December 11, 2020
In this Issue
Here are some of the news articles we are following:
- The CDC May Require Full Ship Quarantine for Single Positive Case
- CLIA proposes replacing Australia cruise ban with path to resumption
- A Big Day Approaches for Royal Caribbean
- International cruise ships ban costs Australia A$2bn
- India cruise ship Karnika used on Dubai and Gulf routes is headed for scrap yard
- Royal Caribbean pauses sale of cruises longer than 7 nights because of new CDC rules
- Major cruise lines extend sailing suspensions
- Viking Hires Chief Health Officer
- Latest Look: When Carnival Cruise Line Ships May Start Sailing Again
- Atlas Ocean Voyages provides private jet flights to Antarctica 2021-2022 itineraries
- Behind the Scenes on Royal Caribbean's First Post-Pandemic Sailing: Day 2
- Canary Islands accept COVID-19 antigen tests from travelers from high-risk countries
- Royal Caribbean's First Cruise Since Pandemic At 27 Percent Occupancy
- Almaco provides catering solutions for Saga Cruises’ Spirit of Adventure
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The CDC May Require Full Ship Quarantine for Single Positive Case
What will happen if a cruise operator in U.S. waters sees a single positive COVID-19 case aboard? A full ship quarantine seems to be the likely option, according to the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order issued by the CDC at the end of October. Operators sailing in U.S. waters will need a Conditional Sailing Certificate, meaning they met new stringent CDC guidelines and are operating with strict health and safety protocols. The Framework for Conditional Sailing Order states that in case of a positive COVID-19 case, a cruise line must first notify passengers and crew, and then immediately end the future. It also may be forced to cancel future voyages as directed by the CDC. The ship also must return to the U.S. port of embarkation. And a full ship quarantine is likely the case, as the CDC's order said that the ship must immediately isolate "any sick or infected passengers and crew in a single occupancy cabin with private bathrooms and quarantine all remaining passengers and non-essential crew."
CLIA proposes replacing Australia cruise ban with path to resumption
The cruise industry is calling on Australia to replace the ban on cruising, which expires December 17, with a conditional process that would allow a carefully managed resumption in 2021. CLIA Australasia MD Joel Katz said extensive new health measures have been outlined to government agencies in detail as the industry responds to COVID-19 and plans a pathway to revival. He said Australia’s relative success in stemming community transmission of COVID-19 and a layered strategy for the resumption of cruising creates an opportunity for a tightly managed and phased revival of the country’s A$5bn-a-year cruise industry. ‘This would initially involve restricted local cruises for local residents only, with limited passenger numbers, 100% testing of guests and crew and extensive screening and sanitation protocols in place,’ he said. Under the proposals presented to government agencies, cruises would initially operate within state or national borders while travel restrictions are in place.
A Big Day Approaches for Royal Caribbean
It might not sound like a big day for those of us waiting for cruises to resume in the US. However, Royal Caribbean Quantum of the Seas’ operational start in Singapore on December 1 is an essential step for the Miami-based cruise line. The line is planning to do 3-day and 4-day Seacation voyages from Singapore for Singapore residents. While MSC and Costa have been operational now for many months in Europe, Royal Caribbean has only had experience with joint ventures Mein Schiff and Hapag Lloyd. It has had minimal operational experience with its own, much larger ships.
International cruise ships ban costs Australia A$2bn
The ban on international cruise ships since March will cost the Australian economy A$2bn by the end of December. This is according to the annual Economic Impact Assessment commissioned by the Australian Cruise Association and Cruise Lines International Association Australasia. CLIA Australasia MD Joel Katz said another A$3bn is at risk across the economy if the cruise suspension continues into 2021. ‘It is no secret the sector has been devastated by COVID-19, but the impact is also being felt by the many thousands of small businesses, especially in regional communities that rely on a thriving cruise industry,’ he said. ‘These include travel agents, fresh food suppliers, tour operators, hotels, bus companies, baggage handlers, Aussie entertainers and the thousands of other businesses across the country which rely on the cruise industry.’ Australian Cruise Association CEO Jill Abel said the 2019-20 report, conducted by AEC Group Ltd, research consultants operating in Australia, New Zealand and Asia Pacific, highlights the impact of lost visitation from the more than 1,000 cruise ship visits made around Australia each year. Abel said some of these ports and destinations are ‘crying out’ for more visitors to support their economic recovery.
India cruise ship Karnika used on Dubai and Gulf routes is headed for scrap yard
Dubai: The Karnika, cruise ship owned by now bankrupt Jalesh Cruises, has been sold for scrapping in Alang, India, according to reports. This comes just weeks after the Indian cruise line announced that it is permanently suspending operations due to rising debts and a delay in the reopening of cruise ports in its home country. The ship is located off Mumbai and has been “practically abandoned” by Jalesh Cruises after the pandemic erased global travel demand, the Cruise & Harbor News first reported. UK-based NKD Maritime purchased the vessel for $5 million. “We can confirm that we were awarded the cruise vessel Karnika from the Court Marshall in Mumbai,” a spokesperson for NKD Maritime said.
Royal Caribbean pauses sale of cruises longer than 7 nights because of new CDC rules
Royal Caribbean will not sell any cruises longer than 7-nights until further notice in order to comply with new rules by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The CDC's Framework for Conditional Sailing Order stipulates that cruises longer than 7 nights and call on a U.S. port are not allowed while the CSO is in effect. Therefore, Royal Caribbean sailings between Jan. 1 and Nov. 1, 2021 are "temporarily paused" while Royal Caribbean determines what to do with them. The cruise line informed travel agents on Tuesday of the change, "To ensure compliance, we have temporarily paused the sale of such cruises as we evaluate options and determine the necessary itinerary updates or changes."
