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Hopes dashed as Morrison’s future COVID-19 plan does not include cruising.

August 3, 2021 Cruise News, Headline News No Comments

Cruising in Australia has suffered a major blow to its restart, even domestically, with PM Scott Morrison’s post National Cabinet announcement on future Covid-19 measures and a phased easing of travel restrictions last week, very disappointingly, not mentioning cruising at all.

In the meantime, CLIA CEO Joel Katz said in a media release that Australia’s plan needs to include cruising, adding that an agreement on future travel requirements for Australians will be a positive step forward for the tourism sector, but a framework must include provisions for domestic cruising in order to save thousands of Australian jobs and businesses.

Katz also said governments needed to include carefully managed domestic cruise operations within the early stages of their plans, adding, “Cruise lines globally have committed to stringent new health protocols in response to Covid-19 and these measures are already working successfully in other countries overseas,” and “Australia is now the only major cruise market in the world where no progress has been made towards a responsible cruise resumption”, adding, “We need urgent action from governments to save jobs and revive economic opportunities for communities around the country.”

Mr Katz said Australia’s ongoing cruise suspension had already cost the local economy an estimated $6 billion in losses and put more than 18,000 jobs in doubt, adding, “The cruise industry has done an enormous amount of work to lay out health protocols to underpin a responsible resumption of cruising in Australia,” and “We now need governments at the state and federal levels to agree on a framework that sets out the pathway forward for cruising as part of their wider plans for travel.”

With the next review of the international travel and cruising ban scheduled for September 17, 2021 but with the current outbreak and lockdown situation in New South Wales and South East Queensland little hope is being held out for any changes to international travel and even domestic cruising on September 17, 2021.

The next review date after that is December 17, 2021, but based on the PM’s plan only the 70% level of vaccinations is estimated to have been reached by then, but 80% is required to open borders and presumably cruising, so considered highly unlikely anything will change them either.  We can only hope and pray!

A report by John Alwyn-Jones, Cruise Editor, Global Travel Media and Global Cruise News.

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