The first cruise line will officially resume sailing in the Caribbean beginning on November 7th after the worldwide pandemic halted cruising back in March.
The SeaDream Yacht Club is the first cruise line to officially announce a date that they would resume sailings in the Caribbean. SeaDream announced the news on their website saying that their ship the SeaDream I will begin sailing from Barbados on November 7th.
The 112 passenger ship will depart from Barbados on a 7 day round trip cruise with multiple stops in St. Vincent and the Grenadines before a final stop in the capital of Grenada.
Throughout November, guests can select from four 7-day cruises on the SeaDream I all with slightly different itineraries.
The SeaDream I will arrive in Barbados on November 5th after making a 21 day transatlantic cruise to reposition itself from Norway.
Since the ship does not enter U.S. waters and is under 250 passengers, the CDC’s no sail order does not apply to the SeaDream I.
COVID-19 Protocols For The SeaDream Yacht Club
SeaDream Yacht Club has strict COVID-19 protocols that are enhanced by Barbados entry requirements. All travelers arriving in Barbados will be required to present proof of a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival. Depending on a country’s ‘risk level’, travelers could face additional requirements.
When passengers arrive at the port, they will once again be tested by SeaDream before being allowed to board the ship.
SeaDream has four Abbott ID Now COVID-19 test machines which can each process four tests per hour. Passengers will be asked to arrive at the pier at designated arrival times to complete their testing.
Once finally on board, the negative COVID-19 bubble will be maintained and passengers will not be allowed to venture on their own at port stops.
While many other cruise lines have tentative sailings scheduled for November in the Caribbean, none of them have confirmed they will actually sail. Dates have been pushed back multiple times as the CDC and Cruise Line International Association continue to extend suspension of sailings.
Carnival has a western Caribbean sailing scheduled for November 2nd but the company has not confirmed if they actually plan on sailing the cruise yet.
The first large cruise line to resume operations was MSC on August 16th when the Grandiosa sailed from Italian port city of Genoa.
The cruise was successfully completed and there were no confirmed cases of COVID-19 on the ship.
The second large cruise line to resume operations was Carnival Corporation owned Costa Cruises which departed on September 6th from Trieste, Italy. Again, the cruise was successfully completed with no confirmed COVID-19 cases on board.
Both large cruise lines implemented COVID-19 PCR swab tests before boarding and did not permit passengers to explore port stops on their own.
A total of 10 cruise lines have now resumed operations and more are expected in November. A lot will depend on if the CDC lifts its no sail order after being extended until at least October.
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Disclaimer: Cruise news can change without notice and is being updated constantly. We do our best to keep this article up to date with all the latest information, but 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.