Coronavirus Update, Cruise Ship Tracker and Cancellations

Posted on Apr 20, 2022

by Markus Stumpe in Cruise News

Last updated on April 20, 2022

corona virus suspended passwort

The World Health Organization declared the Coronavirus outbreak an international public health emergency in March 2020. It forced countries to close their borders, close schools and governments to issue safety measures. As a result, the pandemic heavily impacted the travel industry globally (including the cruise sector). However, in march 2022 the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) revised their “Cruise Ship Travel Notice”, which advises everyone against traveling on cruise ships.

The CDC's Conditional Sailing Order Framework, which was extended and updated in October, has now expired. COVID-19 guidelines for cruise ships are becoming voluntary, according to the health agency. The CDC collaborates with cruise ship operators to help the industry detect, mitigate, and manage COVID-19 aboard ships. This covers everything from crew member testing protocols to what to do if there are cases on board, as well as masking and distancing guidelines. Consequently, being up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccine is strongly recommended. 

This article will help comprehend the latest regulations, check the current status of cruise ships, and have a clear view of how to cancel a planned cruise.

Latest COVID-19 Regulations

In reaction to the Omicron variation, Norwegian Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean are now following CDC's recommendations and have face mask restrictions on board. Unless eating or drinking, guests must wear masks in all indoor spaces. After the implementation of the guidelines, there are indications that the number of cases aboard ships is rapidly decreasing. Jason Liberty, the newly appointed Royal Caribbean Group CEO said: 

“The good news is that in the last several weeks, cases onboard our ships have been declining rapidly, and we now have returned to exceptionally low pre-Omicron levels”.

All Disney Cruise Line guests aged five and above must be fully vaccinated. Disney cruise line will no longer approve Rapid testing for guests under five years old. Every passenger above the age of 5 must submit a negative PCR test within 72 hours of their sail date. 

As almost all major cruise lines resumed sailing from some ports this year, they indicated that compliance with CDC's rules, and recommendations regarding vaccinations, will be enforced.

Coronavirus cruise ships tracker

Last year, cruise ships (with or without onboard confirmed cases) were being left stranded at sea or in port as countries have refused them permission to dock. Now the cruise industry is trying to rebuild after the coronavirus shutdown. Thanks to new instructions from the CDC, the development of stringent hygiene concepts and the progress on vaccinations, cruise lines are more optimistic to set sail in increasing numbers this summer.

Using our cruise ship tracker, you can see where cruise ships are located in real time. Try checking out for example the cruise ship location of Zaandam. 
Coronavirus cruise ships tracker - overview of stranded ships
Cruisewatch cruise ships tracker tool: here you can see Zaandam cruise ship location

Cruise Cancellation, Refund And Rebooking Policies: what cruisers need to know

Cruise lines have been updating their cancellation policies due to the urgent circumstances. Here’s an overview of what you need to know if you planned a cruise and need to cancel it or get a refund.

Major cruise lines cancellation policies

Carnival cancellation policy - Choose Fun with Confidence

The Carnival Corporation, owner of six cruise lines, has issued a global “Cruise With Confidence” policy to be followed by its trade cruise line companies. According to a press release from May 11th all sailings through and including July 30, 2021, are cancelled. However, the cruise line hopes to resume sailings in July of three ships from Florida and Texas, including Carnival Vista and Carnival Breeze from Galveston, and Carnival Horizon from Miami. Depending on the cruise line’s ability to sail to Alaska, the Carnival Miracle could operate cruises by July from Washington. 

Guests whose cruises are canceled are entitled to a future cruise credit, an onboard credit or a full refund. Passengers can check out their sailing status on Carnival’s website.

Royal Caribbean cancellation policy - Cruise with Confidence

Royal Caribbean Cruises extend the suspension of sailings  through June 30th, 2021 for the majority of their fleet. However, there are some exceptions regarding the resumption of sailings in July, including sailings onboard Quantum, Anthem, Adventure, Vision, Jewel, and Odyssey of the Seas.

Beginning in June 2021, the Vision of the Seas will offer sailings from Bermuda, the Jewel of the Seas will start cruises from Limassol, Cyprus and the Adventure of the Seas will resume sailings from Nassau, Bahamas. 

