1:00 pm: Royal Caribbean Intl has temporarily suspended its port calls in Mexico. The decision was made in an abundance of caution, and to allow additional time to better understand the full impact of the Swine Flu. The temporary suspension involves four of our ships currently making regularly scheduled port call in Mexico - Enchantment of the Seas, Freedom of the Seas, Liberty of the Seas and Mariner of the Seas. It also involves one additional ship scheduled to make upcoming Mexico port calls as it repositions - Radiance of the Seas. The revised sailings for each ship will be as follows:
Enchantment of the Seas
-- Its 5-night sailings that depart Port Everglades on Mondays will replace their Cozumel port calls with additional time in Key West and an additional day at sea.
-- Its 4-night sailings that depart Port Everglades on Thursdays will replace their Cozumel port calls with additional time in Key West and port calls in Nassau, Bahamas.
-- Its 5-night sailings that depart Port Everglades on Saturdays will replace their Cozumel port calls with port calls in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.
Freedom of the Seas
-- Its 7-night sailings that depart Port Canaveral on Sundays will replace their Cozumel port calls with additional time in George Town, Cayman Islands, and an additional day at sea.
Liberty of the Seas
-- Its 7-night sailings that depart Miami on Saturdays will replace their Cozumel port calls with port calls in Coco Cay, Bahamas.
Mariner of the Seas
-- Its 7-night sailings that depart Los Angeles on Sundays will sail a fully revised itinerary, visiting Canada and the U.S. West Coast. It will now visit San Francisco, California, Mondays from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Victoria, British Columbia, Wednesdays from noon to 10 p.m.; and Seattle, Washington, Thursdays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
-- The ship's May 10 sailing will feature a port call in Astoria, Oregon, rather than San Francisco.
At the current time, our revised itineraries for Mariner of the Seas are scheduled to take place up to and including the ship's June 14 sailing. Mariner of the Seas guests booked on a revised sailing are encouraged to contact their travel agent or Royal Caribbean for compensation and rebooking options. We have established a special help desk to assist these guests. The toll-free is: 1-800-327-6700. Please note that the weather on the revised itinerary is considerably colder. Gests should remember to pack clothing that is appropriate for this new itinerary.
Radiance of the Seas
-- On its current sailing, it will replace its port calls in Huatulco, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, with an extended, overnight port call in San Diego, California, and additional time at sea.
Like our guests, we take all health matters seriously. Although authorities have not raised specific concerns regarding the ports we visit in Mexico, we want to err on the side of caution. We’re taking proactive steps onboard our ships to help ensure the health and well-being of our guests and crew members, and this is just one more step in that process. We apologize for the disruption these changes will cause our guests, and we appreciate their understanding.
We continue to closely monitor Swine Flu developments and utilize our Influenza Prevention and Response Plans. That plan was developed by our office of Medical and Public Health in coordination with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other health experts. The plan is based on three pillars: Preparedness and Communication; Surveillance and Detection; and Response and Containment.Our Swine Flu activities include:
-- Providing guests with Swine Flu information from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
-- Screening embarking guests and crew members regarding recent visits to, or travel through Mexico, contact with people ill with the Swine Flu, and for recent flu-like symptoms
-- Conducting enhanced sanitizing of all high-touch areas onboard
-- Providing hand sanitizers throughout all ships
-- Asking guests to follow the advice of medical experts regarding the best ways to help prevent the spread of flu and other illnesses - via proper and frequent hand washing, and covering the mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
-- And, if necessary, onboard medical staff can isolate and treat guests or crew members who display flu-like symptoms, using the supply of anti-viral medications kept onboard all ships.
We'll continue to closely follow developments regarding the Swine Flu. Additional information regarding the Swine Flu is available at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website: www.cdc.gov