Norwegian Cruse Line’s Gem ship will return to New York after a 10-night Caribbean voyage was canceled midway through Thursday due to “COVID-related circumstances.”
THOUSANDS OF US FLIGHTS CANCELLED, THOUSANDS MORE DELAYED AS WINTER STORM DROPS SOUTHEAST
A spokesperson for Norwegian told FOX Business that the ship docked overnight in Philipsburg, St. Maarten following the decision and would return to New York “soon”. The company did not provide an estimated time of arrival or other details of the situation.
In addition to the Gem, Norwegian has canceled the following 2022 trips:
- Norwegian Pearl cruises with embarkation dates up to and including January 17
- Norwegian Dawn cruises with embarkation dates through January 18
- Norwegian Getaway Cruises with Embarkation Dates Through Jan. 19
- Norwegian Escape Cruises with embarkation dates up to and including January 22
- Norwegian Joy cruises with embarkation dates up to and including January 22
- Norwegian Breakaway Cruises with Embarkation Dates Through Jan. 23
- Norwegian Sky cruises with embarkation dates up to and including February 25
- Pride of America cruises with embarkation dates through February 26 inclusive
- Norwegian Jade cruises with embarkation dates through March 3 inclusive
- Norwegian Star cruises with embarkation dates up to and including March 19
- Norwegian Sun cruises with embarkation dates up to and including April 19
- Norwegian Spirit cruises with embarkation dates up to and including April 23
All Norwegian passengers affected by the cancellations will receive a full refund of their travel fare in the form of original payment for the amount paid. Additionally, guests will receive a future cruise credit that can be applied to departures through May 31, 2023.
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The latest cancellation comes after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Framework for Conditional Sailing Order expired on Saturday. The agency has now moved to a voluntary COVID-19 risk mitigation program for cruise ships.
The CDC’s Marine Unit will work closely with participating cruise ships, monitoring COVID-19 preventative measures and onboard cases through enhanced data collection and daily inspections. Meanwhile, vessels that operate in U.S. waters and sail international routes that choose not to participate in the program will be designated as gray under the agency name. Cruise Ship Color Status Web Page, stating that the CDC has not reviewed or confirmed the cruise ship operator’s health and safety protocols. Those who sail only in US waters will not be listed.