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Crystal Announces New Vaccine Requirement in Latest Update to

Crystal Clean+ 4.0 Health & Safety Protocols

 

MIAMI, February 18, 2021 –Today, Crystal announced that it has updated its new health and safety protocols to now require all guests to be fully inoculated with a COVID-19 vaccine at least 14 days prior to their Crystal cruise. Guests will need to provide proof of vaccination before embarkation and must have received both doses of the vaccine if recommended by the manufacturer by that timeline. The vaccine requirement augments the company’s comprehensive Crystal Clean+ 4.0 measures, including negative COVID-19 tests for both guests and crew, temperature checks at the terminal prior to boarding, a nimble mask policy, social distancing guidelines, enhanced cleaning and disinfection measures, reduced capacity and more.

 

“We are encouraged by the progress being made with the COVID-19 vaccines and what this means for our Crystal Family and the travel industry as a whole as we eagerly look forward to exploring the world again,” said Crystal’s interim president and CEO, Jack Anderson. “We know that peace of mind is the greatest luxury; and the vaccine requirement is simply the best way to ensure the safest possible Crystal Experience for all on board. This sentiment is underscored by conversations with our guests and travel partners and a recent Cruise Critic survey of cruisers that revealed that more than 80 percent of respondents would cruise if a vaccine were required.”

 

Crystal understands that the widespread availability of vaccines varies according to the distribution plan of each travelers’ home country and/or state. As of today, the company has voluntarily paused operations through May 2021 for its River fleet, into June for its Ocean ships, through August 1 for Crystal Esprit and through August for Crystal Endeavor, allowing most travelers sufficient time to get fully vaccinated before Crystal’s resumption of sailing.

 

Crystal’s crew, who hail from dozens of countries around the world, will be expected to be vaccinated as well when the company resumes sailing, however, this may not be a viable option for all crew members given their age and/or the availability of vaccines in their home countries. 

 “As part of the company’s Crystal Clean+ 4.0 measures, crew members will be tested for COVID-19 prior to leaving their home location to join the ship and must receive a negative result. They also will take a COVID-19 test at embarkation; quarantine for seven days upon arrival; be tested again at the end of that seven-day period and must receive a negative result before beginning their duties,” Anderson noted.  “When vaccines are widely available, they will be a requirement of employment for crew which must be completed at least 14 days prior to service.”

 

In addition to providing verified documentation of their COVID-19 vaccine at the time of boarding, guests will complete an online form acknowledging this requirement before their cruise tickets will be issued. Crystal has published a frequently asked questions document on the advisory alert section of its website for further reference.

 

Crystal will continue to evaluate and update its Crystal Clean+ 4.0 health and safety protocols for its luxury brand experiences – Crystal Cruises, Crystal River Cruises, Crystal Yacht Cruises and the upcoming Crystal Expedition Cruises – according to the latest scientific data and expert guidance.

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I am glad Crystal got this out.  I expected they would require all guests to have the vaccine and as someone who wants to get back on board and cruising again when it is safe to do so, I applaud this requirement.

 

Kudos to Crystal Cruises for requiring the vaccines.

 

Keith

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I am looking at our vaccination documentation which (for us in the U.S.) consists of a card with the CDC logo with the dates of both our shots, brand and batch numbers of the vaccines we received. Since we received our shots at a mass vaccination center run by our county, I am concerned that this documentation would be hard to replace should we lose it. Folks who received their shots at a Walgreens or CVS, for example, would probably have an easier time getting substitute documentation if necessary. So, wondering whether carrying a copy of the cards would be satisfactory or whether originals will be required, and if they would still be considered valid if we laminated them. Welcome any thoughts/speculation.

 

Ed

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I wonder how they will handle situations like ours - we had serious cases of Covid and are advised against the vaccine as our antibodies are high and the vaccine could cause nasty and potentially fatal side effects. We are hopeful that a titer test would suffice as it would show immunity. Psoque - what do you think?

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3 minutes ago, edgee said:

I am looking at our vaccination documentation which (for us in the U.S.) consists of a card with the CDC logo with the dates of both our shots, brand and batch numbers of the vaccines we received. Since we received our shots at a mass vaccination center run by our county, I am concerned that this documentation would be hard to replace should we lose it. Folks who received their shots at a Walgreens or CVS, for example, would probably have an easier time getting substitute documentation if necessary. So, wondering whether carrying a copy of the cards would be satisfactory or whether originals will be required, and if they would still be considered valid if we laminated them. Welcome any thoughts/speculation.

