Carnival Cruise Line has proof positive that many eager travelers are ready and willing to cruise now that pre-cruise testing and vaccination requirements have been simplified. Compared to similar pre-pandemic dates, bookings are nearly double previous rates.
Bookings Skyrocket With Protocol Changes
Carnival Cruise Line announced on Friday, August 12, 2022, that its pre-cruise testing requirements would be simplified, dropping the mandate entirely for vaccinated passengers on cruises of 15 nights or less, depending on the destination.
At the same time, the exemption letter requirement was dropped for unvaccinated guests, further simplifying pre-cruise paperwork. These changes are effective for cruises departing on Tuesday, September 6, 2022 or later.
On Monday, August 15 – the first full business booking day after the announcement – the cruise line saw tremendous positive response to the change. Monday’s bookings were nearly double the level for the equivalent day in 2019, well before the pandemic began.
“We have previously disclosed strong occupancy projections for the summer, and our bookings through the end of 2022 have also been very solid,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “With the further alignment of protocols to other vacation choices, our guests are booking the remaining 2022 inventory, and getting a head start planning for 2023.”
Mid-summer booking activity is historically a slow period, as families have already planned their annual vacations during schools-out periods, and are not yet planning for future travel.
“Mid-August is typically not a busy month for cruise bookings, but it’s clear that pent-up demand for Carnival has not been satisfied and guests are responding very favorably to our updated protocols,” Duffy said.
Guests have many amazing options to come for Carnival cruises still in 2022, with Carnival Luminosa scheduled to join the fleet in November, followed quickly by the debut of the cruise line’s second Excel-class ship, Carnival Celebration, which will set sail on her maiden voyage from Miami on November 21.
Loyal Carnival guests may also want to take advantage of their last chance to enjoy the Fantasy-class Carnival Ecstasy, before that ship is retired from the Fun Ship fleet in early October. Carnival Ecstasy is offering 4- and 5-night roundtrip Western Caribbean sailings from Mobile, Alabama.
A special 10-night Eastern Caribbean sailing departing September 12 will be Carnival Ecstasy‘s last visit to eastern ports including Key West, Grand Turk, and Puerto Plata.
Safety Remains a Priority
While pre-cruise testing protocols and vaccination requirements have been relaxed, Carnival Cruise Line remains committed to the health and safety of all its guests, crew members, and port communities.
The cruise line remains in contact with health officials and authorities from both homeports as well as ports of call, and will continue to refine onboard and pre-cruise protocols as necessary.
All guests will still complete health questionnaires prior to sailing, and onboard cleaning and sanitation protocols remain enhanced. All crew members are fully vaccinated and receiving booster shots when eligible.
Staggered embarkation procedures are still in effect with boarding appointments to minimize crowding, and guests are encouraged to use VeriFly to upload their health documentation to further smooth embarkation. To date, more than one million Carnival Cruise Line guests have successfully used VeriFly.
With such strong interest in cruise travel continuing to grow, Carnival Cruise Line is poised to bring amazing fun and memorable vacations to many cruise travelers yet in 2022 and forward into 2023.