A number of cruise lines today, have extended their suspension of sailings.

Royal Caribbean today extended its suspension of sailings to May 12 – the start of what may well be a number of extensions.

“Given global public health circumstances, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. has decided to extend the suspension of sailings of our global fleet,” the line’s Miami headquarters reported in a statement.

“We are working with our guests to address this disruption to their vacations, and we are genuinely sorry for their inconvenience. We are also working with our crew to sort out the issues this decision presents for them.

“We expect to return to service on May 12, 2020. Because of announced port closures, we expect to return to service for Alaska, Canada and New England sailings July 1, 2020.”

P&O Cruises and Carnival Cruise Line have also announced they would be extending the suspension period by 30 days to 15 May 2020.

The line has had to cancel a number of voyages to New Zealand as well as the State of Origin and Taste of Tasmania.

Carnival Cruise Line has also followed suit.

This points out two important issues:

How long lines can continue to hold fully crewed ships ready to sail when most health bodies believe Australia at least will be struggling with a pandemic at its peak in May/June?

And when can sailings sensibly resume with an expectation of passengers.

Costa this week also extended its date to April 30. And Holland America has extended its suspension to June 1, 2020.

“Due to the protracted emergency situation for the global pandemic of COVID-19 and the further introduction of containment measures — such as port closures and restrictions on the movement of people — which do not actually allow us to operate, Costa Cruises has decided to extend the voluntary suspension of its cruises until April 30, 2020.”

But a number of sister brands in the Carnival group still maintain mid-April as the start of sailing.