Carnival Cruise Line Releases New Health Protocols

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Carnival Cruise Line released new health and safety procedures explicitly relating to the current COVID-19 pandemic. The health procedures have been divided into two separate guidelines—one specifically for Alaska and one for all other voyages onboard Carnival’s ships.

Many people have been waiting for the guidelines to be released, specifically to see if Carnival would require guests to be vaccinated and if Carnival would require wearing masks onboard the ships.

Vaccinations Only In Alaska

Carnival Cruise Line only requires guests to be fully vaccinated on the Alaska cruises, which it is sailing aboard Carnival Miracle this summer. For all other voyages, the line is, so far, not requiring guests to be vaccinated. Carnival does say in its message on its website that these guidelines are still subject to change.

Much of this has to do with Carnival intending to sail on simulated voyages in the upcoming months. The result of these voyages will decide whether Carnival Cruise Line can sail voyages with guests that are not vaccinated.

As for masks, the line still requires masks on board the ships if a physical distance cannot be maintained.

The Have Fun. Be Safe. Guidelines

The guidelines as they have been released are below:

Enhanced Health Screenings

Before embarkation, every guest will need to undergo enhanced health screenings, including 100% COVID-19 testing, touchless temperature checks, and fill out the required health questionnaires.

Those with signs and symptoms of COVID-19 or identified as at-risk will undergo additional medical screening before they are allowed to board. During the cruise, second screenings (and health checks) will be completed as necessary. Every cruise includes contact tracing.

Responsible Physical Distancing

At check-in and aboard ships and during shore excursions, physical distancing will be enforced at all times. Ships management will adjust the flow of groups, occupancy will be reduced, activities will be staggered, and the size of groups managed carefully. Restaurants and entertainment programs will be designed to enhance physical distance.


In cases where physical distancing is not possible or public health authorities mandate it,  masks will be required onboard, at private islands, and during shore excursions. Masks must be worn at all times in terminals, during embarkation and disembarkation.

Personal Hygiene

In high-traffic areas of the ship and venue entrances, guests are encouraged to use hand sanitizer dispensers. Through our daily programming, entertainment systems, announcements, in-stateroom literature, and the App, Carnival will inform guests about the ways to stay healthy while on board as well as when ashore. No self-service will be available for meals. Crew members will serve guests.

Safe Shoreside Experiences

Carnival is working closely with local authorities, travel companies, and tour operators to ensure the enhanced health and safety measures onboard are maintained at land. Health protocols will be followed at every port.

Tour vehicles and excursions may experience a reduction in capacity. We will only permit shore excursions that comply with our prescribed protocols. Guests who fail to comply will be denied reboarding.

Carnival Cruise Ship in Alaska
Photo: Carnival Cruise Line


Carnival Cruise line has released a second set of guidelines for the Carnival Miracle sailings sailing this July from Seattle. These cruises are only available to those guests who have been fully vaccinated 14 days before the cruise. The guidelines for Alaska are as follows:

  • All guests, including children who are age-eligible for vaccines, will need to show proof of vaccination. This means guests who are not vaccinated, including children who are not yet eligible for a vaccine, will not be permitted to sail.
  • All guests will be asked to confirm their status as fully vaccinated for COVID-19 during check-in and provide proof of vaccination before boarding.
  • Those who arrive at the embarkation terminal without the proper proof of vaccination will not be able to cruise, and Carnival Cruise Line will issue no refund.
  • Face masks for all forms of transportation are still required by the CDC; however, protocols are evolving, and as changes are announced, Carnival will share more information as soon as possible.
  • While guests will be vaccinated, Carnival will follow protocols and requirements for each destination while ashore in Alaska. These restrictions are under the control of local government and are subject to change without advance notice; guests are encouraged to come prepared for potential mask requirements ashore.

Also Read: Carnival Cruise Brands to Restart Sailings to Alaska

New Cancelation Policy

In addition to the health guidelines, the cruise line also released new cancelation and denied boarding policies.

If Carnival Cruise Line cancels the cruise, guests are entitled to a refund of the amount paid to Carnival within 180 days or a future cruise credit. If guests cancel the voyage during a declaration of a Public Health Emergency, or guests cancel the booking because they are prohibited from traveling to the vessel due to a governmental travel restriction, they are entitled to an FCC to the amount paid.

A cruise canceled by a guest who tested positive for COVID-19 or someone living in the same household within 14 days of booking is also eligible for an FCC. The same counts for guests who have been found positive before or during a part of the voyage. A partial voyage FCC would be pro-rated.

Worth Reading: The New Reality for Carnival Cruise Line Crew Members

Guests denied embarkation or reboarding or who are disembarked or quarantined during the voyage for failure to comply with the Carnival COVID-19 Guest Protocols in effect at the time of the cruise, will not be entitled to a refund or compensation of any kind.

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