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Carnival Cruises has began staffing its first cruise ships in the Caribbean as the company looks to restart sailing in December.

According to the CTI staffing agency, crew members began traveling to St. Maarten on October 24th to join the Carnival Horizon, Pride, and Mardi Gras.

carnival cruise members leave jakarta for St amaarten

“Several Team Members of Carnival have departed today joining Carnival Horizon, Pride, and Mardi Gras to St. Maarten,” read the Facebook post as they wished the crew members safe travels. 

Carnival has scheduled 21 cruises before the end of the year starting on December 7th from Port Canaveral on the Carnival Liberty and December 16th from Miami on the Carnival Horizon. 

The restaffing of ships by Carnival is a strong indicator that the cruise line is preparing for a December launch if all goes to plan. 

In order for the successful restart of cruising in the U.S. the CDC will have to lift the mandatory no sail order which is set to expire on October 31st. 

carnival breeze 2

The no sail order issued by the CDC went into effect back on March 14th when the pandemic first began which prevents all cruise ships with more than 250 passengers from operating in U.S. waters. 

The order has been extended multiple times with the latest extension set to expire on October 31st. 

In a confusing move on October 21st, the CDC reissued its latest travel advisory for cruise ships which stated to ‘defer all cruise ship travel‘.

Carnival Liberty

Some media outlets have reported that the no sail order could expire on October 31st allowing cruise ships to return but the CDC has taken a strong stance that it will not recommend travelers take cruises. 

The U.S. government reportedly has put pressure on the CDC to end the no sail order and let the cruise industry return. 

Carnival Cruise ship in the Caribbean

Carnival Corporation which owns Carnival Cruises has already relaunched two of its brands including Italy based, Costa Cruises and German cruise line AIDA.

Costa Cruises has successfully relaunched three cruise ships and has not reported a single case of COVID-19. 

Carnival Cruises would be the third cruise line under the Carnival Corporation to restart operations.

Costa Smeralda

The latest CDC warning is the highest the organization gives stating the ‘CDC recommends that travelers defer all cruise travel worldwide', and that passengers on cruise ships ‘are at increased risk of person-to-person spread of infectious diseases, including COVID-19, and outbreaks of COVID-19 have been reported on several cruise ships.'

Carnival Cruise Ship on sailing on open ocean

Ongoing reports of pent up demand among passengers have shown that there is still a strong demand for cruising, even in the middle of a pandemic. 

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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling.  Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories

Sources: CTI Group



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