Disney and Royal Caribbean add vaccine requirements to cruises


ORLANDO, Florida – Disney and Royal Caribbean cruise lines became the latest this week to make COVID-19 vaccine a requirement for boarding a ship.

What would you like to know

  • Disney Cruise Line will require vaccinations for people over 12 from September 3 for cruises with Bahamian ports
  • Royal Caribbean to start requiring vaccinations on September 1
  • Both cruise lines have private islands in the Bahamas which are included in the vaccine requirements ordered by the Government of the Bahamas
  • Carnival announced its policy change on Monday; Norwegians have already demanded vaccinations

Disney Cruise Lines changed its policy on its website on Tuesday. For cruises beginning September 3 that include a stopover in the Bahamas, passengers aged 12 and over must be fully immunized 14 days before departing on the ship. Customers must also provide proof of vaccination before leaving.

Passengers under the age of 12 must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test performed between 5 days and 24 hours before the departure date.

The policy change coincides with the Bahamian government order requiring all cruise ships to provide crew and passenger manifests showing everyone is fully vaccinated before entering port.

Disney says the move includes all of the cruise line’s private islands in the Bahamas, including Disney’s Castaway Cay. All Disney Florida cruise itineraries for the fall include a stop at Castaway Cay, making the vaccine requirement necessary for all Florida cruises.

Royal Caribbean also updated its policy this week, now requiring full vaccinations for guests 12 and older before sailing on any of its cruises, including its Florida ports.

Carnival Cruise Line announced a similar policy change on Monday. Norwegian Cruise Line has already insisted on vaccination requirements for its cruises and sued Florida when Governor Ron DeSantis banned cruise ships from requiring “vaccine passports.” A federal judge blocked the Florida rule, but the state is appealing the decision.

The Bahamian declaration runs until November 1.

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