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CDC to allow cruise companies to do test voyages with volunteers

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If you are itching to get back to sailing the seven seas, you may be one step closer to walking up the gangplank.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has laid out plans that will allow cruise lines to get ready to resume operations, The Associated Press reported.

The plan includes having companies embark on trial runs, from two to seven days and sail with at least 10% capacity. All who volunteer must be 18 or older and either fully vaccinated or not have a medical condition that could put them at risk of having a severe COVID-19 infection.

The CDC said the companies must inform passengers that they are simulating untested safety measures and that sailing during the pandemic is risky, the AP reported.

Passengers must also be tested for coronavirus before and after the sailings with at least 75% tested at the end of the voyages.

They must be masked and adhere to social distancing guidelines. Guided shore excursions will be allowed if the tour operators follow guidelines.

Each ship, before they resume their normal schedules, must have one test voyage, unless 98% of crew members and 95% of passengers were vaccinated, the AP reported.

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