Great news! Carnival Cruise ships are back in the water! We are your resource for the most up to date information around vaccination & testing requirements, whether you will need a mask, taking shore excursions, and health & safety measurements taken by the cruise line.
Carnival has announced New testing requirements for fully vaccinated guests went into effect on August 14, 2021. Since the CDC has recently revised testing requirements for vaccinated guests which go into effect on 09/13/21, guests on sailings departing as of 09/13/21 - 10/31/21 will be informed that their pre-cruise PCR/Antigen test must now be taken within 2 days prior to sailing.
Carnival realizes some guests are having a challenge getting a pre-cruise COVID-19 test, especially considering the 2 day new guidance. They are working to set up mobile testing sites at all embarkation homeports to conduct a rapid test the day before or day of departure. This process is still in the works and not available at this time. More details will follow.
Quick checklist of what you need prior to boarding your cruise. More details can be found below:
- Pre-cruise vaccine attestation question email within 24 hours of booking (or cruise will be cancelled by Carnival) if unvaccinated guest is on reservation you will need to submit a request for capacity-managed (vaccination) exemption within 48 hours of making reservation.
- Negative viral COVID-19 test taken within 3 days of departure
- Complete online health questionnaire 72 hours prior to sailing
- Vaccine card if vaccinated, Travel Insurance Requirement for unvaccinated guests on Florida & Texas based ships
- Masks are now required for all guests regardless of vaccine status
- Shore excursion requirements
Guests traveling on the following ships will have to be full vaccinated and present a negative viral COVID-19 Test taken within 3 days of departure.
- Carnival Vista® from Galveston; Sailings started July 3, 2021
- Carnival Horizon® from Miami; Sailings started July 4, 2021
- Carnival Breeze® from Galveston; Sailings started July 15, 2021
- Carnival Miracle® from Seattle; Sailings July 27 through September 14, 2021
- Mardi Gras™️ from Port Canaveral; Sailings started July 31, 2021
- Carnival Magic® from Port Canaveral; Sailings started August 7, 2021
- Carnival Sunrise® from Miami; Sailings started August 14, 2021
- Carnival Panorama® from Long Beach; Sailings started August 21, 2021
- Carnival Glory® from New Orleans; Sailings starting September 5, 2021
- Carnival Pride® from Baltimore; Sailings starting September 12, 2021 *(see below)
- Carnival Dream® from Galveston; Sailings starting September 19, 2021
- Carnival Miracle® from Long Beach; Sailings starting September 27, 2021
- Carnival Conquest® from Miami; Sailings starting October 8, 2021
- Carnival Freedom® from Miami; Sailings starting October 9, 2021
- Carnival Elation® from Port Canaveral; Sailings starting October 11, 2021
- Carnival Sensation® from Mobile; Sailings starting October 21, 202
Terms and Conditions from Checklist
1. Pre-cruise vaccine attestation email and Non-vaccination exemption:
- Pre-cruise vaccine attestation email: In order for Carnival to manage the vaccinated sailings, it is very important for all guests to be on the look-out for a one question pre-cruise vaccine attestation email which needs to be completed for every person on the reservation. Guests will be asked to update their profile on Carnival.com with their current contact information as we will be communicating through a series of emails. Please read all correspondence and complete all requests for pre-boarding information. Failure to comply with pre-cruise information requests on a timely basis will result in cancellation.
- If you did not receive the vaccination you will need to complete the capacity-managed (vaccination) exemption form within 48 hours of making a new reservation:
- Requests will be processed after the booking is paid in full, in sailing date order, and once we have finalized the estimated vaccinated guest count.
- If you are an unvaccinated guest, your reservation is not considered confirmed unless you receive an approved exemption, which will be issued within 14 days of sailing.
- Any unvaccinated guests whose exemptions are approved will be required to review and agree to all the restrictions and protocols listed above prior to boarding the ship.
- If Carnival Cruise Line is unable to approve the request, guests will have the option to cancel the unvaccinated guest(s) from a reservation, move to a future sailing date or cancel with a full refund to the original form of payment.
We recognize that unvaccinated guests will face temporary restrictions during the initial phase of our restart, along with additional costs for testing and insurance and are optimistic these protocols will continue to evolve over time.
2. Temporary COVID-19 Testing Requirements for sailings up to and including October 31, 2021. (New testing requirements for fully vaccinated guests will go into effect on August 14, 2021)
- ALL fully vaccinated guests to present a negative viral COVID-19 test (PCR or antigen) taken within 3 days of their embarkation on all sailings.
