Experts lay out what Florida cruise passengers can expect on their next trip

'I was really surprised at the amount of families,' travel adviser says
Posted at 5:00 AM, Jul 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-22 12:53:51-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — WPTV spoke to experts to get your questions answered as cruising resumes at Florida ports.

Vaccinated or not, you can set sail again in Florida.

Some areas on the ship will be designated only for people who have had the COVID-19 vaccine, travel adviser Carolyn Leibowitz says.

MORE: Cruising in Florida is back amid pandemic; Here's what you need to know

"Like for dining -- one of the levels were for vaccinated guests and then the second dining room level was for unvaccinated guests as well as in the showroom they did the same thing," said Carolyn Leibowitz, travel advisor at Cruise Planners.

Stacie Faulds and Leibowitz recently cruised with Royal Caribbean on its first sailing out of Miami since the pandemic.

Even though she was vaccinated, Faulds said she did have to wear her mask in public areas indoors​.

"If you are walking from your cabin to dinner, I wore my mask and everyone I saw was wearing their masks too, but then when you got to dinner, you took off your mask," Faulds said.

Facebook Q&A: Cruising in Florida during pandemic

"They have signs up in areas of the ship that they do say 'have your mask on,'" Leibowitz said.

Another question that families are asking is -- can kids cruise again?

"I was really surprised at the amount of families. I thought it was very positive," Leibowitz said.

However, if you are cruising out of a port not located in Florida, you will be required to show proof of vaccination.

There are already sailing dates out of Seattle and Galveston where they are requiring children ages 12 and older to show proof of vaccination as well.

MORE: Legal battles brewing as cruising returns in Florida

Some people may have had a cruise vacation planned prior to the pandemic, and they are not ready to use those credits.

Leibowitz said if the cruise cancels the sailing, you can get a refund.

Otherwise, it's going to depend on how far along you were on the payments and which cruise line your trip was booked with.

Sailing protocols and policies are going to vary from cruise line to cruise line. Travel advisers recommend you book with a professional to pick the cruise ship and itinerary that is right for you and your family.