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Cruise Ship Restart News: Week of July 26, 2021

Cruises are setting sail from multiple U.S. homeports, and we want you to stay up to date on all the latest cruise happenings. Here, we take a look at which ships are running simulated voyages or returning to cruise the week of July 26, 2021.

Find out when your favorite ship is setting sail with’s master list of test cruises and 2021 debut sailings.

Cruise Ship Restart News: Week of July 19, 2021

Struggling to keep track of which cruise ships are returning to service and when? We are, too.  To help keep you updated on test cruises, ship relaunches from U.S. homeports, and other news related to the return to cruising, we’ll be providing weekly updates of key dates and information cruise fans need to know.

Find out when your favorite ship is setting sail with’s master list of test cruises and 2021 debut sailings.

Got two different Covid vaccines? Cruise lines might not let you sail

Cruise lines are getting more specific about which types of vaccines qualify guests to sail as vaccinated passengers. Several lines have added wording to their fine print saying that mixed-type vaccines do not qualify, which could prevent booked cruisers from sailing on ships designated for vaccinated travelers only.

Dig through the health and safety protocols sections of Carnival, Holland America, Norwegian and Princess Cruises’ websites, and you’ll find language to this effect:

For first time in two years, a large cruise ship has sailed to Alaska

The cruise industry and representatives of Alaska gave a warm welcome to the first large cruise ship to visit an Alaskan port since 2019.

Royal Caribbean's Serenade of the Seas stopped in Ketchikan on Friday, where U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski, Alaska Lieutenant Governor Kevin Meyer, and City of Ketchikan Mayor Bob Sivertsen championed her arrival.

Ever since the global health crisis shutdown cruises, Alaska has been without one of its primary sources of economic revenue.

First test cruise sails as CDC control over cruises sits in limbo

Royal Caribbean’s Freedom of the Seas returns to Florida today after its first test cruise – part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) requirements to return to cruising from the U.S. – just days after Florida was granted an injunction against the Conditional Sail Order (CSO) that mandated the simulated voyage in the first place.

Royal Caribbean opens bookings for U.S.-based cruises from Florida and Texas

The cruise industry has reached another milestone in its efforts to resume cruising from U.S. homeports.

Royal Caribbean announced it will start sailing with paying passengers from Florida and Texas homeports in July, and has opened bookings Caribbean and Bahamas cruises for five (soon to be six) ships.

"This is it. Vacationers can finally plan to take their precious time off this summer and truly get away after what has been a challenging time for everyone," Michael Bayley, president and CEO, Royal Caribbean International, said in a statement on Facebook.

Cruises to Alaska look to be the first sailings to start from the U.S.

In an unexpected reversal of fortune, Alaska has gone from the destination least likely to host cruise ships in 2021 to the first destination to welcome cruise ships from U.S. ports.

CDC releases what cruise ships need to do for test cruises

Cruise lines have gotten a new update from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with what they need to do on test cruises so they can get back into service.

The CDC released Phase 2B instructions that include all the steps required for a cruise line to conduct a simulated voyage, which include requirements such as mask wearing, vaccines for volunteers, social distancing, and more.

What do the CDC's latest cruise ship updates mean for passengers?

Last Wednesday, the CDC sent a letter to cruise lines, updating guidance on restarting cruises from the U.S. as early as this summer.

But what do all the policy updates mean for cruisers anxious to return to the high seas?

Here are the top four takeaways we gleaned from the CDC’s message.

CDC tells cruise lines cruises could restart by mid-July from the U.S.

Perhaps the best hint that cruises could actually restart from the U.S. came in a new update from the CDC.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) sent a letter to the cruise lines late on Wednesday night providing additional insight and guidance for how cruise ships could restart sailings.

The letter was sent by Aimee Treffiletti, who is the CDC's head of the Maritime Unit for CDC's COVID-19 response within its Global Mitigation Task Force for COVID-19.

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