Q – Really appreciate this site and your straight answers. My wife and I are excited to be taking a Seabourn cruise again in September 2021. But I’ve been following your site and it now seems that new protocols will require that guests purchase the cruise line excursions in order to be able to go ashore. I once lived in Siena and in the port of Livorno I have hired a private driver for the day to take my wife and I back to the place where I lived in Siena and the streets where I spent some of the best moments of my life. Now, it seems like I must do the ship’s tours. I am ready to cancel. Any advice?
A – Don’t cancel. You will be able to take your wide to Siena by September. We promise.
The restriction you mentioned was part of the 74 Protocols recommended to the CDC by Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Lines. Under present sailing conditions, your interpretation is correct. But the positive news is that we are expecting full inoculation of all potential cruises to be completed by April Fool’s Day. If that projected deadline, encompassing all five levels of our population and assuming that healthy cruise travelers are in the final group, is late, we are still anticipating a May 1st date for completion. Many European nations will be ahead of us – including Italy.
Private and independent touring will be permitted by September. There is no scenario we can imagine where that is not the case now that we have the three leading vaccines. Those who refuse to take the vaccines will not be permitted onboard ships nor will they be certified to enter most European ports. But there is always Netflix for the doubters.