CLIA’s Core Elements for a Return to Cruising

Earlier today, we published a preview of the new health protocols recommended by Royal Caribbean Group and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Ltd. Now Cruise Lines International Association has released its protocols, which applies to all CLIA member lines in North America.

Here is the full release from CLIA. We have included the graphics featured in their release below. On some devices, they may be difficult to read. The full report is available to download (including higher quality graphics) for those with mobile devices or other smaller screens.

 21 SEPTEMBER 2020 

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) and its Cruise Line Members Announce Core Elements of a Set of Strong Health Protocols as a Path to Phased Resumption of Ocean-Going Cruise Operations

Core elements include a travel-industry first with 100% testing for passengers and crew

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), which represents 95% of global ocean-going cruise capacity, announced today the adoption of mandatory core elements of a strong set of health protocols to be implemented as part of a phased-in, highly controlled resumption of operations. A critical next step, now that initial sailing has begun effectively with strict protocols in Europe, is the resumption of operations in the Caribbean, Mexico and Central America (the Americas), which encompass the largest cruise market in the world.

Informed by leading scientists, medical experts, and health authorities, the core elements are the product of extensive work by CLIA oceangoing cruise lines and their renowned teams of science and medical experts, including the recommendations from the Healthy Sail panel established by Royal Caribbean Group and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. released today, as well as MSC’s Blue Ribbon group and Carnival Corporation’s collection of outside independent experts. Other considerations included the effective protocols developed for the successful sailings in Europe by MSC Cruises, Costa, TUI Cruises, Ponant, Seadream, and others.

The CLIA Global Board unanimously voted to adopt all of the listed core elements for an initial restart of limited operations in the Americas and, most important, operations related to U.S. ports. These core elements will be continuously evaluated and adjusted against the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the availability of new prevention, therapeutics, and mitigation measures.

Guided by world-class experts in medicine and science, CLIA and its ocean-going cruise line members have outlined a pathway to support a phased-in, highly-controlled return to passenger service in the Caribbean, Mexico and Central America with protocols that promote the health and safety of passengers, crew and the communities visited. The core elements mirror the successful resumption of cruising in other parts of the world and include 100% testing of passengers and crew prior to boarding — a travel industry first. Initial cruises would sail on modified itineraries under stringent protocols that encompass the entirety of the cruise experience, from booking to debarkation. With support and approval of regulators and destinations, cruises could feasibly begin during the remainder of 2020.

The core elements, which are applicable to CLIA member ocean-going cruise ships subject to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) No Sail Order, will also be submitted by the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) on behalf of its members in response to the CDC’s Request for Information (RFI) related to the safe resumption of cruise operations. CLIA’s response to the RFI also details other measures that address the entire cruise experience from booking to disembarkation.

Implementation of the core elements on board every oceangoing ship subject to the CDC’s No Sail Order is mandatory and requires written verification of adoption by each company’s CEO. These elements do not preclude additional measures that may be adopted by individual lines. Measures will be continuously evaluated and adjusted against the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the availability of new prevention and mitigation measures. 

The prevention, mitigation and response measures implemented by cruise lines as passenger services resume will be continuously evaluated against the current state of COVID-19 transmission as well as the availability of new prevention and mitigation measures that could enhance safety and health.

The most stringent measures implemented at initial restart will be adjusted as circumstances change over time, including persistent low level of community spread in a source market and the development and availability of effective treatments and/or availability of vaccines.

Core Elements

To support a path to the initial restart of passenger service in the Americas: 


Note: this is a large PDF file and may take time to open on some systems/devices.