(3:35 p.m. EDT) -- The European Union has released guidelines for what cruise lines need to do to resume service in their member countries – and while some protocols will be easy for the companies to follow, others could place a heavy burden on the industry.The Healthy Gateways report, released on June 30, offers a glimpse of what cruising will look like in the COVID-19 era.While it is important to know that these are guidelines and not requirements, it's possible that this document could be adopted, in whole or in part, by other government organizations around the world, including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC has yet to issue any sort of formal guidance on the resumption of cruises, even as the industry heads into its fourth month of total shutdown.Some changes, like social distancing and recommended mask wearing, shouldn't come as a surprise. And some of these protocols -- like visible hand washing stations and regular cleaning of public areas -- were already in place on cruise ships prior to the pandemic.Others -- like the recommended elimination of indoor swimming pools and separate activities for cruisers depending on age -- have the potential to radically change the cruise experience.A rundown of what cruisers can possibly expect in the not-so-distant future:
(4:25 p.m. EDT) -- Cruise lines -- and people who love sailing on cruise ships -- greeted the news that lines can begin a phased resumption of service with a sigh of relief, as well as more questions.
The 40-page directive from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is called the "framework for conditional sailing" and outlines the lengthy process that cruise lines must go through to begin taking passengers again.
The requirements put forth by the CDC, such as COVID-19 testing for all passengers and crew at both embarkation and debarkat