Carnival Cruise Line, Holland America Line drop most remaining COVID-19 rules
Carnival Cruise Line has further eased its COVID-19 rules, dropping most of its remaining requirements this week.
The cruise line is no longer requiring proof of vaccination or COVID-19 testing for trips 15 nights or less, according to its website. "However, irrespective of vaccination status, we encourage all guests 5 years and older to test three days prior to their cruise," Carnival spokesperson Matt Lupoli told USA TODAY in an emailed statement.
Passengers ages 18 and up who are sailing on trips 16 nights or longer must be fully vaccinated, including booster doses if more than six months have passed since the last dose of their primary vaccine series. Unvaccinated travelers must apply for an exemption.
Passengers ages 5 and older on those voyages must take an antigen or PCR test within three days prior to their cruise, according to the line's website. The changes are subject to local requirements at various destinations.
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Carnival previously relaxed its COVID-19 requirements last month, no longer requiring unvaccinated guests to apply for an exemption for many sailings, but passengers had to show proof of vaccination or take a test in order to board.
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Holland America Line also lifted vaccination requirements for its "Standard Protocol" voyages, as well as testing rules for unvaccinated guests, according to a news release. The changes are also subject to local restrictions.
"Guests on Enhanced Protocol voyages will be provided additional information about protocols based on ports visited," the line said in the release. Passengers can also view specific requirements for their sailing by using the line's Health Protocols Tool.
Princess Cruises made a similar change last week, lifting its remaining vaccine and testing requirements for many voyages. The changes apply "except in destinations where government regulations may vary like Australia and a few enhanced guidelines voyages that have their own vaccination and testing requirements," a Princess spokesperson said in an email.
Passengers can check the requirements for their cruise online via the line's CruiseHealth tool.
The updates come after Norwegian Cruise Line also dropped all mask, vaccine, and testing requirements earlier this month. Many cruise lines began easing rules after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ended its COVID-19 Program for Cruise Ships in July.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Carnival, Holland America drop most remaining coronavirus requirements