- Fully vaccinated guests will be required to provide proof of this negative COVID-19 test along with proof of full vaccination at least 14 days prior to embarkation upon arrival in the terminal and can then proceed on board.
- Please note that testing in the terminal will not be available so it’s critical that you have your negative test results with you at cruise check-in. We will not be able to accommodate guests without proof of a negative test.
- *Guests sailing on Carnival Pride 14 day journey, will need to be fully vaccinated AND present the negative results of a PCR test taken between 72 and 24 hours at embarkation
3. Complete online health questionnaire 72 hours prior to sailing
- All guests will be asked to complete an online health questionnaire 72 hours prior to sailing and undergo enhanced pre-embarkation health screenings, which will include confirmation of their health screening responses, validation of their vaccination documents and any required COVID-19 testing.
- We will refer anyone with signs and symptoms of COVID-19, or who are identified at-risk, for additional medical screening before allowing them to board. Secondary screenings (and health checks throughout the cruise) will be performed when necessary. Contact tracing is planned for every cruise.
4. Vaccine information & what to expect if you are unvaccinated.
Requirements for cruise ships to enter ports outside the U.S. continue to evolve and Carnival Cruise Line must operate in full compliance with these regulations. Most recently, Bahamas and Caribbean have similar limitations stating that all guests 12 and over must be vaccinated to enter their port.
Consequently, effective with embarkations on or after August 28 from all U.S. Atlantic and Gulf home ports, vaccine exemptions will be limited to children under 12, and those with a medical condition that does not allow them to be vaccinated.
What you need to have to apply for vaccine exemptions:
- The guest’s birth certificate or passport (for children), or a letter from a medical provider stating that the individual cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons, must be presented at check-in, along with the exemption approval letter from Carnival.
- Unfortunately, all other vaccine exemptions previously granted for upcoming sailings cannot be fulfilled due to these new limitations.
- If you have already received an exemption approval for anyone in your party that does not meet the requirements of these two categories (under 12 or proven medical condition that prohibits vaccination), that exemption is no longer valid.
What Vaccines are accepted?
- For cruises departing the U.S., the CDC requires both vaccines in a 2-dose series to be of the same type. They also accept mixing mRNA vaccines only (Pfizer and Moderna).
Concerning Canadian Vaccinated Guests - The Canadian government is encouraging the mixing of vaccines (e.g., first dose of Pfizer, second dose of Moderna). Carnival does not recognize these passengers to be fully vaccinated; and as such, these customers will be treated as unvaccinated guests. Additionally, all Canadians are required to get tested before reentering Canada (including vaccinated Canadians); however, Carnival does not offer tests to vaccinated passengers. This means Canadian guests will need to find a testing site after disembarking the ship.
What proof of Vaccine do I need to provide?
Vaccinated cruises are available for guests who have received their final dose of an approved COVID-19 vaccine at least 14 days prior to embarkation day and have proof of vaccination. You will also need to provide proof of vaccination at the terminal in advance of boarding, as follows:
- Guests must bring their original vaccination record issued by the country’s health authority that administered the vaccination (i.e., U.S. CDC's Vaccination Record Card). Copies or photos are not accepted.
- The name and birth date on the vaccination card must match the guest’s travel documents and show the guest is fully vaccinated. Vaccine type, dates administered, and lot numbers must be clearly visible. Vaccination dates must indicate the guest has completed the required doses no later than 14 days prior to the sailing date.
- Alternatively, guests may present a digital COVID-19 Certificate (QR code acceptable) and a record of COVID-19 vaccination from a healthcare provider (original digital email accepted), personal electronic health record or government Immunization Information System record.
Travel Insurance Requirement for Unvaccinated Guests - Florida & Texas Based Ships -
- In addition, sailings departing from Florida, & Texas, guests must also show proof of travel insurance coverage during check-in.
- This requirement is currently being waived for children under 12 who are ineligible for a vaccine. However, parents are advised that purchasing travel insurance for their children is strongly recommended.
- Each unvaccinated guest must provide proof of a valid travel insurance policy at the time of check-in that has a minimum of US$10,000, per person, in medical expense coverage and US$30,000 coverage for emergency medical evacuation and without COVID-19 exclusions.
