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8 hours ago, Life Buoy said:

Heard a discussion yesterday on CNBC as the cruise line stock was falling. They concluded that the election results might have a real affect on when we can start to cruise. Originally the CDC wanted a later start date, but was overruled. I won't say more.

I do think election results could have a real impact on cruising.  No one knows for sure how the election could change their guidance, but I think we have enough knowledge to make a very educated guess.  I don't think saying that breaks the 'no politics' rule as we are not saying which side is correct - it just is what it is.  I also think the CDC is holding the cruise lines (and in turn all of us with upcoming bookings) hostage while they try to tap dance their way at least past the election if not past the January inauguration.   It will be interesting to see how they do that with the No Sail order expiring Saturday.  My prediction is that they will let it expire, and then depending which way the wind blows in the next few weeks (with mail in voting it may take that long) they may or may not re-implement it.

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2 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

I don't understand what you mean by a "wait and see" approach?  They created a Healthy Sail panel which put together many (admittedly high level) recommendations for sailing.  I also believe, but couldn't prove at this point, that behind the scenes they are likely working like demons to try to get at least a couple of their ships ready to sail when the go-ahead is given.  I highly, highly doubt the CEOs would let their companies just wait and see.  Plans may fall through, but I would bet a whole lotta money on the fact that there is a ton of work being done behind the scenes.

For months after first no-sail order cruise lines basically sat back and hoped problem would go away.  CDC presented them with a list of issues which they failed to address.  The no-sail order displays a very angry tone regarding lack of cruise industry responsiveness.  If you haven't read through it suggest you should.  Healthy Sail recommendations only came out at end of August and as you say it only contains very high level proposals.  Hopefully there is a lot more detail underneath that will eventually be shared with public.  CDC has spent tens of thousands of man hours working with cruise lines indicating ongoing dialogue is taking place

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6 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

I think there is merit in what you say.  At the same time, very early on in the pandemic no one knew what the heck they were doing.  This made it very difficult for an entity with so much public exposure.  I'm probably not explaining myself well.  Consider for a minute norovirus (and to be clear - I am not comparing this virus to norovirus).  Norovirus has become known in the media as "the cruise ship virus".  Why is that?  Because cruise ships have so many more cases per population than other venues?  Not at all.  The opposite is true.  It's because they are required to report their illnesses when the percentage reaches a certain level (and that level is pretty low - I think it is 3% ?).  So what happens - the CDC finds out about outbreaks, the media gets the word, and next thing you know people consider cruise ships floating petri dishes.  I know people who, pre-Covid, were afraid to cruise because of all the media hoopla.  It was totally unwarranted.  I think a similar thing is happening with Covid.  Because of their uniqueness and because of how no one - cruise lines CEO's, CDC, government officials - knew how to handle things they certainly did get out of hand for awhile.  

Let me describe the problem another way. Look around the world and take a look at the types of activities that are at the top of the restriction list due to transfer potential.

 

live theater performances  yes on cruise ships

indoor dining   yes on cruise ships

indoor bars and lounges. yep they ha e those two.

 

then add the close confines of the crew, the narrow indoor hallway and stairwells. The tendency for crowded events indoor.

 

No wonder for the track record in the early days and why they are considered an issue.

 

Add to that the continued cases of infection on crew only ships into August and September.

 

Also the main  lines have not exactly been cooperative with CDC when it comes to testing and reporting. 

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9 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

I think there is merit in what you say.  At the same time, very early on in the pandemic no one knew what the heck they were doing.  This made it very difficult for an entity with so much public exposure.  I'm probably not explaining myself well.  Consider for a minute norovirus (and to be clear - I am not comparing this virus to norovirus).  Norovirus has become known in the media as "the cruise ship virus".  Why is that?  Because cruise ships have so many more cases per population than other venues?  Not at all.  The opposite is true.  It's because they are required to report their illnesses when the percentage reaches a certain level (and that level is pretty low - I think it is 3% ?).  So what happens - the CDC finds out about outbreaks, the media gets the word, and next thing you know people consider cruise ships floating petri dishes.  I know people who, pre-Covid, were afraid to cruise because of all the media hoopla.  It was totally unwarranted.  I think a similar thing is happening with Covid.  Because of their uniqueness and because of how no one - cruise lines CEO's, CDC, government officials - knew how to handle things they certainly did get out of hand for awhile.  

Since you mentioned the Norovirus program I will mention that it is my belief that the major cruise lines are playing both a short and long game.

 

The short game is to be able to get back to cruising.

 

The long game is to make sure that there are no new precedents or regulations that require the cruise line to do any additional reporting to or get any new approvals related to health issues  from the CDC. Basically they want to make sure after Covid that they can go back to operating exactly as they did pre-Covid.

