As the CDC announces its requirements for the cruise ship industry, Port Tampa Bay may come back to life with passengers.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has told cruise lines what they need to do to begin sailing with passengers again. The specifics from the CDC includes requiring 98% of the crew and 95% of passengers to be fully vaccinated in order to bypass simulated test trips. There would be simple viral tests before boarding the ship. According to a spokesperson for the CDC, for cruise cruises could begin from the United States in mid-July. This is for cruise lines that follow the next step of guidelines.
Royal Caribbean Chairman and CEO Richard D. Fain said in a business update:
“We are looking forward to resuming operations out of various ports around the world in the coming months. In addition, we have had very constructive dialogues with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in recent weeks about resuming cruising in the U.S. in a safe and healthy manner. Last night, the CDC notified us of some clarifications and amplifications of their Conditional Sail Order which addressed uncertainties and concerns we had raised. They have dealt with many of these items in a constructive manner that takes into account recent advances in vaccines and medical science.”
This is important for passengers who want to get back to traveling again. However, for the cruise industry, the loss of business has been crushing. In Florida alone, the cruise industry employs thousands, and has lost hundreds of millions of dollars in the state.