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St. Louisan who runs Carnival says it's 'wait and see' for full-service cruising

"Overall, we’ll have to wait and see how the rest of the world opens up, and which destinations are open and ready to receive people."
Credit: SLBJ
Arnold Donald of Carnival Corp.

ST. LOUIS — St. Louisan Arnold Donald, CEO of Carnival Corp. (NYSE: CCL), said it is 'wait and see' for the resumption of cruises from the U.S.

Carnival resumed limited cruising in Europe on its Costa and AIDA cruise lines last fall, but U.S. cruises have remained canceled, many extended deep into 2021.

"The restart of some sailings has demonstrated that we can resume cruising with enhanced safety protocols, while enabling people to have an enjoyable vacation," Donald told World Cruising. "But overall, we’ll have to wait and see how the rest of the world opens up, and which destinations are open and ready to receive people."

Other questions Donald fielded:

- How can the industry fight back against negative media coverage? "The way things have been publicized could be an additional hurdle for those who weren’t already cruising pre-Covid, but we have had success before in addressing preconceived notions and myths about cruising, and we will do it again. People will believe and trust the people they know, so through positive word of mouth from cruise enthusiasts, over time we’ll chip away at that barrier and attract new cruisers."

- How are bookings for 2021? "We are seeing a lot of pent-up demand, and bookings for the second half of 2021 have been strong. We know people are excited to cruise again, and we have generous refund and cruise credit policies in place to give them comfort."

- Has Covid-19 had a long-term impact on new ship launches? "Shipyards were impacted just as other industries and the rest of society, with temporary shutdowns to manage the community spread. There were delays, and schedules had to be adjusted, but we are still bringing on new ships. In late September last year, our Princess Cruises brand took delivery of Enchanted Princess – the first ship to be completed since the pandemic – and in early October, our UK-based brand, P&O Cruises, welcomed the new Iona to its fleet."

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