Royal Caribbean Reverses - Will Not Require Vaccination for Florida Cruises
This is a policy change from Royal Caribbean’s original mandate that both guests and crew be fully vaccinated in order to board its vessels when the line returns to cruising from U.S. homeports in June 2021.
The vaccination requirement will no longer apply for ships sailing out of Florida or Texas, although it holds for cruises departing from anywhere else.
In a statement released this past Friday, June 4, 2021. Royal Caribbean wrote that guests ages 16 and over... “are strongly recommended to set sail fully vaccinated”, but proof of immunization won’t be required for those boarding their cruises in these two states. "Those who are unvaccinated or unable to verify vaccination will be required to undergo testing and follow other protocols, which will be announced at a later date," Royal Caribbean wrote in its statement.
If you have questions.. the FAQ section of Royal Caribbean’s website has been updated to reflect the altered protocol, now stating that vaccinations will only be required for guests sailing out of Seattle, the Bahamas or other international ports
This new policy arrives as many do not want ‘vaccine passports’ to become a part of travel. In fact, a bill recently passed by Florida’s legislature and signed into law Governor Ron DeSantis, states that it will fine any of the state’s businesses $5,000 if they request proof of vaccination from customers. In April of this year, The state of Texas and Governor Greg Abbott also instituted a similar ban on businesses’ requesting proof of vaccination.
Florida’s anti-vaccine-passport law is set to take effect on July 1, just as cruise ships begin sailing from U.S. ports for the first time in 16 months. Cruise lines will still require that crew members be fully vaccinated before returning to service, in alignment with current CDC regulations for the industry.