Cruise News Update: August 6, 2022

It’s time to catch up and find out what happened last week in another cruise news update. Covering all major cruise lines, we have coverage on pre-cruise testing, Carnival discounts, Royal Caribbean itinerary changes, Norwegian Cruise Line good news and more.

Cruise News Update

What a week of cruise news we’ve had, so let’s make sure we don’t miss a thing, especially all those discounts from Carnival Cruise Line, which we’ll talk about later in the update. We also have coverage on the construction progress of Royal Caribbean’s new cruise terminal in Galveston, another milestone for a new Norwegian Cruise Line ship, changes to pre-cruise testing by MSC Cruises, a change in test by Carnival and Royal Caribbean itinerary changes. .

New Royal Caribbean terminal 75% complete

Royal Caribbean shared an update last week showing the company’s progress at its new cruise terminal in Galveston, Texas. The state-of-the-art facility already displays the Royal Caribbean anchor logo on the roof and is approximately 75% complete.

Construction of the 68-foot-tall building began in the summer of 2021, when contractors began construction, marking the start of construction. Since then, the structure of the terminal has grown and will be completed in the fall of this year.

Courtesy of Royal Caribbean

With a total cost of $126 million, the cruise terminal will be one of the most advanced buildings for embarking and disembarking cruise ship passengers in the United States. Mobile check-in and facial recognition will improve the process at the terminal.

When completed, the new terminal will be able to accommodate the mass of people who come to Galveston to sail aboard the Oasis Class Allure of the Seas. Beginning Nov. 13, the cruise ship will sail a series of seven-night Western Caribbean cruises.

Norwegian Viva fleet

Although global supply problems have forced the construction of Viva Norwegian and her sister norwegian prima a little behind, Norwegian Cruise Line still has something to celebrate.

After norwegian prima was officially handed over by the shipyard to the cruise line a week before, there was another occasion to celebrate on August 2 as Viva Norwegian took on water for the first time while under construction at the Fincantieri Marghera shipyard in Italy.

Norwegian cruise ship Viva
Photo credit: Camilla Bach / Fincantieri

The float is a milestone in the construction of a cruise ship and was celebrated by welding a commemorative coin into the ship. The float marks the completion of the ship’s exterior work, with the focus on completing the interior of the 142,500 gross ton cruise ship and cabins for the 3,215 passengers who will sail the ship from from mid-2023.

With a slight delay of just over two weeks, Norwegian Viva is set to debut on July 3, 2023. She will spend her inaugural season in Europe, sailing in the Eastern and Western Mediterranean.

MSC Cruises abandons pre-cruise tests

Following in the footsteps of other major cruise lines, MSC Cruises has made several changes to its health and safety protocols for cruises departing from the United States. The changes follow the lifting of the CDC’s voluntary program for cruise ships several weeks ago.

The new protocols will be in effect from August 8, 2022. They include that all fully vaccinated passengers sailing on a cruise of five nights or less will no longer be required to provide a negative test result before sailing. Instead, the cruise line only recommends getting tested before sailing.

MSC Cruises in Miami
Photo credit: Solarisys/Shutterstock

For all unvaccinated passengers age two and older, a laboratory-administered negative viral test (NAAT or antigen) performed within three days of embarkation is required for all cruises departing from US ports. The same policy applies to all cruises aboard MSC cruise ships on itineraries of six days and longer departing from US ports.

For all cruises departing from the United States, there will be no changes to the vaccination policies currently in place. This means that all guests aged 12 and over must be fully vaccinated.

Carnival Cruise Line backtracks on the Bahamas

Carnival Cruise Line has updated its pre-cruise test protocolsespecially when it comes to crossings to the Bahamas.

This had caused some confusion in recent days, as other cruise lines have not required testing on shorter cruises with stops in the Bahamas, but Carnival has always mandated testing for all passengers, regardless of vaccination status or length of cruise, if visiting the Bahamas.

Effective August 8, on cruises of 5 nights or less, vaccinated passengers do not need to present a pre-cruise test result of any kind, including those sailing to the Bahamas. This is a change from the clarification provided by Carnival Cruise Line just a few days ago.

