CDC lowers COVID-19 level for cruise ship travel

US authority decreases travel health notice from High to Moderate

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has wound back its COVID-19 Cruise Travel Health Notice (THN) from Level 3 to Level 2.

Level 2 is considered a “Moderate” level of COVID-19 compared to the previous “High” level. The decreased status also varies by suggesting that unvaccinated travellers who are at increased risk for severe illness from COVID should avoid non-essential travel.

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The drop in status announced on Monday [14 March 2022] in the US was based on reported data by cruise ships and health authorities, to assist with making determinations about THN levels.

According to the CDC’s primary criteria for cruise ship travel, the cumulative new COVID-19 crew case counts in the past fortnight decreased from between 1,000-2,000 (Level 3) to 500-999 (Level 2).

Cruise travellers are however warned that the THN level recorded now may change by the time they cruise.

Nine destinations in the Caribbean were also downgauged from the CDC’s travel recommendations advisory, from ‘Level 4: Very High’

to ‘Level 3: High’. Those destinations included Cuba, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, the Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Turks and Caicos, Dominican Republic. One destination, Mauritius, was elevated to the ‘avoid travel’ Level 4 status – the same rating the CDC issued for travel to Australia in mid-January and New Zealand earlier this month.

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