Royal Caribbean has updated their health protocols for cruises that leave from Florida in the month of August. Royal Caribbean currently has one cruise ship sailing from Florida and will have more ships coming back into service over the next few weeks.
Here are Royal Caribbean’s new health protocols for cruises that depart from Florida in August. The cruise line is recommending that all passengers age 12 and over be vaccinated. Those who sail and are not vaccinated will need to purchase insurance and will be tested more often.
Masks will be required for all guests age two and up. Masks will not be required while inside staterooms, eating or drinking, on outside decks, or at fully vaccinated parties. Masks will also not be required while at the cruise line’s private island in the Bahamas, CocoCay.
As a condition of boarding, each unvaccinated guest 12 years and older departing from a Florida homeport on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship must provide proof of a valid insurance policy that has a minimum of:
(a) $25,000 per person in medical expense coverage and
(b) $50,000 coverage for emergency medical evacuation and no COVID-19 exclusions.
All unvaccinated guests must undergo multiple COVID-19 tests. The total charge for unvaccinated guests 12 years and older from the third-party testing vendor for these tests is $136 USD per guest for sailings 5 nights or less and $178 USD per guest for sailings 6 nights or longer. This amount will be applied to the guest’s onboard expense account.
Unvaccinated guests will be tested a total of three or four times. The will need to undergo a PCR test for COVID-19 administered by an accredited laboratory of the guest’s choice and taken within three days of sailing.
They will also be tested before boarding the ship, mid-cruise for sailings six nights or longer, and then again before disembarking the ship.
Social distancing will be set up all around the ship. The casino will be open to only vaccinated guests due to space limitations.
The Fitness Center will have dedicated operating hours for everyone as well as hours reserved for vaccinated guests only. Salon services will be available to everyone but given the enclosed space and longer length of spa services, the treatment rooms used to provide facials, massages and other services will only be available to vaccinated guests.
Many bars and lounges will be open to everyone and others will be available to vaccinated guests only. There will be crew stationed nearby and signage to help direct guests.
For Main Dining, Royal Caribbean will designate areas for everyone, including parents and unvaccinated children, and areas for vaccinated parties only. My Time Dining will not be available to parties that include unvaccinated guests. Some specialty restaurants will be open to everyone, while others will be for vaccinated parties only.
For guests that prefer the buffet, Windjammer will be open to everyone for breakfast and lunch, and the food will be served by the crew. Royal Caribbean recommends that guests make dining reservations via Cruise Planner before the cruise or the Royal Caribbean app once onboard. Grab-and-go cafes will also be available for everyone.
Unvaccinated guests will be allowed off the ship when visiting ports only if they purchase a shore excursion through Royal Caribbean. Vaccinated guests can explore ports on their own if they choose.