Major cruise lines extend sailing suspensions
A selection of major cruise lines has extended suspensions in operations until at least March 2021. Princess Cruises has confirmed that it will pause all operations through to 31 March 2021. In addition, the line has suspended itineraries longer than seven days sailing in and out of US ports through to 1 November 2021. Princess Cruises is also extending its pause in operations for cruises departing in and out of Japan through to 25 June 2021. Princess Cruises president Jan Swartz said: “We are focused on preparing our ships to meet the CDC health and safety requirements for our eventual return to service. “We also appreciate the continued support we have received from our guests, partners and travel advisors, reinforcing for all of us why we do what we do.” Guests booked on cancelled voyages will have the option to receive a refundable future cruise credit (FCC) equivalent to 100 per cent of the cruise fare paid, plus an additional non-refundable bonus FCC equal to 25 per cent of the cruise fare.
Viking Hires Chief Health Officer
Viking has hired Raquel C. Bono, M.D. as the cruise line’s Chief Health Officer. This announcement follows news that Viking has become the first cruise line to complete the installation of a full-scale polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing laboratory at sea. A board-certified trauma surgeon and retired Vice Admiral of the United States Navy Medical Corps, Dr. Bono most recently led Washington State’s medical and healthcare systems response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As Principal at RCB Consulting, she partnered with Viking earlier this year to help develop and define new protocol enhancements; as Chief Health Officer, Dr. Bono will be instrumental in Viking’s restart of operations, with a focus on public health.
Latest Look: When Carnival Cruise Line Ships May Start Sailing Again
Carnival Cruise Line's Carnival Horizon arrived in Miami this week as the company prepares to resume operations out of North America. The company, however, will first need to meet the CDC's new Conditional Framework for the resumption of cruise service. Ships are expected to re-enter service in a staggered, phased-in gradual approach, with short cruises. A look at the expected first sailing of each Carnival ship as the cruise industry gets back into service, based on announced deployment and cruises available for booking on Carnival's website (all information is subject to change due to the COVID-19 crisis)….
Atlas Ocean Voyages provides private jet flights to Antarctica 2021-2022 itineraries
AOV-Atlas Ocean Voyages (brand owned by Mystic Cruises) announced it would provide private jet service to guests on its 2021-2022 Antarctica itineraries, to bring travellers from Orlando (Port Canaveral) to Ushuaia Argentina. Atlas is a start-up cruise brand, which is expected to launch its first ship, World Navigator, in 2021. The company said that the "direct-to-ship" private charter would "shorten travel time and eliminate layovers and scheduling complications." Vacationers will be flown from one of 16 airports in the USA and Canada to Orlando, from where the private plane will fly to Argentina. The direct flight cuts off "at least a day's travel time" when travelling from North America to Ushuaia - the homeport for most cruises to Antarctica.
Behind the Scenes on Royal Caribbean's First Post-Pandemic Sailing: Day 2
Royal Caribbean International's Quantum of the Seas is enjoying its first full day at sea on December 2 on its first cruise since the company paused operations earlier this year. With just over 1,000 guests aboard, the ship is quiet, with Singapore Cruise Society onboard and providing a look at an adjusted cruise experience.
Canary Islands accept COVID-19 antigen tests from travelers from high-risk countries
Hoping to attract more British tourists, especially over winter months, the Canary Islands (Spanish autonomous territory) is in a deal to accept COVID-19 antigen tests from travellers from high-risk countries, including the UK. The Canaries archipelago was added to the UK travel corridor in October, with the islands passing legislation asking for negative Coronavirus (COVID-19) tests on arrival. The new deal will allow cruise passengers to use antigen tests as proof they're Covid-free. Unlike RT-PCR tests, antigen tests give results within 30 minutes and are cheaper. Typical Coronavirus PCR tests cost up to GBP 175, while antigen tests can be purchased for GBP 49. The move aims to encourage more tourists from the UK, including cruisers, to visit the Canaries.
Royal Caribbean's First Cruise Since Pandemic At 27 Percent Occupancy
Royal Caribbean's Quantum of the Seas has officially left Marina Bay in Singapore on its first cruise since the coronavirus pandemic, operating under a set of strict health and safety protocols developed between both the Royal Caribbean Group and Singaporean authorities. The ship may be quiet however, with just over 1,000 guests aboard. According to Singapore Cruise Society, there are just 1,093 guests onboard the first cruise, a two-night sailing to nowhere as part of a four-month deployment from Singapore. The 2014-built Quantum, at 100 percent occupancy, holds approximately 4,100 guests, meaning the first cruise is operating at roughly 26.6 percent occupancy.
Almaco provides catering solutions for Saga Cruises’ Spirit of Adventure
In January 2017, Meyer Werft contracted Almaco Group to provide catering solutions for Saga Cruises’ ship Spirit of Adventure. The scope of work of Almaco included the engineering, supply, installation and commissioning of the ship's bar, galleys (kitchens) and pantries equipment. Spirit of Adventure was delivered to SAGA UK on September 29 in Emden Germany. After the sistership Spirit of Discovery, this is the 2nd new ship built for SAGA at Meyer Werft. Both vessels are resource-saving and environmentally-friendly. This has been taken into account in the choices of the catering solutions provided by the company. SAGA promised that the new liner would “be distinguished by her superb specialty restaurants, serving sumptuous steaks, sophisticated Italian dishes and mouth-watering Nepalese cuisine”.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the articles above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this e-Newsletter
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