected.


The basic vaccines and the boosters have reduced the severity of Covid but have not totally eliminated the possibility of still catching Covid.  Most of the new cases are caused by one of the variants and the booster designed to address them is just now being given so hard to say how effective it might be.  Of course then there is always the chance a whole new variant or maybe even variants will come along and defeat the new booster series.  Who knows?   Also remember even the flu vaccine doesn’t guarantee a person won’t get flu and unfortunately some still die from the flu/complications.  I agree with Rkacruiser and also hope that either Covid will fade away or be nothing more than an annual vaccination.  

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Not as a pandemic! Plus we do take the polio sugar cube when we go to countries where that is recommended. I think all countries have to balance the nationwide expense of mass vaccination versus the hopefully ever-lowering number of people still alive who might die from it!

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8 hours ago, worldtraveller99 said:

Not as a pandemic! Plus we do take the polio sugar cube when we go to countries where that is recommended. I think all countries have to balance the nationwide expense of mass vaccination versus the hopefully ever-lowering number of people still alive who might die from it!

Living with polio is no picnic either!

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13 hours ago, worldtraveller99 said:

Not as a pandemic! Plus we do take the polio sugar cube when we go to countries where that is recommended. I think all countries have to balance the nationwide expense of mass vaccination versus the hopefully ever-lowering number of people still alive who might die from it!

 

So far not an epidemic or pandemic.  But, if some people continue to ignore getting vaccinated against preventable diseases.......

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On 9/13/2022 at 5:01 PM, rkacruiser said:

A bit of realism is required, I think.  Polio was once thought to have "gone away".  It's back.  

 

Appreciate these comments and follow-ups about polio and other related aspects that impact travel and public health.  .  

 

From the Royal Gazette,  founded in 1828, Bermuda's only daily newspaper, this morning they had this headline: Government defends cruise ship Covid policy in wake of cancellations with these highlights:The Government has defended its controversial Covid testing policy for visitors in the wake of criticism from cruise ship operators. Two cruise lines had cancelled seven transatlantic cruises scheduled visits to the island by the end of the year. Operators blamed 'Bermuda’s testing requirements' for the cancellations.  The news prompted outrage from west end retailers who called for the testing policy, in which visitors must pay $40 to take a Covid test just prior to arrival, to be scrapped.  Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, said testing was still necessary on cruise ships because of the greater risk of infection compared with aircraft.  Ms Wilson said: 'If cruises take more than four days to arrive to Bermuda, passengers wishing to get off the ship in Bermuda must take another supervised Covid-19 test on board, no more than two days before arrival to Bermuda.'  'On a cruise ship, it is hard to avoid the three Cs – closed spaces, crowded places and close-contact settings. These precautions allow everyone to ‘know their status’ as, unfortunately, the coronavirus is still with us.' 

 

Have never visited Bermuda, but it sounds a little risky as to what will happen for cruise ship visitors hoping to go there.  Or, not?  Overall, these "local policies" are part of my "concern" as cruise ships seek to return to some form of "normal".  And, it looks as if in Bermuda, those arriving by airlines have an easier time arriving there versus those on cruise ships.  For us, it is about the itinerary, especially to explore, see and experience unique areas of the world.  

 

This reporting also shared that earlier this year, there were 180 cruise ship calls scheduled for 2022.  But with the adding and cancelling of calls, Bermuda is currently at 175 calls projected as of September 15.  Will these new local rules be a big deal or not?

 

Full story at:

https://www.royalgazette.com/tourism/news/article/20220917/government-defends-cruise-ship-covid-policy-in-wake-of-cancellations/

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio   

 

Barcelona/Med: June 2011, with stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Great visuals with key highlights, tips, etc. Live/blog now at 255,189 views.

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1426474

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From CBS TV News in Miami earlier this month, they had this headline: With new ships in 2022, cruise industry shows recovery after pandemic with these highlights:The cruise industry is recovering after the pandemic, rolling out a couple of dozen new ships this year.  The president and CEO of Celebrity, Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, says, 'It's time to transition into the next phase and that's what the world is doing and that's what we're finally doing.'  Cruise companies hemorrhaged tens of billions of dollars during the pandemic and now industry trade groups see the tides shifting. Cruise Lines International Association predicts passenger numbers will exceed pre-pandemic levels next year. Disney Cruise Lines added its fifth and largest ship, Disney Wish, to the fleet this summer and the biggest ship in the world, Royal Caribbean's Wonder of the Seas began sailing in March.

 

Will this prediction for next year come true?  How much are all of those new ships helping the overall recovery process?  Good questions?

 

Full story at:

https://www.cbsnews.com/miami/news/with-new-ships-in-2022-cruise-industry-shows-recovery-after-pandemic/

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Norway Coast/Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise from Copenhagen, July 2010, to the top of Europe. Scenic visuals with key tips. Live/blog at 244,829 views.

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1227923

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7 hours ago, TLCOhio said:

Will this prediction for next year come true?  How much are all of those new ships helping the overall recovery process?  Good questions?

 

Good questions?  Yes.  But, with increased capacity in their fleet, the occupancy numbers are going to have to significantly improve for all of the ships on each cruise for profitability to return and debt retirement to begin.  

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On 9/20/2022 at 4:57 PM, rkacruiser said:

Good questions?  Yes.  But, with increased capacity in their fleet, the occupancy numbers are going to have to significantly improve for all of the ships on each cruise for profitability to return and debt retirement to begin.  

