Royal Caribbean will restart with short cruises to private island, may seek volunteers for test runs
Cruise Lines International Association, which represents 95% of the cruise industry, introduced mandatory requirements to be able to set sail again. USA TODAY
Royal Caribbean will resume sailings with short cruises to its private island, Perfect Day at CocoCay, once it has fulfilled the new requirements issued last week by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) – and it may need volunteers to participate in the required "simulation voyages" required by the CDC.
The comments were made Wednesday by Vicki Freed, Royal Caribbean's senior vice president of Sales, Trade Support and Service, during her weekly coffee chat with travel advisors.
"We will be bringing back short cruises calling at Perfect Day at CocoCay," Freed told Royal Caribbean's travel agent partners. "We're going to be doing a series of sailings using our employees and other volunteers," she continued. " We haven't decided how we're going to select people at this point. We will be looking possibly for volunteers. We do not have all of the details yet fleshed out."
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Freed also acknowledged the complexity of the CDC's new recommendations, noting that it will take some time for the company to go through the requirements and formulate a return-to-service strategy.
"It is complicated to go through this entire CDC recommendation, but we are going to do it," said Freed.
Though the CDC has required cruise lines to conduct simulated voyages as part of being certified for restricted cruise operations, the organization told Cruise Critic on Wednesday that exact details about these sailings – from dates, durations and even how prospective volunteers can apply – were still being hammered out."CDC has not yet determined requirements for simulated voyages and further information about restricted voyages will be outlined in future technical instructions and orders," a CDC spokesperson told Cruise Critic in an email.
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