DeSantis and Norwegian Cruise Line at loggerheads
Following CDC guidelines that cruise lines can set sail only if at least 98 percent of crew members and 95 percent of passengers are fully vaccinated, Miami-based Norwegian Cruise Line is currently in a standoff with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who signed an order forbidding business from mandating proof of COVID-19 inoculations.
It is unclear if the governor can legally enforce such an order.
In response, Norwegian CEO Frank Del Rio, who has pledged 100 percent vaccinations for all crew and guests, threatened to pull the cruise line out of Florida, but said he hopes the matter can be resolved. On an earnings call last week, he said, “[At] the end of the day, cruise ships have motors, propellers and rudders, and god forbid we can’t operate in the state of Florida for whatever reason, then there are other states that we do operate from. And we can operate from the Caribbean for ships that otherwise would’ve gone to Florida. We certainly hope that it doesn’t come to that. Everyone wants to operate out of Florida; it’s a very lucrative market, it’s a close drive market.”