 

Ed

 

I would scan the card into my phone!

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For those with Questions regarding the Vaccine requirement it looks as though it's absolute according to their posted FAQ.  


WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO MY RESERVATION IF I AM UNABLE TO RECEIVE A COVID-19 VACCINE DUE TO MEDICAL OR OTHER PERSONAL REASONS?
We understand that receiving a COVID-19 vaccine may not be a possibility for some guests because of medical restrictions or other personal reasons. While we value each of our loyal guests, Crystal is responsible for the collective safety and wellbeing of all who sail aboard our vessels and therefore, at this time, we are unable to accommodate any guest who cannot be vaccinated. Crystal will continue to monitor recommendations by global public health experts and may adjust this policy as appropriate.

https://www.crystalcruises.com/docs/default-source/default-document-library/files/crystal-covid19-vaccine-requirements-faqs.pdf

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11 minutes ago, suzeluvscruz said:

 

I would scan the card into my phone!

Oh, we have copies on our phones...will see in time whether copies will suffice or if originals will be required.

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6 minutes ago, djdobrott said:

For those with Questions regarding the Vaccine requirement it looks as though it's absolute according to their posted FAQ.  


WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO MY RESERVATION IF I AM UNABLE TO RECEIVE A COVID-19 VACCINE DUE TO MEDICAL OR OTHER PERSONAL REASONS?
We understand that receiving a COVID-19 vaccine may not be a possibility for some guests because of medical restrictions or other personal reasons. While we value each of our loyal guests, Crystal is responsible for the collective safety and wellbeing of all who sail aboard our vessels and therefore, at this time, we are unable to accommodate any guest who cannot be vaccinated. Crystal will continue to monitor recommendations by global public health experts and may adjust this policy as appropriate.

https://www.crystalcruises.com/docs/default-source/default-document-library/files/crystal-covid19-vaccine-requirements-faqs.pdf

What happens if your are scheduled to get the second dose 2 weeks before embarking and through no fault of your own, like the vaccine center being closed and you get it two days or so later, do you lose all your money as Crystal will not let you board?  of course it’s hypothetical.

 

Also, the vaccine center where I received my doses told me to take a picture of the card showing doses 1 and 2 on my phone and Ipad which I did.  I have to say that card can be easily photoshopped by most teenagers.

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11 minutes ago, djdobrott said:

For those with Questions regarding the Vaccine requirement it looks as though it's absolute according to their posted FAQ.  


WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO MY RESERVATION IF I AM UNABLE TO RECEIVE A COVID-19 VACCINE DUE TO MEDICAL OR OTHER PERSONAL REASONS?
We understand that receiving a COVID-19 vaccine may not be a possibility for some guests because of medical restrictions or other personal reasons. While we value each of our loyal guests, Crystal is responsible for the collective safety and wellbeing of all who sail aboard our vessels and therefore, at this time, we are unable to accommodate any guest who cannot be vaccinated. Crystal will continue to monitor recommendations by global public health experts and may adjust this policy as appropriate.

https://www.crystalcruises.com/docs/default-source/default-document-library/files/crystal-covid19-vaccine-requirements-faqs.pdf

 

Even if you can prove immunity with titer or antibody tests? Even is you are a plasma donor?

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8 minutes ago, edgee said:

Oh, we have copies on our phones...will see in time whether copies will suffice or if originals will be required.

Of course you do, it sounds like a sticky wicket here. Originals do get lost and/or damaged.🙄

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2 minutes ago, suzeluvscruz said:

 

Even if you can prove immunity with titer or antibody tests? Even is you are a plasma donor?

 

According to their FAQ I think it's Vaccine and Negative Test or no Boarding Passes.

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11 minutes ago, suzeluvscruz said:

How sad for us! Crystal cruising is our favorite pastime!

That is very sad, any chance you may get vaccinated once your antibodies come down or you're no longer deemed immune? worth asking your physician.

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19 minutes ago, suzeluvscruz said:

How sad for us! Crystal cruising is our favorite pastime!


