Headlines of Interest to International Travelers Updated Every Few Days

Curated articles from around the web covering recent news on travel restrictions, security, air travel, cruising along with travel industry headlines.

Two good reference web sites are now available for up-to-date travel information on COVID-19 requirements by country and for CDC travel recommendations.

The first is the Internatinal Air Transport Association – IATA offers an up-to-date COVID-19 Travel Regulations Map HERE.

Additional information from the The American CDC – For international travelers the American CDC now provides a list of countries and the COVID-19 threat level for each HERE.


Recent News

March 26th, 2021

Updated Information On Cruising Restarts

A patchwork quilt of countries with different approaches to fighting the pandemic has left the cruise industry in a constant state of flux. No small consideration is when to start bringing crews back. That’s something that doesn’t happen in just a few days. Where to locate their ships is another constantly changing set of circumstances.

As of today the following information is a listing of announced cruise dates provided by the major cruise companies.

Azamara: The only current information is they will start sailing July 1, 2021

Carnival: Begins sailing June 1, 2021 with these exceptions:

Mardi Gras: Maiden cruise scheduled for May 29, 2021, at Port Canaveral.

Carnival Legend itineraries in Europe are canceled.

Carnival Miracle all service from San Diego has been suspended until further notice, with sailings from San Diego offered through April 2023 canceled. Seven voyages to Hawaii on Miracle will now sail from Long Beach.

Carnival Liberty: scheduled cruises from Port Canaveral from September 17 – October 18, 2021 are canceled for dry dock work.

Carnival Sunshine: sailings from Charleston from October 11 – November 13, 2021 are canceled for dry dock work.

Four ships scheduled for dry dock in 2021, the Magic, Paradise, Valor and Legend will return to service in November 2021.

Carnival Radiance dry dock and upgrade has been moved to September, with sailings from Long Beach in November 2021.

Australia voyages aboard Carnival Splendor are canceled through June 28, 2021 departures, while Carnival Spirit sailings through the September 12, 2021 are cancelled.

Celebrity begins sailing June 1, 2021 with sailings in Asia, Australia, New Zealand and South America are canceled through the 2021 season.

The May 1 Transatlantic crossing on Apex is cancelled.

May through October 2021 Europe and transatlantic cruises on Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Constellation are suspended.

Voyages aboard Celebrity Millennium will begin from St. Maarten on June 5, 2021.

Crystal Cruises – Crystal Esprit scheduled to sail August 2, 2021, the Crystal Serenity July 3, 2021 on new cruises from and around the Bahamas. Crystal Symphony July 2021, Crystal Endeavor September 2021.

Cunard Line – Queen Elizabeth: Summer 2021 UK voyages only. Existing voyages are cancelled up until October 11, 2021. Queen Mary 2 is scheduled to sail November 14, 2021, Queen Victoria September 10, 2021.

Disney Cruise Line – Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy scheduled to sail June 1, 2021, with Disney Magic in Europe for August 11. Alaska sailings on Disney Wonder departing on or after June 1 have been removed from the schedule for evaluation.

Holland America Line resumes May 1, 2021, except the following ships: Volendam: July 1, 2021 (Europe), Westerdam: July 1, 2021 (Europe), Nieuw Statendam: July 1, 2021 (Europe). Cruises from Canadian ports have been cancelled through the rest of 2021. Cruises departing from Seattle are cancelled through the end of June 2021.

Hurtigruten – January 2021 for Norwegian coastal sailings only. Voyages to Antarctica are canceled for the entire season. Select expedition itineraries aboard MS Fram, MS Fridtjof Nansen and MS Roald Amundsen are canceled through July 2021. Expedition sailings aboard MS Trollfjord are canceled entirely.

MSC Cruises -All North American Caribbean voyages are canceled until June, 2021. All South Africa cruises until at least November 2021. Voyages for UK passengers only will begin May 20, 2021 aboard MSC Magnifica from Southampton.

Norwegian Cruise Line -July 1, 2021 except for the following: Norwegian Encore October 28, 2021, Norwegian Jewel October 6, 2021, Norwegian Jade November 4, 2021.

P&O Cruises – June 27, 2021, though only for UK domestic sailings, while Australia cruises are scheduled to sail beginning June 18, 2021.

Princess Cruises – May 15, 2021, except Caribbean Princess July 1, 2021, Ruby Princess July 1, 2021, Enchanted Princess July 1, 2021. Voyages to Alaska from Vancouver have been cancelled for the entire 2021 season. Cruises to Alaska from Seattle are cancelled through June 27, 2021.

Royal Caribbean: Scheduled to resume June 1, 2021, except sailings aboard Quantum of the Seas in Singapore and Odyssey of the Seas in Israel. With sailings aboard Spectrum of the Seas and Vision of the Seas in China starting April 29, 2021. Sailings aboard Adventure of the Seas from Nassau begin June 12, 2021. Sailings aboard Vision of the Seas from Bermuda will begin June 26, 2021.

March 20th, 2021

Is your ID Department of Homeland Security compliant? – On October 1st 2021 in order to fly domestically in the United States it will be necessary to have a REAL compliant identification card. Since most people use a drivers license as their usual identification. Check you license to see if it contains a gold circle with a star inside it? If it doesn’t you will need to update your license before you can board a plane. Click HERE to access the government site that can connect you with your states DMV to find out what you need to do.

The U.S. CDC’s continued pressure on the cruise industry has most companies not sure when they will be allowed to sail from U.S. ports. Many are now exploring Caribbean ports as new alternative home ports for cruises this Summer. American travel organizations are becoming concerned that the actions of the CDC are intentionally trying to damage certain sectors of the travel industry.

More cruise lines push off their cruising dates from U.S. ports – Under continued pressure from the CDC a number of cruise companies operating out of U.S. ports have cancelled Summer cruises or have pushed back scheduled departures.

March 18th, 2021

New Orleans airport sees traffic rebound to 20% above March 2020 as Southwest Airlines announced that it expects to resume its non-stop flight to Cancun on April 16, the first international flight from the airport in over a year.

Biden could lift COVID international travel restrictions in mid-MAY – The Biden administration is aiming to lift COVID-19 travel restrictions by mid-May for the Mexico and Canada borders and also loosen current flight bans on the UK, Europe and Brazil, officials have said.

Crystal To Base Luxury Cruise Ship In Bahamas – In a move to open up cruising in North America, Crystal Cruises announced it would home port its luxury oceangoing ship, Crystal Serenity in the Bahamas. It will offer new weeklong itineraries departing from, and visiting only ports in the Bahamas.

Airline industry pushes back on CDC – The airline industry is pushing back against new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines that fully vaccinated people should still avoid travel.

The US Virgin Islands Is Open – The U.S. Virgin Islands has reopened to travel with enhanced health and safety protocols in place amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to being one of the most sought-after destinations in the Caribbean, the USVI—consisting of the main islands of St. Croix, St. John and St. Thomas—is among the most accessible to Americans, who won’t need a passport to visit or a negative COVID-19 test result to return home to the mainland U.S.

Israel tourism begins reopening as country emerges from lockdown – With around 4.3 million people having received at least one shot of a Covid-19 vaccine, Israel is currently preparing to reopen its economy.

February 16th, 2021

Mexico Invites Cruise Lines to Sail from Cozumel – One of the cruise lines Mexico is targeting is MSC which is currently successfully running cruises in the Mediterranean. MSC was the first major line to sail with full COVID-19 protocols as early as mid-August 2020, and has continued to do so with a few breaks when borders were tightened during a viral flare-up.

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