Royal Caribbean to launch ‘fully vaccinated’ Israel cruises in May
Cruise company Royal Caribbean (RCL -0.89% ) today announced its intention to begin cruises departing from Israel for the first time in May, describing them as his first “fully vaccinated” trips. Tickets go on sale in eight days, March 9, with the company’s relaunch Odyssey of the seas serving as the main cruise ship. The ship has many modern high-tech equipment and a range of on-board entertainment.
While other cruise lines plan to resume navigation with their vaccinated crews, Royal Caribbean is breaking new ground by ensuring a fully vaccinated passenger list. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu underscored this fact, saying that because of “the millions of vaccines we have brought, I am proud that Israel is the first country in the world to launch Royal Caribbean’s new flagship.”
He added that he expects the country’s COVID-19 vaccination passport program to help make the nation “the world champion of economy and tourism in the post-Corona era.”
Cruises will cross the Mediterranean to visit scenic destinations in Cyprus and Greece, with each trip starting and ending in the Israeli port city of Haifa. Greek and Cypriot tourism officials welcome the plan, with the Greeks putting in place travel protocols to facilitate Israeli visits to their shores.
Royal Caribbean the share price rose almost 400% compared to a year ago during the initial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, although its ships continue to be mostly idle and cruise revenues are close to zero. Today’s announcement of Israeli cruises, however, is the second new itinerary since plans for cruises in barbados were made public in January, suggesting the company is looking for ways to make money from live operations sooner than standard routes could offer.
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