Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) announced that its oceangoing cruise line members will voluntarily extend their suspension of cruise operations from U.S. ports until September 15, 2020. CLIA said the voluntary suspension applies to all CLIA members for which the "No Sail Order" applies. That order by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) covers vessels with the capacity to carry 250 people or more.
Strong Financial Impact
A lack of cruise operations can have a steep economic toll, both on the cruise industry and the destinations its ships visit. CLIA said in its statement that in 2018, the cruise industry supported over 421,000 jobs in the United States, with every 30 cruisers sailing from U.S. ports supporting one American job.
It also stressed that "each day of the suspension of cruise operations in the U.S. results in a total loss of approximately $110 million in economic activity and up to 800 American jobs."
Why the Extension?
The official statement explained the reasoning behind the extension as follows: “Due to the ongoing situation within the U.S. related to COVID-19, CLIA member cruise lines have decided to voluntarily extend the period of suspended passenger operations. The current 'No Sail Order' issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will expire on July 24 and, although we had hoped that cruise activity could resume as soon as possible after that date, it is increasingly clear that more time will be needed to resolve barriers to resumption in the United States.
“Although we are confident that future cruises will be healthy and safe, and will fully reflect the latest protective measures, we also feel that it is appropriate to err on the side on the side of caution to help ensure the best interests of our passengers and crew members.
"We have, therefore, decided to further extend our suspension of operations from U.S. ports until 15 September. The additional time will also allow us to consult with the CDC on measures that will be appropriate for the eventual resumption of cruise operations."
The association statement also said that "CLIA member lines will continually evaluate the evolving situation and make a determination as to whether a further extension is necessary.”
For more information, visit www.cruising.org.