Royal Caribbean has reported a re-entry test for their cruise ships after two incidents involving casino smokers. Testing will take place in the late fall, but there is no word yet on whether or not it will affect final payment.
The “royal caribbean cruise updates 2021” is a blog post from Royal Caribbean about the company’s plans for re-entry testing, casino smoking, and final payment.
Recent policy changes aboard Royal Caribbean ships and throughout the globe seem to be having an even greater impact on the cruise line’s onboard operations.
Royal Caribbean has banned smoking in its casinos, after the introduction of many restrictions, including the necessary wearing of masks within the ships, worries of the widespread spread of Omicron, and a recent, though slight, breakout of COVID cases aboard one of its ships.
As the cruise line sails with a more international audience of passengers, the onboard testing options for travelers who require a test to return to their home countries are being phased out.
The cruise operator has also extended the final payment deadline for certain cruises, so it’s not all bad news from Royal.
Casinos will no longer allow smoking as of January 5th.
Smoking will be prohibited at Royal Caribbean’s onboard casinos from January 5, 2022. The step is being taken in response to concerns that Omicron COVID-19 instances might spread aboard and cause outbreaks, which would be disastrous for the business.
Frequently Asked Questions about Smoking on Royal Caribbean
To tackle this, the cruise line recently imposed a mask requirement, and the smoking restriction is a direct outcome of that requirement. The following is taken from the cruise line’s website:
“Smoking is not allowed in the casino on cruises leaving on or before January 5, 2022, owing to a newly amended policy that now requires face coverings at vaccinated-only events.” We will be re-evaluating our policy on a regular basis in order to alter or expand it in light of new public health facts.”
The cruise line’s policy has always been to have one smoking area and one non-smoking section in the casino. Smokers will now need to travel to a designated smoking area on one of the ship’s open decks. Although the policy will not go into effect until January 5, 2022, some ships have already started to apply it, and other cruise companies, such as Carnival Cruise Line, have made similar announcements.
Royal Caribbean has decided to discontinue international re-entry testing.
The smoking prohibition in casinos isn’t the only policy change implemented by Royal Caribbean. The cruise firm has also stated that an onboard antigen test for re-entry into a home country would no longer be available.
This is unsurprising, given the growing number of foreign passengers traveling on Royal Caribbean ships and the number of exams that must be completed on board.
Testing for re-entry
These exams will be required starting January 5 when passengers disembark the cruise. Guests who booked flights right after debarking face a number of issues as a result of this. The cruise line, on the other hand, had considered this and supplied passengers with various options, but they are not linked with the cruise company.
Guests may select between a quick PCR test and an antigen COVID-19 test while debarking the terminal. Guests will get the results via email immediately after the exam is completed.
Second, a test is available at various airports around the United States. Finally, visitors who want to remain in the region after disembarking the ship may take use of local testing facilities. The cruise operator said it would provide additional information to passengers aboard and before they depart.
Royal Caribbean extends the deadline for final payment.
In between all of the COVID-related news, there is some positive news, something that will encourage passengers to book a cruise despite the restrictions. The cruise operator has delayed the deadline for final payments until the new year.
The option allows visitors to pay for their trip in full 30 days before departure, providing them additional flexibility to change their plans, cancel if necessary, or just save a little longer. The most recent modification now applies to guests departing on sailings until May 31, 2022.
Darryl Brooks / Shutterstock.com / Darryl Brooks / Shutterstock.com / Darryl Brooks / Shutterstock
Will These Efforts Be Sufficient?
The developing Omicron strain has been obvious in recent weeks as a significant source of worry for cruise operators. And with good reason: the variety seems to be spreading far more easily than prior varieties.
Also read: Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas Cruise Ship Has 48 Cases
As cruise lines have returned to a state of relative normalcy with some onboard precautions, they will do all possible to avoid any major breakouts that may jeopardize the effort done in the previous six months.
It remains to be seen if the new regulation implementations completed in recent weeks will be sufficient. If Omicron spreads as quickly aboard cruise ships as it has in various European nations, we might be looking at even more limitations or even cancellations, as MSC cruises have already experienced in Europe.
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Royal Caribbean has released a statement on the re-entry testing, casino smoking, and final payment. The statement says that there will be no changes to their policy for those who have already booked their cruise. Reference: royal caribbean smoking in casino.
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