Forced to drop the anchor for more than a year, the shipping lanes hope to sail quickly with passengers who are tired of staying aboard.
After more than a year of frustration, fans of travel vacations in the United States still want to go to sea, even though companies still face reluctance from U.S. health officials.
U.S. ports are still closed
Affected by the cancellation of a dozen tickets last year, Steve Butcher is optimistic this time around: he booked a trip in July from the Dutch part of Saint-Martin on the Caribbean island of Sint Maarten.
It therefore does not depend on the decision of the CDC, the leading federal public health agency in the United States, which has not yet authorized liners to carry passengers back from U.S. ports. “I want to get my life back on track,” 68-year-old Steve Butcher told AFP.
James Holcomb, 51, of Atlanta, is counting on a trip from Jamaica after spending his bookings on “cancellation or replacement” last year.
Unable to disembark at US ports, travelers are gradually unleashing their boats around the United States, often through low-efficiency and mandatory anti-Govt vaccination.
Because there is a need. At the sector company Carnival, bookings in the first quarter increased by 90% compared to the fourth quarter of 2020. According to a survey conducted by the site, nearly half of the visitors to the specialty website Cruise Critic are looking for a trip to book.
Tourists “encouraged” to be vaccinated
Frequent visitors of deck chairs on the bridge hope that the U.S. authorities will soften their position sooner, especially thanks to the rapid advancement of the vaccine in the United States. But the country’s leading federal public health agency, the CDC, cited the need for stricter instructions in early April, as the Covid-19 variety appeared.
“It is difficult to navigate safely and responsibly during global epidemics,” the company stressed. “Vaccination efforts against Govt-19 will need to be safely resumed,” the CDC said.
The governor of Florida, a state that relies heavily on tourism for its revenue, sued the government last week seeking a resumption of travel.
Ron Desantis, a staunch supporter of former President Donald Trump and a possible Republican candidate for the next presidential election, has suggested that the recent ban on “vaccinated passports” prevent shipwrecks from returning and that they be vaccinated.
Carnival “encourages” everyone who can be vaccinated to do its part, its executive director Arnold Donald said in a statement released in early April. But he does not want to inject his passengers because not everyone has access yet, especially children, and he respects “personal liberties.”
Will the ports reopen in July?
“We believe that cruise ships are not subject to zero risk because this is, apparently, not considered anywhere else in the company,” Arnold Donald said.
Another major U.S. The cruise ship Norway Cruise Lines has also stated that it intends to make the vaccine compulsory on its ships, and that the U.S. The CFC did not respond to AFP’s request.
According to a Cruise Critic survey, 86% of ship enthusiasts would be willing to board if vaccination is mandatory. Steve Butcher, who lives in Ohio and already has a vaccine, approves of the idea that travelers should have the vaccine, as well as wear a mask.
After decades of military service, he says he has “become accustomed to obeying the rules.” He acknowledges that shipwrecks have been reluctant to stop passengers quickly in the spring of 2020, although many pollution cases have been proven with caution.
But the CDC goes a long way, he says. “To respect the rules, I stayed at home (). I think it’s time for the rules to take the next step, ”he says. James Holcomb says he was “not interested” in getting the vaccine, but that he would “do it if it allowed me to board the plane” and enjoy “total relaxation”.
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