Living in Florida, we are never too far from the water. That means that there are plenty of beach days! It also means that we are not too far from several different cruise ports. Cruising is big business in the state, and it’s a business that has been put on hold because of Coronavirus. I’ve watched with a heavy heart as the major cruise lines keep pushing back the dates for their next sailings.
That doesn’t mean that the cruise industry is sunk (pun intended). Since the industry shut down the ships have been deep cleaned, and officials have been working to come up with plans to start up again while keeping people safe.
Which brings me to my question, what would it take for you to feel comfortable about cruising once again? I’ve thought about this a lot, partly because I love cruising. I’m by no means an expert, I’ve only cruised twice, and both times it was with Disney Cruise Line. I’ve seen the lengths that Disney has taken to keep people as safe as possible in the theme parks, and I have no doubt that the fleet won’t sail again until they can provide the same peace of mind on the ships. What I say here is nothing official, these are my own thoughts on the subject.
Once cruises start again, we can expect to see some changes. Capacity will probably be limited, at least at first. I’ve heard unofficially that the ships will be at anywhere from 30 to 70 percent capacity.
Temperature checks are a given before boarding a ship. I think that this is a step that many places will decide to keep, even after COVID-19 is a bad memory. I can also see daily temperature checks in place, at least for the first few months. Anyone with a fever would be isolated and monitored.
If a rapid COVID-19 test becomes readily available, I can picture that as a requirement before boarding. If someone tests positive, it would be run again, since there have been cases of false positives. This could help to put people’s minds at ease.
I am a huge proponent of masks, and I would be willing to wear one in the common areas. Of course they would not be required in the staterooms, and masks can’t be worn while eating or drinking, but I would be happy with a guideline that’s similar to what is currently in place at Walt Disney World. The hallways are so narrow, social distancing would be difficult when getting from one place to another.
One thing that I would be all for is four seatings in the main dining rooms instead of two. Maybe there could be a choice between lunch and dinner as the main meal of the day. They could add shows as well, and then you could sign up for a time to watch. This would allow them to keep the capacity down in the theater.
Cabanas could possibly stay a buffet. They would just need to have someone in each section to put the food on the plate. It could also change to full service, either way would work.
One thing that I’m certain of is that the elevators will be a mess! People wait a long time, and then crowd in. They will have to limit the number of people allowed in an elevator at any one time. I always take the stairs, it helps me to avoid the typical cruise weight gain, but this is going to be a nightmare for some people.
These are just a few things that I’ve been thinking about when it comes to cruising. I would cruise again, especially on Disney Cruise Line. I know that they will go above and beyond to keep passengers safe. I miss it.