These policies are going to continue to change MULTIPLE times before Crystal relaunches, the same way they have been to this point...  IMHO there is no need to write anything off based on one “announcement”.  
 

That said, I think long term it’s going to be important that travelers get the vaccine anyway, and cruises are just one aspect.  We could easily see entire countries not let foreign tourists in their borders without vaccination in the next year, and in the case of the South African variant we’re seeing preliminary data showing past infection of the earlier strains likely provides much more limited protection than we were seeing.  Long story short, your immune response from your prior infection isn’t going to evolve the way the vaccine program will continue to.  Right now I know antibody tests are being accepted for some uses, but I’m not sure that’s going to hold in the long term.

 

To anyone that wants to stress over v4.0’s rules, I ask what makes people think there won’t be a version 5, 6 or 7?

 

Vince

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54 minutes ago, claudiaYVR said:

That is very sad, any chance you may get vaccinated once your antibodies come down or you're no longer deemed immune? worth asking your physician.

For now they say 9 months - at first it was 3, then 6, now up to 9. It could extend but because the 9 month people were early on, they don't really know...we had it in October, so we are supposed to be good 9 months out but it could be longer. Anybody's guess.

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32 minutes ago, suzeluvscruz said:

For now they say 9 months - at first it was 3, then 6, now up to 9. It could extend but because the 9 month people were early on, they don't really know...we had it in October, so we are supposed to be good 9 months out but it could be longer. Anybody's guess.

Since it has only been 9 months since there were enough recovered people to start tracking this, of course we don't know the number yet.  More time will be necessary first.  Although caution may seem to suggest otherwise, my baseline assumption is that it will last longer until we get to the point that we know it doesn't.

 

Another factor is that as time goes on and as we discover that immunity lasts longer, the incidence should be going down as more and more people get vaccinated.  If the incidence level is very low, your immunity won't be put to the test as often, and failure to remain immune will not be observed as often.

 

Time will tell....

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3 hours ago, edgee said:

.....So, wondering whether carrying a copy of the cards would be satisfactory or whether originals will be required, and if they would still be considered valid if we laminated them. Welcome any thoughts/speculation.

 

Ed

I just got my first dose from a clinic that is not my primary provider.  I asked my provider, Kaiser, and they had me send a picture of my CDC card and they entered the information into my permanent medical record.  I can now access and print all my Immunization Certificates on Kaiser's website when needed in the future for travel. 

 

~Nancy  

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10 hours ago, cruisr said:

What happens if your are scheduled to get the second dose 2 weeks before embarking and through no fault of your own, like the vaccine center being closed and you get it two days or so later, do you lose all your money as Crystal will not let you board?  of course it’s hypothetical.

 

Also, the vaccine center where I received my doses told me to take a picture of the card showing doses 1 and 2 on my phone and Ipad which I did.  I have to say that card can be easily photoshopped by most teenagers.

You can't board.  Simple as that.

 

If one is concerned don't book a cruise until you are sure you will be vaccinated.  

 

I know getting a vaccine is challenging now but this is all going to change in a few months as there will be enough doses by the end of July to meet all requirements and if we add in another two months to get it into peoples arms that is September of this year so if someone was in doubt pick a cruise after that and the reality is how many cruises will be sailing before then anyway. 

 

There is a saying you can't please all of the people all the time.

 

I know there wil be some who can't get the vaccine or some who have something go wrong getting the vaccine (although for the latter is that all that different from getting a visa and something goes wrong at the last minute and with no visa no boarding).

 

I am very happy that Crystal is requiring this and I would hope all cruise lines will do likewise.  It just makes no sense not to require this.  

 

Keith

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I applaud Crystal for making this policy regarding vaccination requirement for passengers.  I am, however, a bit disappointed that Crystal did not use this opportunity to comprehensively review their passenger vaccination issue and require, or at least strongly recommend, other common-sense vaccines for passengers to board their ships.  The list of required/recommended vaccine should include more than that for coronavirus.

 

For example, most of the childhood vaccines recommended by  CDC/WHO should be included in the list, especially those against highly contagious diseases such as measles.  Also, from a public health and logistics standpoint, it is rather ludicrous to recommend the coronavirus vaccine and not the seasonal influenza vaccine, since the symptoms are virtually indistinguishable between the two diseases, and even a small outbreak of influenza will effectively activate a coronavirus response aboard, until testing is complete. And though a typical influenza virus is less of a problem than the current coronavirus, it can be a be a big problem, depending on the season.