European sailings with the Anthem of the Seas have been put on hold. Instead the ship will offer sailings from Southampton for UK residents only. The Quantum of the Seas' Alaska sailings will be cancelled as the ship will remain in the Asia-Pacific region. The planned sailings with the Odyssey of the Seas out of Haifa, Israel starting in May are cancelled due to the unrest in Israel and the region. 

If a sailing is cancelled by the COVID-19 operations suspension, Royal Caribbean offers different refund options. The cruise line provides a 125% Future Cruise Credit for future sailings with them by September 30th, 2022. The re-booking must be completed by April 30th, 2022. Moreover, existing booking can be moved to a similar sailing next year. Guests can also get a full refund which they can expect 45 days after submitting their request.

Norwegian Cruise Lines cancellation policy - Peace of Mind 

NCL is also extending suspension for twelve of their cruise ships, such as those for Pride of America and Norwegian Bliss through July 31, 2021. Many other fall voyages on multiple ships across the fleet are suspended as well. 

The five remaining ships, Norwegian Epic, Norwegian Gem, Norwegian Getaway, Norwegian Jade, and Norwegian Joy, are returning to sail in the Caribbean and Mediterranean in August and September and are bookable now. Norwegians’ Health & Safety Programme includes mandatory vaccination requirements for all guests and crew on all sailings through October 31, 2021. 

Guests who are affected by a cancellation will automatically receive a refund as well as a 10% off coupon added to the guest's account. You can also receive a Future Cruise Credit for suspended sailings which can be used for a voyage in the next year. Besides these different refund options, the cruise line also offers a "Break Free" offer, a special deal including a discount of 30% off all cruises and other free packages on top.

What this means for cruisers

Normally, there are several options to cancel a booked cruise. You should first check out your cruise line’s cancellation policy update. There are usually no cancellation fees. Cruise companies also often offer future cruise credit. These can be used on future trips, if customers cancel their trips in a specific time frame before (usually 24 to 48 hours beforehand).

All Cruise lines cancellation policies

Carnival Cruise Lines

Celebrity Cruises

Costa Cruises

Crystal Cruises


Disney Cruise Lines

Holland America Line 


MSC Cruises 

Norwegian Cruise Lines

Oceania Cruises

P&O Cruises 

Paul Gauguin


Princess Cruises

Regent Seven Seas

Royal Caribbean 

Seabourn Azamara 


Silversea Cruises 

Viking Cruises

Windstar Cruises

Cruisewatch input

The cruise industry is an essential and robust industry, we saw that during the financial crisis. I am convinced we will recover shortly after the virus. Despite these difficult times, there are arising opportunities for cruise lovers, as cruise lines are offering the best cruise prices ever, combined with very flexible cancellation conditions. Our mission at Cruisewatch is to help cruisers cease them. Our products are being enhanced to adapt the ongoing events, and enable our customers to gain more control and flexibility in their future cruise search.

We have received increasing demand from cruise lovers asking for solutions to the current crisis, and we will keep working on our product to provide the best service. Although the future of cruising is uncertain, we try to offer some sense of positivity and control in your cruise search through our enhanced products.

  • Cruise ship tracker: In the current crisis, locating cruise ships is a great asset to view the live status of sailings in port or at sea. This should help you stay up to date with your preferred cruise ships.
  • Cruise price prediction: Although predicting cruises price is in our DNA, we don't need data to realize that now is the best time to book. Despite the crisis, prices are dropping and cruise lines are offering excellent cancellation policies and refunds for customers who have already booked, giving everybody a chance to make better cruising decisions in the near future.
  • Cruise price alert: This tool will help you follow up on the price of interesting cruises by creating automatic price drop alerts. Although operations have been cancelled until the end of July, this feature will be a great asset when things get back to normal.
  • Cruise vacancy prediction: With the help of data, we are able to predict sailings that are going to be sold out in the next 10 weeks before departure. We are reworking this feature to adapt the current events.
  • Cruise booking: You can now book a cruise directly via Combined with the price prediction service and the cruise price alert, we hope to help ease your booking experience.

The future of the cruise industry relies on a joint effort from all industry stakeholders, including us cruise lovers. We all have a part to play to ensure a future, not only in cruising, but because we care for our elders, and loved ones. And the only way is for everyone to stay safe.