Celebrity Cruises has been approved by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for a second cruise ship to sail from the U.S. Celebrity Equinox will begin sailing out of Fort Lauderdale, Florida and it comes after Celebrity Edge became the first cruise ship to be approved to restart.
Celebrity Equinox to Restart Sailings from the U.S.
Celebrity Cruises continues to move forward with its restart plans out of the U.S. as the CDC has now approved Celebrity Equinox to resume operations. The ship will begin sailings out of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on July 25, 2021. She will offer seven-night itineraries, including calls at Cozumel and Costa Maya in Mexico and Nassau in the Bahamas.
This follows Celebrity Edge which is scheduled to begin cruises from the same port on June 26, the first cruise ship to resume cruises from the U.S. since suspensions first started in March 2020.
Celebrity Cruises President and CEO Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, said, “It is so exciting to announce yet another ship on the heels of Celebrity Millennium leading the industry’s Caribbean comeback to rave reviews just this past Saturday. From the outpouring of comments and emotion from our guests and crew on that sailing, it’s clear that people are ready to cruise back to normal.”
She continued to say, “We’ve all been waiting for the day we could get away, again, to the places we’ve been dreaming of and that ‘someday’ is here.”
Celebrity Equinox joins eight ships that are returning to service by mid-September. It has been a long wait but finally, things are moving forward. Royal Caribbean Group Chairman Richard Fain said in an update on Monday that dialogue continues with the CDC for a safe return.
Here are the other eight vessels in the fleet returning to service in addition to Celebrity Equinox:
- Celebrity Millennium, which began sailing seven-night Caribbean itineraries from St. Maarten on June 5; and will reposition to Seattle to sail seven-night Alaska Dawes Glacier cruises beginning July 23.
- Celebrity Summit will then sail the remaining St. Maarten season through August, followed by plans to sail a new series of four- and five-night sailings from Fort Lauderdale to the Western Caribbean through late October.
- Celebrity Apex – sailing seven-night Greek Isles itineraries from June 19;
- Celebrity Edge – sailing a rotating schedule of Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries from Fort Lauderdale, beginning June 26;
- Celebrity Silhouette – sailing the UK coastline as of July 3;
- Celebrity Flora – returning to the extraordinary Galapagos Islands as of July 3, followed by the award-winning Celebrity Xpedition and intimate 16-passenger Celebrity Xploration on July 24, and September 18, respectively.
Just like all the other Celebrity cruise ships that are resuming operations, Celebrity Equinox from Fort Lauderdale will be for fully vaccinated guests only. This applies to all guests 12 years old and over. There will be strict health protocols in place to follow the CDC’s Conditional Sailing Order requirements. Vaccinated guests won’t have to wear a mask during the cruise unless required by local port protocols.
This news follows Celebrity Millennium becoming the first cruise ship to begin cruises in the Caribbean. The ship is based out of her new homeport of St. Maarten.