Norwegian cruises scrap vaccination requirement and ease testing rules
Travelers in this age group who are not vaccinated or who do not present proof of vaccination will be allowed on board as long as they present a negative PCR or antigen test taken within 72 hours of boarding. Children under 12 will have no testing or vaccination requirements.
Requirements could still vary depending on local regulations at different ports, “including but not limited to Canada, Greece and Bermuda,” the announcement said.
“Our long-awaited revisions to our testing and vaccination requirements bring us closer to the rest of society, which has learned to adapt and live with COVID-19,” said the Norwegian President and CEO. Frank Del Rio in a press release.
According to Norwegian Sail Safe protocols, voyages through September 2 will still require all crew and guests 12 years and older to be fully vaccinated at least two weeks prior to a departure date. Until the new policy takes effect, according to protocols, all guests over the age of 2 will still be required to present a negative test before travel, regardless of their vaccination status. Children between 2 and 12 years old will still have to present a negative test (antigen if they are vaccinated, PCR if they are not vaccinated) until September 2.
Carnival and Royal Caribbean cruises relax coronavirus testing rules
Norwegian’s moves to relax pandemic-era protocols follow similar moves by industry leaders Carnival and Royal Caribbean, which each announced last month they were scrapping testing for vaccinated travelers during some trips that last less than a week.
About a month ago, Norwegian announcement it would stop requiring pre-cruise testing in August ‘unless local regulations require it’, which continued testing on ships in US waters because the company had opted for standards set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The CDC ended its covid-19 program for US cruise ships on July 18, removing outbreak data for individual cruise ships from its website and letting companies set their own standards. public health agency recommended guests are tested for coronavirus no later than three days before a cruise, regardless of their vaccination status.