 

I believe it is for that reason that they have resisted cooperating with the CDC, including taking ships outside of US waters to avoid having to report health information to the CDC.

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Just to clarify statements made about noro reporting, and the level of scrutiny the cruise industry comes under, every cruise ship, every time it calls at a US port, whether coming from a US port or a foreign port, has to make a report to the CDC of GI illnesses reported, even if that number is zero.  What other institution where large numbers of people gather for extended periods (colleges, nursing homes, conventions) have to make weekly reports that "everyone's healthy"?

 

Saying that the CDC has come down hard on the cruise industry "because it can", is simplistic. What the CDC is recommending as the needed measures to restart cruises, is basically what they've been pushing for all through the pandemic, for all activity, but they have no jurisdiction over other activities.  Just as you say with noro, the entire VSP is far stricter than 90% of state or local health codes, because the CDC can apply "best practices" there.  Look at the CDC's study of public swimming pools in the US, and the fact that about 80% of them would be shut down if they had to meet VSP standards.

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Sorry but this thread is not really anything new.   Update to a pre-existing web site.  Why don't we all just wait to see what happens on or after October 31 in three days??? That is the real news that we await.  The rest of this thread is kind of meaningless IMO.

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1 hour ago, TeeRick said:

Sorry but this thread is not really anything new.   Update to a pre-existing web site.  Why don't we all just wait to see what happens on or after October 31 in three days??? That is the real news that we await.  The rest of this thread is kind of meaningless IMO.

Yup!  This thread could time warp back to March.

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19 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

I don't understand what you mean by a "wait and see" approach?  They created a Healthy Sail panel which put together many (admittedly high level) recommendations for sailing.  I also believe, but couldn't prove at this point, that behind the scenes they are likely working like demons to try to get at least a couple of their ships ready to sail when the go-ahead is given.  I highly, highly doubt the CEOs would let their companies just wait and see.  Plans may fall through, but I would bet a whole lotta money on the fact that there is a ton of work being done behind the scenes.

Agree 100%!

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4 hours ago, GeorgesGal said:

Agree 100%!

 

Maybe a whole lotta work is being done behind the scenes, try a little transparency and tell us. Right now the cruise lines are seemingly sitting on their hands and hoping someone/anyone tells them Go For It. Get those ships out to sea. 

 

 

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16 hours ago, RICCruisers said:

 

Maybe a whole lotta work is being done behind the scenes, try a little transparency and tell us. Right now the cruise lines are seemingly sitting on their hands and hoping someone/anyone tells them Go For It. Get those ships out to sea. 

 

 

I agree - I would like to know more.  I understand they may not want to announce exact sailing dates and itineraries as those are likely in flux.  But I sure would like to know more about some things, like specifically how they plan to handle illness and exposure onboard.  Whether they sail in December, or in March or whenever, I see no reason that could not have been all worked out already and approved by the CDC.

 

My even bigger issue with transparency is the fact that they still have a whole lot of cruises out there with deposits and in many cases full payments made which they know with 100% certainty won't sail.  And yet they are not cancelling them.  For example, I have a B2B 10/11 night on Connie in January.  The odds of it sailing are zero (and for that matter, the odds of me wanting to take the health risk of sailing on it are also zero). It's an old ship which is less efficient fuel-wise, it has not been refurbished yet, and the itineraries are much longer than the CEO's say they will start with.   I wanted to lift and shift but after six cancelled or lifted and shifted cruises already this year, I can't convince DH to do it.  We lucked into a Sky Suite (a rarity for us due to price).  He keeps holding out belief that it will go but everything I've read here and elsewhere says no way.  If they'd just be ethical and cancel the darn thing we could lift and shift to 2022.  Very frustrating.

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It would be difficult if not impossible for them to reinstate a cruise once they cancel it. Keeping their options open is prudent. They should only cancel when they need to cancel regardless of the pressure from those booked on a particular cruise.  I just had a cruise cancelled on another line a week before final payment was due.

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2 hours ago, Life Buoy said:

It would be difficult if not impossible for them to reinstate a cruise once they cancel it. Keeping their options open is prudent. They should only cancel when they need to cancel regardless of the pressure from those booked on a particular cruise.  I just had a cruise cancelled on another line a week before final payment was due.

That certainly is the case for some upcoming cruises.  But there is no way a 10 or 11 night cruise in early January on Connie is sailing.  They absolutely know that for sure.  I'm sure there are others like that.  In some cases, I could see them modifying cruises and perhaps offering the previously booked passengers the option.  Keeping those on the books makes sense  But it is virtually certain that M class ships, especially the non-revolutionized ones like Connie, will not be sailing for some time.  For them to keep stringing us along is unethical.  (and by the way, they already have my final payment for both cruises😔

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14 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

But there is no way a 10 or 11 night cruise in early January on Connie is sailing. 

