Royal Caribbean asks unvaccinated guests to get travel insurance for Florida cruises

Royal Caribbean International will require unvaccinated guests over 12 years of age who are travelling from Florida to show proof of insurance that covers Covid-19 related medical expenses, quarantine and evacuation, the company said on Tuesday June 29th.

RCI announced the policy after two unvaccinated teenagers tested positive on the Adventure of the Seas (IMO 9167227); two others were infected on the Celebrity Millennium (IMO 9189419) earlier in June. The cruise line took care of expenses in these cases.

The Florida legislature has banned companies from requiring to show proof of vaccines. This has put the cruise line operators in a difficult position as the Federal CDC requires that cruise operators show that a majority of its passengers and crew are vaccinated before setting sail.

The insurance policy requirement is that travellers must have a minimum of $25,000 per person for medical expenses and $50,000 per person in travel expenses, Royal Caribbean said. Proof of travel insurance will be a condition of boarding and must be shown at check in. The changes apply to sailings from Aug. 1 through December 31st.

The new rules neatly sidestep the Florida requirements, because if insurers prove reluctant to insure unvaccinated travellers against Covid-related costs, the cruise line can point out quite legitimately that it is not barring unvaccinated passengers, but ones who are uninsured.

2001-built, Bahamas-flagged, 138,193 gt Adventure Of The Seas is owned by Adventure Of The Seas Inc care of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd of Miami, Florida, USA. It is entered with Steamship Mutual (Americas Division) on behalf of Adventure Of The Seas Inc. 2000-built, 91,011 gt Celebrity Millennium is owned by Millennium Inc care of Celebrity Cruises Inc of Miami, Florida. ISM is RCL Cruises Ltd of Weybridge, Surrey. It is entered with Gard P&I on behalf of Millennium Inc