Cruise deals will likely be in abundance once the lines start operating again but restrictions may not be worth the price.
Millions of people love to find great cruise deals but when the cruise line industry starts up again, no deals may be worth taking one.
The advertisments can easily draw you in. Norwegian Cruise Lines is promoting kids sail free on select cruises. “Visit the tropics with our great deals”. Over on Carnival, they want you to book with $50.00 deposits and cruises starting at just $60.00 a day. And guess what? These deals are going to get a lot better once the industry is given the o.k. to set sail.
There is however, a rub. A big rub. Restrictions on travel may be too much to truly enjoy a cruise when they do reopen.
A document was submitted by Royal Caribbean and Norwegian lines in an effort to outline plans for reopining. In this document, they have laid out 74 areas where they are hoping to improve safety and reduce health risks.
More from TripSided
- Do You Know Where the World’s Oldest Operating Restaurant is?
- Why You Should Learn Some French Before Going to France
- Why Everyone Should Visit Las Vegas Once In Their Life
- Best Islands to Vacation on When You’re on a Budget
- A Brief History of Bánh Mì
As we know, the cruise industry was put in a huge bind when COVID began. Ships were stranded without being able to make port. Entire ships were confined and quarantined and others tested positive daily. Cruise lines were also directly blamed for the spread of the virus from country to country. So naturally, they need to make sure everyone is safe the next time.
Of those 74 items that they sent out, some make sense but some take away from actually being on a cruise. Guests will be asked and required to wear masks. That makes sense at a comedy show or at the casino but what about by the pool? What about on the decks where it gets really hot in the tropical sun?
Daily temperature checks make sense but is someone going to knock on your door every morning to check your temperature and give you a green checkmark. It’s a minor inconvenience at best and something that I would imagine will be around a long time.
The one area that does bother me though, one rule that would significantly reduce my desire to cruise is the one that happens when you arrive at port.
One of the proposals is that guests will not be allowed to explore ports on their own but instead will need to stick to a group. Have you ever tried to do something with a bunch of people you don’t know? It’s hard enough trying to get family to hurry up.
For me, this is almost a 100% deal breaker because when I go to ports, I hit the shops I want to hit, i hit the local pharmacy for cheap medications (yes, it’s legal), and I like to hit the restaraunts I enjoy, and I like to get to the water on my own time and leave on my own time.
I like to snorkel and I tend to do that without using an excursion. In the Grand Bahamas, I hit local beaches where sea turtles feed or the Devils Grotto. Both you don’t need to book an excursion. Both are free and both are in walking distance or a short jaunt by taxi.
The problem now is that you won’t be able to do either of them. These are not big touristy destinations so finding a group that will be going there will be near impossible.
This same issue may become a problem on all of the cruise line destinations. The draw of a cruise for many is that they can explore on their own when they get to port.
Prior to boarding there is a recommendation that travelers get tested 5 days prior to their cruise and another test 24 hours prior to their cruise. They don’t say where these tests should come from but this could be an issue for those flying or driving in the day of the cruise departure or even the night before.
Of course the good news in all of this is that the industry is suggesting smaller passenger limits, and indoor social distancing requirements. This will keep some of the more annoying guests at least 6 feet away from you.
In addition, if you don’t like to leave the ship when you arrive at a port you have been to before, then this will have change for you and the lower prices may just be what you are looking for to get out of your house and back to a somewhat normal life.