 

Agree as a good follow-up question for increased capacity versus occupancy percentages.  

 

From the below-connected website this morning, they had this headline: Royal Caribbean stock gains after disclosing bookings were 'significantly outpacing' pre-pandemic levels with these highlights: “Shares of Royal Caribbean Group rose Thursday, after the cruise operator said demand remains 'strong,' as bookings have been 'significantly outpacing' pre-pandemic 2019 levels. The company said the easing of COVID-19 testing and vaccination requirements from most of its cruises had an "immediate positive impact" on bookings for 2022 and 2023 cruises.”

 

Full story at:

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/royal-caribbean-stock-gains-after-disclosing-bookings-were-significantly-outpacing-pre-pandemic-levels-2022-09-22?mod=home-page

 

THANKS!  Enjoy!  Terry in Ohio

 

Sydney to NZ/Auckland Adventure, live/blog 2014 sampling/details with many exciting visuals and key highlights.  On page 23, post #571, see a complete index for all of the pictures, postings.  Now at 238,459 views.

www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1974139

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Supervised tests are now virtually unobtainable in the UK. I had 3 booked for my cruise on Whisper this summer and only one was possible.

We've just got to start treating this like norovirus or flu.

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On 9/22/2022 at 2:36 PM, TLCOhio said:

From the below-connected website this morning, they had this headline: Royal Caribbean stock gains after disclosing bookings were 'significantly outpacing' pre-pandemic levels with these highlights: “Shares of Royal Caribbean Group rose Thursday, after the cruise operator said demand remains 'strong,' as bookings have been 'significantly outpacing' pre-pandemic 2019 levels. The company said the easing of COVID-19 testing and vaccination requirements from most of its cruises had an "immediate positive impact" on bookings for 2022 and 2023 cruises.”

 

There is a thread in the Floataway Forum about the cruise industry and the market.  One of our posters posted very interesting questions about this announcement.  It is a good thread to read.  Consider joining us.  

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Now that Canada 🍁 has dropped all Covid restrictions, (as of Oct 1, tomorrow),   When will SS drop the pre boarding Covid test?   I know Viking has already done this as has Holland America, not sure about other lines……..   Just asking for a friend.

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46 minutes ago, crusinbanjo said:

Now that Canada 🍁 has dropped all Covid restrictions, (as of Oct 1, tomorrow),   When will SS drop the pre boarding Covid test?   I know Viking has already done this as has Holland America, not sure about other lines……..   Just asking for a friend.

Hi, if you have been vaxxed? You no longer need a pre-boarding test. That requirement was lifted. There is information with an update on the website date 9/22.

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16 hours ago, Lois R said:

Hi, if you have been vaxxed? You no longer need a pre-boarding test. That requirement was lifted. There is information with an update on the website date 9/22.

Well, I was ready to book a Canada, New England cruise just the other day.  I nice last minute get away, because all the restrictions were dropped.  Mrs Banjo and I are vaxed, but not boosted, (too risky for me due to medical issues).  I was told by our PCC that SS still requires pre boarding testing. Now, I’m not against testing, but we have never been tested, have avoided all the sickness, and don’t even know how to go about fulfilling this requirement.  So, we just declined and said we will stay in the US until the last of the stumbling blocks are removed.  Hopefully in the near future.

 

no offense to Stumblefoot intended!

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10 minutes ago, crusinbanjo said:

Well, I was ready to book a Canada, New England cruise just the other day.  I nice last minute get away, because all the restrictions were dropped.  Mrs Banjo and I are vaxed, but not boosted, (too risky for me due to medical issues).  I was told by our PCC that SS still requires pre boarding testing. Now, I’m not against testing, but we have never been tested, have avoided all the sickness, and don’t even know how to go about fulfilling this requirement.  So, we just declined and said we will stay in the US until the last of the stumbling blocks are removed.  Hopefully in the near future.

 

no offense to Stumblefoot intended!

Not sure what the PCC? Is? Personal Cruise Consultant? Not sure why they said SS still requires a test....either they are incorrect or the updated information on the website is incorrect. It is dated 9/26 so that was just earlier this week.

 

I am sailing out of Canada on 10/22 and it states on line, testing is no longer required for fully vaxxed guests. And as of today Canada no longer requires anything either. The ArriveCan has been lifted as well as testing.

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17 minutes ago, crusinbanjo said:

Well, I was ready to book a Canada, New England cruise just the other day.  I nice last minute get away, because all the restrictions were dropped.  Mrs Banjo and I are vaxed, but not boosted, (too risky for me due to medical issues).  I was told by our PCC that SS still requires pre boarding testing. Now, I’m not against testing, but we have never been tested, have avoided all the sickness, and don’t even know how to go about fulfilling this requirement.  So, we just declined and said we will stay in the US until the last of the stumbling blocks are removed.  Hopefully in the near future.

 

no offense to Stumblefoot intended!

Here is a screenshot from the SS website

FC7798D2-C309-44CE-8016-E7BE9C44BD37.png

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This is from SS's website:

  • Fully vaccinated and up-to-date travellers will not be required to show evidence of a PCR or Antigen test to embark a Silversea vessel except from destination with specific local health regulations, including but not limited to Australia, Bermuda, Canada and Greece.

 

Now, as of today, 10/1, Canada has lifted all their restrictions.......ArriveCan and testing are no longer necessary.

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