One look at a picture is more than enough to make you wonder why cruising is not allowed right now. Cancun Airport recently showed no signs of social distancing or care for any COVID-19 related measures. The images and videos shared across the internet show thousands of people crammed together like sardines in a tin can.
It is surprising to see that flights from overseas are allowed to take place in this manner when cruise ships have spent billions of dollars on COVID-related measures but are not allowed to sail.
Oliver Renick tweeted a shocking image and even a video showing what looks to be thousands of people jam-packed at Cancun International Airport this month. They were originally posted by Cubeinart on Instagram:
Flights leave to and from Cancun to cities in the states such as Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Miami, Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. A situation like this makes you wonder what the agenda is behind cruise ships still not sailing (which, coincidentally, sail from the same ports as the flights are flying from).
Even though the airport looks busy it is important to know that the majority of the time it’s not like this. Cancun is popular right now as people are desperate to get away for a short break which Cancun can easily offer. It still puts in question the health protocols that were in place at the airport from the Mexican authorities and that days like this can happen.
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Measures Need To Be Taken Serious
Let’s start by making clear that all measures need to be taken seriously by everyone. The cruise line industry has been hit extraordinarily hard in the last 12 months by the crisis.
This is why the industry has been going through extraordinary measures to, hopefully, sail again soon. When it does, it will need to adhere to the implemented measures onboard, as do the guests.
However, when select airlines and airports do very little to prevent COVID-19 from spreading, the government’s own words seem hollow at best. Yes, the airport is in Mexico; however, surely US-based airlines that fly to Cancun have some say? We cannot have the cruise industry at a complete standstill while the airline industry is practicing the reasons used to shut down the cruise industry.
Airlines have been given leeway for many measures demanded by the CDC to be implemented on cruise ships. And that’s great because we need airlines, we need air travel, and we need these people to keep their jobs. But the CDC needs to seriously wonder if the measures it has implemented for the cruise industry are possibly too much.
Cruise Industry Has Shown It Is Safe
Common sense has prevailed in Italy, of all places, in the last year. The country has been hit extraordinarily hard by the pandemic in the last 12 months. The country is also home to two cruise lines that have been sailing regularly since July and August.
Both MSC and Costa Cruises have been sailing in Italian waters without any incidents whatsoever. In Spain, another country hit hard in the last year, TUI Cruises, Hapag Lloyd, and AIDA Cruises have been sailing.
In Singapore and Taiwan, two countries that have managed to keep the virus out for most of the time, Royal Caribbean and Dream Cruises, are sailing with local residents.
The cruise lines have proven to the world that cruising is safe. That with the proper measures, we can step onboard a cruise ship and have an enjoyable vacation without worrying about it.
The reason why we don’t have to worry is that everyone will have been tested. Everyone onboard is monitored by a qualified doctor, experienced nursing staff, and competent crew members. Social distancing will be enforced. Mask wearing will be enforced. Contact with people outside the ship bubble is illegal and will get you thrown off the ship.
Why Are Airplanes Flying But Cruise Ships Not Sailing?
The reasoning behind allowing flights to take place has been for mandatory, vital, and necessary travel. The airlines are taking that term to the extreme. It’s not the first time this has happened, either.
Late last year, there was significant upheaval as Seadream 1 had several guests onboard infected. Although the mass media storm was focused on the vessel, very few cared to report that all passengers from the ship were crammed into an airline lounge and airplane without any social distancing. It shows the bias that exists against the cruise industry in its purest form.
The fact of the matter is that the CDC needs to start taking action at this point. It has been far too long since the organization released its framework (4 months and counting). The cruise lines are still waiting for further instructions.
It is time the ships sail. Those people on board, in the ports, the hotels, the shops, the tour agencies, the travel agents, need to get back to work. People need to be allowed to take a safe vacation.
Because if we look at it in a clear and non-biased manner, one thing becomes painfully clear. The images from Cancun Airport and around the world show that sailing onboard a cruise ship is far safer than flying onboard an airplane.
Main Photo Credit: Cubeinart