- The insurance policy must name the unvaccinated guest as the policy holder or beneficiary and may be purchased from a travel insurance company of the guest’s choosing or through Carnival Vacation Protection™, which includes the required coverage.
- Guests without the required proof of insurance will not be permitted to sail and no refund will be provided.
Carnival has not announced a vaccine or testing policy for other ships that might return to service in the coming months.
We do not collect vaccination cards or store proof of vaccination. Those cruise lines that have vaccine requirements to cruise will likely ask for proof at the time of boarding.
Please note that these guidelines are subject to change.
5. Masks are required for all passengers
In a temporary change of policy, Carnival Cruise Lines will now require masks for all passengers, both vaccinated and unvaccinated, in certain areas indoors onboard its ships. The new onboard mask policy goes into effect for all cruises departing on or after Saturday, August 7, 2021 up to and including October 31, 2021.
- It is strongly encouraged that all guests wear face masks when indoors, particularly guests who are unvaccinated including children under the age of 12 who should wear masks in public areas, except when eating or drinking.
- All guests ages 2 and older will be required to wear face masks in elevators and in designated indoor entertainment areas, all retail shops, and in the casino, except when eating or drinking.
- Guests will be required to wear face masks prior to being seated in main dining rooms.
- You may occasionally be asked to wear a mask in other designated areas where larger number of guests may congregate.
- As a reminder, masks are required during embarkation and debarkation in the terminal, and masks must also be worn during the debarkation process on board.
- We recommend guests wash or replace their mask daily and choose a good quality double-layer cloth or medical-grade mask.
- Please note that bandanas, neck gaiters and masks with exhaust valves will not be accepted as a substitute for a face mask and that visors and face shields are only permitted when used in addition to a mask
It is recommended that unvaccinated guests maintain physical distancing as follows:
- Indoors – Remain at least 5 feet from others not in your cruise companion group. As such, we encourage you to take the stairs whenever possible, if you are able to do so.
- Outdoors – Remain at least 3 feet from others when not wearing a mask and not in your cruise companion group.
6. Shore Excursions
It will be necessary to follow the health protocols for every port we visit, which are under the control of local government and subject to change without prior notice.
- There is no independent sightseeing in ports of call for unvaccinated guests, who may only debark if booked on a Carnival-sponsored bubble tour.
- Guests must follow all local protocols and we cannot guarantee that additional restrictions will not be imposed by local authorities in the destinations we visit.
- Carnival-approved bubble tours are excursions that operate in a controlled environment. In the event you choose not to purchase a bubble tour, bubble tours are sold out, or cancelled due to weather, unvaccinated guests will have to remain on board for that call.
- Guests will be escorted from the ship to their excursion and back to the ship immediately upon return from the shore excursion. No unscheduled stops are permitted (i.e. gift shops, bars, restaurants, etc.).
- Guests participating in a bubble tour, regardless of vaccination status, must follow all tour protocols and local guidance regarding testing/screening, mask wearing, physical distancing, etc.
- Guests who do not comply with the controlled environment of a bubble tour will be removed from the tour.
- In private ports of call, such as Half Moon Cay and Princess Cays, unvaccinated guests may participate in independent exploration or purchase any of our tours.
These restrictions are under the control of local government and are subject to change without advance notice, so we encourage guests to come prepared for potential mask requirements ashore.
Health & Safety on the Ship
Ships and terminals will undergo a thorough sanitization between sailings and guests will be encouraged to use the hand-washing sinks and hand sanitizer dispensers at venue entrances and in high-traffic areas throughout the ship. Guests will also be asked to follow health information about the ways to stay healthy on board and when ashore.
Carnival has not yet made an announcement about how buffets will operate.
Things to know:
- All guests and crew embarking a ship will likely undergo enhanced pre-embarkation health screening in accordance with prevailing health best practices, such as health questionnaires and touch-free temperature checks as appropriate
- Ships have introduced enhanced fresh air distribution into public spaces and staterooms and HEPA filtration systems to key areas such as Medical Centers and dedicated isolation rooms
- Rapid response and contact tracing plans exist in case of on-board illness
- Ships have a team of highly-trained medical staff including qualified doctors and nurses who have experience in caring for a broad range of medical conditions and medical centers with both outpatient and inpatient facilities including critical care capabilities
- There are enhanced Health & Safety Trainings and Continued Education for Crew Members focusing on COVID-19
Check here for the most up to date information on each Cruise Destination, including vaccination requirements, mask mandates, shore excursions, and insurance requirements.