PIRAEUS, GREECE - SEPTEMBER 29: The German cruise liner "Mein Schiff 6" with a dozen Covid-19 infected passengers on board is docked in the Greek port of Piraeus on September 29, 2020 in Athens, Greece. All 922 vacationers and 666 crew members are to undergo a coronavirus test and must remain on board until further notice. (Photo by Milos Bicanski/Getty Images)

Good news for cruise lovers- cruises could resume in July!

According to USA Today, there was a letter from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sent to cruise lines saying they can resume operation upon meeting certain criteria.  Cruises have been on hold for the past year due to orders from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Under the new criteria, cruises can resume if 98% of the crew members and 95% of the passengers are fully vaccinated.

Could this change be a result of recent lawsuits filed by Florida and Alaska?  Suits were filed against the CDC to lift their conditional sailing order and allow ships to cruise out of U.S. ports.

Previously, there was a 60 day waiting period for simulated voyage requests with the CDC.  They have since announced it will review and respond to those applications within 5 days.  This means cruise ships are closer to open water sailing sooner!

Ships can bypass simulated voyages if they provide proof that 98% of the crew and 95% of the passengers are fully vaccinated.

There are also updates to testing and quarantine requirements.

The CDC is diligently working to get the cruise industry back in business by mid-summer.  This will require cooperation from cruise lines with submitting port agreements in a timely manner to stay on track for this timeline.

(Source: WESH)