Cruise companies are actively planning to return to the seas, but their official return dates are something of a moving target. A combination of governmental regulations, health concerns, and port closures have prevented the cruise lines from nailing down specific guaranteed sailing dates. But despite the uncertainty, cruise companies are nevertheless planning to return to cruising, with some sailing dates being planned for this summer.
Below is the most up-to-date information relating to cruise companies' plans to start cruising again:
- Carnival cruise line has announced that it plans to return to cruising on August 1. The company plans to sail out of ports at Galveston, Texas, Miami, Florida, and Port Canaveral, Florida.
- According to Forbes, Royal Caribbean's website indicates that the company plans to return to cruising on June 12. A CDC no-sail order extends until July 24, putting the June 12 sailing in doubt. Forbes reports that a Royal Caribbean spokesperson did not offer an explanation as to how the June sail dates would comply with the no-sail order.
- Norwegian Cruise Line has not indicated when it will return to sailing. The company was in deep financial trouble earlier this month when it announced that it doubted that it would be able to continue as a going concern. But a massive loan just days later sured up the company's near financial future.
Most cruise companies are now offering more generous cancellation and refund policies than in the past. Forbes reports that both Norwegian and Royal Caribbean are offering refunds of over 100% in the form of a cruise credit if passengers must cancel.
Meanwhile, there are still up to 70,000 cruise ship crew members stuck aboard over 100 cruise ships across the world. Many have been on the ships for two months or more.