Isn’t Connie still in Europe?
If that is the case, how can CDC control what happens in European waters, when their control is what happens to sailings from American ports.

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5 hours ago, upwarduk said:

Isn’t Connie still in Europe?
If that is the case, how can CDC control what happens in European waters, when their control is what happens to sailings from American ports.

The sailings of which I speak are out of Tampa in the US.  The fact that it is still in Europe just supports my point😔

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On 10/27/2020 at 10:43 PM, nocl said:

The long game is to make sure that there are no new precedents or regulations that require the cruise line to do any additional reporting to or get any new approvals related to health issues  from the CDC. Basically they want to make sure after Covid that they can go back to operating exactly as they did pre-Covid.

 

I believe it is for that reason that they have resisted cooperating with the CDC, including taking ships outside of US waters to avoid having to report health information to the CDC.

I agree with the long game part of this. I do think though that the CDC will stick to their guns about some of the recommendations and that permanent changes will have to made to some cruise procedures and facilities - particularly the medical facilities and, for at least the foreseeable future, to the procedures for taking care of passengers who are truly too ill to stay on board, whether or not it is due to an infectious disease - I think they are going to have to be more transparent about what would happen or what sort of insurance would be required of passengers.

Part of the long game I think the cruiselines are facing is that they don't know how many passengers they will have in the 1-3 year timeline or what countries they will be able to visit in the 1 year timeline, so if they need to do any extensive remodeling to ships to meet CDC guidance, they will have to make hard decisions about which ships to remodel when. I know the fear is that important changes needed for health and safety won't be made, but I think the more likely outcome is a very very slimmed down cruise fleet, to keep demand high. How long can they survive that way - I don't know. They can't just fly Americans into foreign ports and leave from there to circumvent the CDC...

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Just now, cangelmd said:

I agree with the long game part of this. I do think though that the CDC will stick to their guns about some of the recommendations and that permanent changes will have to made to some cruise procedures and facilities - particularly the medical facilities and, for at least the foreseeable future, to the procedures for taking care of passengers who are truly too ill to stay on board, whether or not it is due to an infectious disease - I think they are going to have to be more transparent about what would happen or what sort of insurance would be required of passengers.

Part of the long game I think the cruiselines are facing is that they don't know how many passengers they will have in the 1-3 year timeline or what countries they will be able to visit in the 1 year timeline, so if they need to do any extensive remodeling to ships to meet CDC guidance, they will have to make hard decisions about which ships to remodel when. I know the fear is that important changes needed for health and safety won't be made, but I think the more likely outcome is a very very slimmed down cruise fleet, to keep demand high. How long can they survive that way - I don't know. They can't just fly Americans into foreign ports and leave from there to circumvent the CDC...

Let's see if the ban ends without comment from the CDC. Normally you would expect an announcement from CDC explaining the logic of letting it end. If it expires without comment it will not be a good sign. I would take that to mean that, they were put on the sideline, as when they were overruled and the extension limited to 30 days,

 

After all if the ban ends the rules go back to pre covid and there is no requirement for the cruiselines to submit and get approvals for protocols from The CDC.

 

For CDC to be involved the ban would have to be replaced by a new requirement or regulation that would mean a public notice of some kind.

 

 

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21 minutes ago, nocl said:

Let's see if the ban ends without comment from the CDC. Normally you would expect an announcement from CDC explaining the logic of letting it end. If it expires without comment it will not be a good sign. I would take that to mean that, they were put on the sideline, as when they were overruled and the extension limited to 30 days,

 

After all if the ban ends the rules go back to pre covid and there is no requirement for the cruiselines to submit and get approvals for protocols from The CDC.

 

For CDC to be involved the ban would have to be replaced by a new requirement or regulation that would mean a public notice of some kind.

 

 

Yeah, from what I do at work, I know they can't issue regulations without comment, but they did get public comment ending Sept 21 (although it wasn't on a specific set of regulations, which is what I'm used to). I'm hopeful that they have been encouraged to at least approve the framework, so that ships can begin making the changes. Who knows?! CDC may be waiting on the election, they may actually be reluctant to codify regulations for a single infectious disease no matter how scary - it's really hard to get regs changed after they are made, and what if the next disease needs a different approach.

