Princess Cruises Announces Multiple Sailings Out of U.S. Ports Starting in September
Princess Cruises will set sail from several ports in the United States in the fall for vaccinated guests, in addition to the line's already-planned summer voyages to Alaska.
The cruise line will head out from Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Ft. Lauderdale between Sept. 25 and Nov. 28, sailing to the Caribbean, Panama Canal, Mexico, Hawaii, and along the California coast. Itineraries range from 15-day cruises to Hawaii to 10-day cruises through Mexico and island hopping through the Caribbean.
"As we continue our return to service, it is a thrill for us to be able to bring more cruise vacation options to our travel-starved guests," Jan Swartz, the president of Princess Cruises, said in a statement provided to Travel + Leisure. "We appreciate the support of government and port officials who we worked closely with to make these travel opportunities available, in a thoughtful and safe way, for our guests."
All guests on board a Princess cruise through the remainder of the year will be required to be fully vaccinated at least 14 days before embarking, the company said. All crew will be vaccinated in line with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The CDC has recommended cruisers get a COVID-19 vaccine and has waived the need for "simulated voyages" with volunteer passengers for any cruise that sails with 98% of crew and 95% of passengers fully vaccinated. The agency has also said vaccinated passengers can potentially ditch their masks and will allow them to explore ports on their own.
Vaccine mandates have become politically controversial in recent months with several states, including Florida, banning the concept of vaccine passports. That decision has directly affected some cruise lines that are requiring vaccines, like Princess and Norwegian Cruise Line.
Last week, a federal judge in Florida ruled the CDC can no longer enforce its coronavirus-related rules on ships in Florida ports, The New York Times reported. In his ruling, the judge gave the CDC until July 2 to propose a "narrower injunction."
Princess' fall plans come after the cruise line announced a series of Alaskan voyages starting in July, including stops at Glacier Bay National Park, Juneau, Skagway, and Ketchikan.
Beyond Alaska, Princess has cancelled California and Mexico sailings on the Ruby Princess and Caribbean sailings on the Caribbean Princess through Aug. 21, as well as cancelled all remaining sailings in the Mediterranean on the Enchanted Princess through the end of the year.
Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.