If you’re going on a cruise these days, you’ll probably need to get a pre-departure negative Covid-19 test.

Some cruise lines have dropped the requirement to get a negative test, but most still require one to ensure everyone boarding the ship likely doesn’t have an active infection.

US-based cruise lines are required by the CDC to ensure all of its cruise ship passengers get a negative Covid test before embarkation. Some lines operating in Europe have begun to drop the pre-cruise test, but this is the exception.

Here’s the current list of cruise lines that do not require a pre-cruise Covid test to sail.

P&O Cruises

UK based (and Carnival Corporation owned) P&O Cruises has removed its testing requirement on the Iona ship if guests are fully vaccinated.

This applies to Iona only and for sailings between June 25 to 23 July 23, 2022.

Each of these cruises departs from Southampton and visits Norwegian ports of call.

During this time, any guests considered fully vaccinated will no longer need to purchase or take a lateral flow (antigen) test before boarding the ship.

“As the health protocols for COVID-19 continue to evolve across the world, P&O Cruises will be changing its policy on Iona to remove the pre-departure testing for all guests.”

“You can rest assured that the protection of your health and well-being is, as always, very important to us and we still have a number of protocols in place to help you relax and enjoy your holiday.”

Viking Cruises

Viking Cruises ended its pre-cruise Covid-19 test requirements for all of its ships fleetwide as of June 10, 2022.

The catch is, pre-cruise testing is still required depending on where the ship sails to.

As of June 10, 2022, select ocean voyages on the Viking Orion and expedition voyages on the Viking Octantis in the United States and Canada will continue to require a pre-departure COVID-19 test.

Viking’s vaccine mandates remain in effect for both passengers and crew members.

Cruise lines that require a pre-cruise Covid test

Nearly all cruise lines require a pre-cruise Covid test in order to sail, regardless of vaccination status.

This includes:

  • Carnival Cruise Line
  • Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Disney Cruise Line
  • MSC Cruises
  • Royal Caribbean International
  • Celebrity Cruise Line
  • Princess Cruises
  • Holland America Line

Will more cruise lines drop their pre-cruise test requirement?

Anyone going on a cruise is curious if the pre-cruise test mandate will go away anytime soon, and the answer is maybe.

In June 2022, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) called on the CDC to review the pre-cruise testing rules.

“As the CDC monitors the improving health landscape and works with airlines to support a smooth transition with the lifting of the pre-arrival testing requirement, we believe a review of pre-embarkation testing requirements for cruise travelers is also in order.”

There’s no timeline for if/when that kind of a change may happen.

As the threat of Covid-19 begins to diminish, an end to pre-cruise testing seems logical given that the US dropped a pre-flight covid test requirement for international travel.

For now, all the major cruise lines require a pre-cruise covid test, with the exception of a handful of ships operating in Europe noted earlier in this article.