On a call with travel agents last Thursday, Dondra Ritzenthaler, senior VP of sales, trade support and service at Celebrity Cruises, discussed “the elephant in the room,” according a scoop in the unofficial Royal Caribbean Blog, which is not affiliated with the cruise line. The blog’s founder, Matt Hochberg, was not on the call but obtained an audio recording, which he shared with Forbes.
Apparently, the revised messaging would assert that the cruise terminal will be in Florida, while “as soon as you pass through and step on the ship, you’re no longer considered to be local. You’re now in international waters,” said Ritzenthaler, who noted that DeSantis will still be able to say “that people in Florida will not have to show vaccination proof to go to bars and restaurants and Walmart and Target, but how cruising is a little bit different.”
When asked about the story, DeSantis press secretary Christina Pushaw said in an email that the conversation cited in the Forbes article “didn’t involve anyone from the DeSantis administration and shouldn’t be cited as though it reflects the governor’s position.”
She also said, “As far as I know, the governor’s public statement from Friday still reflects his position on this matter.”
Pushaw then added that the governor “expects a favorable outcome to the mediation with the CDC that will allow cruise ships to operate in Florida under state law (meaning, that vaccine passports wouldn’t be mandated).”
— Forbes (@Forbes) May 30, 2021