WASHINGTON, D.C. – It will be even longer until Americans can travel aboard cruise ships. A group of the nation’s top cruise lines have agreed to suspend their U.S. operations even further.
Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) announced Wednesday that its ocean-going cruise line members will suspend their U.S. operations until at least Oct. 31, 2020.
The association, made up of companies like Carnival and Norwegian cruise lines, had previously suspended U.S. operations until Sept. 15. The CDC’s no-sail order lasts through Sept. 30.
The association said it was a hard decision to further suspend operations, but it must be done to protect the public from the devastating effects of COVID-19.
“This is a difficult decision as we recognize the crushing impact that this pandemic has had on our community and every other industry,” said CLIA in a statement. “However, we believe this proactive action further demonstrates the cruise industry’s commitment to public health and willingness to voluntarily suspend operations in the interest of public health and safety, as has occurred twice prior.”
CLIA says its cruise line members will continue to monitor the situation with the understanding that they will revisit a possible further extension on or before 30 September 2020.
“At the same time, should conditions in the U.S. change and it becomes possible to consider short, modified sailings, we would consider an earlier restart,” wrote CLIA.
CLIA says its most recent economic impact study indicated the U.S. supports nearly half a million American jobs and generates $53 billion annually in economic activity throughout the country. According to the association, each day of the suspension of U.S. cruise operations results in a loss of up to $110 million in economic activity and 800 direct and indirect American jobs.
The impact of the suspension is particularly profound in states that depend heavily on cruise tourism, including Florida, Texas, Alaska, Washington, New York and California, according to CLIA.
The following global cruise lines are part of the association:
American Cruise Lines
Carnival Cruise Line
Disney Cruise Line
Holland America Line
Norwegian Cruise Line
Pearl Seas Cruises
PONANT Yacht Cruises and Expeditions
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Royal Caribbean International
Scenic Luxury Cruises and Tours
SeaDream Yacht Club