Royal Caribbean International is postponing the inaugural sailings of its newest cruise ship after eight crew members received positive coronavirus test results during routine testing.
The Odyssey of the Seas’ initial sailings, which the cruise line had laid out as six- and eight-night Southern and Western Caribbean cruises from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, from July 3 to July 31, are being canceled as a precaution, Royal Caribbean spokesperson Lyan Sierra-Caro told USA TODAY. The launch will be postponed until July 31, when the first sailing with paying passengers is now scheduled to depart. Four sailings were scrapped in total.
A test cruise originally set by the company to leave in late June, though it hadn’t yet received CDC approval to sail, is on track to be rescheduled at a date to be announced, Sierra-Caro said.
Those who had planned to sail “will be notified and given several options to consider,” Royal Caribbean President and CEO Michael Bayley said in a Facebook post.
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All 1,400 crew members on Odyssey were vaccinated on June 4, but the positive cases were found before the vaccines would be considered fully effective June 18.
Of the eight crew members who tested positive, six are asymptomatic and two have mild symptoms. They were quarantined and were…