Starting on July 25, Azamara will no longer require guests test negative for COVID-19 prior to embarkation, except where it is still required by law.
Azamara made the announcement on Tuesday, writing that it is still requiring proof of vaccination prior to departure, and guests are still recommended to be tested prior to travel, but it will no longer require the test for guests. It had been requiring PCR tests taken at least three days prior to embarkation, or an Antigen test taken within one day of embarkation.
“The easing of our testing policy marks a step in the right direction towards a return to normalcy for the travel and cruising industry,” said Azamara president Carol Cabezas.
“Cruising is one of the safest ways to travel, and our existing health and safety protocols onboard will ensure peace of mind for our guests and crew as we move forward.”
The announcement is similar to a move that Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings made earlier this month when it announced its three brands (Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises, and Regent Seven Seas Cruises) would stop requiring pre-cruise COVID-19 testing unless required by local regulations.
Due to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regulations at the time, the new policy did not change anything for U.S.-based cruise itineraries. Other itineraries, including those that visit Canada, Greece, and Bermuda, also weren’t affected. However, some itineraries sailing out of Europe this summer were.
Azamara, for its part, is recommending travelers use Sherpa to find out which countries are requiring pre-departure testing ahead of their cruise.
Azamara is currently back to sailing its full fleet of four ships. Total in 2022, it expects to visit 362 ports around the world, with 392 overnight stays, 862 late nights, and 3,000 shore excursions of which nearly 1,000 have been created since the pandemic began.