When a cruise ship departs a Florida port within the next few months, some do not require passengers to get the most effective pandemic life preserver there — Covid-19 vaccination..
that is New law Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has signed a ban on businesses requiring customers to present evidence of vaccination.The law came into force on Thursday, with opponents saying it could make it difficult for cruise ship companies to get their teeth in the federal government and threaten the recovery of industries essential to the state’s economy. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention vaccination recommendations..
Florida is headquartered with at least 10 major cruise lines, including Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Norwegian Cruise Line and Disney Cruise Line.
Celebrity Cruises has withdrawn the requirement for Florida passengers to show evidence Their shot. Royal Caribbean requires certification at certain ports, but Florida does not. This week, requirements were introduced to complicate unvaccinated travel. Those passengers must show proof of travel insurance..
Despite the law, the two largest cruise lines, Carnival and Norway, have decided to impose vaccination certification requirements, according to the information published on their website. Violations of Florida law can be fined up to $ 5,000 for each violation.
“No company goes beyond the law,” DeSantis spokeswoman Christina Pushau said in an email. “Some of the largest cruise lines have revised their policies. We expect others to follow their example.”
When asked how the carnival intends to deal with the new Florida law, the spokesperson did not comment on the decision to break the law, but instead introduced the frequently asked question page to NBC News. Unless you have been vaccinated in advance, you are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 and you must provide proof of vaccination before boarding.
Norwegian, You need to bring proof of vaccinationResponded to inquiries regarding future US voyages with a link to the latest press release from early June.
Democrats have blamed the new law and accused DeSantis of undermining both the public health and cruise industries.
Florida Agricultural Commissioner Nikki Fried said in a statement from NBC News, “The Governor is trying to protect customers, including cruise lines where our agricultural industry relies on millions of food sales. It is forcing state companies to do so. “
Democratic Fried is running to leave DeSantis in next year’s elections.
Mr Pushau said the governor’s executive order is unlikely to scare travelers on the voyage.
“It’s almost unprecedented for a vaccinated person to get a serious illness with Covid-19,” she said in an email. “Therefore, vaccinated people should not be worried about getting infected from unvaccinated people.”
When DeSantis signs A law banning what he called a “vaccine passport”“In Florida, your personal choices about vaccination are protected and businesses and government agencies cannot deny your service based on your decision,” he said.
Bari Golin-Blaugrund, Cruise Lines International Association, An industry group that called Florida the “center of the cruise world.”
“Before the pandemic, the industry directly and indirectly supported nearly 160,000 jobs in Florida.”
In 2019, 8.3 million of the 13.8 million cruise ships in the United States boarded in Florida, Golin-Blaugrund added.
However, Florida is not the only port of call for the cruise ship industry. A NBC News survey of 17 routes servicing the United States found that four did not follow the CDC’s recommendations to vaccinate all targeted crew members and passengers. .. An American Cruise Line based in the United States. , Based in Italy Costa Cruises, And the Swiss-based MSC Cruises and Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line.
American operates small vessels with less than 250 passengers and is not subject to the same cruise line regulations as large operators.
“The rapid progress of vaccination in the United States is very positive for the resumption of cruises,” said Ruben Rodriguez, president of MSC.
MSC has been active in Europe since last summer and has been visited by tens of thousands of guests, whether vaccinated or not.
“MSC Cruises is a very comprehensive family brand and we would like to welcome all guests, including children and adults who have not been vaccinated for medical or other reasons,” Rodriguez said.
Another company, Holland America Line, requires passengers to be vaccinated before boarding, but states that the requirements are “subject to change.” At Royal Caribbean International, passengers are required to be vaccinated, but only when departing from these four ports. Galveston, Texas; Nassau, Bahamas; and Limassol, Cyprus.
Golin-Blaugrund said the industry “overwhelmingly supports vaccines,” but “100% vaccination is not an option for families because children under the age of 12 do not have access to the Covid-19 vaccine.” “He added.
Considering these restrictions, the CDC offers two ways to certify a cruise ship to sail again. Reach the immunization threshold of 95% of passengers and 95% of crew, or have a cruise ship test the protocol before traveling.
“This route requires a simulated or test voyage before volunteer passengers can obtain the conditional voyage certificate required to resume commercial operations from a U.S. port,” Golin-Blaugrund said. I will.
Nevertheless, even if these test cruises resumed in US waters last month, there are already reports of Covid-19 outbreaks on ships not regulated by the CDC.
Two passengers aboard the Celebrity Millennium, which departed from Sint Maarten in the Caribbean on June 5, and were supposed to be “fully vaccinated,” tested positive for Covid-19. It is run by a celebrity. Royal Caribbean subsidiary.
Royal Caribbean also delayed its first voyage Odyssey of the sea A cruise ship after eight crew members tested positive on Covid-19 last month.
Disney postponed test sailing this week After inconsistent Covid-19 test results.Also this week, the Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line has since postponed its reopening. The crew tested positive for Covid-19..