(2 p.m. EST) -- In this week's edition of our video series, "This Week in Cruise News," Cruise Critic's Managing Editor Chris Gray Faust talks about the big news concerning Alaska 2021 cruises, gives an update on the first North America line to require a mandatory COVID-19 vaccine and also what the CDC mask requirement means for cruisers.
In case you missed it, you can also check out last week's video, where UK Managing Editor Adam Coulter reveals the results of a cruiser survey, talks about cruise lines that are vaccinating crew, and details some exciting news from Azamara.
Hello cruisers! I'm Chris Gray Faust, Cruise Critic's Managing Editor, with this week's cruise news roundup.
It has been a very busy week for the cruise industry, with lots of news. So make sure you watch until the end so you get all of it.
First, Transport Canada has issued an order banning cruise ships from Canadian waters through February 2022. Yes -- next year. What this means is that almost all cruises to Alaska for this summer -- as well as those that go to New England -- will also have to be canceled.
That's really devastating news for the tourism industry in Alaska and many small Canadian ports in Nova Scotia, and the maritime provinces.
Now, some cruise lines have said that they may run their Alaska land tours instead. Both Princess and Holland America have lodges throughout Alaska, at Denali and other wilderness areas. They also operate a scenic train that runs between many tourist towns. The lines are also asking Transport Canada to reconsider this ban. Nonetheless today's news is heartbreaking for people who planned to cruise Alaska this year, and we will keep you updated on what's going on there.
in other news, American Queen Steamboat Company and its sister company Victory Cruise Lines became the first in North America to mandate a vaccine for both passengers and crew before sailing. This makes sense, given that many people that might sail these lines are older and starting to get vaccines now. The lines also have smaller ships so it's an easier requirement to follow.
Finally, the CDC said this week that its mask mandate on transportation extends to cruise ships and cruise terminals. Cruise lines have already said that masks will likely be a factor when service resumes, but the CDC regulation makes things clearer.
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