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UPDATE: Cruise lines requiring vaccinations

TORONTO — After more than a year’s pause, the cruise industry is finally gaining some momentum with a growing number of cruise lines announcing their resumption of operations this summer.

Major cruise companies like Holland AmericaNCLRoyal CaribbeanCelebrity and Crystal Cruises have all announced their return-to-service in the coming months with cruises departing from non-U.S. ports. And though Canada’s cruise ship ban will remain in effect until Feb. 28, 2022, the CDC hinted just last week that cruise ships could possibly return to U.S. waters as early as mid-July, on the condition they meet certain requirements.

According to the CDC, COVID-19 vaccination will be “critical” in the safe resumption of passenger operations. As such, it is recommending that “all eligible port personnel and travellers (passengers and crew) get a COVID-19 vaccine when one is available to them.”

Britain-based Saga Cruises was the first to announce a vaccination requirement back in late January, with sister brands American Queen Steamboat Company and Victory Cruise Lines following suit soon after. In mid-February, Crystal was the first major cruise line to mandate vaccination for all guests and since then, most major cruise companies have also come forward with a similar requirement. Now, with cruises set to resume, proof of vaccination against COVID-19 has become the new normal for the cruise industry.

Here are the cruise lines that now require proof of vaccination from guests. For the most up-to-date protocols, please go to each individual cruise line’s website.


Celebrity will be one of the first lines to offer fully vaccinated sailings, where guests age 18 and over will be vaccinated against COVID-19. The company is set to resume operations with the Celebrity Millennium sailing seven-night itineraries in the Caribbean starting June 5.

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All guests will be required to be fully vaccinated two weeks prior to sailing, as an added layer of protection to keep guests and crew safe, in addition to providing a negative SARS-CoV-2 test result. Once aboard, complimentary COVID-19 testing and medical evaluations will be available.

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All guests and crew must be fully vaccinated at least two weeks prior to embarkation in order to board. All guests will also be required to take a COVID-19 antigen test, administered and paid for by Oceania, prior to boarding and receive a negative result. They’ll also take a second antigen test prior to disembarkation.

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Starting June 18, all embarking crew and guests will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to embarking on any Silversea cruise, with the exception of sailings departing from Australia. All crew and guests will also be required to take a COVID-19 test prior to boarding with only those who test negative permitted to board.

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All guests will need to provide proof of one of the following upon embarkation:

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Article by Travel Week | Written by Cindy Sosroutomo | May 6, 2021


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