Soon, the Royal Caribbean Group will drop pre-embarkation COVID-19 testing for vaccinated guests on cruises of five days or less starting in early August, if it’s allowed by local regulations.
Royal Caribbean presented its second quarter financial results on Thursday (July 28), reporting a $0.5 billion net loss (compared to a loss of $1.3 billion for the same period last year), but noting a full return of its global fleet, which has led to increased bookings and positive cash flows.
But within the breakdown was a mention of a policy change related to COVID-19 testing.
Starting Aug. 8, testing will be required for unvaccinated guests on all voyages and for fully vaccinated guests, only on sailings that are six nights or longer, Jason Liberty, president and CEO, revealed during a call Thursday morning.
Previously, guests had to complete COVID test prior to their cruise, regardless of vaccination status.
No addition details on the change were part of Royal Caribbean’s press release, but more information should be made available in the coming days.
The new policy applies to Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises.
Royal Caribbean's update follows similar actions taken by Azamara, Virgin Voyages and Margaretville at Sea, which have all ended pre-embarkation COVID-19 testing following the CDC's ending of its Cruise Ship COVID-19 program.