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So far the CDC has proven its blind to evidence, dumb to science and unwilling to see anything beyond its own limited knowledge. I'm not sure they'll even know.

Royal has stated the last antigen test on board will be timed so this can be used for the purpose of flying home.

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1 hour ago, Baked Alaska said:

 

All crew members will be vaccinated for Covid-19 onboard, and fully vaccinated guests 18 years of age and older are able to sail. Children under the age of 18 with proof of negative COVID-19 test results are able to sail as well.

Everyone needs a Bahamas Health Visa to reach the ship which requires a negative test result, so unless the Bahamas changes their policies, everyone needs a PCR test even if vaccinated. 

So everyone needs to be tested to enter the Bahamas and everyone 18 and older needs the vaccine to board the ship. Those under 18 are covered since they will have a test result (like everyone else) just to enter the Bahamas.  

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2 hours ago, smokeybandit said:

I would imagine fares will be sky high for these cruises

The Celebrity announcement strikes me as surprisingly reasonable.  "Veranda cabins starting at $1999" per person. It includes taxes (which I assume means port charges) and airfare.  It isn't super clear, but I think it also includes tips, drink package and wifi.

The devil may well be in the details, but it looks like you could be all in for $4K for a balcony.

We can argue whether this is a bargain or not, but it doesn't strike me as sky high.

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23 minutes ago, RBRSKI said:

Oh how I remember many on this blog in particular one individual said that Nassau couldn’t handle embarkation and the logistics.  Saying it would not happen.  Well, my grin is from cheek to cheek 

A little less than a year ago, I had said that the lines should sail from some of the islands as well.  I'm sure the challenges and costs make this far less than ideal, but it looks like the lines eventually agreed.  

I wonder when they reached that conclusion? It had to take months to work out the logistics for this.

I also wonder what it means for the future.  Do the Bahamas, St Maartin and Barbados become permanent embarkation ports?

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10 minutes ago, steverk said:

I also wonder what it means for the future.  Do the Bahamas, St Maartin and Barbados become permanent embarkation ports?

The cruise lines will do what they always do...  follow the money.  

If cruising returns to any resemblance of what it used to be like I suspect most guests won't want the cruise to start offshore.  

If the CDC continues to kill American jobs with limits or restrictions for cruising from US ports for a prolonged period, offshore cruising will continue.

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Here's an encouraging story - NOT!  https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/19/travel/coronavirus-cruises.html

 

If you look at the NYT  reported timeline, its going to be 90+ days after the specs are delivered before a US cruise could go.  There's a 30 day notification of desire to sail, then if the test cruise is successful, an 60 period allowed for certificate to sail is granted.  Likely 120 days once the balloon goes up, taking into account 1 month of test cruises (my hypothesis).  So if specs delivered 1 Apr - August start possible if all goes well.

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6 minutes ago, twangster said:

The cruise lines will do what they always do...  follow the money.  

If cruising returns to any resemblance of what it used to be like I suspect most guests won't want the cruise to start offshore.  

If the CDC continues to kill American jobs with limits or restrictions for cruising from US ports for a prolonged period, offshore cruising will continue.

That makes sense.

The big possibility in my mind is the Bahamas.  Royal is purchasing and re-developing a resort there.  I'm probably missing something, but the only way that makes sense to me is if the Bahamas becomes a permanent embarkation port. 

Your point about Americans preferring to depart from American ports is well taken. Does RCI figure that they can make the Bahamas a combo land vacation/cruise port? Are there any countries that can fly to Bahamas, but not to the US (at least not easily)? If so, do they have enough disposable income to be profitable?

I don't know. It's all a mystery to me. 

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10 minutes ago, steverk said:

That makes sense.

The big possibility in my mind is the Bahamas.  Royal is purchasing and re-developing a resort there.  I'm probably missing something, but the only way that makes sense to me is if the Bahamas becomes a permanent embarkation port. 

Your point about Americans preferring to depart from American ports is well taken. Does RCI figure that they can make the Bahamas a combo land vacation/cruise port? Are there any countries that can fly to Bahamas, but not to the US (at least not easily)? If so, do they have enough disposable income to be profitable?

I don't know. It's all a mystery to me. 

Grand Bahamas has the potential to be a game changer for the future of cruising but for reasons unrelated to a pandemic.  

If it were to become a cruise transportation hub it could allow a cruiser in Texas to sail to Grand Bahamas, spend a few nights in a hotel then a board a different ship to New York, or Baltimore, or Miami.  Today the PVSA prevents that but an offshore transportation hub with a large resort changes that.

I don't know if that is how Royal intends to use it, but it opens the door for a lot of possibilities.  Most of the US cruise market will just want to go on a cruise though, so I don't see Miami losing it's lock on being the cruise capital of the world.

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1 hour ago, RBRSKI said:

Oh how I remember many on this blog in particular one individual said that Nassau couldn’t handle embarkation and the logistics.  Saying it would not happen.  Well, my grin is from cheek to cheek 

This is great news for those who want to travel, but man, I am really curious to see how Nassau handles itself as a cruise origin point. That whole port area seems like it will be a headache-and-a-half to deal with as an originating passenger. I would have to pound a few beers at Pirate Republic before dealing with that. 

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21 minutes ago, cruisellama said:

Here's an encouraging story - NOT!  https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/19/travel/coronavirus-cruises.html

 

If you look at the NYT  reported timeline, its going to be 90+ days after the specs are delivered before a US cruise could go.  There's a 30 day notification of desire to sail, then if the test cruise is successful, an 60 period allowed for certificate to sail is granted.  Likely 120 days once the balloon goes up, taking into account 1 month of test cruises (my hypothesis).  So if specs delivered 1 Apr - August start possible if all goes well.

That's predicated on the CSO remaining unchanged.

I think the CSO will be revised to reflect vaccinations that are now available that were not when the CSO was put together on a cocktail napkin in bar in under 30 minutes.

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7 minutes ago, Landry_TX said:

Have they said anything about shore excursions? 

Not the CDC, but the Safe Sail Panel recommends cruise line directed / controlled tours with "safe" vendors.  Its part of the long list of back to sail recommendations provided to the gov't last year.  MSC has exercised that a similar protocol in their excursion requirement.
 

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1 hour ago, Zacharius said:

This is great news for those who want to travel, but man, I am really curious to see how Nassau handles itself as a cruise origin point. That whole port area seems like it will be a headache-and-a-half to deal with as an originating passenger. I would have to pound a few beers at Pirate Republic before dealing with that. 

What if you just check in on the app and get on-board.

 

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