coronavirus

CDC Recommends Putting Cruise Plans On Hold Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

NBC10 Responds reporter Harry Hairston spoke with a travel agent who says dozens of people are still booking cruises.

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Cassandra Doyle is busy planning spring and summer vacations. The travel agent told NBC10 she's booked dozens of cruises in recent months and only one family has canceled due to coronavirus fears.

She's not to worried, either.

"I'm packing for my own cruise," the travel agent told NBC10 Responds. She plans to ship out to the Caribbean this coming weekend.

Setting sail is a decision everyone must make for themselves.

According to new guidance from the Center's for Disease Control and Prevention: travelers, especially those with underlying health issues, should defer all cruise ship travel worldwide.

The CDC warns that "cruise ship passengers are at increased risk of person-to-person spread of infectious diseases, including COVID-19."

The federal agency goes on to recommend discussing cruise ship travel with your health care provider prior to travel and avoiding travel if you're already sick.

If you've already booked a cruise and you're uncomfortable boarding, Doyle suggests contacting your travel agent or the cruise line.

The six major cruise lines that service U.S. ports all have varying options to delay your trip. Doyle says if you don't see an option for the time you're scheduled to set sail, don't cancel right away.

According to Doyle, "If you are outside the covered timeframe, you might want to sit tight talk to the cruise line and see what course of action you may have down the road if you still decide to cancel. "

Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line, Carnival Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line, MSC Cruises, and Princess Cruises posted their evolving policies for dealing with COVID-19 on their websites. Check with your cruise line for their specific policies.

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