Royal Caribbean announced two upcoming sailings in June in order to assist with repatriating crew member efforts.
Vision of the Seas’ June 13th, 2020 and Anthem of the Seas’ June 20th, 2020 sailings are the two cancelled sailings that were announced today.
Royal Caribbean is using these ships to ferry crew members home due to local travel restrictions.
Unfortunately, local travel restrictions and commercial flights have made it extremely challenging to get our crew safely home. We’ve been working with our partners at Cruise Lines International Association and the CDC for months to get our crew safely home, and sailing to their home country is the best option.
As a result of the cancellation, Royal Caribbean is providing these guests with the option of a 125% Future Cruise Credit or a 100% refund.
Future Cruise Credits issued on these sailings should be received by Friday, June 5th, 2020.
The Vision of the Seas June 13th sailing was scheduled to be a 12-Night Mediterranean Greek Isles cruise from Barcelona.
The Anthem of the Seas June 20th sailing was scheduled to be an 8 Night Spain & Portugal Cruise from Southampton.
Royal Caribbean's plans to get crew members home was reported in the last 24 hours.
The crux of the matter that prevented crew from getting home sooner was evidently the CDC's rules for disembarking crew that included provisions such as requiring crew go home via chartered or private transportation.
In the letter from Royal Caribbean International CEO Michael Bayley to crew, it explains the legal entanglement that is created by sending crew home now, "The CDC will only allow us to disembark crew members if company executives, myself included, are willing to attest — subject to criminal penalties including imprisonment — that we will not use any public transportation and that each crew member will comply with certain conditions after disembarking the ships. We are happy to do all the things they requested, but the criminal penalties gave us [and our lawyers] pause."
While Bayley said he hopes the threat of criminal prosecution will be removed, he said, “we have decided that the importance of getting you home is so great that we will sign these documents as they are written today to help get you off the ships.”
Thanks to Katina Bradley for alerting us to this announcement.