The status of the Alaskan cruise season has been in limbo for some time now. Travel restrictions in surrounding areas were set to cause severe problems for cruise lines looking to sail through to Alaska. Because of this, many companies simply cancelled their Alaskan seasons while others have been waiting on standby to see if anything changes. It was seeming bleak for a bit, but there has now been some progress. It seems like an Alaskan cruise season may be possible this year. Let’s take a look.
House passes Alaska Tourism Recovery Act
The biggest piece of news regarding Alaskan cruises is certainly the fact that the House of Representatives just passed the Alaska Tourism Recovery Act. This is a bill that allows cruise ships to skip previously required stops in Canada. These stops were the major roadblocks before, and a cruise ship could travel directly from the continental US to Alaska if it didn’t need to stop in Canada. Of course, the bill passing through the House is only the first step. President Joe Biden then needs to sign the bill into law, but if that happens, the Alaskan season is more or less saved.
Cruise lines prep for Alaska sailings
If the Alaska Tourism Recovery Act wasn’t enough to get you hopeful, this will certainly seal the deal: several of the biggest cruise lines in the United States are now prepping to sail to Alaska this season. This means that they are very confident that travel to Alaska will be possible, and that’s great! Carnival Corporation gave a statement on May 20th detailing how three of its brands (Carnival, Princess, and Holland America) were all readying ships to sail from Seattle to Alaska. While these itineraries will also need to be approved by the CDC, it is very likely that this will happen. Each cruise line plans to have their Alaskan sailings require vaccinations, and that is the main criteria that the CDC is currently using to approve itineraries. All three of these brands will start their Alaskan itineraries in July if everything moves forward at the pace that they are currently expecting.
Royal Caribbean joins in
It’s not just Carnival ships that are prepping for Alaska either. Royal Caribbean announced on May 21st that two of its ships, Serenade of the Seas and Ovation of the Seas, would also sail to the state. Serenade of the Seas will start its Alaskan itineraries in July while Ovation will start in August.
While the past year has certainly been rough for cruise fans, it seems we are finally turning a corner. Many had written off the Alaskan season entirely, so it’s amazing to see that it will likely be happening after all.