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Royal Caribbean Group’s European Brand to Require Booster Shots

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German cruise line Hapag-Lloyd Cruises, which Royal Caribbean Group owns 50 percent of, has announced that in February it will begin requiring that guests have their booster shot if it’s been over three months since their original vaccination.

The cruise line’s current rule, since fall 2021, is that all passengers 18 and older be fully vaccinated with either a two-course or one-shot vaccination. Beginning February 1, the age requirement for vaccination (not including boosters) will go down to 12.

hanseatic nature

Hanseatic Nature (Photo courtesy of Hapag-Lloyd)

The booster requirement will apply to all passengers over 18 years old if their initial vaccination was more than three months prior to the start of the cruise.

Booster shots will be required for sailings starting on these dates:

  • Europa 2‘s cruises starting with the February 14-28 voyage
  • Hanseatic Spirit‘s sailings starting with the February 19-March 6 cruise
  • Hanseatic Nature‘s voyages starting with the February 19-March 8 sailing
  • Hanseatic Inspiration‘s cruises starting with the February 24-March 16 voyage
  • Europa‘s sailings starting with the February 24-March 9 cruise

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Proof of basic vaccination against COVID-19 as well as the booster must be presented upon embarkation, either on a physical vaccination certificate or the digital one. Hapag-Lloyd specifically notes that proof of recovery without additional proof of vaccination is not sufficient.

Guests who have been fully vaccinated with either a two-dose course or the one-dose Johnson&Johnson shot less than three months prior to the sailing do not need a booster to sail. Passengers must be vaccinated at least two weeks prior to sailing.

hanseatic spirit hapag-lloyd

Hanseatic Spirit (Photo courtesy of VARD)

The line says it’s implementing the new requirement with the purpose of “further increasing safety for passengers and crew and based on the current vaccination recommendation of STIKO, which recommends a booster vaccination after three months.”

Because different destinations may have their own additional requirements, Hapag-Lloyd says that specific rules for each cruise will be sent to guests with their travel documents.

The vaccination and booster requirements will be in place until further notice.

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