Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) on Friday announced that all of its member cruise lines will extend their voluntary sailing suspension through at least Sept. 15 because of COVID-19 concerns.
The suspension, which goes beyond the "No Sail Order" issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that will expire on July 24, includes all cruise lines who sail ships with 250 passengers or more.
“Due to the ongoing situation within the U.S. related to COVID-19, CLIA member cruise lines have decided to voluntarily extend the period of suspended passenger operations. The current No Sail Order issued by the CDC will expire on 24 July, and although we had hoped that cruise activity could resume as soon as possible after that date, it is increasingly clear that more time will be needed to resolve barriers to resumption in the United States," CLIA said in a statement on Friday.
“Although we are confident that future cruises will be healthy and safe, and will fully reflect the latest protective measures, we also feel that it is appropriate to err on the side of caution to help ensure the best interests of our passengers and crewmembers. We have therefore decided to further extend our suspension of operations from U.S. ports until 15 September."
CLIA said the extra time will "allow us to consult with the CDC on measures that will be appropriate for the eventual resumption of cruise operations."
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings had already extended its voluntary suspension into September earlier this week, and other lines, like Disney, had cancelled some Canadian sailings into October because of the Canadian government's ban, but CLIA's statement on Friday puts a hold on sailings from some cruise lines who were hoping to be able to sail later this summer.