The coronavirus has wreaked havoc across many industries. Perhaps the biggest to feel its impact is the cruise line industry, which became a problematic entity at the start of the pandemic.
From coast to coast, cruise ships were having trouble battling with widespread COVID-19 outbreaks aboard its vessels. This led to some boats being stuck at sea until receiving clearance. Cruises were put to a halt in the middle of March with Carnival Cruise Line coming under scrutiny for their handling of the situation. Now, the company is the first major cruise line to make an announcement for a return. On Monday, Carnival revealed their plan for eight ships to set sail in August.
Three of those boats will take off from Galveston, Texas with another three leaving Miami and the other two from Port Canaveral, Florida on Aug. 1. In its statement, the company said that they are "committed to supporting all public health efforts to manage the COVID-19 situation." It adds that a "measured approach" will be taken. In a follow-up statement, the cruise line said any resumption is "fully dependant" in cooperation with federal, state, local and international government officials. No specifics were announced in terms of changes for protocol both entering the ship and while aboard, but the company does say there will be "social gathering guidelines" taken.
During a press briefing in March, President Donald Trump discussed "the big business" that are cruise lines. "We can't let the cruise lines go out of business — that will be massive numbers of jobs for our country," Trump explained. Despite this, though, cruise lines were not included in the $2.2 trillion stimulus package. With uncertainty as to when some sense of normalcy will return to the industry and even more questions about whether or not people will return, the cruise lines are scrambling amid the pandemic, with many offering some whopping savings to entice visitors once bans are lifted.
Back on March 26, the Grand Princess came under fire after two passengers lost their lives aboard the ship due to contracting COVID-19. This occurred after earlier in the month saw more than 20 of the 3,500 passengers and crew members tested positive for coronavirus.