 

Furthermore, by not requiring influenza vaccines and vaccines against other respiratory diseases, the cruise lines are going against the long-standing recommendations by the CDC to make sure all crew and passengers are vaccinated for these diseases as well.  If the cruise lines value the well-being of crew and passengers a little higher, they would and they should follow and/or exceed this recommendation, instead of worrying about their bottom line.

 

I'm hoping that Crystal and other cruise lines are thinking about these issues as they are planning for their eventual resumption of their cruise operations.  Perhaps they can include the influenza and measles vaccines when Crystal releases the "next version" of their safety protocol.

 

 

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Vaccination for all is a good idea yes. However it is only one aspect of safe travel. I think many are thinking once vaccinated they are invencible. I am afraid it is not going to be like that. There can still be COVID on board. So be sure that when you make your decisions you are aware of this.

Ivi

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3 hours ago, travelberlin said:

Vaccination for all is a good idea yes. However it is only one aspect of safe travel. I think many are thinking once vaccinated they are invencible. I am afraid it is not going to be like that. There can still be COVID on board. So be sure that when you make your decisions you are aware of this.

Ivi

Interesting point made in today's New York Times daily email. The point is that once vaccinated and 14 days have passed, you are extremely unlikely to get Covid, and in super rare chance you do,  it is like a minor cold. Also highly unlikely you can pass on the virus to others. It also opines that a cautious scientific community emphasizing masks and social distancing without a timeline to end in sight even for those vaccinated will discourage folks from getting the vaccine. Some who are skeptical anyway will say, "what's the point?" Combine this group with the anti vaccing community. Then fast forward to late summer 2021 when the demand/supply ratios switch and there are more vaccines than people willing to get them and we could have a problem getting enough people vaccinated to achieve necessary herd immunity. An early sign of this is the disturbing 1/3  rate of active duty U.S. military turning down the vaccine. With apologies to those that may hit a paywall, here is link to the article:

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/19/briefing/ted-cruz-texas-water-iran-nuclear.html?smid=url-share

 

Edited by edgee
Clarity
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I am pretty confident overtime more and more people who are reluctant to get the vaccine will for several reasons.

 

- Hopefully, they will see how well people did with the vaccine.

 

- Hopefully the proof will be in the pudding and those who got the vaccine will either not get COVID-19 or if they do they will not die, need hospitalization or have very few side effects if any.

 

-  I suspect overtime we will see ad campaigns encouraging people to get the vaccine.

 

- Finally we could see mandates for getting the vaccine going far beyond Cruise Lines such as being able to enter other countries, fly, etc.  

 

Now the challenges include how many more changes occur with COVID and the effectiveness of the vaccines to the changes and the need for boosters.

 

I do think we will get through this and hopefully it will be more like influenza where you get yearly vaccinations.

 

On a very positive front Prizer has said temperatures do not have to be anywhere as low as they first said and that means that pharmacies should be able to store it with the refrigeration most have in place.

 

And other good news is the USA is going to provide money to poorer countries and is asking others to do the same to get vaccine to them.  It will take time because more vaccine has to be produced but it gives me more hope.  

 

Keith

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On 2/18/2021 at 4:51 PM, edgee said:

I am looking at our vaccination documentation which (for us in the U.S.) consists of a card with the CDC logo with the dates of both our shots, brand and batch numbers of the vaccines we received. Since we received our shots at a mass vaccination center run by our county, I am concerned that this documentation would be hard to replace should we lose it. Folks who received their shots at a Walgreens or CVS, for example, would probably have an easier time getting substitute documentation if necessary. So, wondering whether carrying a copy of the cards would be satisfactory or whether originals will be required, and if they would still be considered valid if we laminated them. Welcome any thoughts/speculation.

 

Ed

I just read that digital vaccination cards will be available!

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The folks who vaccinated us told us to scan it into our phones in case we lost it before the second shot.

I guess they knew from experience. . . . ..

 

When we travel we take copies of our passports and I guess now we will add copies of our proof of vaccination.

 

I agree with the posters who stated that the rules will change and evolve as we get closer to sailing.

I do hope, however, that the vaccine requirement does not change.

 

 

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