Royal Caribbean announces new easier pre-travel testing policy for joining crew Covid-19

Another cruise line is stepping up testing of vaccinated passengers on many of its voyages.

Royal Caribbean Group (RCL) CEO Jason Liberty announced the news: “Last week, the CDC ended its cruise COVID-19 program. Based on this change, we continue to adjust our protocols to more closely align with how the rest of society and other travel and leisure companies operate.”

“That means we’re moving to a point where everyone can vacation with us while always working with our destination partners to meet their regulations. “Starting Aug. 8, testing will be required for unvaccinated guests on all trips and only for vaccinated guests on trips of six nights or longer.”

On sailings of six nights or longer, everyone – vaccinated or not – must still test negative for sailing. On cruises of five nights or less, only unvaccinated passengers will need to test negative on the cruise.
The line hopes to drop testing for longer cruises in the not-too-distant future.

The company, which includes cruise lines Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, and Silversea Cruises, completed the return of its global fleet in all of its key destinations except China last month. China is still closed to cruises as they are underway
pandemic-related closures.

In the third quarter of 2022, the company expects load factors to average around 95 percent across the fleet. It is expected to grow to triple digits by the end of the year.