Carnival Cruise Line will extend its sailing suspension in North America through the end of September, the cruise line announced Monday.
“During this unprecedented pause in our business, we have continued to assess the operating environment and confer with public health, government and industry officials,” Carnival Cruise Line President Christine Duffy told cruisers and travel agents in a letter sent Monday announcing all cruises are canceled through Sept. 30.
The news comes on the heels of an announcement from industry group Cruise Lines International Association that member cruise lines have voluntarily extended the suspension of U.S. cruise operations until Sept. 15 amid coronavirus concerns.
CLIA’s member lines carry 95% of the world’s ocean-going cruisers. The new order applies to all CLIA member ships that can carry 250 or more passengers.
“We have watched with great interest as commerce, travel and personal activities have begun to start back up, and once we do resume service, we will take all necessary steps to ensure the health and safety of our guests, crew and the communities we bring our ships to in order to maintain public confidence in our business,” Duffy said in the letter.
Roger Frizzell, spokesman for Carnival Corp., told USA TODAY on Thursday, that though health protocols and ship capacity levels have not yet been announced, “there is certainly some time to finalize that while we are at a pause.”
Cruisers who want to rebook for a later date will get a future cruise credit and either a $300 or $600 cruise credit or can receive a full refund. They have until May 31, 2021, to decide.
Carnival Corp., the parent company of Carnival Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Holland America Line and others announced last week it would take a phased approach to returning ships to sailing.
“We are going to be patient in our approach and learn from the best available information we are going to have before we sail,” Frizzell said.
Carnival Cruise Line, which has a fleet of 27 ships, also noted in its announcement that the line is completing the repatriation of nearly 29,000 crew members to more than 100 countries.
Contributing: Morgan Hines
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Carnival cruises canceled through September amid coronavirus