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Bahamas excursions "bubble tour"


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I've been impatiently waiting for Carnival to post excursions for our September cruise to the Bahamas.  They've finally started to post a few and I'm a bit confused..... the titles say "Bubble Tour", and in the description it explains that the group must remain in designated areas and you can't explore on your own, etc.  

 

However, in the Carnival health protocol information it states that:

 

Vaccinated guests may participate in Carnival operated tours and independent sightseeing. It will be necessary to follow the health protocols for every port we visit, which are under the control of local government and subject to change without prior notice. Guests must come prepared to follow local guidance pertaining to mask wearing, physical distancing, testing/health screenings, etc.

 

Are the "bubble tours" a requirement of the local government?  I've searched and so far haven't been able to find anything, hoping that someone here might have heard.

 

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7 minutes ago, Sailin_Pirate said:

The bubble tours are for the not vaccinated folks.

 

I was wondering about that, but couldn't find anywhere that talked about it.  

 

 

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From Carnival's FAQs: 

Guests who are vaccinated may purchase a Carnival tour or engage in independent sightseeing.

Unvaccinated guests will be offered options for Carnival-approved “bubble” tours as self-guided or independent exploration is not allowed in many destinations. In the event our approved “bubble” tours are sold out, or cancelled due to weather, unvaccinated guests will have to remain on board. Guests will be escorted from and to the ship, upon return from the shore excursion. No un-scheduled stops are permitted (i.e. gift shops, bars, restaurants, etc.). Guests participating in a “bubble” tour, regardless of vaccination status, may need to follow all tour protocols and local guidance regarding testing/screening, mask wearing, physical distancing, etc.

In private ports of call, such as Half Moon Cay, Princess Cays, etc., unvaccinated guests may participate in Carnival-approved tours or independent exploration.

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1 hour ago, deweytrader said:

Where did you find these bubble tours?  Been patiently waiting to book for a cruise that leaves in 19 days with my 9&10 year old unable to be vaxxed kiddos....

They're SLOWLY showing up in the "Cruise Manager" section on the Carnival website.  So far I'm seeing four total excursions available for my Sept. 18th cruise which has 3 stops, two of those are "bubble tours" at Nassau.

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On 7/4/2021 at 10:09 PM, groundloop said:

I've been impatiently waiting for Carnival to post excursions for our September cruise to the Bahamas.  They've finally started to post a few and I'm a bit confused..... the titles say "Bubble Tour", and in the description it explains that the group must remain in designated areas and you can't explore on your own, etc.  

 

 

If you don't mind sharing, what types of tours are being offered? I'm traveling in October with a 5 year old and hoping to get an exception on her so will have to book a bubble tour.

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We had already gotten to a point where we stay on the ship unless we see a tour we really liked. Cannot imagine I would book a bubble tour. Sounds like more trouble than it would be worth. 

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On 7/5/2021 at 8:31 AM, nina_930 said:

From Carnival's FAQs: 

In private ports of call, such as Half Moon Cay, Princess Cays, etc., unvaccinated guests may participate in Carnival-approved tours or independent exploration.

On 7/5/2021 at 8:31 AM, nina_930 said:

In private ports of call, such as Half Moon Cay, Princess Cays, etc., unvaccinated guests may participate in Carnival-approved tours or independent exploration.

I wonder if the unvaxxed are allowed to go into San Juan since its US territory and the mainland states are all open now.

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20 minutes ago, asalligo said:

We had already gotten to a point where we stay on the ship unless we see a tour we really liked. Cannot imagine I would book a bubble tour. Sounds like more trouble than it would be worth. 

For the same price they dont get the full tour etc that the vaxxed receive i think the prices should be lowered.

 

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1 hour ago, heath1414 said:

If you don't mind sharing, what types of tours are being offered? I'm traveling in October with a 5 year old and hoping to get an exception on her so will have to book a bubble tour.

I can only see what's offered for my cruise in September, so of course it's possible your offerings may be different.  The 'bubble tours' I see so far are at Nassau:

 

BubbleTour: VIP Family Beach & Dolphin Connection

 

Bubble Tour: Private Family Beach Day Blue Lagoon

 

 

 

 

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On my cruise on the 18th on the Horizon, there’s a few bubble tours available. Pretty basic stuff like going to the beach and what not.  Sadly, there’s only one or two per port mostly, some ports have none. 

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Good incentive for people to get vaccinated.  3 choices:  be stuck on a bubble tour,  stay on the ship, or get vaccinated and have the run of the islands!

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29 minutes ago, pe4all said:

Good incentive for people to get vaccinated.  3 choices:  be stuck on a bubble tour,  stay on the ship, or get vaccinated and have the run of the islands!

The exemptions are going almost entirely to children under 12 who can't get vaccinated. 

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So we travel next month to two stops in the Bahamas (Nassau and HMC).  WE are vaxxed so we should be able to go out on our own, but the Bahamas show the following requirements. Does this mean if we want to get off the ship for a regular tour, a bubble tour, or on our own we have to do this?

 

All persons travelling to The Bahamas, and those travelling inter-island, are required to apply for a Bahamas Travel Health Visa at travel.gov.bs.

VACCINATED TRAVELLERS

  • Fully vaccinated travellers will be required to upload valid proof of vaccination (such as CDC or government issued vaccine record card) in lieu of PCR test requirement.
     
  • For international travellers, proof of vaccination must confirm they have passed the two-week immunity period.
     
  •  At this time The Bahamas Government will only be accepting vaccines by Pfizer Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca
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12 minutes ago, wemjam said:

So we travel next month to two stops in the Bahamas (Nassau and HMC).  WE are vaxxed so we should be able to go out on our own, but the Bahamas show the following requirements. Does this mean if we want to get off the ship for a regular tour, a bubble tour, or on our own we have to do this?

