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Dec 30 (Reuters) – The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said people should avoid traveling on cruise ships regardless of their vaccination status, as daily COVID-19 cases in the country climb to record highs due to the fast-spreading Omicron variant.
The move delivers another blow to an industry that just started returning to the seas in June after a months-long suspension of voyages caused by the pandemic.
The CDC raised its COVID-19 travel health notice level for cruise ships to four – its highest warning level – from three, citing reports of COVID-19 outbreaks on cruises.
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The health agency has investigated or started an investigation into COVID-19 cases on more than 90 ships.
“Even fully vaccinated travelers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants,” the CDC said on Thursday.
Shares in Carnival Corp (CCL.N), Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd (NCLH.N) and Royal Caribbean Group (RCL.N) reversed course after the news to fall between 1% and 2%.
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