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CDC Lowers Warning Level For This Big Activity

But some major precautions still remain.

Traveling on cruise ships is officially a bit safer, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said this week. The CDC has revised its warning on cruise travel, downgrading it from Level 4, which recommends avoiding all travel, to Level 3, which encourages travelers to be fully vaccinated before traveling. Read on to see what else they had to say about travel—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You Have "Long" COVID and May Not Even Know It.

Unvaccinated Travelers Should Avoid Cruise Ships

The action came just more than a week before the first U.S. cruise in more than 15 months is scheduled to depart on June 26 from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on Celebrity Cruises' Celebrity Edge.

"Since the virus spreads more easily between people in close quarters aboard ships, the chance of getting COVID-19 on cruise ships is high. It is especially important that people who are not fully vaccinated with an increased risk of severe illness avoid travel on cruise ships, including river cruises," the CDC said.

However, the agency still advises that unvaccinated travelers avoid travel on cruise ships.

The CDC also recommends that all cruise travelers be tested for COVID-19 one to three days before their trip and three to five days after their trip. Unvaccinated passengers should self-quarantine for seven days after a cruise, even if they test negative. If they don't get tested, the agency recommends that they should self-quarantine for 10 days following a cruise.

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Vaccine requirements tested

Most cruise companies are requiring passengers to be vaccinated against the coronavirus—except those departing from Florida, where a recently enacted state law prevents them from requiring proof of vaccination to board.

The Miami Herald reported that Celebrity Cruises, the first company scheduled to resume U.S. cruises, has created a Florida caveat to its rule that all passengers 16 years old or older must be vaccinated. On cruises departing from Florida, the company says on its website, "If you decline or are unable to show proof of vaccination at boarding you will be treated as unvaccinated and you will be subject to additional costs, restrictions, and protocols that we will advise you of as soon as they have been determined."

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Masks still required, even if fully vaccinated

No matter your point of departure, the CDC has not eased its guidance on face masks. "CDC has issued an order that requires face masks to be worn by all travelers while on public transportation, including all passengers on board and all personnel operating maritime conveyances traveling into, within, or out of the United States," the agency said on its website. "Masks are also required at all U.S. transportation hubs, including seaports and ferry terminals." Now, to get through life at your healthiest, don't miss these First Signs You Have a Serious Illness.

Michael Martin
Michael Martin is a New York City-based writer and editor whose health and lifestyle content has also been published on Beachbody and Openfit. A contributing writer for Eat This, Not That!, he has also been published in New York, Architectural Digest, Interview, and many others. Read more about Michael
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