Carnival Cruise Line has confirmed plans to return to guest operations in the US state of Texas from early July.
Sailings from the port of Galveston will begin on July 3 with Carnival Vista, followed by the return of operations on Carnival Breeze on July 15.
Carnival also hopes to begin sailings on board Carnival Horizon from PortMiami in July, but remains in talks with the State of Florida and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) following the introduction of a Florida law that prohibits companies from requiring proof of vaccination from customers. The line said it would provide an update by Friday.
Plans for August sailings will be communicated to guests and travel agents over the coming days, Carnival said.
Cruises from Galveston are only available to guests who have received their final dose of a US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-approved Covid-19 vaccine at least 14 days prior to the beginning of the cruise. Guests must provide proof of vaccination, in accordance with current CDC guidelines.
Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line, said: “We appreciate the progress and support for our US restart from the CDC and other key federal agencies; however, the current CDC requirements [in Florida] for cruising with a guest base that is unvaccinated will make it very difficult to deliver the experience our guests expect, especially given the large number of families with younger children who sail with us.
“As a result, our alternative is to operate our ships from the US during the month of July with vaccinated guests.”
Duffy thanked the governors of Florida and Texas for making vaccinations available to cruise line staff, which the line said “has expedited the restart process”.