Celebrity Cruises will be returning to U.S. waters again next month.
According to the cruise line, it will be the first operator to set sail in U.S. waters with ticketed passengers since last year, when the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a “No Sail Order” because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Celebrity Edge was given the green light by the CDC to be the first ship back in the water, having met all-new standards for providing a healthy cruise experience for its guests and crew,” the announcement said.
The CDC is requiring cruise operators to either show that 98% of crew members and 95% of passengers are fully vaccinated or to complete a series of tests, Travel and Leisure reported.
Celebrity Cruises will require its crew to be vaccinated, as well as all guests ages 16 and older, according to the company’s Healthy at Sea policy. Starting August 1, all guests who are 12 and older will be required to be vaccinated.
“For the past 15 months our conversations with friends and loved ones about seeing the world have been accompanied by the phrase ‘someday.’ I’m beyond proud and excited to say that day has arrived,” Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, Celebrity Cruises’ president and CEO said in a statement.
Celebrity Cruises announced this week that it is returning to U.S. waters on June 26, when its ship, Celebrity Edge, sets sail from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. (iStock)
According to the announcement, Celebrity Cruises plans to bring back eight of its 15 ships this year.
This week, the CDC also approved Royal Caribbean — a sister company to Celebrity Cruises — to conduct cruises this summer. However, those cruises are mock voyages with volunteer passengers, Fox News reported this week.
Royal Caribbean’s Freedom of the Seas ship, based in Miami, will start up the test cruises on June 20, the first time a cruise ship has set sail out of the U.S. since the pandemic hit last March.
Passengers ages 16 and up must be fully vaccinated with all COVID-19 vaccine doses administered at least 14 days before sailing onboard Royal Caribbean. And all U.S. travelers age 12 must be fully vaccinated to travel beginning Aug. 1, according to the company’s Healthy Sail Panel.
Fox News’ Jeanette Settembre contributed to this report.
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