Yesterday, the House passed H.R. 1318, the Alaska Tourism Restoration Act (ATRA). The legislation, led by Alaska’s U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, and Congressman Don Young, provides foreign-flag cruise ships transporting passengers between the State of Washington and the State of Alaska a temporary exemption to the Passenger Vessel Services Act (PVSA) requirement they call at a foreign port.
Due to the Canadian prohibition on passenger vessels traveling through Canadian waters, without the legislative fix, large cruise ships sailing from Washington would not have been able to sail to Alaska, as the PVSA requires a stop in a foreign country. The measure had earlier been passed by the Senate and now heads to President Biden’s desk to be signed into law.
THREE CARNIVAL BRANDS ANNOUNCE PLANS
Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) said today that three of its cruise brands are expected to return to service with Alaska sailings from Seattle starting in July.
“Based on recent guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and close collaboration with Alaskan officials, Princess Cruises, Holland America Line and Carnival Cruise Line plan to resume guest cruise operations for a partial season in Alaska, each with one ship sailing round-trip,” says Carnival Corporation. “These Alaska cruises are available for guests who have received their final dose of an approved COVID-19 vaccine at least 14 days prior to the beginning of the cruise and have proof of vaccination. Crew vaccinations will be in accordance with CDC guidelines.”
“It is great news for cruising, for travelers ready to again explore the world and for all the communities in Alaska that depend on cruising and have suffered great hardships over the past year,” said Arnold Donald, CEO of Carnival Corporation. “As one of America’s natural treasures, Alaska is a land of beauty and wonder, and one of the most popular destinations for our guests. We look forward to our brands restarting this summer from the U.S. while also supporting our longtime partners and the communities in Alaska.”
Princess Cruises, Holland America Line and Carnival Cruise Line are each continuing the return-to-cruising preparation already underway.
Princess Cruises will resume operations in Alaska starting July 25 through September 26, with seven-day cruises onboard Majestic Princess. Its cruises will visit signature ports, glaciers and attractions in Alaska including Glacier Bay National Park, Juneau, Skagway and Ketchikan.
Holland America Line will resume its cruise operations to Alaska with seven-day itineraries aboard Nieuw Amsterdam, calling at Juneau, Icy Strait Point, Sitka and Ketchikan, with scenic cruising in Alaska’s iconic locales, including Glacier Bay and Stephens Passage. The first cruise for the brand is scheduled to depart July 24, with 10 Saturday departures that will operate through October 2.
Carnival Cruise Line has already opened bookings for Alaska sailings departing from Seattle beginning July 27, with weekly departures through September 14 aboard Carnival Miracle. There are seven 7-day cruises featuring calls in Juneau, Skagway, and Ketchikan, as well as scenic cruising in Tracy Arm Fjord. The September 14 departure is an 8-day cruise with an additional stop in Icy Strait Point.
Carnival Cruise Line is also working to finalize its plans to operate Carnival Horizon from Miami, and Carnival Vista and Carnival Breeze from Galveston in July. Itineraries along with specific details about protocols are expected to be finalized and announced next week.
Carnival Corporation says that it and its brands continue to work with the CDC and other authorities on protocols and requirements for sailings out of U.S. ports, which continue to evolve with changing circumstances. Each of the brands will provide guests with advanced, detailed information about protocols in place at the time of departure, as full details continue to be updated in collaboration with medical and science experts and government authorities.
The company is currently sailing with two of its brands in Europe—AIDA Cruises and Costa Cruises—using highly effective enhanced health and safety protocols developed in conjunction with national and global health authorities and medical experts. Additionally, eight of Carnival Corporation’s nine cruise line brands have announced plans to resume guest operations this summer in Europe, the Caribbean and Alaska, with AIDA Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn and P&O Cruises (UK) resuming sailings from global ports over the next several months.