Two weeks ago, Royal Caribbean began to ban passengers from bringing emotional support animals onboard their 25 cruise ships.
The cruise line has sent out an update to travel agents to clarify the new rules regarding bringing emotional support animals and trained service animals onto their cruise ships. The update, posted below, should help clarify any misunderstandings future Royal Caribbean passengers may have regarding this new policy.
Royal Caribbean’s emotional support animals update for August 31, 2018:
“We’ve recently changed our policy on emotional support animals onboard all our ships. Our policy now differentiates emotional support animals from service animals that are trained to perform a function for a person with a disability. We will continue to welcome service animals onboard for guests with disabilities, and will no longer have emotional support animals onboard.
As we transition into our new policy, any guest that processed a request to bring their emotional support animal on or before July 30th, 2018, will be allowed to do so for their existing cruise. We apologize for any impact this may cause your clients, but we hope your clients understand and look forward to welcoming them onboard very soon!”
Royal Caribbean’s website lists the following for service dogs: Service dogs will be permitted to accompany a person with a disability in all public areas, including dining venues on Royal Caribbean cruise ships. While in public areas, service dogs must be on a leash, harness or other restraining device. Due to health regulations, service dogs are not permitted in pools, whirlpools or spas.
Royal Caribbean defines a service dog as “any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability.” Service dogs are not considered pets.