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Royal Caribbean pushes back final payment date and will allow kids to take antigen tests

15 Sep 2021
Matt Hochberg

Royal Caribbean announced two changes to policies that will likely make things easier for all guests going forward.

An email update was sent to travel agents on Wednesday advising them of these changes.

The time needed to make final payment for a cruise has been pushed back, a change the cruise line has not done throughout the global health crisis.

The final payment due date on sailings departing between October 1, 2021, through December 31, 2021, will now have until 30 days prior to sailing to submit full payment.

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The final payment date is typically 90 days before a sailing commences. 

No action is required on the part of guests or travel agents, and no cancellations will occur until the new final payment date.

Royal Caribbean says the change was made to "grant a little more time and flexibility."

This change comes just days after Royal Caribbean extended the time guests have to use their future cruise credits under the Cruise with Confidence program.

Royal Caribbean originally introduced the Cruise with Confidence program at the very beginning of the global health crisis, as a way for guests to cancel their cruise past the final payment date window.

By cancelling a cruise before the final payment date, they can get a full cash refund, if they booked refundable cruise fare.

Guests could still cancel a cruise past the final payment date even with this new final payment date window, up to 48 hours before their sailing without penalty and get a 100% future cruise credit.

Change for unvaccinated kids pre-cruise testing

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According to the cruise line, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) has revised its pre-cruise COVID-19 testing requirement for unvaccinated kids.

This means unvaccinated kids ages 2 to 11 may present either a negative PCR or antigen test result.

The test must be taken no more than 3 days prior to sailing, but not on boarding day. 

Then on embarkation day, unvaccinated kids ages 2 to 11 will undergo a complimentary PCR test for COVID-19 at the terminal. Pre-cruise test cost continues to be the guest's responsibility and telehealth home tests are still not accepted for unvaccinated guests.

Royal Caribbean announced yesterday that unvaccinated kids would be able to do back-to-back cruises as well.

Matt started Royal Caribbean Blog in 2010 as a place to share his passion for all things Royal Caribbean with readers. He oversees all the writers at Royal Caribbean Blog, and writes a great deal of content on a daily basis.  He has become one of the foremost expert on a Royal Caribbean cruise.

Over the years, he has reached Pinnacle Club status with Royal Caribbean's customer loyalty program.

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