Carnival Cruise Line in the Bahamas
Photo credit: Joe Hendrickson / Shutterstock.com

Unvaccinated passengers, however, must still present a negative test result to be allowed to sail, even on shorter crossings. This can be a supervised PCR or antigen test, and it can be done up to three days before boarding.

All passengers 2 years of age and older – regardless of vaccination status – must present a negative test result for any Carnival cruise, to the Bahamas or any other destination, if sailing for 6 nights or more.

This clarification is a welcome notice to customers who have booked on upcoming short sailings to the Bahamas.

Previously, Carnival Cruise Line required testing for all passengers visiting the popular island nation, although the Bahamas has no mandate for travelers to present a negative test result upon entering the country. This requirement ended in the Bahamas on June 19, 2022.

Quantum of the Seas Itinerary Changes

Due to ongoing engine issues, Royal Caribbean changed the rest of the Alaska itineraries for quantum of the seas this season. Changes include removing scenic glacier sailing days, replacing ports of call and modifying port times to accommodate slower ship speeds.

Affected itineraries for the Quantum-class ship include late August embarkation dates, 22nd and 29th, and all September departure dates: 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th. Previously, departures on 1st, 8th and August 15 were amended. .

Royal Caribbean Quantum of the Seas
Photo credit: Leonard Joukovski / Shutterstock

quantum of the seas offers 7-night round-trip sailings to Alaska from Seattle, with two different routes planned.

Depending on the itinerary for each sailing date, the scenic cruise for Endicott Arm and Dawes Glacier is waived, and port time in Juneau is slightly extended. Alternatively, crossings that were to have visited Icy Strait Point will now travel to Ketchikan.

In emails sent to reserved customers informing them of itinerary changes, the reasoning is given as follows: “due to speed restrictions caused by a technical problem with one of the ship’s engines.”

No security mechanisms on board the ship have been compromised and no hotel operations are affected. Only the ship’s cruising speed is affected.

Carnival Cups

And finally, we discover this Carnival Cruise Line repels and removes. Last week, the cruise line sent out a communication detailing some permanent changes to restaurants on board the fleet.

Effective August 1, 2022, Carnival is reducing a wide range of dining services, locations and hours of operation. These reductions are not as extreme as they first appear.

Carnival cruise ships will no longer have a 24-hour pizzeria. Instead, Pizza Pirate or Pizzeria del Capitano (depending on the ship) will operate from 9 a.m. to 4 a.m. and will be closed for the least busy five hours of the 24-hour period.

Customers craving a late night snack will no longer be able to enjoy late night snacks at the Lido restaurant, but can get Pizza Plus options instead.

Carnival cruise ship deck
Photo Copyright: Cruise Hive

The popular Sea Day Brunch, with its exclusive offerings in the ever-popular main dining room, will be shortened by an hour and end at noon instead of 1 p.m.

The fun atmosphere of Ocean Plaza, a staple aboard seven Carnival ships, will no longer be available with a menu of light snacks for breakfast and lunch.

Room service door hanger menus will no longer be available to place cabin doors outside to request breakfast. Although room service offerings are not changing, customers must now call room service to place their orders.

Free occasion cakes – popular for birthdays and anniversaries – will no longer be available during dinner in the main dining room.

The Chocolate Extravaganza buffet, usually offered on the last day of fun at sea, will continue to be discontinued for the time being, but may return on future cruises. Afternoon tea time, an elegant snack and social hour, is still on hiatus, but will return. Also, the once-popular HairChest competition on the lido deck is not returning. This activity has disappeared and Carnival is introducing new alternatives instead.

More cruise titles

It’s been a very busy week of cruise news indeed, and we’ve got all the full coverage on cruisehive.com, including updated protocols from Royal Caribbean, another landslide touching the cruise dock in Skagway, Alaska is the end of a popular beach contest on Carnival cruise ships, Carnival takes a big step since the resumption of operations, construction in progress for two Caribbean cruise ports, Carnival Paradise cancellations due to the dry dock, fishing boat collides with an NCL cruise shipand many more stories all over the site.

Cruise News Update

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