MIAMI & NEW ALBANY — Two more cruise lines are celebrating the resumption of operations, further adding steam to the cruise industry’s road to recovery.
Royal Caribbean’s Adventure of the Seas set sail from Nassau, The Bahamas over the weekend, on June 12, as previously announced, the first of its ships to resume cruising in the Western Hemisphere. More than 1,000 fully passengers are onboard, with those 16 years and older fully vaccinated (along with the crew). Vaccinated guests make up 94% of all those onboard, while the remaining 6% of guests are children younger than 16.
Adventure of the Seas now begins a summer lineup of seven-night sailings to Perfect Day at CocoCay, Royal Caribbean’s private island destination in The Bahamas; Grand Bahama in The Bahamas; and Cozumel, Mexico.
“The return of Adventure of the Seas marks a start in the tremendous step forward our guests have been waiting for and we’ve been working toward for more than 15 months,” said Michael Bayley, president and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “This is all possible thanks to the government of The Bahamas, the support of our partners and the hard work of our teams across Royal Caribbean.”
Guests sailing with Royal Caribbean aged 16 years or older must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This age minimum goes down to 12 or older on Aug. 1. Guests younger than the eligible age must undergo testing and follow other protocols. For more details click here.
Following its inaugural cruise, 11 Royal Caribbean ships are set to cruise from the U.S. and Europe beginning in July and August. The complete lineup of 2021 cruises is available here.
Meanwhile, American Queen Steamboat Company has announced that the American Empress will embark on the first sailing of the 2021 Pacific Northwest season today, June 14. This sailing marks the first overnight river cruise with 100% COVID-19 vaccinated guests and crew in the United States, as well as AQSC’s return to cruising on the Columbia and Snake rivers. The popular Pacific northwest Splendor itinerary, which sails from Portland to Spokane or reverse, is almost sold out for the 2021 season.
“Today is an important milestone for both American Queen Steamboat Company and pacific Northwest tourism as we restart operations in the region and cruisers can once again relish the majestic beauty of the Columbia and Snake rivers,” said Shawn Bierdz, president of American Queen Steamboat Company. “We look forward to safely welcoming guests onboard the American Empress to sail through this diverse environment and discover the communities that make it such a unique travel experience.”
AQSC was the first U.S.-based cruise company to announce a 100% vaccination policy for guests and crew in February, which will go into effect fleetwide, including Mississippi, Ohio, Tennessee and Cumberland river departures, after July 1, 2021. All guests must show proof of COVID-19 vaccination at check-in by providing a valid vaccination card or an image of a valid vaccination card. Guests who fail to provide proof of vaccination will be denied boarding and subject to full cancellation penalties.
For information on AQSC’s health and safety protocols go to https://www.americanqueensteamboatcompany.com/health-and-safety/.