CDC reduces the percentage threshold requirement for "highly vaccinated voyages" from 95 to 90

   May 6, 2022 ,   Cruise Industry

The USA's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) relaxed a key COVID-era cruise regulation on Thursday, May 5, allowing more unvaccinated adults and kids to sail on ships designated as "highly vaccinated." 

Now, the regulation requires 90% of passengers to be vaccinated for a cruise to be considered "highly vaccinated." That is down from 95%, according to the Covid-19 Program for Cruise Ships Operating in U.S. Waters of the Centers. 

The 90% threshold applies to cruisers who are 5+ years of age.

Crew vaccination requirements remain unchanged at the 95% threshold. 

According to the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the decision recognized protective measures cruise ships have taken during the crisis. A CLIA spokeswoman said the change was particularly notable because it would allow for a cruise company to carry more families sailing with kids who are not vaccinated. 

The change comes just two days after Carnival Spirit experienced a Covid outbreak during her 16-day Panama Canal voyage from PortMiami to Seattle. According to CCL-Carnival Cruise Line, most cases were asymptomatic and there were no serious health issues.