While Some Cruise Lines Delay Start Dates, Others Bump Them Up

Posted on Wednesday, October 14th, 2020 at 5:58 pm    

In recent months around the world, cruise lines have had to adjust to the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic. In some cases, this has meant halting operations entirely. For instance, in the United States, a No Sail Order has banned cruise ships from U.S. ports until November 1. Even before the CDC announced this particular date, the cruise industry had initiated its own ban on U.S. activity until November.

However, some cruise lines around the world have been eager to welcome guests back onto their ships. On August 16, the MSC Grandiosa left the port of Genoa, Italy, and became the first ship to set sail in months. Since then, other ships have followed in its footsteps.

As more and more cruise ships take to the water, many cruise-goers will wonder: which cruises are – and are not – in operation, and why? And how are cruise lines keeping their guests safe?

Which Cruise Lines Are Delaying Start Dates?

Recently, Carnival Cruise Line has announced new trip cancellations that will extend into the spring of 2021. The canceled trips include all cruises leaving from Miami aboard the Carnival Magic until March 13; all cruises from Tampa aboard the Carnival Paradise until March 19; and all cruises from New Orleans aboard the Carnival Valor until April 29.

Carnival’s recent cancellations appear to be a COVID safety measure. Christina Duffy, the president of Carnival Cruise Line, stated in a press release: “We are committed to providing our guests and travel agent partners with certainty where we can, although we regret disappointing our guests.”

Which Cruise Lines Are In (or Soon To Be In) Operation?

Unlike Carnival’s U.S.-based cruises, other ships have restarted operations this fall or announced plans to do so soon. Since the MSC Grandiosa set sail in August, multiple cruise lines have resumed trips departing from Europe.

In mid-September, AIDA Cruises announced that it would bump up its restart date for Mediterranean cruises to October 17. AIDA, which is a German subsidiary of Carnival Corporation, had previously announced that it would delay trips until November 1.

AIDA’s announcement follows a similar decision from another Carnival Corp. cruise line in Europe. Costa Cruises, an Italian Carnival line, officially resumed operations when two of its ships set sail on September 6.

How Are Cruise Lines Keeping Passengers Safe?

Cruise ships have responded to the pandemic by implementing new safety measures for guests and crew. For example, AIDA has developed a “health and safety” program for all vessels, which includes:

  • A mask requirement in indoor common spaces
  • Social distancing requirements
  • Continuous cleaning and disinfection measures
  • Hand sanitizer stations

Unfortunately, safety measures such as these cannot fully eliminate the risk of COVID spread. As the CDC has recently noted, foreign cruise lines have continued to see COVID outbreaks aboard their ships this summer and fall.

Contact Louis A. Vucci P.A.

If you or your loved one has fallen ill during or since a cruise, get in touch with Louis A. Vucci P.A. today. We know that cruise lines have a responsibility to keep their guests safe – and if your illness is a result of cruise ship negligence, one of our skilled attorneys will fight to win the compensation you deserve. Call (786) 375-0344 to schedule your free, confidential consultation now.


Cruise Ships Barred from U.S. Ports Until November

Posted on Wednesday, October 14th, 2020 at 5:39 pm    

On September 30, the CDC announced that it would extend the No Sail Order for cruise ships through the end of October. In other words, cruise ships will not be allowed to operate in U.S. waters or dock in U.S. ports through at least October 31. This move is intended to minimize the risk of COVID-19 outbreaks among would-be cruise guests.

In of itself, the No Sail Order is old news – it has been in place since mid-March of this year. However, if the order actually expires at the end of this month, there may be serious implications for U.S. cruise-goers. So, what is the reasoning behind the No Sail Order, and how long will it last?

The Reasoning Behind the No Sail Order

When the No Sail Order first took effect in March, cruise ships had been making national headlines for having rampant COVID-19 outbreaks. The Princess Diamond was one of the most infamous examples of this phenomenon. By the end of that voyage, more than 700 of the ship’s 3,711 passengers and crew members tested positive for coronavirus.

The No Sail Order is a response to the risk of high infection rates and possible deaths on cruise ships. As the CDC noted in its recent announcement, at least 41 deaths have resulted from cruise-related COVID-19 cases in U.S. waters since March 1. Since the pandemic continues to affect U.S. communities, the order has been extended multiple times to reflect the ongoing danger.

Furthermore, as the CDC points out, cruise ships operating in other parts of the world have not proven that they can successfully mitigate COVID-19 risk. Some of these ships have experienced outbreaks in recent months, despite operating at lower-than-usual capacity. As the announcement states:

“Recent outbreaks on cruise ships overseas provide current evidence that cruise ship travel continues to transmit and amplify the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 – even when ships sail at reduced passenger capacities – and would likely spread the infection into U.S. communities if passenger operations were to resume prematurely in the United States.”

How Long Will the No Sail Order Last?

For the moment, the No Sail Order is set to last until November 1. Of course, the order has been extended multiple times in past months, and it could be extended at the last minute again. (The most recent extension was made official just two hours before the order was due to expire at the end of September.)

However, there is reason to anticipate that the order will actually expire at the end of October. According to reporting from Axios, CDC Director Robert Redfield pushed to extend the No Sail Order until February 15, but was overruled by the current administration. The October 31 date is the result of the administration’s decision, and also matches up with the cruise industry’s own ban on U.S. activity until November.

Contact Louis A. Vucci P.A.

If you have suffered harm related to COVID-19 exposure on a cruise ship, do not delay in contacting a lawyer at Louis A. Vucci P.A.. The experienced cruise ship negligence lawyers at Louis A. Vucci P.A. can help you understand the paths you may be able to take to recovery. To schedule a free consultation, call (786) 375-0344 or fill out our contact form now.