Crew Disembarkations through Commercial Travel
CDC is committed to helping cruise lines provide for the safety and well-being of their crew members while onboard cruise ships and as they disembark. CDC is allowing crew members to disembark from all cruise ships in U.S. waters with certain precautions. Cruise lines with complete and accurate response plans are able to use commercial travel to disembark crew members from certain ships if the ships meet certain criteria set by CDC. Criteria include no confirmed cases of COVID-19 or COVID-like illnesses onboard the ship within the last 28 days. These ships are also able to lessen certain social distancing restrictions onboard. Cruise lines with complete and accurate COVID-19 response plans but not meeting the above criteria will still be able to disembark their crew members using noncommercial travel. Cruise lines must have measures in place to ensure those involved in transport are not exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 and follow all CDC requirements to prevent interaction of disembarking crew with the public.
Criteria for Commercial Transport of Crew
Ships that request the use of commercial travel for disembarking crew members will need to meet the following criteria:
- A COVID-19 response plan that is complete and accurate.
- This does not mean ships are allowed to resume passenger travel, but rather that they have met CDC’s requirements to provide a safe environment for crew members to work and to disembark crew safely by noncommercial travel.
- Cruise company officials must sign an acknowledgment of the completeness and accuracy of their response plan.
- No confirmed cases of COVID-19 or COVID-like illness for 28 days, as determined by a qualified medical professional.
- If the ship has received ship-to-ship transfers, the crew must have come from a ship that had no confirmed cases of COVID-19 or COVID-like illness within the 28 days before the transfer occurred.
- If land-based crew embarked, they were immediately quarantined for 14 days upon embarking the ship.
- Submission of a signed attestation for commercial travel.
Meeting these criteria does not mean cruise ships can resume passenger operations. We don’t have enough information at this time to say when it will be safe to resume sailing with passengers. Cruise lines need to establish additional safety measures before sailing with passengers is permitted to resume. CDC will continue to evaluate and update its recommendations as the situation evolves.
All cruise ships operating in U.S. waters, or seeking to operate in U.S. waters, must comply with all of the requirements under the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order and Technical Instructions even when outside U.S. waters.
As ships become eligible to transport crew members commercially, this page will provide a list of cruise ships meeting those criteria.
- Confirmed COVID-19 means laboratory confirmation for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing.
- COVID-like illness means acute respiratory illness (ARI), influenza-like illness (ILI), or diagnosis of pneumonia, or other signs and symptoms of COVID-19.
Status of COVID-19 Response Plans and Commercial Transport of Crew
As a prerequisite for requesting commercial travel, cruise lines must have a complete and accurate response plan that provides a safe environment for crew members to work and disembark during the initial phases of the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order. CDC has provided feedback regarding all the response plans that have been submitted and is working with the cruise lines to ensure they are implementing the safeguards outlined in their plans.
The following table lists cruise lines that have ships operating or planning to operate in U.S. waters during the initial phases of the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order.
Determination for color-coding status (Green, Red, or Yellow) can only be made for ships if the following are true:
- CDC has finished the review of the cruise line’s plan, and
- Cruise line has returned an acknowledgement attesting that their No Sail Order response plan is complete and accurate.
Ships of cruise lines that have not met the above two criteria will be listed as Provisionally Green* or Provisionally Yellowⱽ.
This table is updated once a week every Tuesday. Last updated October 29, 2020.
|Parent Company||Cruise Line||No Sail Order Response Plan Status||Ship Name||Ship Status||Commercial Travel Allowed¥|
|Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line||Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line||Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement||Grand Celebration||Green||Yes|
|Walt Disney Company||Disney Cruise Line||Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement||Disney Wonder||Green||Yes|
|MSC Cruise Management (UK) Limited||MSC Cruises||Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement||MSC Armonia||Green||Yes|
Cruise Line Holdings
|Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement||Norwegian Gem||Green||Yes|
|Pride of America||Green||Yes|
|Oceania Cruises||Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement||Oceania Regatta||Green||Yes|
|Royal Caribbean Group||Celebrity Cruises||Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement||Celebrity Apex||Green||Yes|
|Royal Caribbean International||Complete and accurate with signed acknowledgement||Adventure of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Brilliance of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Enchantment of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Freedom of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Grandeur of the Seas||Red||No|
|Harmony of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Independence of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Liberty of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Mariner of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Navigator of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Oasis of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Rhapsody of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Serenade of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Symphony of the Seas||Green||Yes|
|Vision of the Seas||Green||Yes|
*Provisionally Green: Ship meets the surveillance criteria for “Green” status, but the ship has not submitted a signed attestation to CDC for crew to travel commercially.
ⱽProvisionally Yellow: Ship meets the surveillance criteria for “Yellow” status, but the ship has not submitted a signed attestation to CDC for crew to travel commercially.
¥Commercial Travel Allowed: Allowed for ships that are “Green” and have submitted a signed attestation to CDC for crew to travel commercially.
Note: The above list includes cruise ships operating in U.S. waters or seeking to operate in U.S. waters during the initial phases of the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order.
Is the process for crew disembarkation under the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order different from the process during the No Sail Order period?
No, the process for crew disembarkation required during the No Sail Order period remains the same during the initial phases of the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order.
Why is CDC requiring ships to test all crew members during the initial phases of the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order, including those on “Green” ships?
The purpose of testing during the initial phases of the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order is to ensure cruise ship operators have adequate health and safety protections for crew members while they build the onboard laboratory capacity needed to test crew and future passengers. CDC’s guidance under the previous No Sail Order recommended routine testing of crew. However, only 1% of crew aboard ships were tested for COVID-19 during the period of the No Sail Order.
What steps is CDC taking to make sure ships stay in compliance with the criteria for commercial transport of crew?
CDC will review weekly surveillance data provided by ships, and only those ships that continue to report no cases of COVID-19 or COVID-like illness will maintain this status.
What other changes can cruise ships make if they meet these criteria?
CDC is committed to helping cruise lines provide for the safety and well-being of their crew members onboard. As cruise ships are able to show they have no cases of confirmed COVID-19 or COVID-like illnesses onboard, crew members will be able to resume some of their daily interactions with fellow crew members.
Some examples of decreased restrictions on cruise ships if they meet these criteria include resuming in-person meetings, events, and social gatherings; reopening bars, gyms, or other group settings onboard for crew member use; and removing requirements to wear face coverings.
What does it mean if a cruise line or cruise ship is not listed on the table above?
If a cruise line or cruise ship is not listed, it means it is not operating and does not plan to operate in U.S. waters during the initial phases of the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order.