Cruise Ship Guidance

CDC is allowing crew members to disembark from all cruise ships in U.S. waters. Cruise ships with complete and accurate No Sail Order response plans are able to disembark their crew members without a signed attestation if they use non-commercial travel and follow all CDC requirements to prevent interaction of disembarking crew members with the public. Cruise company officials must sign an acknowledgement of the completeness and accuracy of their response plans. These cruise ships are also able to use commercial travel to disembark crew members if they meet certain criteria to show that they have no confirmed COVID cases or COVID-like illness onboard. Crew members on these ships that are not affected by COVID-19 can also resume some of their daily interactions with fellow crew members.

CDC is committed to helping address crew members’ questions or concerns while onboard and as they disembark. Crew members on ships in or intending to be in US waters who have questions about the process for disembarkation or who have concerns about what their ship is doing to prevent COVID-19 onboard can share them with CDC by sending an email to eocevent431@cdc.gov.

Learn more about what CDC is doing to help cruise travelers.

No Sail Order for Cruise Ships

September 30, 2020 Update

On September 30, 2020, CDC extended the No Sail Order and Suspension of Further Embarkation; Third Modification and Extension of No Sail Order and Other Measures Related to Operations that was issued on July 16, 2020. The Order is effective upon signature and published in the Federal Registerexternal icon on October 5, 2020.

This Order is in effect until one of the following occurs:

  • The expiration of the Secretary of Health and Human Services’ declaration that COVID-19 constitutes a public health emergency,
  • The CDC Director rescinds or modifies the order based on specific public health or other considerations, or
  • October 31, 2020.

See the attached order (print-only) pdf icon[PDF – 29 pages] for the full requirements.


July 16, 2020 Update

On July 16, 2020, CDC extended the No Sail Order and Suspension of Further Embarkation; Notice of Modification and Extension and Other Measures Related to Operations signed by the CDC Director on April 9, 2020—subject to the modifications and additional stipulated conditions as set forth in this Order. The Order is effective upon signature and published in the Federal Registerexternal icon on July 21, 2020.

This Order is in effect until one of the following occurs:

  • The expiration of the Secretary of Health and Human Services’ declaration that COVID-19 constitutes a public health emergency,
  • The CDC Director rescinds or modifies the order based on specific public health or other considerations, or
  • September 30, 2020.

See the attached order (print-only) pdf icon[PDF – 20 pages] for the full requirements.


April 9, 2020 Update

On April 9, 2020, CDC renewed the No Sail Order and Other Measures Related to Operations Order signed by the CDC Director on March 14, 2020—subject to the modifications and additional stipulated conditions as set forth in this Order. The Order is published in the Federal Register and effective as of April 15, 2020 (https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2020-07930external icon).

The extended Order is in effect until one of the following occurs:

  • The Secretary of Health and Human Services’ declares that COVID-19 no longer constitutes a public health emergency, or
  • The CDC Director rescinds or modifies the order based on specific public health or other considerations, or
  • 100 days have passed from April 15, the date the extended order was published in the Federal Registerexternal icon and went into effect. 100 days from April 15 is July 24.

See the attached order (print-only) pdf icon[PDF – 9 pages] for the full requirements.


March 14, 2020 Update

The CDC Director has reason to believe that cruise ship travel may continue to introduce, transmit, or spread COVID-19. As such, the CDC Director issued a No Sail Order for cruise ships effective March 14, 2020. CDC commends the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the leading industry trade group, for their willingness to voluntarily suspend cruise ship operations from U.S. ports of call beginning on March 13, 2020 for the next thirty (30) days. See the attached order (print-only) pdf icon[PDF – 7 pages] for the full requirements.