Here Are the New Rules Carnival Will Implement When Cruising Returns

Update: February 9, 2021 at 9:20 a.m. ET by Donald Wood

Carnival Cruise Line removed the new health and safety protocol changes announced on its website just hours before.

After an influx of comments and questions about the updated rules , Carnival took down the announced changes and replaced them with basic health requirements issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The cruise line told TravelPulse the updated protocols were posted before being approved.

“In our haste to keep guests and travel agents informed, we posted some information that was not finalized. As we have said previously, guests should expect mask, testing, distancing and other protocols. We intend to provide more details over the coming weeks as we work to resume operations.”

Carnival Cruise Lines will have a much different look – as will all cruise companies – when it is allowed to return to the water later this year.

The company disclosed its new health and safety protocols as demanded by the Centers for Disease Control, and Bruce Parkinson of CruiseRadio.Net spoke to Carnival about the changes.

“This disclosure includes core elements of our return to service plan which will continue to evolve once we receive additional guidance from the CDC,” a Carnival spokesman said. “When we have a final plan, we will update our website and communicate directly with booked guests and travel agents .”

Carnival says the new policies and procedures — which will be mandatory for all guests — were developed based on guidance and directives from health authorities including the CDC, governments in the U.S. and abroad and additional advice from medical and public health experts.

If guests break the rules, well then be prepared for a waste of your hard-earned money. That’s how serious this is.

“If a guest is denied boarding or disembarked due to failure to comply with Carnival COVID-19 Policies and Procedures, they will not be entitled to a refund, credit, or compensation of any kind. Guests will be responsible for all costs and fines, including without limitation travel expenses,” the new policy states.

Parkinson's story has all details of the new rules, which include:

– Every guest two years of age or older will be required to provide documentation of a negative SARS-CoV-2 test taken between five days to 24 hours prior to the date of embarkation. The cost of that testing will be the responsibility of the travelers. Any further testing performed in the terminal or on board the ship by providers retained by Carnival will be considered included in the cruise fare and there will be no charge to passengers. All guests will be required to complete a health questionnaire beginning 72 hours prior to the date of embarkation to identify any symptoms consistent with COVID-19 (or other infectious diseases) and any contact with individuals confirmed to have COVID-19 prior to the cruise. As well, all guests will have their temperature taken as part of the boarding process.

– Only booked guests will be permitted to enter the terminal and boarding area. All guests must complete their online check-in and select an arrival appointment time no later than midnight (Eastern time) prior to their sailing date. Guests must arrive within their selected time to facilitate physical distancing during the check-in and boarding process. Arriving early or late will result in a wait.

– Guests may be required to undergo temperature checks at least daily and must submit to any requested medical screening during the cruise. Temperature checks may also be conducted prior to disembarking at a port of call and before participating in certain onboard activities. Guests have the personal responsibility to immediately report any symptoms consistent with COVID-19 to the ship’s medical personnel.

– All guests over the age of two will be required to wear a mask when indoors except when inside their own stateroom, while eating and drinking seated at a table and when using the cardio equipment at the gym if physical distancing is maintained.

– Guests will also have to wear a mask outdoors when physical distancing cannot be maintained. Masks should have two or more layers and be worn over the nose and mouth. Gaiters and bandanas are not allowed, and face shields are permitted only when used with a mask.

– Hand sanitizers, wipes and/or handwashing locations will be located throughout the ship and in terminals, and guests will be directed to use them regularly.

– To maintain physical distancing, Carnival will restrict access to public spaces, and venues/activities will operate at reduced capacity. The line says it may use a reservation system for public areas including pools, gyms, casinos, restaurants, bars and entertainment productions.

– Guests can expect appropriately distanced seating in theaters, restaurants and other common venues, modified entertainment showings and meal services to control capacity as well as other measures. Buffet service will be modified to eliminate or severely restrict self-service items.

– Carnival has worked closely with officials in the ports where its ships will call to develop protocols for passenger excursions. During the initial return to sailing, guests will be restricted to excursions or activities led by vetted tour operators who maintain Carnival’s level of COVID-19 controls. Self-exploration or non-Carnival sponsored excursions will not be permitted. Guests will be able to pre-purchase shore excursions through, the Carnival HUB app or on board, subject to availability and capacity restrictions.

Blog Author

Xiangdong Lai