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Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, which owns Norwegian, Oceana and Regent Seven Seas Cruises, announced on Friday the suspension of all voyages scheduled through June 30, along with a target date to resume operations by July 1. The company had previously suspended all sailings through May 10.
“We are committed to taking all appropriate steps and actions to combat the spread of COVID-19 and are working closely and in partnership with local, state, federal and global agencies," Norwegian wrote in an advisory update shared on Friday. “While this may result in additional future changes, please know our teams are working around the clock to do what is right by our guests and travel partners. We will provide additional updates as they are available.”
Several cruise lines owned by the Carnival Corporation have also announced extensions to its sailings through summer, including Cunard, P&O and Carnival Cruise Line.
In an “operational update” posted to Cunard’s website, the cruise line confirmed its three ships — the Queen Mary 2, the Queen Victoria, and the Queen Elizabeth — would not be making any voyages through July 31, with the latter not making any voyages through Sept. 8 (and none in Alaska through the end of 2020.) P&O announced a “pause” in its operations through July 31, as well.
Carnival Cruise Line itself had already extended its suspensions through June 26, per an April 13 announcement.
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., which operates Royal Caribbean International, Azamara Club Cruises and Celebrity Cruises, had also previously extended their voluntary suspension of voyages through June 11.
On April 9, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) extended a “No Sail Order” for all cruise ships under U.S. jurisdiction, after originally issuing the order in March. Citing continued coronavirus outbreaks on “at least 10 cruise ships” in the preceding weeks, the CDC urged cruise operators to cease operations until the coronavirus pandemic was declassified as a public health emergency, or until the CDC rescinds its directive.
Meanwhile, the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), which counts dozens of cruise lines (including Carnival, Norwegian and Royal Caribbean) as members, has maintained that health and safety is a top priority, although it claims the continued suspension of cruise operations will have a “pronounced detrimental effect on the global economy.”
The CLIA’s member cruise lines, however, are free to extend the suspension of sailings as they see fit, regardless of no official guidance from the CLIA.