CDC urges all travelers, regardless of vaccination status, to avoid cruising

Dec 30, 2021

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control recommends that travelers avoid cruising, as the agency raises its travel health notice to the highest level on Thursday.

The CDC urges that all travelers avoid cruise travel, reflecting the increase in COVID-19 cases onboard cruise ships due to the omicron variant. In recent days, there’s been a meteoric rise in positive cases identified both on cruise ships and on land across the U.S.

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

According to the agency, even those who’ve been fully vaccinated and boosted should reconsider cruising. The tight quarters on cruise ships increase the risk of spreading COVID-19, it said.

Before Thursday, the CDC had ranked cruising as a level three on its scale from one to four.

The cruise and travel industry reacted forcefully to the news, particularly as the industry has tried to rebound from a difficult few years.

“The decision by the CDC to raise the travel level for cruise is particularly perplexing considering that cases identified on cruise ships consistently make up a very slim minority of the total population onboard—far fewer than on land—and the majority of those cases are asymptomatic or mild in nature, posing little to no burden on medical resources onboard or onshore,” Cruise Lines International Association said in a statement to TPG.

The U.S. Travel Association, an organization representing the travel industry, said it hoped the advisory would be “brief and temporary.”

“Advising travelers to ‘avoid cruise travel, regardless of vaccination status’ is akin to a travel ban that seems counter-intuitive to the Administration’s lifting of the travel ban on South Africa and surrounding countries,” executive vice president Tori Emerson Barnes said in a statement.

In addition to cruising, many nations worldwide also hold level four travel warnings from the CDC.

The move comes as the number of COVID-19 cases on cruise ships has risen during the holiday season. Some ships have been forced to adjust their ports of call during travel, with some scrapping plans for multiple days at sea.

If you do decide to cruise, the CDC recommends getting tested both before and after your trip, regardless of vaccination status or symptoms.

Those who aren’t vaccinated are recommended to self-quarantine for five days after cruise travel.

Featured photo by Daniel Piraino/EyeEm/Getty Images

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs up to two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® after you apply through any Authorized Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
17.24%-26.24% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.