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Cruise lines to give coronavirus tests to all passengers and crew to restart sailing in U.S.

Cruise lines to give coronavirus tests to all passengers and crew to restart sailing in U.S.
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Cruise lines said they plan to test all passengers and crew for the coronavirus before boarding ships as they prepare to resume sailing in the U.S. 

The Cruise Lines International Association, a trade group that represents 95 percent of global ocean-going cruise capacity, shared the plan Monday as cruise lines prepare to start sailing again after pausing trips amid the coronavirus pandemic, The Associated Press reported.

The association’s plan will head to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) which will decide whether to lift the no-sail order in place through Sept. 30. In addition to the CDC’s order, the Cruise Lines International Association has also issued a voluntary suspension through October, the AP noted. 

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Association President Adam Goldstein said the plan requires testing passengers and crews but does not specify the style of coronavirus test that companies must use, the AP reported. Passengers and crew will have to test negative to board, according to the newswire. 

The association reportedly said its members will also require passengers and crew to wear masks while onboard whenever physical distancing can’t be maintained, according to the AP. 

The plan also permits limited shore excursions and requires passengers to wear masks and stay apart from others during the excursions. Passengers who don’t comply won't be allowed to reboard the ship, according to the AP. 

Royal Caribbean and Norwegian’s Healthy Sail Panel also submitted a 66-page report to the CDC on Monday with dozens of recommendations on how to prevent or mitigate the spread of COVID-19 on ships. The report includes testing passengers and crew members, as well as daily temperature checks and requiring face coverings.