On Friday, Disney Cruise Line announced they have canceled sailings through February 28, 2021. The news comes on the heels of Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, and MSC Cruises also axing voyages through the same date earlier in the week.
A statement on Disney Cruise Line’s website said, “As we continue to refine our protocols for our eventual return to service, we have decided to cancel all departures through February 28, 2021. Sailings are canceled onboard the Disney Magic through February 25; the Disney Wonder and Disney Dream through February 26; and the Disney Fantasy through February 27.
Disney went on to say that guests who have reservations already paid in full will receive a future cruise credit or a full refund. Guests who have not paid their reservation in full will receive a complete refund of the money paid towards their cruise. The cruise line has also relaxed its cancellation policy for guests that have a cruise booked and change their mind about sailing.
Disney has already had Fantasy and Wonder enter U.S. waters, with Dream scheduled back into Port Canaveral next week.
Although the line hasn’t spoken much about it, over the past few months all of their ships have been at a French shipyard completing — what is assumed — retrofits to accommodate new health and safety protocols.
When the shutdown first occurred, the company’s ships were anchored off the coast of Florida until travel restrictions eased up and crew members could fly home.
With only having four vessels, Disney has a slight advantage when it comes to prepping its ships to resume cruising. For one, they will not have to layout as much cash to bring their ships up to CDC standards.
A company like Carnival Corporation, which has dozens of cruise ships, will have to spend well over half a billion dollars in retrofitting vessels. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings’ CEO Frank DelRio has already said that it will cost his company north of $300 million to retrofit their ships.
Before returning to services, each ship will have to pass a series of benchmarks set by the CDC, which will include a round of simulated sailings.