 

All persons travelling to The Bahamas, and those travelling inter-island, are required to apply for a Bahamas Travel Health Visa at travel.gov.bs.

VACCINATED TRAVELLERS

  • Fully vaccinated travellers will be required to upload valid proof of vaccination (such as CDC or government issued vaccine record card) in lieu of PCR test requirement.
     
  • For international travellers, proof of vaccination must confirm they have passed the two-week immunity period.
     
  •  At this time The Bahamas Government will only be accepting vaccines by Pfizer Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca

The health visa is only if you're flying.

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10 hours ago, sailingships said:

For the same price they dont get the full tour etc that the vaxxed receive i think the prices should be lowered.

 

What makes you say that they don't get the full tour that the vaxxed receive?  The only difference should be you have to remain with the group and can't explore on your own.

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8 hours ago, Cruise Related said:

On my cruise on the 18th on the Horizon, there’s a few bubble tours available. Pretty basic stuff like going to the beach and what not.  Sadly, there’s only one or two per port mostly, some ports have none. 

So you stay on board and bond with your kids.  You're  cruising again.  If the restrictions are not to your liking,  then you never should have submitted the exemption form.  There are other families that would have gladly taken your cabin.

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5 hours ago, SNJCruisers said:

So you stay on board and bond with your kids.  You're  cruising again.  If the restrictions are not to your liking,  then you never should have submitted the exemption form.  There are other families that would have gladly taken your cabin.

Just so you know the bubble tour restriction and the fact that the kids club would not be open for under 12 year old's was not noted  on the exemption requests, these have both come into fruition long after the July/August exemption requests were submitted.  I am not sure what will be different between the bubble tours and a regular Carnival tour, I always do ship sponsored excursions and never have wandered off on my own...I think it only fair that Carnival provides a couple in each port as my kids love to get off the ship and do new things and see new places.

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34 minutes ago, deweytrader said:

Just so you know the bubble tour restriction and the fact that the kids club would not be open for under 12 year old's was not noted  on the exemption requests, these have both come into fruition long after the July/August exemption requests were submitted.  I am not sure what will be different between the bubble tours and a regular Carnival tour, I always do ship sponsored excursions and never have wandered off on my own...I think it only fair that Carnival provides a couple in each port as my kids love to get off the ship and do new things and see new places.

Carnival can't "provide" them. They can only offer what local suppliers are providing. Some areas still have fairly strict restrictions in place and it may well be difficult finding a supplier willing to put together a bubble tour, not to mention the unreliability of number of passengers who'll actually take advantage of the offers deterring local operators from putting them together. In the end if I were taking my son and he couldn't be vaccinated I'd just wait a few months or I'd plan on spending my time onboard the ship. Break the news to him in advance and make him a part of the process of figuring out great things to do on board while we have the ship mostly to ourselves- most kids are just going to be excited to go. I'd have him help my buy candy and make ice cream sundaes, ride the water slides, use the hot tubs and play games in the arcade- take a card game or two and you know talk and hang out and so on. 

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4 hours ago, deweytrader said:

Just so you know the bubble tour restriction and the fact that the kids club would not be open for under 12 year old's was not noted  on the exemption requests, these have both come into fruition long after the July/August exemption requests were submitted.  I am not sure what will be different between the bubble tours and a regular Carnival tour, I always do ship sponsored excursions and never have wandered off on my own...I think it only fair that Carnival provides a couple in each port as my kids love to get off the ship and do new things and see new places.

But you had to know that bubble tours were going to be a requirement for anybody that is unvaccinated, whether they be an adult or a child.  If you always do ship sponsored tours and you never wander off on your own, then the bubble tour will be exactly what you are accustomed to in the past.  Because of the limited amount of people that would possibly be taking these tours, that would be the reason that there would be a limited choice.  If there are 3000 people on board, only 150 at the maximum are unvaccinated and not all 150 will be going on a tour.

Once again, if the choices tour wise are not satisfactory to you, there really isn't much you can do about it.  I learned a long time ago that we don't make the rules, we just play the game.  And unfortunately these are the rules of the game at this point regarding unvaccinated cruisers and port tours.

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26 minutes ago, SNJCruisers said:

But you had to know that bubble tours were going to be a requirement for anybody that is unvaccinated, whether they be an adult or a child.  If you always do ship sponsored tours and you never wander off on your own, then the bubble tour will be exactly what you are accustomed to in the past.  Because of the limited amount of people that would possibly be taking these tours, that would be the reason that there would be a limited choice.  If there are 3000 people on board, only 150 at the maximum are unvaccinated and not all 150 will be going on a tour.

Once again, if the choices tour wise are not satisfactory to you, there really isn't much you can do about it.  I learned a long time ago that we don't make the rules, we just play the game.  And unfortunately these are the rules of the game at this point regarding unvaccinated cruisers and port tours.

I am just amazed at the differences between cruise lines, just off Royal Adv of the Seas in late June and all RCL sponsored tours were available and the sailing I was on was 92% vax and 8% un-vaxxed.  I am not complaining - I just think there to be an option for a tour or two in each port.  

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41 minutes ago, deweytrader said:

I am just amazed at the differences between cruise lines, just off Royal Adv of the Seas in late June and all RCL sponsored tours were available and the sailing I was on was 92% vax and 8% un-vaxxed.  I am not complaining - I just think there to be an option for a tour or two in each port.  

Be content with the fact that you are lucky enough to have SIX cruises booked for 2021, including spending New Years on the Odyssey.  Enjoy what the ships have to offer if there isn't a tour available to your liking.

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