Norwegian Cruise Line to drop face mask requirements


FILE – In this June 25, 2005, file photo, the cruise liner Norwegian Jewel built at the ship yard Meyer in Papenburg, northern Germany, goes down the river Ems. (AP Photo/Joerg Sarbach, File)

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Norwegian Cruise Line said it will no longer require guests and crew members to wear face masks on board starting March 1, according to the company’s website. 

The cruise line recommends that all guests who are sailing from a U.S. port wear a mask while onboard and indoors. This excludes when guests are actively eating or drinking, seated at a table in a dining setting, or when in their stateroom. 

“Mask coverings are also recommended outdoors when physical distancing of at least six feet cannot be maintained,” Norwegian’s update explains. “The decision to wear a mask covering when onboard is at the discretion of each guest.”

According to the company’s website, when customers are sailing from a European port, guests will be required to wear coverings on board while indoors except when eating or drinking or in their room. 

“Face masks that have two or more layers that completely cover your nose and mouth and fit snugly on your face are permitted. Face masks should block light when held up to bright light source. Masks with exhalation valves or vents; single layer or masks made of thin fabric that don’t block light (i.e. neck gaiters) are not permitted.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s most recent guidance says that, in general, people do not need to wear masks while outdoors. If you are not up-to-date with your COVID-19 vaccines, the CDC encourages wearing a mask while indoors and in public.

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