Norwegian Cruise Line plans to launch a full fleet by April, CEO said

A Norwegian Dawn cruise ship arriving at the port of Marseille in the French Mediterranean on July 27, 2021.

Gerald Botino | SOPA Pictures | LightRocket | Getty Images

Norwegian Cruise Line CEO Frank Del Rio announced on Tuesday that its entire fleet of 28 ships will resume operations for the first time by April 1 since the pandemic repaired much of the industry world cruise. By the end of the year.

The Norwegians currently operate eight ships under three cruise brands, and all ships on board must provide full proof of vaccination before departure.

“If anything, the world is open and more people are vaccinated,” Del Rio told CNBC’s “Closing Bell”. “The demand for trips that have been in operation continues to be very strong,” he said.

He said the company currently requires all passengers and crew to be vaccinated before boarding and does not allow unvaccinated children who are not yet eligible to shoot. ..

People under the age of 12 are not yet cleared to receive Covid vaccines, but Pfizer submitted data to the Food and Drug Administration last month in hopes of receiving emergency use clearance to administer drugs. vaccines aged 5 to 11 years. Made. If approved, Del Rio said fully vaccinated children in this age group would be allowed to sail.

The FDA will review Pfizer’s findings at a meeting on October 26, and the vaccine could be rolled out for ages 5 to 11 as soon as Halloween begins.

“Are we losing customers? Probably, ”Del Rio said of the vaccine mission. “But today we believe our mission is to have a competitive advantage.”

The Miami-based Norwegians clashed with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis this summer over a state law prohibiting companies from requiring customers to certify vaccinations. The Norwegians said on August 8 that a federal judge had issued a temporary injunction to preserve evidence of the company’s vaccination requirements.

Despite Cruiseline’s rigorous vaccination protocol, Del Rio said passengers and employees do not yet need Covid booster shots. However, as the pandemic worsens and more people get vaccinated against the virus, Norwegians may require additional vaccination or adjust existing company vaccination guidelines if the pandemic worsens, has he declared. Noted.

“I got the recall two weeks ago because I qualified myself,” said Del Rio. “Therefore, if the time is right and the pandemic continues to be a threat to humanity, we must take it into account. “

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