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3 minutes ago, cangelmd said:

Yeah, from what I do at work, I know they can't issue regulations without comment, but they did get public comment ending Sept 21 (although it wasn't on a specific set of regulations, which is what I'm used to). I'm hopeful that they have been encouraged to at least approve the framework, so that ships can begin making the changes. Who knows?! CDC may be waiting on the election, they may actually be reluctant to codify regulations for a single infectious disease no matter how scary - it's really hard to get regs changed after they are made, and what if the next disease needs a different approach.

if the ban ends without comment, the cruiselines will have no need to get the framework reviewed. No requirement would exist to for them to do so.

 

 

Edited by nocl
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I believe - but I admit that I don't know- that if the No Sail Order expires tomorrow that a lot of discussion and agreements have already been made by the cruise lines, the CLIA, and the CDC.  But the CDC has the ultimate hammer as they could simply issue another No Sail Order at any time if the cruise lines do not comply or if there are too many positive cases on ships resulting in hospitalizations and deaths over what might be expected.  Perhaps neither Imposition or Expiration of the No Sail Order is a one time event as some believe.  It could happen again and again.  But I would not want to have my business affected by such ongoing uncertainty. 

Edited by TeeRick
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1 hour ago, TeeRick said:

I believe - but I admit that I don't know- that if the No Sail Order expires tomorrow that a lot of discussion and agreements have already been made by the cruise lines, the CLIA, and the CDC.  But the CDC has the ultimate hammer as they could simply issue another No Sail Order at any time if the cruise lines do not comply or if there are too many positive cases on ships resulting in hospitalizations and deaths over what might be expected.  Perhaps neither Imposition or Expiration of the No Sail Order is a one time event as some believe.  It could happen again and again.  But I would not want to have my business affected by such ongoing uncertainty. 

Comply with what?  No directives have been issued.  No regulations requiring anything that did not exist prior to Covid.  Even the reporting requirements for ships in US waters goes away when the ban ends.  The only requirements that will exist will be those that existed prior to the start of Covid.

 

AS far as I can see the cruise lines and the CDC have not come to any agreements while there have been statements by the CLIA that the results of RCL/NCL Healthy sail panel and a general framework was sent to CDC, there have been no comments about any more detailed procedures even being submitted yet alone reviewed and agreed to. Have we seen any announcements from CDC about cruise ship requirements to sail?  They certainly did post requirements for crew disembarkation under the no sail order.

 

Do you really think that the PR engine of the cruise lines would not put out an announcement if the CDC has come to an agreement about anything with the cruise lines?  Would that not reduce passenger concerns and therefore be in the interest for the cruise lines to publish if it existed.

 

Instead what we see is the cruise lines (according to Bloomberg) launching a major lobbying effort.  That Pence overruled the CDC concerning the extension of the ban and no word from the CDC since, except for updating the do not cruise warning.

 

There are no signs of the cruise lines cooperating with the CDC, instead there have been lots of signs of the cruise lines lack of cooperation. 

 

The last things the cruise lines want is the CDC having any increased role than compared to prior to Covid, in their operations.

 

Edited by nocl
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Lots of details to unpack: https://www.cdc.gov/quarantine/pdf/CDC-Conditional-Sail-Order_10_30_2020-p.pdf

 

One I noted right away was that this "conditional sailing order" is in effect until November 2021.  No cruises longer than 7 days are allowed.  Cruise operator must conduct testing at embarkation and disembarkation.  

Edited by danv3
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15 minutes ago, danv3 said:

Lots of details to unpack: https://www.cdc.gov/quarantine/pdf/CDC-Conditional-Sail-Order_10_30_2020-p.pdf

 

One I noted right away was that this "conditional sailing order" is in effect until November 2021.  No cruises longer than 7 days are allowed.  Cruise operator must conduct testing at embarkation and disembarkation.  

A couple of large hurdles.  One, the cruise lines must get port approval for the number of ships per day, and agreements with local health care providers and facilities for quarantine in order to call at that port.  Two, any ship that has left US waters in the last 6 months, must submit the EDC (Enhanced Data Collection) form for the crew for the 28 days prior to re-entering US waters, and I don't know if the cruise lines have kept up with this with their ships all over the globe. Then, they have to do some simulated cruises, get approval from them, and then they can start "restricted" cruises.

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27 minutes ago, danv3 said:

Lots of details to unpack: https://www.cdc.gov/quarantine/pdf/CDC-Conditional-Sail-Order_10_30_2020-p.pdf

 

One I noted right away was that this "conditional sailing order" is in effect until November 2021.  No cruises longer than 7 days are allowed.  Cruise operator must conduct testing at embarkation and disembarkation.  

That's very distressing if it doesn't change!  We have four cruises next year longer than 7 days; 3 of them in the first half of the year.  I'm hoping by the 3rd quarter this edict might change, but I'm really concerned about the 3.  I hope Celebrity does the right thing and advises people ASAP what is going to happen to their longer cruises!  I doubt they will, but I can hope

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